Bio: K.S.Subramanian, India has published two volumes of poetry titled Ragpickers and Treading on Gnarled Sand through the Writers Workshop, Kolkata, India. His poem “Dreams” won the cash award in Asian Age, a daily published from New Delhi.
He is a retired Senior Asst. Editor from The Hindu and lives in Chennai. His poems and short stories have appeared in several web sites, anthologies published at home and abroad.
Aging with Grace?
Ease into the evening of life, a time honoured idiom; Grey hairs alone do not uncover the valley of wisdom. As your bones feel the tremors, you inch away from the whirlpool of emotions; Doesn’t the world change faster than the batting of an eyelid? You are a cloud of the Past, shrinking in memory as time ticks by; Soon the cloud is gone! The new generation, on a tenuous toehold, speaks a language that waltzes over mind; A bridgewide gap or a mouse trap? You have reached a stellar stage when what happens is only a happening; It may anger or please but is only a passing of breath, no more. Growing old is refining the gild of memory. To live life all over again Let me not do a U turn of my neck to see the past. Skill sets that lost their sheen in time, high hopes slithering down a slippery slope and scorned by ingrate times that sang an ode to Darwin. Warm a pedigreed chair with emaciated stare, or a rickety one unfit for your pedigree. My chagrined inner voice said “Fruit is not the milestone, karma is” Me, fellow mortals, were never shy of bending our backs, cerebral sparks that lighted many, pleased a few. But landed as always where destined with a sickening thud and inner nudge “this is not what you strove for….” Soon days wove into burdened years when stars shone less in a dark dawn, my own halo eclipsed in the oblivion. An old raging song that stirred the chords of a crowd lost suddenly in the eerie! Years later had an awkward timbre when resung on a changed string! I sense the new faces, old hopes straining to carve a frame, new light! I go back to my dusky sky, see where I slipped amid the stars which shone once. Portrait of my mother Beneath those solemn eyes quiver the vague outlines of a dim past. The early days when she was just a marriageable burden; Heart was bland in a milieu of unbroken tension, gripping scrutiny. The early outpouring of natural warmth brimmed on the day of wedlock; The pulse trembled, like the unfurling wings of a bird, for a maiden takeoff; Soon calmed down, it never came failed her like a distraught monsoon. Now caught on a new wave of bond, love for her offsprings, soothing the pulse in pleasure, not peace! But the beat, low-keyed, stayed. Strapping and restless, they have grown with a distinct tone of their own; She has found the chords no more in her power, salty moments of disgust, ashy distaste recur. Bonds might crack, wither away in Time’s journey; But I find her eyes, somber and ready. A discarded cloth A discarded cloth winks from a corner awaiting the final shove to its fate. In a few years it lost its sheen, hubris whittled away by wear and tear. It played host to its owner for a time braving the nuances of vagabond weather - rain, soaking heat or embalming chill. It knew Time had nothing to reclaim. Its owner, ever short of care or foresight, was too besotted with his daily chores – building a life out of the visible avenues. No thought to spare for a cloth’s plight. Its clever design or artful artwork is a contrivance for only a passing notice. A shred of beauty awaits its own twilight. The owner’s day too awaits the hearse. Its prankish wink was lost on the owner. After all age is only a fading number. The footfall I hear the slow footfall of New Year whispering sweet tidings. “Place hope on a rising swell, Keep out the ides of the dark. I come on the back of every Rolling cycle, see through the Layered tissues of pain and joy – Let the clouded days leave no trace, Verdurous moments refresh a memory of the smell of spring and ever out to undress a new haven. The morrows always have a mystery, Like the cusp of a coconut. Stellar orbits feel no fatigue. I have seen them too, often wondered. If they don’t why would one whine about the roll of the cycle?” The footfall is close to the ear now. Tip-toed by a joyous ring tone.