Friday, September 16, 2005

Price of Freedom

It is difficult to reflect on this picture. This is Kashmir, Circa 2005. A lone mother sobs softly at her son's grave in Srinagar, the capital of Kashmir. Her son, like thousands others, perished in the bloody strife that has plagued this beautiful glade on earth since the late 80's. I guess, it is difficult for parents to outlive their children.

What joy it is when a baby is born! Mothers' go through the pangs of motherhood, the kicks, the pain, the anguish and the pleasure to beget a life. She breeds the kid, brings him up. Educates him at her lap. Watches him crawl, babble and jostle for his drink.

Sees him go to school, imbibe words, croon rhymes. Blushes to see him grow his first face-hairs; does a quiet prayer when his tender voice turns hoarse. The sheer emotion that flickers to see him go camping. His band. His room. His books. The joy of being a parent. The bonds. The anxities, those parental dreams for him!

And suddenly a bomb! Gun shots! Dreams shattered!
Blood in runnels. Her son's!
Who got him. Gunmen, Army!
His grave. Mom sobs! Tears. The agony.

God, I can't stand this!