Walking The Last Footsteps In This World

Maharaj Kaul

Today the resplendent morning tore off itself from the dark annular rings of the night,
While the birds were still half asleep in their vulnerably fragile nests.
I scrubbed myself close to remove the last vestiges of dirt reaching my new world.
A sparkling white shirt seemed best attuned to the occasion;
Deep blue denim I thought should drape the still soldierly legs,
Who are keen to carry the body in the one last salute to life.

Still waking up from the mists of the morning dream,
I feel eager to shake the last hand,
To say my last good bye,
To take my last walk in this world.
At moments I feel bristling with happiness,
Which seems to be rocking me off my balance.

For a long time the world was playing games with me
But unable to carry the charade any more I decided
To reject it outright and come out clean:
To secure my vision of life, to save my soul;
To send a message to fellow human beings
That it is better to suffer than be duped.

For every hope I became pregnant with,
I paid twice in pain in its miscarriage by the conditions of the world;
For every altruistic project I launched,
I paid twice in dejection by its rejection by the Wall Street;
For every dream that enkindled in me,
I paid twice in suffering in its shattering by the “real” world.

Why are we unfurling the false flags
Of materialistic achievements?
Why are we celebrating the victory
Of man against nature?
Why are we saving ourselves from pains,
While our whole community is inundated with them?

Falseness is more alluring to the world,
As it has more style to it, it is easier;
Excitement is more in demand than serenity,
As it delivers instantly and entails less investment;
Materialism looks more secure than spiritualism,
As it seems more real and takes less time to acquire.

Peace, inner and outer, seems to be a heavier intangible,
While today’s world would rather like to work on more concrete matters;
Happiness seems to be an abstruse concept of philosophy,
Which should be substituted by the more real aimless life.
Like in Quantum Mechanics we have accorded our difficulties
In reaching the truth the status of reality, thereby shortchanging our understanding.

When one sees beauty in the spectral dance of a sunset,
Or greatness in the sacrifices a Gandhi makes to gain independence of his people,
Or commitment in a Einstein spending thirty years of his life trying to unify the forces of nature,
One sees where man’s essence lies:
The power of faith over just survival,
The magic of mind over just brain.

I have had my battles with falseness and materialism,
I have had frustrations with modern man’s aberration in
Calling the moment as the life and what he can see as the truth.
But I do not have to go along with the fashions of the times.
I have given up my worldly wealth, honors, and securities,
And I am ready to walk my last footsteps in this world.

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