Shaukat Ajmeri

On the wings of hope

2-minute read

Why would one write poetry, I don’t know. Why would one write anything at all, I don’t know. This much I know that we humans are a creative bunch. We create things, invent things. We just can’t help it. Without this innate, ancient urge to create I wonder where would we be today. But then, with the creative yin comes the destructive yang. Our amazing creative talent is balanced by our instinct for awful destruction. Between these two opposites, this duality, resides the secret of our visible universe.

But I digress. Here is a poem – rather an expression of random thoughts and images that have been playing on my mind for the past few days. I’ve attempted to give them a coherent shape, or so I would like to think. Here goes…

On the wings of hope

Round and round the heavens swirl
Spreading marvels in countless hues
The heart cries a silent sob
Of wonder, of terror, of awe
At the utter beauty of this night
Oh to be alive, to be human
To breathe a breath that comes
From the darkness of time
Bearing bouquets of love and pain
Of failed hopes, of endless seeking
Oh the tyranny of the unknown

To ancient rhythms the heart still beats
To what end no one knows
A nameless love lingers
In the shadows of everyday life
When everything is said and done
Emptiness remains
Prisoner to words and meanings
On this day of Sabbath
Free spirits have lost their minds
Come, bring your gods along
Let’s drink to their eternity and
Snatch the secrets from their hearts
Then in the circus of unreason
Religion will be the clown
But don’t be too quick to laugh
New messiahs wait in the wings

Meet me beneath the scented cedars
By the pond where lotuses grow
We’ll walk on a path to nowhere
Away from the straight and narrow
In the symphony of distant stars
Under a low hanging moon
We’ll dance like mad lovers
To the music of our souls
You and me, me and you
Whirling, turning, merging
Into one body, one being
Here, on the threshold of
Sacred and profane we’ll
Un-name all that is named
One by one, thing by thing
Unlock the mysteries and
Free the Word from the Book
And rescue meaning from
Prophets and priests

When the music stops and feet are tired
We’ll rest under a nameless sky
Among the ruins of shattered certainties
Caressed by the slanting rays of a moist dawn
We’ll close our eyes in silent gratitude and
Fly prayers on the wings of hope