Wednesday, April 19, 2006

In response to Peter's 'an SMS poem'

How easily we clear the clutter
from our lives today
Touch buttons to eject
people, words, memories, messages.
I'm still desperately searching
for the Erase command on my heart
in this new model of Me
that has limited card space

Friday, April 07, 2006

The other deaths

My neice said,
What should I do
when people say,
"I'm sorry about your grandmother.
I'm sorry she died"?
And I gently gave her
a choice of stock answers
that may help her get by.

These are easy, I wanted to say
There are other deaths
that could freeze your words
and chill your heart.

Slowly they all died -
and Didi and Papaji and Nanima
and friends and relatives
and friends' relatives,
and strangers in global disasters.
The rituals of these deaths
are familiar now
and I have learned to order my grief,
mumble the right words, even
think the right thoughts to carry on
with or without the Alprax
and Bach flower remedies.

These are almost easy,I want to say.
There are other deaths
that chill my heart
and freeze my words.

What rituals should I follow
when friendship and trust die?
How accept the drowning
of civil dialogue;
the death of freedom and conviction,
of belief and human faith,
of compassion and love
What prayers should I perform?
How bury or cremate
my innocence and illusions?

What shall I say,
I want to ask my niece,
when people say
"I'm sorry about your friendship.
I'm sorry it died"?