Here I share a poem penned in May 2013, in remembrance of thousands of lives lost at the collapsed factory; Rana Plaza in Savar, Bangladesh on 24th April 2013. Despite being warned of the structure's poor condition the previous day, the owners refused to shut down the factory -- more so, forced the employees to go for work next day, by threatening to cut off their salaries. Factories found in similar conditions and with poor working conditions are found all over the world. In Bangladesh, China, Cambodia, India, Nicaragua, Pakistan etc, "conditions await" to write thousands of lives into smiler stories.
While the "privileged and elite" celebrate world economy, "human worth" is compromised each day in the corporate world, while humanity slowly goes blind behind the tightly shut eyes of "our world's" very own soul.
This poem is my humble dedication to all workers, especially many women who lost their lives -- and the survivors.
Light and regards, Ishtar Zikr.
Rented Lives of Clay Puppets by Silent Fingers (Ishtar Zikr)
Rented lives of clay puppets selling themselves to the aroma of two tasteless morsels; bought at the price of few crumpled paper -- faded in color with few jotted numbers; worth lesser than frayed blankets covering half-naked bodies on cold concrete pavements.
Five yards of human soul -- ... of feet that once danced in muddy puddles sinking paper boats ... of hands that once fed half-full stomachs of starving toddlers -- now wrapped and bound in forty yards of pure white-cotton; tied together with a limb or a two missing – one lying here... the other lying there.
Lighter than the day they were borne as pieces of “heaven” Heavier now than a world weighed down by anchored "hells" carried upon blistered shoulders -- of a father a brother a son ... or, perhaps a stranger's -- each frozen through this procession of animated toil, hailing the once warm flesh of now-red-stained-bodies, all laid on their backs -- facing His "still benevolent" sky.
This -- the lost march of the crushed souls’ last parade; with no drums no trumpets... with no cheers no applauds... but only screaming sighs bursting breathing chests open -- of the half-alive loving ones left behind.
Famished graves await restless – mouth open as earth beckoned it's share of fresh salty morsels; ... a once smiling face, ... a once singing voice, and, a once fighting "warrior" -- forced once to enter the hell of the poor man’s world, blessed now to escape the heaven of the rich man’s hell.
Souls buried beneath the weight of life’s bitter truths -- Twice! Then, under the jostling cold shoulders of concrete and iron. Now, under the wet soil of materialism's unforgiving truth …. all in the voids of inhumane humanity. …. all in the voids of inhumane humanity.