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Lengthening Shadows

Reclining in my armchair,
My eyes wandered to the horizon far
And saw darkness invading the Earth
Lost, so lost in the marauding loneliness
I watched the shadows of evening
Thickening around me and spreading a pall

I heard the rustle of wings
In the distant air
Is it a vulture or some other bird of prey?
Hovering over in circling motion?
With talons sharp and a malicious gaze,
To hook me on its piercing claws,
And carry me to destinations unknown?

My thoughts slipped to forgotten graves
Where the dead remain anonymous as dust,
And sleep dreamless through the years,
Where the wind whistles through the heap of bones,
Where the weeds silently shed their tears,
Where silence sits brooding to hatch gloom,
Where inscriptions moulder on the memorial tablets,
Where ivy twines round fallen columns

This is the empire of the forgotten souls!
The dark shadowy palace where all shall enter,
When the curtain falls over our little lives
And the farce of life comes to its close.
This is the only place,
Where one is not entitled to stand in queue
Or vie with one another to overtake.

Here, Death sits on his imperial throne
Mocking at the relics of human glory
Zealous with the task of clearing out the old
To make way for the new
As Time silently turns over its pages
The idols of today upturn the heroes of yesterday
From pedestals of glory to be supplanted,
By the successors of tomorrow.
Here each age is a volume closed down,
To be cast aside and eventually forgotten,
Or locked forever in the annals of history

Reclining in my armchair,
Brooding in gloom,
On this twilight evening,
When shadows lengthen,
And the day darkens,
What made me think of forgotten graves?
Or led me to meditate over fleeting time?
May be the thought of tottering over the brink….!

But pardon me of my selfish craving
Let me stay here a little longer!

Submitted: Sunday, July 07, 2013
Edited: Monday, September 02, 2013


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Comments about this poem (A Journey to Bethlehem by Valsa George )

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  • Patricia Grantham (7/28/2013 6:14:00 PM)

    This is a very thought provoking write Valsa. Death or the thought of dying
    is a topic that hardly no one wants to discuss. This is an event that must
    happen to all no matter what race, creed, religion or color. Death is the
    great leveler of humanity but Jesus Christ has conquered it. Great write.

    0 person liked.
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  • Hazel Durham (7/14/2013 12:53:00 PM)

    As the shadows lengthen your wandering thoughts goes to the forgotten graves, lost souls and the cycle of life in with the new out with the old. You capture with such clarity the mysteries of when the curtain falls and we bow
    out gracefully we hope.
    I'm enthralled by the superb quality of your writing! !

  • Bobby Wynn (7/12/2013 8:30:00 AM)

    Thanks. What a great way to take a trip and never leave the farm

  • Anthony Di''anno (7/12/2013 4:40:00 AM)

    A reflection upon mortality. Whispered into the restless winds of known unknowns.
    I am pleased that you prefer to linger :)

  • Heather Wilkins (7/10/2013 9:28:00 AM)

    let me stay here a little longer. nice thought and poem

  • Shahzia Batool (7/10/2013 2:56:00 AM)

    It is said everybody wishes to go to Heaven, but everybody is never in a hurry to go to Heaven, this is how we humans think...Life rules strongly, only when it weakens, then the death gets a chance to overpower...desiring to live a long and normal life is also a kind of worship as life is a gift of God - He likes us to cherish it...
    the poem is a complete poetic piece, capturing the poet's brooding moments...the last 2 lines make the poem a natural human thought!

  • Dinesh Nair (7/9/2013 8:34:00 AM)

    Your craving is an innocent one! But as you wish to stay here a little longer, all these mental exercises turn out to be the luxury of a fantasy that has ever transported the craving poets unto a world lost between hope and dejection.
    It is nice to live a longer life while celebrating the concept of death, the greatest leveler.
    While reclining in the armchair next time, please spare the vulture which is enlisted as a species facing extinction. We poets have to train some other birds how to eat corpses! A thoroughly enjoyable write dear Valsa....

  • Danny Draper (7/8/2013 4:47:00 PM)

    Maybe the pondering is succession planning with the harsh realization of our place in history, if remembered at all.

  • Tirupathi Chandrupatla (7/8/2013 11:00:00 AM)

    Thoughts go wild. Meditating over fleeting time is a natural phenomenon. Your conclusion is very appropriate - let us stay here a little longer and make the stay memorable. Thank your for a thought provoking poem.

  • David Wood (7/8/2013 5:19:00 AM)

    Here, Death sits on his imperial throne, what powerful words to this powerful poem.

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