The Forgotten Sepulchral

a poem by NILANJANA HALDAR, India

The Forgotten Sepulchral

While walking through the silent graveyard,
The rocks, these morning glories have chosen to guard,
A silent city of the dead did I see,
That was treaded by no mortal but me.

At short intervals did I see,
Beautiful stone cupolas decked with morning glories,
Lucky are even they that are dead,
With donations of orchids over the grey, grimy bed.

Unlike one, that I did see,
At one corner, under a withered tree,
This one breathed a hollow mood,
Leaning over I saw the name, “Sir Stafford Dashwood.”

Then did I remember that when I was young,
And in my bosom, a beautiful melody was sung,
He was the richest philanthropist in town,
For in his very presence, no man was ever let down,

He was the most well-known person in the neighbourhood,
No man was known any better in my years of childhood.
His very hands would never rest a day,
Until he had lit a smile at his bay.

They owned the town’s biggest, a palatial mansion,
Made people talk and dwell in a mystic animation,
And after his death, his wife took the lead,
Who furthered each and every loving, noble deed.

Years passed by, she turned old and wrinkled,
Till one day, she died when the evening star twinkled,
Since then, the very lamp that lit their house,
Began shrinking and it soon began to
douse.

No one remembers his abundance of kindness,
Excepting the old-timers who pretend in his likeness,
No one remembers the beauty that he has strewn,
Not the memoirs of the drudgery that he had borne.

Now, while I stand beside his cenotaph,
And the crumbling powder of its epitaph,
A brisk tear oozes out of my eyes,
That drips onto the dead weeds where it did lie.

Silently I sink onto my haunches,
And gently touch my lips where his spirit lounges,
And in the quietness of my heart, now do I pray,
As the swift wind brushes the weeds where he lay.


——By Nilanjana Haldar ( written in eight grade back in school)

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