A Naga poet speaks of Nagaland For Christ

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These poems were written by Lea, a Naga poet who wishes to let her poetry speak for itself

 

For The Forsaken

 

And God turned away
From the dog gnawing
At the broken tiny body
And the curled little fingers
That might have reached
To stop the hands that took
Her life before it began.

And God turned away
From the whimpers behind the door
And the tiny heart asking
What the voice could not say
To stop the Unspeakable
To let her be a child again.

And God turned away
From the muffled screams
The blows raining on flesh
The broken heart begging
For release from the horror
He made of her life.

And God turned away
For when He created Man
To Love
This beautiful world He gave.
To Value
She whom He made too
To Share with him that world.
Had He not seen
The mark of Cain in Man.

And God turned away.

And who will save
The baby – the girl – the woman
He had so wonderfully made.

 

Nagaland For Christ

 

I am sad
That I never saw a paise
Of the great flood of cash
Released by the election this year.

Though I did hear of households
Where each member was worth
Two thousand at least to each candidate.

So I did the math
And understood why
Ours is the land of festivities still.
But since no aspirant
Of the sixty coveted thrones
Cared to cross my palms
With cash or appeal or promise
I kept my vote to myself.

I read in the papers
That our dis-honorable so and so
Had some crores in his car
And it made me wonder
If so much in car
Then how much at home
Or in the banks – of Nepal?
And I wondered if the bullets were
For those who wanted more
Or those who wanted better.

I also read
The Church cried
“Clean Election, Clean Election!”
And  it made me wonder
How are we then to find
The lakhs that we need
To enter your special halls
Or feed your thousand minions abroad
Or fund your workers’ fancy exposure trips.

And then I saw
‘One man-one vote’
Being given the naga-twist
‘One man-one village vote’
And I said to myself
Let no God put asunder
What Election hath united.

So five more years of gorging and fattening for some
Five more years of steaming and scheming for others
And for the rest of us
Five more years  before
We shall be worth two thousand each again.

And  if I were a realist
I might conclude
“My Nagaland:
Our Religion: Building Churches
Our Democracy: Selling Votes
Our Development: Fashion Dressing
Our Future: Pothole-fishing”
But I am still a dreamer
So I plead
“Wake up Nagaland, for Christ’s sake…”

 

 

Them Shoes

 

I told my man, my shoes they pinch.

My man, with love he said to me

Oh no they can’t, they don’t at all.

 

I told my man, my feet they say

My shoes they pinch me bad a lot.

My man, again with love he said

My feet, they say them shoes

Don’t pinch your blessed feet at all.

 

I told my man, my feet they are

Attached to me, as such you see

I know they pinched me bad a lot

My steps are wobbly, my range is small

I long to stride and pace at will.

 

My man with love, he said to me

I know your shoes, I know them well

My grandpa with his clones they made

For granny and her clones, they are

To last and last forever more

And not by word or deed were they

Adverse to wearing those them shoes.

 

I told my man, my feet are large

Unlike your granny’s hardened feet

And your mummy’s deadened fee

See how they strain and pull the seams

That holds them in their gnarly shape.

 

My man he did, he called his clones

They brought their scum, who brought their drums

And all of them with shiny daos

That long had served them since time past.

 

At last, at last, I sang aloud

The time has come, my feet shall breathe

My toes shall spread and they shall be

The shape that they were meant to be.

 

Or so I thought, until I saw

They marched me down, they marched me up

Past Barefoot Lot and Clichés Park

Through Immemorial Lane and Manhood Hill

And there on Ego Slab they did

They cut my feet to fit them shoes.

 

My daughters dear, I say to you

Them shoes that cripple mother’s feet

Shall fray and fall, I say to you

For when they cut my feet to size

They broke the string that ties me down.

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