Theme: Life

Sitting by Bonfire

by Mamta Agarwal
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Sitting one December night, by the bonfire;
Glanced up and gazed at stars sparkle like sapphires.
Sparks were rising up like glow worms; why
At that moment flashed across my mind’s eye.
Vincent Van Gogh’s famous painting ‘Starry Night’.
How restless he felt about getting it somehow right.
Silently contemplating nature with a painter’s eye,
He felt compelled and determined to give it a try.
The thought for long haunted and preoccupied his mind.
To the mystery and essence of night, in spirit aligned.
Finally he decided to paint it on the spot by the river at night.
Excited to paint under the moon, stars, a little artificial light.
Lo, what you see is a painting of night not dark or black.
Done with beautiful blue, violet, and green to illuminate.
He singled out colours that would express what he felt.
Blend of serenity and dizziness and what to him it meant.
Thus he was able to attain the mystic dream of youth.
Through painting to assuage his thirst for the truth.
It became an act of faith, in a state of meditation.
I reflected, is art an effective path for salvation…
What leads to this slow and sure transformation of man,
Into an artist, musician and a poet- is it Creator’s plan?
Does the intensity, seclusion lead to the brink of insanity.
As I had in my teens read his tragic and sad biography.
Do we live in chains and prisons of our own making?
Does it have to do with events beyond control; destiny?
Aware of his fractured psyche, calmly told his brother Theo;
One lesson I have learnt is not ever to complain for sure.
My eyes drifted to dying ambers, just when my son asked me;
Would you like me to add more logs; came out of my reverie.
We walked on the gravel path towards the lodge in silence.
He said Mom; spend more time in Sun, with nonchalance...


More By  :  Mamta Agarwal

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Comments on this Poem

Comment A very itense poem, Mamta, nature reflecting the colours of the night, it is never dark, it is what we wish to see or what is burning in one's mind! Thank you for this lovely composition.

Kumarendra Mallick
03-Jun-2011 03:21 AM

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