For Girish Karnad: A Whitsun Song From the Road

Tell me why the road needs a song
It isn’t a winding river shining
In the sun. Tell me why it brings 
Hidden meanings to the pen, unbidden
Yearnings that flock to the fore and when
The road turns, the wanderer in you
Learns how much you long for beauty
Without the thorns. Tell me why,
Now that Karnad is dead, the road
Might meander away from where
He led. Tell me stories mile-stoned
By the rocks you hurl into
The way ahead. Now that Gibran
Is gone from our memories and our
Libraries change their histories, tell me
Who will collect, catalogue, call
Our songs of those blocks where we
Stumble and fall. Tell me why we sing
Our heartbreak when the roads we take
Are the driven-paved paths we make.

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