Niladri demystifies freedom in this verse and exposes its delusions red in tooth and claw.
Freedom is an orgy, it is the burning of an effigy.
Intoxicated fireflies illuminate the Act with their lights of lies.
An idea is made inconspicuous,
Painted by interpretations promiscuous.
Freedom is a whore, it is the wave that doesn’t reach the shore;
We sight it in the horizon, we sight it where twilights meet,
We sight it where fresh fruits are replaced by red meat –
Freedom is only a mirage; what we see is a firefly.
Face painted in black, maquisards of our times are called rebels.
Red is the colour of blood, it is the spilth of war;
But they choose that hue to paint their rue,
Not knowing their Purpose is also marrying that hue.
‘Em totemists attack who they think are capitalists
Only to fatten their gun-makers, the new totalitarianists.
Escaping from the shackles of green leaves,
Fireflies imprison themselves in the prison of thieves.
They have taken bullets, they have understood war;
But they do not know the lesson taught by an old scar.
Like innocent bees ogling a sly nectar, the disguise of a spectre,
Our children happily suckle, ingesting mother’s colostrum
Contaminated with poisons of her blossom’s conundrum.
The past comes back haunting their young brains;
With clots of dark ideas, it clogs their arteries and veins.
The dust of civilisation clogs their throats,
They are fireflies not taught how to make paper boats.
Freedom is of thinking, freedom is of love-making.
Freedom is becoming a slave of Freedom.
These fireflies are the slaves in Her Majesty’s Kingdom.
Catching hold of Time is what can save us;
Idea of going back to the past shall remain a jest
Because Time’s sympathy has faded in our zest.
Our zest was of greed,
To create watersheds between the rivers of our creed.
Time is a firefly, lingering into the abyss of sky –
The same sky who saw her admirers wither.
Only the cratered and teary moon was left to admire;
We disloyal stars stopped shining, blemished by mire.
©Niladri Ranjit Chakraborty
Pix from Net.