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Newspaper People by Nameera Anjum Khan

Newspaper People

They wanted me to be a Doctor And now, I dissect crimes of the body politic; The organs supposed to protect us fail with every new patient clutched in the hands of corruption.

They say that what I do for this world will reduce mine to a farce, Is the world really just my mother’s comforting smile and my father’s unfinished bedtime story? I think back to a time when Politics was a jargon far beyond my understanding; Today, even the vegetable vendor reeking of God’s own smell represents a system, the cracked roads look like God’s own brokenness, the hasty arrival and departure of the garbage truck with its blasting existence shows God’s own defeated melody.

At times, I wonder: Which garbage truck can take away the dirt in the mind? There is a song of hatred but people think it’s growth, There’s suppression and murder, and people think it’s growth, There is growth for one and death for another – tell me, which finger of yours completes your hand? Are you ready to chop off the ones that don’t matter to you anymore?

There’s a protest in my mind as I dissect the newspaper – a certain privilege, I say to myself; that what’s in my hands is not where I rest – within many words but without a voice of my own – unlike so many others.

There’s a name to every religion, Kindness isn’t one of them.

No Doctor can cure these defects, No amount of silence can fix what we avoid; No Masjid can wash away our sins, No Mandir can redeem our hatred, No Church can promise us the peace that we watch being shred into pieces; We’re left to find faults, but even God’s creation isn’t faultless; I mean, just look at us!

We turn to our tools – War, God, Philosophy, History, And the child at the next signal selling a newspaper turns to one square meal a day like it is the only heaven that could ever exist, His small philosophy is to simply fill a stomach.

We die from the burden of knowledge & not knowing what to do with it, He dies from the emptiness of the hearts around him.

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