My name is Kashmir

Pitiable is the word that explains my plight. My land, known for giving birth to revered saints, has grown barren.The birds seem to have forgotten their odes. Their chirping instead sounds like a ...

Pitiable is the word that explains my plight. My land, known for giving birth to revered saints, has grown barren.The birds seem to have forgotten their odes. Their chirping instead sounds like a woeful lament¬—a song bidding adieu  to my sons. The veil of my daughters is snatched in front of my eyes—I'm stung in the womb by the deadliest insect. The laughter of my children is lost in the thunder of the roaring guns. When they set out to play, the fear of not returning home grips them. What harm can the apple of my eye possibly do to you?

My homes are set ablaze. My waters kill and vabdalised mountains mourn. The streams gushing with the blood of my beloved send shivers down my spine, drenching me to the soul. I, a maimed sparrow, envy the lark that soars high into the sky. The joyous singing of my children is replaced by heart-wrenching cries. Even the amber red leaves that you crush under your feet wail and narrate my story. You too can listen provided you lend an ear.

 My once happy family has forgotten to smile even when it costs nothing. Oh Lord! Is this a dream or am I really going through hell? Here I touch the corpse of my dear son for the last time and lo! I realize this is all true. For the million tears I've cried, my eyes are dry.

 I am a tale incomplete—My name is Kashmir, I wish to come to life again and I promise you I will. The Almighty is with me. He's promised me day after night, light after dark. He's promised me life— Life after death!

( Asma Rafi is an MBBS   student in M.P)

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