I was on my way back from office when we passed a house under construction. Unexpectedly, the first thought that struck me was that 'here stands someone's dreams' in the making. The subtle delight and sense of satisfaction and pride that comes when a dream is on its way of coming true was palpable in that incomplete abode.
But the joy was shortlived as I remembered the tragedy of countless homes and buildings that were gutted during the Latur earthquake in 1993, the tsunami in 2004 that was caused by an earthquake in the Indian Ocean, and for that matter even the attack that demolished the World Trade Center in 2001. All that was material and physical including the property, human lives, money was accounted for, but all that was implicit was lost. All the dreams woven inside the bricks, the pillars, the steel bars, the walls, the rooms, the homes, and the offices, were broken and lost forever.
Here is my tribute to this huge disembodied loss.
A dusty curtain slowly lifts,
threatens to reveal the breathing mass,
Every single pebble of which,
is still alive with broken dreams.
Each red brick lies shattered,
aware that it has fallen short,
of the worthy task bestowed,
on it by a million human souls.
Every slab of cement regrets
all it couldn't hold together.
No matter how hard it tried,
the shuddering earth took apart.
The majestic tower stood proud
minutes before this cataclysm
brought it down on its knees
and into the ground, head first.
With it died a million songs,
a million smiles, a million tears,
Countless dreams, unfulfilled hopes
and wishes of a happy life.
One by one each little pebble,
breaths its last without a sigh
too sad to cry out loud in pain,
it closes its bruised eyes forever.