And He made me a river, a tempest, a tide,
Coerced to run, night and day,
I lash’d at rock, flooded thicket,
Ached for sedation, yearn’d parole.

Bystander at the lychgate, I see you sob
Beloved departed, crypted, cremated.
I reach out to you, take my arm,
Alas but I only am a swift tide of water.

I bargain with Him, ‘Let me stop
For a moment of solace, a word, a pat;
To comfort him with an ‘all will be well’,
And then I shall resume my vault to the sea’.

Yet He said, ‘Slow down, not halt,
And haul his tear to the sea.
I steer fate; you run, he weeps
For you are a river, he, a lover’.

Akshatha Hegde
PGP 20