Lies, Letters and Dirge of the Placid Lake

it’s gently bowing down – the warm sun on the azure sky

millions of frenzied sighs break the stillness

of an unhurried afternoon I spend by the placid lake

and read some letters written long ago but never posted


the papers are worn out, brown and yellow

I blink at them, the words are hazy, distorted

mist from the lake has clouded the eyes, I pretend

but the desolation continues to grow


I delve into the letters often

they are the reminders of the promises you made

between the fading lines lies the grave

of a thousand lies, you spoke, glibly, slyly


the lies of eternal love, of a happy home

the names you chose for our children, never born

the love we added and multiplied with patience

you divided and subtracted your share pence by pence


the sky is suddenly overcast, the lake agitated,

the wind howls, sings a mournful ballad

it plucks the perished words from my quivering hands,

the lake creates for them a marshy tomb


the sun dissolves itself into the lake,

the dirge of the acrid past fades into the stillness

Ah, they’re dead too – the demons that I harbored

Tethys rises from the lake, envelopes me into a soothing hug

I rise too, with the tranquil moon.


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  1. Often times promises
    Don’t materialize
    Seems to be the lies
    Often stuck in fear of being prosaic.

    Ma’am you really pen it beautiful. A sweet lovely thuth wiping away the lies. Beautiful and positive ending.

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Written by Seema Taneja

Formerly a teacher of English language, she is now a full-time blogger, writer, and poet. A bi-lingual writer, she writes on social justice, gender issues, women and child rights, economics, and political affairs, in English and Hindi. She contributes to several platforms like Women's Web, Momspresso, The Anonymous Writer and her write-ups have also been published in The Times Of India. Her stories have been featured in several anthologies. She has won many awards for her writing, including the prestigious Orange Flower Award for Writing with Social Impact in Hindi.

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