Santosh Bakaya

I was on a luxurious ship, fascinated by its tantalizing aura.  
There was an interplay between darkness and light. 
Now and then, a soft tender breeze caressed my cheek.  
Suddenly darkness had the upper hand, and it closed in; 
there was a cacophonous din. 

A vicious gale followed. Was it my imagination 
or was the ship really plunging and jerking? 
Was calamity lurking in some corner?
Shreds of morose whimpering fell into my ears. 
Was some malevolent monster stoking my fears? 
Clawing away at the tapestry of peace?
“Save us! Save us.” Frantic folks flailed their arms, 
pleading, beseeching, fearful. 
Was all a reflection of my inner turmoil, 
a snake uncoiling, coiling, blood boiling. 
Peace torn asunder. 
Realization dawned. Someone was mocking 
me for my vulnerabilities; knocking me off my sensibilities. 

Ah, the Darkness vanished. The light fell on my scars.
It was bizarre, but where were the stars? 


While the bedraggled six year old, 
hunted for the lost marble eye of her rag- tag doll,
her crestfallen father, pale, tear- streaked, 
frantically hunted for his missing wife  
under the debris of shattered buildings. 
He looked up for succor, but could see only drones. 
Hear only drones, rumbling sinister messages. Wrathful. 
In the din, his pleas and moans got drowned. 
He slumped on the ground, but, with a firm resolve,
soon got up and with leaden steps, queued up for food. 
You cannot hunt for your loved ones on empty stomachs, can you? 
An army truck with rocket launchers rumbled through the lanes. 
In a scene of stunning surreality, 
bruised, battered and bloodied peace could be seen scurrying away, 
tears trickling down its cratered cheeks.  
Death, standing akimbo, flaunted its muscles, 
guffawing over the plight of a haunted town,
missile paths, wrecked buildings and drone bases.  
A jet roared overhead; a scared husband, looked 
at his heavily pregnant wife, and helplessly beat his forehead.

Dr. Santosh Bakaya is a poet, essayist, novelist, biographer, TEDx speaker and has written twenty three books across different genre. Ballad of Bapu, and Only in Darkness can you see the Stars [Biography of Martin Luther King Jr] have won international acclaim. “What is the Meter of the Dictionary?” is her latest solo book of poetry. She has won awards like the Reuel International Award [Poetry, 2014], Setu Award for ‘stellar contribution to world literature’ [2018] and Eunice D’Souza Award, 2023(WE Literary Community)

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