Treasure Island

Aniruddha Pathak

(25.05.1941 / Godhra - Gujarat)

The poem and her poet


Death once told poor life defeated by life:
Life's no life if lived on the edge of knife,
No more a struggle, nor is full of strife,
Do ye know how many deaths is Death rife?

Death's all death; the same is not true of life,
Life tries to knot her up snaps when death's knife,
But I've heard a man asking on death bed,
Pray, tell me Death, how long ere I'm all dead?

To him, said death, straightening up his head,
Moments might when look like minutes of dread,
Minutes stretch and stretch into hours, instead,
When hours take days, and days, years, you are dead.

Remember, life's lived moment to moment,
‘Tis measured too in a moving moment,
Forget not: Death alone is permanent,
I dwell in life from birth, live life dormant;

There's no freedom in life, nor should death call,
Death changes but the bricks of prison wall,
All quarrels ‘tween life and death, big and small,
Settled are, death when proves him far too tall.

Life is a small piece, but a paragraph
Of my poem, said Death, metre nor measure but in half,
Life may decide every new beginning,
But ‘tis me that knows the length, knows ending.

Eons pass sans measure for endless time,
While no clocks tick, nor dare their hours to chime,
Boulders of rocks break down whilst time stands still,
O grinding into grains of sands sans will.

While life is stuck with my poem's first rhyme,
Death challenged life to dare the worst she can,
I'm the Absolute trouser wearing man1,
I wonder how relative would tick time!
_____________________________________________ ___________
1. Death muses himself to be the male principle, the purusha.
The poem stands for life and prakriti. The piece here depicts
a dialogue between Life, or the matter, the poem and her
creator poet, the Death. In Indic philosophy, purusha is the
presiding deity, the atman or soul, which is eternal and body
is made of prakriti, the material nature, which is death-bound.
_____________________________________________ __________________
- Musings | 12.08.12 |

Submitted: Wednesday, October 17, 2012

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