At the back of my mind
Lies an undigested piece of thought -
That I have to leave my home tomorrow.
My bike carries me through these streets
Along the familiar scenes, pauses
At the places so known to me -
The coffeshops, bookshops, my haunts -
The libraries, the gardens, my previous office
The corners where I have hung around,watching
The milling crowds, a few faces recognized and nodded at.
Faces from my past, faces that have grown old with mine.
The city has grown, its roads wider and cleaner
Trees and corner shops have given way
To malls and multistoreyed monstrosities.
I try hard to remember what were there before
The old, tile-roofed houses replaced
By towering apartments and star hotels.
I realize what hurts me, this dull ache
In the pit of my mind -
I cannot leave this town, this is my home.
However I may dream and yearn
For the snow-clad peaks and seas of forests -
Destinations to reach and then to leave -
To return to my home, this little corner of the world.
I leave for the hills, lands strange and far away
Safe, in the thought that there is always my home
To come back at the end of the day.
I realize why ghosts linger -
Like me now, in the shadows
Of this garden of my life.
************ Balachandran V, Trivandrum, 19-12-2011