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Posts Tagged ‘agony’

I hear them screaming through

the sound of falling and splashing

and stumbling down staircases.

Of mangled steel twisting glass

and concrete skins ripping away

from the building’s skeleton.

 

I hear the slithery rush of jet fuel

scrambling down chases and elevators

at first and second impact, the aftershock.

Igniting fireballs through the hallway.

Explosions rocked the foundations

trembling in little earthquakes.

 

I hear the mad stampede roar.

I hear the panic bars unlatch.

Then the cacophony of sirens,

the tolling of alarm bells,

the symphony of shock,

the avalanche of horror,

the carnage of the missing,

and the agony of the trapped.

 

I hear them- peoples of the world,

helpless among the tangled mess

of floor slabs toppled like a deck of cards.

The gradual weakening of their hearts,

the whispers in pain, the unison in prayer.

The slow fragile breaths silently eroding

and extinguished like wisps from a candle.

 

I hear the distant cries of children

who lost their fathers and mothers.

The anguish of fathers and mothers

losing their children in the rubbles.

The lamentations of men and women

losing their wives, their husbands,

their brothers and their sisters.

 

I hear them all within the sound of the water

trickling down over the polished slabs of stones.

I hear them while I listen in the reading,

of engraved names whose innocent fates

were like the powdery dusts in mid-air

frozen, suspended, undiminished in time.

 

I hear the grieving sighs. The silent tears.

The ashes of remembrance, the memory.

The extraordinary day when the world

will never forget the ground zero.

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The earth became

a lacerated vision

of shallow heaven,

after the rain. T’was

a parting time,

a moment lost

when the big sky

agonizes over

the summer sun.

 

And how the  bamboo trees

sadly waving goodbye.

And the monsoon winds

blew gently,

creating ripples,

mirrored patches

and misty glimpses.

A sea of blue.

 

It was all-

in the photograph

capturing puddles

reflecting clouds

travelling by.

It was all-

that I keep

as a remembrance,

of a big sky

hoping for the sun.

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Sylvia, you struggled with the night, they don’t see you.  And the madness you have kept along since your youth, stand watch to the agony of your desire, I feel you, even if Ted fades away. They seem to like you and your outbursts of anger, unmindful of the things you are so capable of destroying; your fragility, your womanhood.  They had made you as faceless like girls of Kabul wearing burqa. 

But I must admit, Sylvia, that beyond with your innocence, beyond with the frailty and your true self repressed by layers and layers of hate and uncertainties, you will rise like a phoenix redeeming its immortality.  Like a golden lotus emerging from the fiery flames, and a thousand death might come but it will never win its argument against your indomitable spirit. Yet Sylvia, you left the world with a scar that won’t heal in time, putting a strong voice to silence unheard of, in decades past.

Have you ever met Frida Kahlo? Your fate runs almost parallel to hers and through your gift of art, the pangs of pain are shifted through the bittersweet beauty of your words, though they say it was staid and conventional.  But I don’t believe them.  Yours an endless laughter like the one you made with Ted when you first met him at the party in Cambridge. Yours a happiness since the first time you have published “The Colossus”.

How could you keep as perfectly as it was to squeeze in the time breathing life to a poetry waiting there at the dining table and lay you sleepless in the night?  How could you tear yourself apart open and shed the light withholding nothing and the truthfulness of the turmoil you’re going through?  The days that lingers almost unbearable, in between the soiled dishes in the sink, in the soapy suds of the dirty linen and in the keeping of your children who are innocent of the struggles your dealing with Ted. 

In the night, that you have sealed the doors by wet rags, have you thought of just keeping on, pressing on- to deal with your pervading loneliness and disillusion? When you precisely turned on the ignition of the cooker, as you inhale the gas, Sylvia, did you think of finally  avenging your fractured self against Ted?  Of how your  jealousy could have made you insanely and sweetly surrendering to impending death?  How intense is your longing for Ted to reconcile with you, knowing that he is just a man, and you are so afraid of losing him?

Sylvia, if you only have known that after forty years have past since your death, your son Nicholas might have taken his life, too; maybe because he might be carrying the gravity of questions left unanswered since the day you died.  Would you keep on existing? Would you be strong enough to let go of Ted and spend the rest of your lifetime for your children? And see them of what they have become in the twilight of your years?

