There were those steel birds in the blue sky…
I waved at them
Wished them a good day
Though not a bird waved back at me.
I kept watching the trail they left behind
Wondering where they led…
Wondering how beautiful the destination could be …
Wondering what made those steel birds sound so rich and majestic…
I was playing with my little bricks
When I heard a loud noise.
I looked up in fear,
But soon after an ominous silence prevailed.
I could then hear cries and loud shouts
I could see more steel birds above
Exhaling some tiny crackers into the air.
There was smoke all around
And my neighbors panicked.
Everybody was rushing…
Not bothered about the clothes drying outside
Or the farm they maintained.
I looked around to figure out the case.
But my 10 year old brain couldn’t function much,
And I panicked too.
My mother carried me with her
Her fair pretty face terrified with tears.
Fear crept through her bones
And I could feel her trembling fingers gripping me tight.
With several others and my little brother.
Into a burrow we went,
Not like the one showed in Alice in wonderland!
It was pitch dark and the ground hurt
A pungent smell lingered and a dirty candle burned.
There we spent days and nights…
Locked in the dark people kept crying,
I often heard them uttering numbers of death,
People talking about people dying.
After a month of starvation
Living on stale bread and insufficient water
That pitch dark burrow
Tears and fears
“Where is Papa? ” I asked.
“What is going on?”
She closed her eyes and mourned.
“War” muttered my shaken mother
“War” she repeated,
And again we heard the steel birds roar.