Literary Yard

Search for meaning

‘Ocean of Pain’ and other poems

By: Bakhtiar Ahmed

Ocean of Pain

I am floating in the vast ocean
of pain, the ocean so beautiful
so placid, so dark, so infinite
every cell in my body
getting personal attention
tortured individually, torture, so
methodological so thorough, not even
one cell, not even one chromosome is
missed – the pain dispersed
so evenly, the screams
so loud, but silence unbroken
time eternal, space infinite
pain perpetual and limitless
the end, not in sight
what was, is no more
what will be, who cares?
this is now, this is real
this is life



I stepped into a
dark street a
cul-de-sac of sorts
searching for meaning
a purpose, as I was told
“life has a meaning a
purpose, in the
grand scheme of things”
my life, not much different
from this cul-de-sac
a strange cul-de-sac, my
life, closed at both ends
I look for meaning and
purpose, in this
cul-de-sac (my life)
all I see is
an ugly cat, scavenging
an overflowing gutter
waste bins, trash, strewn
around, the sky, ugly gray starless
sky, veiled by smog, is
all I see, all this is supposed
to have a meaning, a purpose
right? I can’t see any
there is no meaning, no
purpose, just an ugly
cat, overflowing gutter, and
trash, strewn around, the
stench unbearable, I
go back inside, to try
another day, another
cul-de-sac (my life), as I
was told, there is a meaning, a
purpose to life



I was laying on my back
the yellowing, soft, grass my
bed, my folded hands my pillow
I was five, or six maybe
I still remember that winter
day, somewhat sunny
intoxicated by that gentle
cool breeze, I was
looking at the blue sky, with
fluffy bundles of white
clouds here and there, breaking the
monotony of blue, I saw some dry
leaves, swirling and swirling
swirling in the wind at
unimaginable heights, I knew
where they came from, I
instantly knew
they had fallen from
the giant trees, in
the fairyland, up above, I was
happy so happy to see them
swirling and swirling like
fairies, from the fairyland
up above, swirling and swirling
I still sometimes see the
leaves, swirling and swirling, at
unimaginable heights, but
now I am a grown-up and I
know, they have fallen from the
trees nearby, lifted by the
gusts of cold wind, and now I
know there is no fairyland, now
I am a grown-up, and when
I see the leaves swirling and
swirling at unimaginable
heights, I am not happy
not happy at all


The World Outside

the noon is almost past
the freezing breeze
chills me right to the bones
sitting on the squeaky
wooden bench, in this
Godforsaken park
trying to get some
warmth, the gleaming
golden grass, still wet
from the rain last night
adding to the cold
chills me right to the bones
I look at the sun, barely
visible under the thin cloudy
veil, it will soon be
dark and I have to leave
my refuge, this Godforsaken
park, the thought of getting
up and going out gives me
shudders, I want to sit
here on this squeaky
bench, all my life, forever
if possible, but
I have to go out
and face the world
again, it will soon be
dark, and I have to
go out and face the
world again

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