Poetry by Sudhanshu Bhandari

Dark Forebodings in a Moon-lit Night

Sudhanshu Bhandari
The moon-lit night illuminates,
The narrow, dusty alleys of a decadent city;
And strange criss-crossing shadows;
Foretell to me my own destiny.

Life in all its majesty, vulgarity and misery
In which my past pervades my soul like eternity;
I gaze outwards across space and time,
Inwards this realization of a misfit; this anomie.

I traverse for many a mile in sleepy oblivion;
I pass through a dim-lit city, a dead-end city;
This city with a bustling million, a sleeping million;
This pulsating city of puppet-like humanity.

The night slowly creeps around me;
The chirpings of insects and nocturnal birds fill the void around me;
It makes me ponder that Nature, perhaps, needs no sleep;
For it is only we who need this balm to forget our own created misery.

The realisation that Life has its moments with no one to turn to;
Where words of commiseration, expressions of friendship and empathy
Have no meaning; in me the ramblings of a tortured mind arise;
where one is marooned with no chance of rescue. 


Success is like wine, the more you get, the more it whets your appetite;
The more your thirst gets quenched, the more you require for the same level of satisfaction,
Till you stand alone on the summit of your hubris;
Sans love, companionship, sans everything.

The higher you reach, the lonelier you get till;
Perched above, you look below at others with condescension;
For they are the laggards, under-achievers and misfits of the world;
Whilst you are the 'Self-made' man; creator of your own destiny.

Success then like an albatross around your neck;
Transforms you from a good-luck charm to a damning curse;
In a sad irony of fate, the most successful persons are also the most       
lonesome ones on the planet;

Outwardly smug, self-assured and enveloped by a mirage;
Yet, inwardly, so fragile, miserable and oppressed.

Like the pantomime artist clowning about in the circus;
Who makes all those around him feel as if he is the happiest guy in town ;
hiding within him his pain, tears and sorrow
beneath a veneer of paint, make-up and mascara.

The achievers too beneath their pretentious world of make-belief
have their subterranean stories of pathos;
 running in caverns dark and deep.

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