But the time has run out.  And you have to choose between life and death.  But you chose the latter. Sylvia, you have chosen to end the sad stories in your life, cutting away Ted and his chains around you.  You have chosen freedom.

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I was on my way to a restaurant that late afternoon to meet a friend, hurrying and my mind was filled with gloomy thoughts. My mind just wandered aimlessly, battling inner fears. 

Rebel as I was, it seems that I am all wearied and fighting against the world, crushed in the agony of my self-defeat- I succumbed into powerlessness.  I have met a familiar darkness of my soul once again. In such a long time.

I am depressed that day.  Defeated by reason. I am filled with anger emblazoned across my face.  That day- I am not the usual masquerading, self-hiding chameleon in the cloak of coolness and charm.  I am likened to a ticking bomb.

I have questions.  And lots of them.  As endless as the broken road markings. My combatant nature would never accept any kind word- even from the most endearing. That was one time I had feared myself the most- who is capable of hurting myself.  Like a jagged knife ready to cut the ventricles of humanity in me.

Somewhere,  in a sudden mysterious way, I heard a helpless chirp.  I stopped and started searching the source  by my side.   And I have found a little bird, that has fallen from a bird’s nest from the nearby palm tree and landed on the ground.  It is too early for the little bird to take flight.  My hardened composure melts gradually into a compassionate being.  How on earth, this hapless sight would pour a cold, cold ice to my raging soul?

Then suddenly, out of nowhere, a stray cat emerged. Prowling as if it is finding something to devour.  In my quick thinking, I immediately snatched the little bird from the ground, rescuing it from danger. From harm and from the claws of the enemy-  so vicious and lethal.

Just when I thought, that what  I did, is the right one, I felt a sudden pain.  A stinging one.  The little bird had bitten me.  Surprised as I was, I accidentally dropped the bird away farther  into the ground. Then the next thing I heard is a scuffle in the bushes until the hopeless chirping stopped.

I am overwhelmed.  I just stand there and was filled with a sudden grief.  I can’t believe that life has been snatched away from my very hands.  The life of a fragile creature. A tragic lost.  Tears quietly streamed down my face until it became flood as pent-up emotions surged and overpowered my anger like a dam  breached loose.

That moment, I wonder,  how vivid  this circumstance made my soul saved from drowning and wallowing in despair?  My life, I learned, can be like the hopeless little bird, compared to a  child out of God’s hand.  How powerful can God teach me a great lesson, a stiff-necked person as I am, who never learned from His admonishing?   The questions that I have over-analyzed  for years has crumbled under the weight of God’s wisdom which is mightier than what I can comprehend.

Like a prodigal son who came back to his father’s arm, I did the same coming home to what God has purposed me to belong.  With the lesson of that hopeless little bird, I just knew that my life on earth rest only on His hands.  All I needed to do is to have an unwavering faith and complete trust on Him.  And God has impressed to me to stay in His dwelling place as long as I live.

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I prepared a meal tonight

for two-

 

forgive me

If I burn the dinner.

Just don’t know how

to hold the pan.

 

I wage a battle.

And I am afraid

of the flames,

and the sound

of the oil

furiously

expelling water.

 

I waited for you

till two-

 

forgive me

If that is all I have to do.

Just don’t know how

to hold your time.

 

I braved through agony.

And I am afraid

of the thoughts,

and the images

of the empty plate

silently

collecting dust.

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Let me sail away

from this cares and doubts.

All I have

is my mind leaving

miles away, free…

When the hammock sways,

I remember images

unadulterated pure shores

silently rushing in on me.

And till I shut out

the windows of my tired mind,

I see the crystal light

fanning flames out of me.

I think of happy thoughts,

of ruffling leaves, dancing

in the distance.

Oh, that clearness

is an opium

that pacifies my soul beneath

the layers of agony.

From there, you happiness

comes. You come at my mercy.

And in each sways

of my hammock

lulls me to sleep

and dreaming dreams.

Note: This was written on March 10, 2002.  This is a vivid memory of my summer spent by the sea in a week.  I was writing this while I am on a hammock under an umbrella tree with the view of the open sea. This is the time as if the world has stopped revolving in a day.

I left it as unedited version to keep the sanctity and the spirit of that moment. A very pure moment.

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