Poet: Muhammad Nasrullah Khan
As a child I dreamt of chasing fireflies.
Watching them hover over shadowy valleys,
like diamond sparkling over the fields
singing pastoral songs throughout the endless night,
glowing with the blue light,
a dancing rainbow for the eyes innocent,
sending a wink to the moon.
I caught one when I was five.
Crushed it tight, not to lose it.
The little bug tickled my palm,
flamed out like shining from shook foil
and then it ceased to be.
Light yet composed, with a lingering soft stare, I cried:
“Grandpa, life and light both gone.”
He hugged me close:
"Behold their joyous dance.
But don't touch their spirit."
Years later I found you, love.
Grandpa’s advice, long forgotten.
the light of love in your eyes drew me.
I gravitated to your embrace,
to find another corpse,
not in my palm, but in my heart.
The music of your voice lost
to a cacophony of crickets.
each dream lingering after dawn.
telling me the truth I don't want to hear,
strangling a once thriving beauty.
Neither childhood nor the valley,
exist in my world.
My heart still longs for the dead firefly.
Poem 2: My Fall
You cast me to demons.
I suffer beneath their teeth.
Their jaws clenched tight,
around my throat, around my heart.
Do not growl at my fall.
Do not howl at the moon.
I’m lost in the abyss,
but re-born dreams fill my heart.
Someone awaits there
like a phoenix, I will be reborn
— my true self, lured by hope.
Do you see ripples kissing the shore?
That is me.
I know how trees grow on rocks.
I am a seedling sprouting from the pavement.
You will see me floating like indigo butterflies.
You will feel me as the breeze that breeze your eyes.
You will smell me in the honeysuckle blossom.
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