Neck deep in heavy, enchanted sleep was I,
skimming on silver tides that dreams found.
A pleasant silence then compelled me,
to aim my ears on the sounds around.
Wish we could have lived in our dreams,
where no vicissitudes of fate can touch us.
The sounds I heard were auditory delicacies –
collectively, the best possible mental stimulus.
I could hear a fragrant breeze blow past,
carrying slyly stolen memories of bygone years.
I could hear the trees stealthily whisper,
and birds responding with ebullient cheers.
I could hear a serpentine stream of water,
meander its way across silky sands.
I could hear the crevices of Earth open,
to nourish all life with benevolent hands.
I could hear delighted children laugh and giggle,
and their playful fantasies happily fulfilled.
I could hear the chorus of a thousand prayers,
thanking heaven’s stones for what they milled.
I could hear the dogs of war snoring,
waiting for peace to break its charm.
But, peace, instead was singing hymns aloud,
ensuring its children stay away from harm.
And then, fittingly, but cruelly I awoke,
only to experience a sinister shock so late.
The vile ironies of fate had consumed me,
using this dreamy sleep as a shrewd bait.
A queer deja vu! And a silence again…
only this time it was chilling to the core.
My ears then burst in crucifying agony,
as the sounds returned to haunt me once more.
I could hear the cannons boldly boom,
paving the way to create new graveyards.
I could hear stilettos chop up bare necks,
and chests being ripped by swords and shards.
I could hear the bloody clang of heavy metals,
and weapons forged with frightening expertise.
I could hear rumbles of an impending catastrophe,
as it awoke from a siesta deep within the seas.
I could hear vultures screeching in the skies,
waiting to sink their teeth into a lifetime’s feast.
I could hear a great havoc muscle out peace,
like some monstrous, unchained, fiendish beast.
I could hear wails of orphaned children –
their parents lost to the juggernaut of strife.
I could hear the empty screams of widows,
struggling to find purpose in a traumatised life.
Dreams are where a wish and a fear meet,
and a battle ensues for cerebral supremacy.
Which side wins, alas! is an oystered mystery,
which leaves us all at night-time’s mercy.
Why such a play of disjoint acoustics exists,
when the actors remain one and the same?
Is it that in our celebrated consciousness,
we kill hopes and make dreams lame?
Don’t we need a reoriented frequency,
on which to lead our nomadic lives upon?
Shouldn’t the sweet sounds of our dreams persist,
when we open our eyes at the break of dawn?
NISHANK MEHTA | 17.04.2008