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December 29, 2017 | Poetry

The Coming Anarchy

Manash Firaq Bhattacharjee

The Coming Anarchy photo

Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold;
Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world
~ W.B Yeats, ‘The Second Coming’

One day, your borders shall speak;

Indignant birds will shit on your head.

Your centre will give way,

It cannot hold its own dying skull

In place; your dreams of fire are rusting.

Your house is full of stench.

You took lives to adorn maps;

You slit tongues that did not parrot

Your hymns; you let loose a boomerang

Without knowing how to receive it;

Now face your own weapon.

You, reading your epic the wrong way,

Thought Krishna is your saviour.

War’s wily charioteer, Krishna destroyed   

The Kurus and his own clan˟ for nothing;

If the enemy you kill is nothing,

Time, old ninja, will replace your head

With an elephant’s; punish your memory. 

One day, anarchy will come barefoot;

Blast the ceremony of crime.

How long can a lie last in history?

Your wise men will ponder such questions,

While a new beast of amnesia is born.

˟ Krishna, the charioteer of the warrior Arjuna in the epic The Mahabharata, said war is a moral duty, and gave the logic that both the killer and the killed are illusions in the hands of time. 


image: M F Husain