Two Poems

Meditations on the Sea

The sea abandons
shoals of shells
broken and unbroken
along the white wave line

Some sink sand-wards,
others drift wave-wards
a few smile sun-wards on the beach

At one time I battled the sea
grabbing shells he dared whisk away

I won fifteen times
He fifteen thousand
Till with warm wave caresses
he lulled mu efforts to peace

The wave that licks the shore
caressingly
will recede and return
in different combinations
of salt, sand, shell, wind and water

Wave follows wave
moment by moment
Tides take twelve hours to turn

The only way to know the ocean
is to know your smallness
More creatures swim
than drown in its belly

Anyone who’s tried to drown
knows the calmness
of the sea is
deceptive

When you try to go in
he washes you out
When you struggle to swim
he suckles you in

Wildfires

Where Greece ends, Turkey begins
wildfires engulf both
devouring forests, birds, beasts
and human settlements.

Wild winds whip flaming trees
embracing arms in death cries
as blazing sun mocks human ants
struggling to douse relentless flames

In California too, fire’s insatiable appetite
gobbles cafes and cars
enflamed skies witnessing
an Apocalypse of wealth and power

Throttled by mankind’s greed
Nature has jumped oceans, continents
hurling destruction at two ends of the globe
respecting neither natural nor political boundaries

Citizens point to politicians, arsonists
– who are surely to blame –
but can we write off our own role
as consumers demanding more and more and more?

Meher Pestonji