Off the Shelf
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The Boy With Obsidian Eyes

Across the vast Serengeti of sands,
A boy there stood between the desert lands.

A boy was born, obsidian his eyes,
Who many times had heard his family’s cries.
A boy so young, his dreams adventures drive,
Was given power over people’s lives.

He bore a gun on back and hand on tags
As stood he looking over body bags.
A knife at hip suggests the lives they take.
But, many other times his hands did shake.

He turned away; so tight he shut his heart.
Resolve was clear in eyes so wide and dark.
If failed he bringing the assigned to death,
His younger brother’d draw a martyr’s breath.

In steadfast manner, now he turned and marched,
Just wanting life devoid of loss — unparched.
The final day of judgment: faced he strife.
They shot and left for dead — inclement life.

He cried…
He cried for parents now departed — gone.

His parents’ warlords forced his hand to kill,
And now a warlord threatened siblings still.

He cried again for loving sister’s war:
A sister raped and made to suffer more.

He further cried for beaten brother prized
Who, living life, will suffer — pain devised.

And then, he cried at length for now himself:
A worthless boy, his deep regrets on shelf.

Of God, he asked, “Why let my people fear?”
The answer made not, though, the water clear.

He closed his eyes, surrendered life — his lease
And slept without a worry troubling — peace.
He knew his time on Earth was over — done —
And nothing more will change this tale so spun.

Srihari Govind (3 Posts)

Contributing Writer

Mahatma Gandhi Medical College and Research Institute, Pondicherry

I am a medical student in the first year aged 18, studying at Mahtma Gandhi Medical College and Research Institute in Pondicherry, India. Love to travel and try new food. Write a bit of poetry and most probably am going to be joining Doctors Without Borders after I finish my studies.