The poet's passage was chosen among other forms of literature, from a challenge we offered on March 02, 2022. We wanted to hear from the entrants, their perspectives on war and peace and asked how it made them feel.
Somebody told me, you are a shadow of what you were once. I would never believe that. The fort has never changed and so has been our subterranean mind, as days gushed in with speed and alacrity of life and living, for us, evenings never changed. Our nudging voices continued to appease, overshadowed our many lives. In Niamey and war, I once saw a girl whose eyes directed me to a nomadic sun. She was tall and ash burnt with many hurts. In a sudden barrier of a desert fleeing a rabid sun, she showed me, you are still there where we had once lived before; she showed me shadows of a vantage life from the roof of a burnt sky, she showed me suddenness that can only be you and nobody but you. And only then, I rushed to drop in the closeness of oceans meeting our once long thought, closeness of life itself in many of your spoken words, closeness in a narrow breath where we still belong, closeness of shadows mingling in people and people with life. We both still live in many such shadows, many such antagonistic lives. © Amitabh Mitra