I threw that gun in the lake

As a baby, he had a stagnant mirth

In his eyes.

Slowly, the mirth was effaced

By the tears of time.

Left to himself to grow as a child,

Beaten and battered by a stepfather,

Neglected by a careless mother,

Naive innocence crumpled and crushed

By the whips and lashes of time,

The seeds of bitterness

Started sprouting in the soft soils

Of his heart.


He sighed forlornly a tangled mesh, a mouse does.

He looked for a friend with a rare plumage

But could not find any on whose shoulder

He could lay his troubled and tired head.

At home, it was always a fish platter for two,

Never three,

and in school, a packed lunch

Of lab created food.

Self-consumed in his sorrows,

He wished he were a pine warbler,

Or a weeping jackal or a scavenging seagull.


He saw in people diseased and decayed

Fruits clinging to frail branches,

Adulthood forced upon childhood

And old age, a deep regret.


One evening, he is asked to clean

His stepfather’s gun.

He knows how to use it

And he says to himself,

‘ I could shoot you.’

He feels the surges of anger,

His heartbeat increases

And the color of his room

Suddenly becomes red—

The color of anger,

The color of blood.


He runs out of the house

Leaving the father safe

And goes by the lake.

He throws the gun in the water

And watches the ripples

While clouds,soft as cotton balls

Send a lovely drizzle on him.

‘Thou shalt not kill

However bitter is life’s pill.

Life was never always dark for anyone

For all the time,

Nor was it bright for all

For all the time,’

Gently said a soft voice.


He goes home,

Sees the anger in the eyes of his parents.

‘Where’s my gun?’ roars the father.

‘Answer immediately,’adds the mother.

He kneels down in front of them

And in a soft voice says,

‘I threw that gun in the lake.

I want love and peace in my home Ma and Pa.’

The parents kiss the child.

A wind of change blows

And a sea of love flows.


Pramila Khadun




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About pramilakhadun

I am the holder of a Bsc degree in Food and Nutrition from S.N.D.T University,Pune,India.Have taught this subject in a private institution for almost thirty-five years.Currently, I am retired and travel alot with my husband Raj, daughters Dr Rajnee and Priyum and son Airline Captain.Had my first book of poetry published by Minerva press, London and other two in Mauritius.More coming soon.I love poetry and enjoy reading poems of poets across the world and I feel Destiny Poets is the right place for me.

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