Ashes of a Bonfire

Shehjar e-magazine Shehjar Online
Slowly people trickled to a late outdoor fall party,

Bone-dry twigs were loaded one by one to a heap rotund and tall,

Which was drenched generously with a flammable liquid ignited by a lighter,

The assembled crowd, some on their knees, billowed the gathering tongues of the flames,

In a meditative mood and with deft hands the bonfire at the party was started,

As the fire lit up to a full girth people’s minds seemed to soar

To a benediction-like solemnity, a state of mind overtook their survival consciousness,

They seemed to be transported to the other world where the time’s arrow is forever arrested

And the hallowed land has no horizon,

In this soul-stretched moment people lost their fears and desires, self and sins,

A sublime trip without a destination,

As more people joined the bonfire the earlier trance was cracked,

A pregnant state of mind turned into a carnival of excitement, fun, and frolic,

As the party gathered steam the hors d’oeuvre and lady alcohol danced to hilt,

The riotous orgy of the senses swelled without restraint,

Musing silences turned to raucous networking,

Late into the night drunk and half-drunk guests finally managed to stream out of the house onto the highways,

Shooting to their holes and hearths, jobs and jaunts,

While the bonfire standing alone slowly turned into a heap of smoldering ash.
*Maharaj Kaul was born in Kashmir, India. He studied engineering in Banaras University and Polytechnic Institute Of New York. He has worked for Wyeth (now Pfizer) and other companies. From his childhood he has been interested in the origins and philosophy of science, religion, and art. He has taken a special interest in studying the effects of the age of technology, we are living in now, on religion, culture, and personality of the mankind. This is a subject that recurs frequently in his articles, books, and poems.
He has written five books: (1) Meditation On Time (poetry); (2) Destruction And Injustice: The Tribulations Of Kashmiri Pandits: (3) Life With Father; (4) Inclinations And Reality: The Search For The Absolute; (5) The Light Through The Woods (poetry).
Some of his literary work can be viewed at