May 2015 - Comments Off

Syeda Rumana Mehdi

How you left me

The cold wind blew the tiny frock,
My little feet throbbed with pain each time I stumbled over a jagged piece of rock,

The pale sun hung high in the sky,
Its barely warm streaks of light seemed like a promising lie,

My hazel eyes stared at the crimson drops of blood on the ground,
My heart beat accelerated each time I imagined the intensity of the wound,

It was eerily quiet,
Not another soul in sight,

Last night, this barren ground was a battlefield,
It was here that the future of the unfortunate was sealed,

They say my brother was among those who were killed,
That his blood was mercilessly spilled,

I moved on, walking past the dead,
Lost in the memory of my brother reading me stories in bed,

I had been dreaming happily when they dragged him out of the house,
My sweet dream became a living nightmare when they raped his spouse,

They say he is here somewhere,
Lying in this terrifying place that resembles Satan's lair,

I call out his name, waiting for him to respond,
My brother knows I need him, we had always shared a special bond,

I stumbled yet again but not over stone,
I looked down, fell on the ground and let out a soft moan,

I cradled his head in my frail arms, tears falling all over his mangled face,
His image swam before my eyes, my poor brother who had been the epitome of charm and grace,

The brother who would never hug me again,
The brother who had been brutally slain,
The sun hid behind dark clouds,
I could now hear screams and shouts.

I walked in the descending dark, clutching the head to my chest,
Determined to find a nice place for my brother to rest,

The silence was broken by a single gun shot,
I recited all the prayers I had been taught,

For the third time, I stumbled and fell,
This time, I would not rise again, I could tell,

My tiny fingers tightened around the head,
My hazy vision full of my brother reading stories in bed,

Published by: in Issue 1: Fall 2014, Poetry, Volume 71

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