Poem by Dr. Jernail Singh Anand
THE BRICK CRUSHER
The reaper who sang a melancholy song
Stands transformed to a brick crusher
There is no song now she sings,
The nightingale has left this environs
Cursing the smoke and buildings
Which have exiled freshness from the mornings
And restful dreams from sleep.
This stepsister of the legendary solitary reaper
Who breaks bricks in a bid to build
An impersonal empire of abstract joy,
Has a mind torn with cares.
She can’t let it roll back
Into tragedies forlorn.
The problems of keeping alive
Are too pressing and too difficult
to meet ends which stand multiplied.
The air she breathes in is inferior.
The food she gulps down is spurious
The water threatens her very existence.
Still she is alive somehow,
Earth has made her a mother
And a mother can’t unmother her kids.
The poet who listened motionless and still
The voice that filled the valley is stilled.
Now the plaintive numbers don’t flow.
Wordsworth! go back! It is our silly show.
DR JERNAIL SINGH ANAND