I sat by the shore
Watching a woman
Swathed by the waves
Sometimes completely inundated
She sat there frigid.
I knew she was crestfallen
Her grief seemed to be raw
A lump rose in my throat
As I walked towards her
She sat there unaware.
I spoke some words of solace
To assuage her emotional deluge
Her fiery eyes bore through me
A scary stony expression of glare
Didn’t deter my positivity
I pressed further…share it
Say it…feel the words that heal
The arrows that sat on her tongue
Pierced my heart into smithereens
I clutched her hand when she spoke…
Do you know a shooting pain
That rises every moment?
Do you know how it feels
To be asphyxiated every second?
Do you know what is loss?
Loss of an only child
My only hope, my only star
Who went to school to study
Bubbling with life cut short by a bullet
Is this the price we pay for learning?
Can your words restore my faith?
Can your hope bring my son back?
Can you assure me no more would be killed?
Can your words mitigate the woes
Of a single mother?
Can you oust the demons
That excoriate me night and day?
Can you replace the walls
That torment me all night?
Can you douse the fire within?
Teary eyed I looked at her, dumb-founded.
© Balroop Singh
This poem was written after the deadliest school massacre occurred at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Broward County, Florida on February 14, 2018.
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