The Death of a Mammoth

a poem by Sheela Chalapathi ramananda, India

He strayed into their territory
without premission.
All that he wanted
was some food.
The cowards came together
to scare him!
Surrounded by Red Anger
screaming for his blood,
he was scared and confused.
Outnumbered by scheming selfishness
he ran helter skelter.
Death was waiting for him
as a gunshot.
The bullet punctured his heart
The mammoth fell shrivelled
like a leaf.
His pierced heart fluttered
at this cruelty.
And then...he lay senseless
punished for tresspassing.
The head that rolled
for another head
punished for guarding,
chopped by the trisul
of the angry Siva,
now lay bleeding on the dust.
It is the same yet
not the same face
of the elephant-god.
Timeless , uncanny!
And then ,the people came
offering flowers and burning camphor.
Dead body sprinkled
with red and yellow dust.
Hunger drawing life out of him!
They begged him to forgive,
what hypocrisy!
His spirit hovered around.
Did he ever question them
when they occupied his territory
destroying his home
in order to build their home?

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