The colours of desolation shine through the crevices
Of the old couple’s face
Waiting every day for the elusive footfall of their son
Relentlessly following his dreams in a far- off land.
They get up at night, shuddering.
Muttering, what if Death comes calling,
And their only son is not around?
Sunny, they called him, he was that bright.
Dismay, rage, outrage, dread
Gut wrenching, toe curling anger,
Teeth –gnashing frustration.
Why is he so callous – this only son of theirs?
Choking grip of a scary darkness, of scary nightmares.
And the night is over, at last!
To begin again at the crack of dawn.
Will he come? Will he call?
Just one single call?
Maybe he will give them a surprise.
Suddenly spring from behind and startle them
Like he did in those happy days?
Maybe …..ah, the phone rings…..
Is it that long-awaited call?
On arthritic feet, the octogenarians stumble
Tumble towards the phone,
Gnarled fingers supporting their backs
Only to halt in their tracks,
As the phone stops ringing
On the third ring.
SEPT/OCT 2017 AUTHOR OF THE MONTH at Spillwords.com
Santosh Bakaya, Ph.D. internationally acclaimed for my poetic biography of Mahatma Gandhi, Ballad of Bapu, I am an academician, poet, essayist, novelist, and TEDx speaker, with more than twenty published books, my latest being Runcible Spoons and Peageen boats (2021). I run a weekly column MORNING MEANDERINGS on Learning and Creativity. My Ted talk on The Myth of Writer's Block is very popular in creative writing circles.