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Mainstream, VOL LVI No 1 New Delhi December 23, 2017 - Annual Number

The Cripple

Sunday 24 December 2017

Bent on a pair of crutches
he makes his tentative move.
Stretching the left crutch
he feels his balance,
then with a slow, sidelong jerk
pulls the right hand crutch;
his frail body shivers, steadying.

After a few steps, he stops,
inhales with a bellowing chest
the fresh morning air,
leaning on the crutches
and memories of days
when he was a part of the world.
He now lives outside.

A couple of joggers trot past him;
a limping dog leaves him behind.
The backdrop pins him
a sagging figure, incongruous
on the tapestry of life. 

Slowly he looks up, starts afresh.
A rhythm peculiar to him
measures his steps on the scale
of a new, resolute move.

A.K. Das

[This poem was composed on December 3, 2017 on the occasion of the International Day of Persons with Disabilities.]

ISSN : 0542-1462 / RNI No. : 7064/62