An ‘Ode’ to Gandhi

Posted in Poetry by Karthick RM on October 19, 2010

Forgive me father
for I’ve sinned.
No more can I tread
the path you laid,
of peace, harmony
and reconciliation
Your patronizing love
father, has become too
much of a burden.
Forgive me father,
but I need to shake free
if I should ever
regain my humanity
I am not the ‘son of god’
but conceived of mortals,
wretched. Oppressed
in the very name of
the ‘god’ you worship.
The demon, then,
dark, despised, loathed,
like the lot of us,
seems a more exciting option.

Forgive me father,
for I’ve sinned.
Your path of passiveness
is good indeed
for those over there
who have much to lose
when we stand to gain.
Those, for whose gain we
have lost, and lost, and lost,
again and again.
But see our path too!
In the paths I’ve travelled,
the roads of Anantnag,
Bastar, Vanni, Manipur,
I’ve soiled my feet.
Yes, my feet are soiled
not with mud
not with dirt
but with the blood
of children.
The blood of children!

‘Violence is a sin’
say those who have never
felt the pangs of hunger,
heard the cries of the silenced,
seen the face of a rifle’s butt.
They, your disciples,
the progeny of the order
that you defended.
Forgive me father,
but far too much
still remains in the world
that must be destroyed
with fire and sword.
And your dousing of the flame
cannot prevent the fire.

For I’ve realized
the only way to
assert my humanity
my identity, my existence
is to negate the existence
of those who deny it to me.
Forgive me father,
for I’ve sinned.
And I intend to continue

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One Response

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  1. a said, on July 29, 2012 at 8:44 pm

    here is gandhi in his true colours. non violence, yes, a noble concept. but has little relevance today. if at all, it can be practised for practical reasons only. non violence stopped being a moral choice a long time ago.

    “If the lower caste people leave their ancestral professions and adopt another profession, their expectations will rise and they will lose their mental balance and ultimately their family’s peace will be destroyed.

    “As per the Hindu Scriptures if a person adopts any other profession in place of his family profession, he commits violence and he renders himself to meanness by not following his ancestral profession.” Young India (11-31-27)

    “As the time goes on every day my belief in the Varna System is strengthening that man has no existence without it. Therefore, the Moslems and the Christians must follow this system; as it is as mandatory for them as it is necessary for the Hindus, to maintain social harmony.” Round Table Conf., l922

    “I will oppose the separation of the Untouchables from the caste Hindus even at the cost of my life. The problems of the Untouchables have no relevance or important before it.” Round Table, London, l932

    “According to me, the caste system is scientific. You cannot condemn it by argument. It controls the society socially and ethnically—I see no reason to end it. To end casteism is to finish the Hindu Religion. There is nothing against Varnastram. I have reason to believe that the caste system is an arithmetic principle. It has its own limitation and disadvantages. Even then there is nothing to be hated in this system.” Harijan, l932 (Translation from a Lower Caste tract circulated among Scheduled Castes and OBCs)

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