Life a short span betwixt two deaths
A king once dreamt a pre-dawn weird dream
A notice from Yama, the Lord of Death:
Along morrows setting sun you shall die;
Dawns half dreams come true, thought he waking up.
Worried, he weighed for long: how death to beat,
But knowing naught, summoned his minister;
The sole escape: beat a hasty retreat
From Death on wings of a flying stallion,
Leave Death behind trailing too far and tired,
Beat too the setting sun, let none oertake.
Feeling assured, he thanked his wise vazeer;
What strange things people do to escape death!
Which, but a tax is tithe for new bodies,
New garments as Bhagavad-Gita doth say,
But we do strange things to evade tithe too,
Kings and commoners alike are in this.
Taking a windy horse he tore off far
Racing, feeling fatigue, hunger nor thirst,
Yon of his lands border in balmy woods,
Dripping wet with sweat, horse foaming in mouth;
The sun was nigh close to but not yet set.
Triumphant at last, he reined in his horse
Under a huge banyan tree, catching breath,
Hoping for him and horse heavens-hailed rest,
Patting its back, grateful hand on its head,
Bravo my boy, ah, weve beaten them both
Death and Time bothand more, ah, saved my life,
I care for none, Time nor that evil Death,
The twain must have been shaken in their faith.
Not yet, he felt a heavy hand on back,
Not shaken in faith, worried sure I was
If you would reach here ere the day dies out,
But your horse sure deserves richest of praise,
It brought you to Death to die destined death.
This early dawn I was well nigh worried,
If you could reach my chosen place of death,
The reason I had to be in your dream.
Death does not come to man, time is when right,
Its man that comes, as if drawn to the site.
Just as a new dawn dawns, like a fresh spring,
The dusk of old age is writ, death and drain,
And ever since life gets spent manoeuvring
Escapade as if all day but in vain!
To escape from inevitable death,
Some seek wealth and some health, some name and fame,
But time and death triumph oer all the same,
Fame is like footprints on the sands of time,
Come dusk and tide, naught is saved to rhyme,
The book of eternitys a print-less page,
It carries to the end a blank image,
Death from all things born draws an equal faith.
The church bells toll; ask not for whom and why,
They toll for everyone, now or near nigh,
And what is Death but a whim of ones mind?
Life lives betwixt of two deaths: fore and hind.
The story of escape from death is unfolded in blank verse.
The poem is loosely metered in iambic pentameter. Towards
the end depicting the truth of death, the poem shifts to
rhymed lines. Perhaps, the truth of death always rhymes!
- Musings | 02.10.12 |
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