Pradip Chattopadhyay (28.01.1961 / Kolkata)
The Shadow on the Window
Her dark silhouette moved beyond the grilled window
Was she a living woman, an apparition, or a shadow?
In the evening sitting there her head bowed low
I loved to think of her a ghost on the window.
That house from ours was within a stone’s throw
At that time looked remote now only I know.
Her hands they always moved what she was up to
Was she knitting corpses’ shroud I had little clue.
Don’t look at her, mom would say, stay away from her
Her words ran me down the window didn’t seem far.
Quickly I shut my eyes there was no way I could dare
To ignore mom’s caution and had her in my stare.
I went back to my homework not that I much willed
But lessons had to be learnt pages had to be filled.
I heard ghosts could pass through wall anyplace they could be
What if she had stopped her work and come looking for me?
I sat frozen in benumbed fear my courage they all fled
For courage would be of no use when dealing with the dead.
I wasn’t safe alone cried out 'mom' to find her I frightfully ran
Passed by the house the grilled window but there wasn’t a woman.
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