All posts by Virinder Sabharwal

21st Century Friends

Friends that you’d make,

In the 21st century,

Will be people of an odd kind.

They would not mean hate;

But love,

It would be presented in a puzzle,

With parts that won’t always fit.

 

They will value you,

As a trophy to be won,

As a laurel hung to their necks,

To show to everyone on the way.

And on some days,

They will throw you in the glass showcase,

where you’d still be admired,

But just because you look like a collectible for the eyes.

 

They will hold you like a bistro menu card,

And choose, one by one,

The parts that they will give love to,

And cross off the items,

That don’t sate their appetite,

For which you must be ignored.

 

You will often run

Into the walls of their expectations.

Walls made of tougher stuff than steel,

Walls that’ll never be low enough for you to cross over,

Walls that’ll you’ll be asked to break,

But those walls would only break you.

 

And some off-timers would also see you,

People befitting the definition of people,

Tossed from a bygone era into your life,

For keeping you at bay with things like love

And hope and dreams.

 

But mostly, it’ll be tough to be you,

In people who can’t really stand the ‘you’, that,

They are always asking you to be.

21st century comes with screw-ups in its line of code,

You’d have to learn the language of love,

With many variables,

And very few constants.

 

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Oh Enemy

Oh enemy,
rest it a little longer,
a little deeper
in my chest.
Your sword
knows the pleasure,
exhilarating in my veins
as they empty out
drop by painful drop.
The evil in me
crackles and breaks
as steel wrenches
the heart blackened by it.
Bereave the soul
and dry it of mercy,
let it writhe and wriggle
in its final moments,
soon the light will
break it free
through the hole
you dug.

Oh enemy,
Let it seep
till the edge of death,
my body will fall
into rejoice
as it falls out of
the evil captain.
Wash your blade
when it’s done
and grind it sharper
for more like me.

Two Smokers

Under a starry night,

Down the old deserted road,

In the ruins of a tavern,

Two smokers smoked.

 

While soft paper edges burned,

Souls were set free,

Of the mind’s worries

There was not even one to feel.

Eyes were awake,

Thoughts had slept,

Memory had returned,

Heart had wept.

 

To one, asks another,

“Why do you still come here?

It’s gotten old, it’s all broken;

Got yourself no place elsewhere?”

 

Follows a voice with soaring fumes,

“In the brokenness,

Of this place,

There is a solace.

Yesterday, I bought a mirror,

It broke today.

In the cracks of it,

I saw myself. Broken.

Into distinct shapes.

So here I rest, in brokenness,

Homely brokenness.”

 

“Oh, boy” smirked the listener,

“You must be high,

Don’t let this smoke get you,

Like it has got me.

It got all of me.

Once I was a spirit,

Full of life, high on smoke.

But then, I became full of ash,

Low on life, in and out,

And I thought who am I,

To question God’s great plan,

So I let this smoke,

Consume me.”

 

Cough, cough, cough,

Coughingly, both laughed,

Making sense of each other.

So, they stopped talking.

And tried floating on the air.

Just like an overhead cloud of smoke.

“Ya know man”, broke the silence,

The broken fellow.

“Everything that’s in pieces today,

Will be used to build tomorrow.

Ya know, build buildings,

build cars, build people.

‘Cause, nothing’s wasted.

It’s just time and place,

One always searches the other,

And when they meet,

Things get themselves all right.”

 

“Sure do, young fella”

Spoke the lowly spirit,

“Ask a man, who doesn’t know,

All the things you said.

Sure do things fix ’em up.

You see those stars?

They were a bunch of crap too.

At a time.

And see ’em now.

They rule the mighty skies.

So, yeah. You got the truth.”

 

Both laughed and passed out.

So did the night.

So did the smoke.

And so did the inner fight.