War and Peace

We who have not fought
are not your good sons, oh life
though we always tried
we tried to shrink the scope of war
for just a meal and a worn out quilt
we kept on weaving something like peace
in the strings of pridelessness
we kept regarding the years as age
years that kept stabbing our bodies
when each moment kept thundering
like a fierce opponent
hiding in a chest
we kept on avoiding the war

wishing to avoid the war
we belittled ourselves
retired father just became useless old man for us
and ever-worried wife appeared like a witch
there were always signs of bankruptcy
we dared not to look into the eyes
of innocent daughters
we remained fearful of converting
the hiding places into bunkers

fear, at times grew on us like slavery
fear at times adorned our heads in guise of turbans
fear at times bloomed in minds as aesthetics
fear at times grabbed our souls as gentleness
fear at times tickled out of lips like a gossip
we who have not fought, oh life
are your utterly deceptive sons

our wish to avoid war
has thrown us flat on the ground
the peace for which we kept crowding
kept tickling the taste buds of wolves...
peace is nowhere
its all about the howling of the jackals inside us
peace is just fantasy of life
while sitting in morose defensive posture..
there is nothing called peace
its all about hiding in a roadside ditch
upon spotting an underground comrade
peace is nowhere
its all about the fear of thundering war cries
and finding music from our howls
there is no peace anywhere else

wasted crops for want of irrigation
trembling villages under the burden of bank loans
and stretched out arms for peace,
is the meanest joke of our era

peace is the wound caused by broken bangle
peace is the wild laughter
behind the doors of infamous mansions
peace is the hapless cry
of the insulted wise beards
peace is nothing else
peace is the rifle of the sentry
guarding the border between happiness and sorrows
peace is the chopped arm
of the poets accepting royal honours
peace is the shine of the white attire of ministers
peace is nothing else...
or peace is Gandhi’s loin cloth
which can be used to hang a billion people
asking for peace means
fighting a war at meanest level
peace is no where

we are just lonely without war
we get drained off while running away from ourselves
just limited without war
we get finished within arm’s length
without war, we are not friends
we only survive on pseudo emotions

war will provide
toys to our children
war will bring
beautiful embroidery designs for our sisters
war will descend as
milk in our wives’ breasts
war will become
spectacles for the ageing mother
war will blossom as
flower on the graves of our forefathers

time has since long been
like an untamed horse
which has dragged us far away from life
nothing but war will control this horse
only war will control this horse

Translation by Dr. Lok Raj