Consequences of a Death

(I)

Something unusual happened today,
Clouds came together to form funeral beds in the sky.
I have never seen a cloud behave like this,
Wearing a shape which graveyards haven’t defined either
Nor have the birds when they sit on stones,
Or the graveman digging holes in the night

(I could die to watch them sleep,
But then again how could I see them?)

Souls don’t get to see how much they weigh,
Or how much weight they carry on their shoulders
Could you tell me why clouds didn’t form river beds,
When rivers cried so much to pull our hearts closer?
Why then did the flower beds remain unseen
When flowers shrivelled to give the leaves their own space?

Maybe the funeral wasn’t for the soul that stayed close with us,
Maybe the funeral beds came together to form clouds in the sky.

(II)

Patrika,
The local newspaper in Allahabad
Announces an obituary today –
A picture that makes my grandmother
Look like she died young.

How one forgets to attend to the water
And then tries to remove seaweeds
That change its colour
That grow and wither
With it.

(III)

Grandfather,

When I look at gulmohar,
basking in the warm winter sun,
I think of you

I think of sweaters and woollen caps,
sewn socks and blankets,
spread in the lawns,
green as heaven would fall
at the feet of their beauty,
and soft as gods would brisk walk
and visit soon
like writers on residencies,
obsessively yearning to finally see
their dreams come true.

When I look at shadows
dancing in the moonlight,
too present in the moment
but too quiet to be seen,
I think of you

How naturally you shrink sometimes,
on nights like these,
to be alone.

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