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Mainstream, VOL LIX No 9, New Delhi, February 13, 2021

Persevere | Badri Raina

Friday 12 February 2021, by Badri Raina

When people of my hoary age
Fight for life at the embattled border,
Undeterred by the bitter of the chill,
Or by the strangulations wrought by order
Of authority deaf to human sound,
Smirking reptilian at their plight,
Is it meet that I look for a pillow
To go into a tired, restful night?

Let me rather draw example from those
Who spoke of life in their dying breath,
And snatched warm human camraderie
And denied justice from the jaws of death.

Let death come when it will
While I am still busy serving life;
What place can fearful nullity have
In the middle of exuberant strife?

The hereafter is here upon the earth
Where alone is my foe and friend;
Our comings and our goings are mysteries
That distract us from the task at hand.

Let the mysteries be left to god
Who is best equipped to answer them;
Let us nurse the wound and fight the Pharaoh
As the surest pathway to Kingdom Come.

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