Elegy —1


It is difficult to wash off memories.

Like all living things it appears,

They too must be having a genetic structure.

For they spin off one from the other

From the other … from the other…


You say good-bye, tata, or cheerio to a person

Just as you did it any other time.

But before you turn around, sit in a café,

And break a biscuit and dunk it in tea,

Time’s mercury dissolves his frame

And dumps it in the recycle bin.


From now on “he is” becomes… he was.

And from now on be remembered only

At parties, gatherings and family functions.

Threading through private experiences of people

He makes his presence (or absence) felt,

To dampen this eye or unsettle that heart.


The ageless death, like a rag-picker

Goes on relentlessly collecting into its bag

Anything between a foetus to a centurion

Putting different punctuation marks to life.


While time anoints people to mitigate their pain

Death ruptures the wound once again

As if to assert her superiority over and over.




  1. I always think of memories like a tree similar to a family tree, with branches leading and interleading to large and small memories, linked and interlinked, too complex to draw I’m sure! I love your last stanza, Sunamu. It is as if once relegated to the past they suffer a small death in our eyes – until the real one arrives. Beautifully written.

  2. Death is a great enigna Denise.

    It really perplexes us if it is a blessing or a curse. Sometimes it makes us pray for it… for self of our beloved whose suffering we can’t put up with. That arrogant and indifferent creature visits when you don’t expect it most, and at other times, is the last guest to this life’s party.

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