Venkateswaran Krishnan Sreenivasan

(JULY 14,1935 / ERNAKULAM, KERALA, INDIA)

A moth eaten book


A moth eaten book ravaged by age
With letters erased from many a page
Crumbling under the fingers into dust
Leaving no clue to its glory first

Was he a king whose sway of the sword
Brought his subjects to obey his word
Or was he his general who lost his war
And laid down his life at the feet of his tsar

Was he a saint whose gospels ruled the world
And his disciples adored and heard
Or a scholar who by his rhetoric cheered the crowd
Of his listeners who did him proud

Was he a statesman who lived in state
And left his progeny a huge estate
Or a philosopher who theorized on the sense
Of the hungry man shorn of his sense

Was he a criminal who thrived by hate
Ignorant of his own fate
Or a physician who viewed his patient as a whole
And ministered also to his soul

A teacher who could not effectively teach
Many of his pupils beyond his reach
Or an actor who lived on the stage
And played his role with all the rage

Every life on earth reflects the sheen
Of godly presence beneath its mien
Aging dims the glow by disuse
And everything ends leaving a haze

Submitted: Tuesday, October 22, 2013
Edited: Wednesday, October 23, 2013

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