Gandhi (Gandhian Philosophy)

Nandini Sahu

Sometimes I ponder
that my country’s limbs 
are crushed down somewhere 
in the busy traffic of a metro 
while freedom hides with shame
in its sixty-fifth year 
under the bed of the battered baby
deserted by parents, unknown,
in the trauma centre of AIIMS, New Delhi, India.
“Average three infants deserted daily
in the capital”—reports
the daily newspaper.

My fingers nimble
by the cold wind. 
Bruises everywhere
in the hurt air. 

Here, molested children 
and abandoned old parents 
prize their freedom 
in wakeful dreams.
silently smile.
I scream inward 
to refurbish the old world. 
The sun is a falling rock. 

Sometimes I wonder
why my country’s limbs
are crushed down somewhere
in the false assurances
of power and failure
and in the fate of the girl
Gang-raped in a bus
by aged men and a minor
her silent death in a 
hospital, afar, stir
the depths of our rage.
I look at freedom in the eye,
freedom, the dry drone of
just a ritual.

In my ignorance, I wish 
to end this season 
the chaotic drum beats freeze around me
turning into twister pillars. 
Each hour, each second 
pass through my waiting veins 
like the shadow of a triumphal arch. 

I try to understand the only freedom 
I discern 
the freedom of the womb
and the  freedom of the ashes. 
Freedom hides somewhere in the contours of my
Country’s body, alien. 

Delhi, 10 a.m.,Winter

Did you hear it right?
It’s 10 a.m., January, Delhi. 
Hitherto, no light.
The sun is earnest and quiet.
The mist hangs heavy overhead.
Chandni Chowk is fighting
with seclusion; a man with
hands in his heavy coat pockets
whistles a tune to battle the chill.
No listeners out there.
Vaishnava jana to tene kahiye…
An old man, a freedom fighter, may be,
takes a proud walk in Rajghat
his teenage granddaughter prefers
Lady Gaga on her i-pod
waiting for grandpa in the car.
Vaishnava janato playing in Rajghat.
No listeners out there.
Delhi, the city of mosques and minarets,
the city of war and peace, stands still
at 10 a.m. It’s still a little shadowy in its own right.
Did you hear it right?
January, Delhi, 10 a.m., a tender delight. 

Bio: Prof. Nandini Sahu, Amazon’s best-selling author 2022, Professor of English and
Former Director, School of Foreign Languages, IGNOU, New Delhi, India, is an
established Indian English poet, creative writer and folklorist. She is the author/editor of twenty books. She is the recipient of the Literary Award/Gold Medal from the hon’ble Vice President of India for her contribution to English Studies. Her areas of research interest cover New Literatures, Critical Theory, Folklore and Culture Studies, Children’s Literature and American Literature. Currently she is designing an MA programme in Indian Knowledge Systems which are inclined to comparative Indian literatures and cultures as well as Hindu Studies.

No comments :

Post a Comment

We welcome your comments related to the article and the topic being discussed. We expect the comments to be courteous, and respectful of the author and other commenters. Setu reserves the right to moderate, remove or reject comments that contain foul language, insult, hatred, personal information or indicate bad intention. The views expressed in comments reflect those of the commenter, not the official views of the Setu editorial board. प्रकाशित रचना से सम्बंधित शालीन सम्वाद का स्वागत है।