A Dozen Red Bricks


A dozen red bricks, on top of his head.
Carried a soul, to earn his daily bread.

His tottering steps, burnt dark in the sun.
The bricks were laid, his job was done.
A shadow waved on his face, a wave of respite.
He pulled his weary head up, with all his might.

In a distance, on a pole, newly painted white.
Fluttered the tricolour, oh what a pretty sight.
'Twas a sight to behold, what the poor soul had seen.
A proud wave of the banner, in Saffron, White and Green.

A smile showed his lips, and then faded away.
He thought to himself, what was he today?
Only then he then realized, his country was free.
And had been so, for long, he realized - years Sixty Three.

This freedom was a gift from his father too.
A freedom fighter, his stories he always knew.
In a way, like his father, he was a fighter as well.
His father fought the British. He fought poverty's spell.

He saw near the pole, in whites, people, very few.
Dragged out of their beds, their faces rue.
None seemed to realize, what the day actually meant.
They hoisted the flag, and back home they went.

An ignorant world, locked up in their homes,
Stuck to their TVs, and their cushioned thrones.
He wondered why, only he had to work today,
Where was his freedom, on Independence Day?

He realized soon, he was much better than them.
Among heaps of coal, a rare polished gem.
Although to poverty and despair, he had succumbed,
He harbored a heart, that understood freedom.

He had no money, he had no wealth,
But he was free to do, what he felt.
His country didn't give him much, he did confess.
But freedom was his wealth, which he did possess.

And he carried on with his chore for the day.
He wanted to do something for his country, his way.
He knew no miracles, to make it quick.
So he built his country, brick by brick.

A dozen red bricks, on top of his head.
Carried a soul, to earn his daily bread.

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A poem by Sudhakar who blogs at Idli Vada Sambar

comment 3 comments:

Debosmita on August 16, 2010 at 1:13 PM said...

I haven't read a better poem on Freedom. Beautifully captured in verses, you highlighted the plight of the invisible Indians.
Lovely!

Dr. Chandana Shekar on August 18, 2010 at 1:58 AM said...

lovely!!! one of the few very good poems i have read offlate

Ugich Konitari on August 21, 2010 at 6:24 PM said...

Sometimes independence means no childhood. Just carrying huge loads on small heads with great minds.

Fantastic verse.

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