Andleeb,
My child martyr
You are not the first
To fall a prey
To the ‘democratic’ bullets
Of these jingoistic soldiers,
Many pinkish blossoms
Have faced the invincible frost
Of fatal winter
In the very midst of sweltering summer
Before you
In exactly the same ruthless way,
Under the same helpless gaze
Of the handcuffed sky,
Although you are a fresh entry
In the fatigued ledger
Of our scarlet history.


Andleeb,
My child martyr,
This is a war
Yes a disproportionate one,
But what option have we
Except for turning
To the inclement terrain
Of roaring rebellion
When even our very innocuous breaths
Are put under the devouring glare
Of the state surveillance?


Andleeb
My child martyr,
Your revolutionary blood
Shall resentfully remain
Suspended in the sullen air
Like that of those
Who were killed before you,
It will all fall down
In collective sacred torrents
Only when Azaadi comes
And it rains simultaneously,
This will turn into a formidable flood
And scrub our homeland clean
Off the ugly footprints
Of these bloody enemies.


Andleeb
My child martyr
I had many things to say
But as you know
I am now too fragile to speak
For my tongue is nailed
To the grisly cross of sadness,
I am just a fistful of brittle bones
So I stop,
But just before you enter paradise
Stay a while and ask God:
Is there still the Day of Reckoning
For the people of Kashmir
When every day we wrestle
With the apocalyptic horrors
Of India-sponsored doomsday?


Andleeb
My child martyr,
You can accuse me of cowardice
Yes I am a coward
So I fight with impotent words
Cautiously collected
From the sterile womb of language,
Accuse me of this cowardice
For I – like the rest of my league
Brandish with unreserved pride
This poetic and prosaic cowardice
As a prized trophy of our triumph
And declare with aplomb:
‘Our duty is done
Now fight, O people fight
Half the battle is won’

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