It suddenly turned cold

Just a few days ago —

Went to all the places

I needed to see,

Preoccupied with work,

Treading lightly with chillness

In my thoughts.


Reflecting on bygone holidays,

Bathing in remembered warmth

In the markets of Islamabad.

My life runs in circles — a bit as if

There’s nothing new in the world.


The work of the past year

Seems to have been spent for naught;

Concepts twirling in my head,

Chatt’ring of a brave new world;

Thoughts speaking of energies misspent

In languages no-one ‘s supposed to know;

But mild hopes refuse to freeze.


Themes waiting to be expressed

Fermenting in the alchemy of my brain;

And I wish for

Something new to burn in my heart,

For new impulses

To quicken my restlessness.


But here’s a voice on the radio

Speaking of war in the east —

A part of my country’s shame,

Part of a history gone sour —

Refracting the rays of new optimism.


The present thus imposing itself

On my aimless ramblings,

I turn off the radio

To wade once more in winter’s chill.