Painting the Sky

In honor of Janmashtami, we present this work by one of contemporary India’s great poets.

1956 – 2019


Blue is not the colour, nor is snowy- white or sun-licked grey.
I paint the sky with water.
The tear.
The colour of solitude brewing in the eyes of a half-dead widow
The outcast.
The color of fear stuck in the eyes of fish lings abandoned by the oceans
The homeless.
The color of quivering silence screaming in the veins of trees uprooted
The wingless.
The color of screams rolling down from the eyes of new-borns denied air
The neglected.
The color of fear boiling under the nerves of those who venture out in the dark
The powerless.
I paint the earth too with water.
The color is tear.
Mind you
If love has a hue, it’s not rose-pink or blood-red
If hope has a hue, it’s not lemon-yellow or chilli-red
If happiness has a hue, it’s not leaf-green or sea-blue If grief has a hue, it’s not black as you
Let me tell you, everything in the world is tinted with a tear-hue
The watery hue
For, rain is a painting perfect for a world soaked in sorrow.
For, sky is a canvas
Painted with grief.

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