When Did You Fathom This / Poem by Ayub Khawar

Poem by Ayub Khawar


When Did You Fathom This

Just at a hand’s distance
From the pores of the sky
Countless stars descend
On the mud and concrete roofs,
Straw beds and pillows made from slumber
Eyes full with sleep
Glitter in the constellation of stars.

When did you see,
In the streets
On the roof tops
Of dust coloured settlements,
How the cluster of stars comes down,
From the unseen stairs of blackness
Tiptoeing around the cots
Like secrets moving,
Like the breath moves on the
Chest of snober.

Have you ever desired
To come out of dim light lantern
Lift your heels
And reach out for stars
And fill your bag.

We used to do this
Lift our heels
And fill a bulk of stars
In our shirts,
The one whose shirt would rip apart
Stars would laugh.

Yes, but you would
With dazed eyes
Be watching
Cluster of stars,
You must be wondering
It’s a dream
One day you’ll have to paint this.

In the fate of city dwellers
There is no sky
Which they think is a sky on their heads
Is a cup of dust,
Neither straight nor upside down
You have seen the sky for the first time
From the mud and hard rooftops
Surrounded by grey walls.

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