I write this
to that enthusiastic archaeologist who shall
one day stumble upon these ruins.
As you diligently dust off time from the
remnants of this city one day, it’s crumbling veneers
may not be truthful enough with you. For they
may let you in on only half the tale.
may brag about the glory that
once lit up this town. Willing only to
reveal shades of preserved affluence studded
through its collapsing vestiges.
So if half-truths don’t kill your curiosity,
I urge you to listen closely to the silence
of these ruins, for it is lush with stories.
Place your ears
next to the friable walls before they fall
in a heap too. For they will let out the screams,
that remain frozen inside, for death came
unexpectedly that night, to those who lived
there, depriving them of a chance, to let out a shriek.
Walk a mile
or two, through the dusty lanes of these ruins.
Be warned though as you take this stroll
you may run out of breath, for you walk through curdled
blood. Blood, when it was not stale, was
callously cut loose from throbbing veins.
Dripped in the agony of helpless parents,
As you wander
through the ruins, they may haunt you too. Itching
to befriend you and share the darkest of all
There are half-told lullabies that echo
through these ruins each night.
Told a long time ago by a father to his kids,
hoping they would fall asleep,
before death knocked that night.
So, one day as you sit next to these ruins,
brushing away the dust off them,
be gentle with your strokes,
for these ruins hide wounds
that continue to simmer under the scabs.
Sanam Sharma is a writer of Indian origin, residing in Melbourne, Australia. He has authored two poetry collections: ‘Tamed Words’ (Authors Press, India) and an e-book of short poems: ‘Molten Eternities’ (Amazon). Sanam also blogs on Huffington Post, India. (http://www.huffingtonpost.in/bloggers/sanam-sharma/)