Abandoned House

An abandoned house on my way to work,
Everyday I spy its magnificent  architecture.
With boundary walls  blackened by algae,
Ravaged by the vagaries of sun and rain,
Though still magnificent in every aspect.

I think of the people who lived here,
Children  playing in the arched  varandah,
This lawn with old mango trees must have,
reverberated with their innocent laughter,
Now strewn with weeds and vines spatter.

Sun rays  through the coloured glass panes,
A row of faded red pillars  in the veranda,
Bring alive in my mind those lively people,
Sitting on a swing or a woven charapai,
Chopping vegetables for lunch or dinner,

Playing Antakshari in melodious sing song.
Or there might be a game of carrom or ludo,
A lively game of cards amidst accusations,
And cards being thrown by the one who lost.
Followed by loud laughter from the winners.

I haven’t peeped inside but I can think of.
Old mahogany dining table with finest china,
A delicate plate ,cup still lying inside cupboard,
All protected securely by spiders’ gossamer web,
And dusted with nature’s free flowing dust.

I imagine alcoves to keep old statues and,
Nooks for candles, tiny vases and ornaments.
A wooden horse still rocking to and fro,
As though a child has just come down.
Kept in a corner while the children grew.

I have been watching it for years now,
A strong urge to get down the rickshaw,
And explore that mystic house comes & goes,
I am always in a hurry to reach the college 
I am always in a hurry to go back home,

Every time this abandoned house haunts my heart,
I think of parents who waited when children were gone.


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Written by Sarita Khullar

Sarita Khullar is a retired associate professor in English from Hans Raj Mahila Mahavidyalaya, Jalandhar. She loves poetry and fiction. She also likes birds, flowers, animals, and humans.

A song unheard..