Chennai, Christmas and 2015

 

My feet take me along the roadway

As I gaze at the endless festivities

Shops bursting with streamers,

Inflatable Santa Clauses, stars and

Illuminated Christmas decorations;

My heart is somewhere else;

Locked perhaps in the agony

Of those who lost their homes

And loved ones.

 

The air is unnaturally cold

bereft of the gentle warmth

of the annual Christmas carols.

The plastic tree is locked away in a suitcase,

Never to be assembled until the next year.

The old decorations gather dust,

The star hidden away inside a cabinet.

One is too tired to look for them

When Christmas is just not prefixed

with the customary ‘Merry’.

 

Try as one may

To bite back one’s sorrow

and mouth a ‘Merry Christmas’.

But can mirrors lie?

Every face becomes a mirror,

Reflecting each other’s sadness

Infinitesimally.

 

Its beautiful that our rebirth

Had to coincide with His birth.

He who is powerful enough

To pull down the princes from their Thrones,

Reduced the opulence of the corrupt

To shambles.

The Son of God became Son of Man

As the Daughters and Sons of the Soil

Became divine in the eyes of the afflicted.

 

If the rains have left behind

A fragment of your joyous soul,

I wish you a ‘Happy Christmas’

From what remains of mine.

 

This is  what Christmas feels like this year. By far, it has been one of the most meaningful yuletide season of my lifetime. With hardly any celebrations around and our churches instructing us to abstain from going on carol rounds or partaking in any kind of austerity, we join in solidarity the many residents of our beloved city who have lost their lives and possessions in the floods. I wish all of you a Happy and Meaningful Christmas 2015. I pray that the new year heralds a dawn of teamwork, co-operation and removal of all biases as an extension of the #ChennaiRains lessons we all have learnt.

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