Insurrection

They categorically stated:
‘It is your lot to be subservient;
Accept it without struggle.’
The following diktats were
Emphatically articulated:
‘Embrace the limitations of
Your kind, be content (with
Whatever crumbs we
Dole out to you) or,
The fate of the over-reacher
Will befall you and you shall
Feel our wrath for your
Devious intent.’

And you chose the second.
You chose to defy.
You chose to dare.
You chose to be presumptuous,
Hoping to shatter the glass ceiling,
Hoping to leave an indelible imprint
On the sands of time.

But they were not the
Sands of time, you
Thought them to be.
It was instead the eternal shore,
You could never lay a claim to.
The extended shoreline, the
Coarse grains of sand, the
Iridescent nimbus, in the
Dauntless vault of the blue
Firmament above,
And the sylvan green
And the sanguine red
And the sunshine yellow,
Was all theirs.

You chose to strive.
You chose to wage war
Without any decorous fanfare.
No alarums trumpeted when
You strode into battle,
When you rode in on the
Invisible horses of poesy.
None bedecked you in armour,
None anointed you with holy oil,
None garlanded you in fragrant flowers,
None drank to your occasional
Triumphs, your hard-fought
Skirmishes.
Yet, you chose to strive.

But there was something you
Couldn’t get rid of,
In the three score years
You lived after that.
Whispers of censure.
Guffaws of vituperation.
Bellows of slander.
Clamours of condemnation.
Clangour of atrocious libel.
Impassioned paroxysms of abuse.
Encrimsoned cascades of scandal.
Rippling tides of grudge, rage
And base, caustic jealousy.

You wanted to attain immortality
Through your written words,
Wanted to invoke the spectral
Aura of Orpheus through your
Lyric.
But little did you realize
While being enmeshed in
Your lifelong crusade that
What you endured for years,
Stoically, relentlessly,
Your curse, the infesting canker
Endowed in your being
Will fester and breed and thrive.

It will be perpetuated in
Your befuddled progeny,
Unwittingly born into the same destiny;
Their lives traversed by the same fate.
They are the potential, unsung fodder
For the selfsame, multitudinous,
Bilious hate;
Not because they share your
Blood-congealed drive or
Possess your martial spirit,
But for the popular suspicion
That they might.

Aneesha Roy

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About Ijagun Poetry Journal

Ijagun Poetry Journal is a quarterly journal that provides a platform from which we can tell our own stories in the authenticity of their multiplicity through the poetic medium. We don’t want to hear these stories from our master “griots” alone; we want to hear from those mastering their art, too. Hence, we aim at publishing new and emerging poets. We also welcome the works of established poets in order to encourage the poetic genius of those mastering poetic art. We prize original works that conform to, break or reinvent conventions. Again, we accept reviews and critical essays on poetry. We also accept powerful art works and photographs that make us appreciate the "poetry" in everything.
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