Darkest of nights | Surya T | Poetry Marathon Poem 20

The street light keeps blinking
on the verge of its end
The apartment is still further away
and the lights are getting dimmer

“I need to leave soon” I told boss
“You aren’t leaving until I say so”, boss replied
What was supposed to be a journey before nightfall
became one during the darkness

Multiple complaints to the corporator
Nothing yielded any results
Only the phone’s flashlight is the source
for safety, or sanity

Darkness craves company, it seems
In the shadows lurked, from dogs to robbers
“I have to leave, my neighborhood isn’t really safe” I pleaded
“Defend yourself, you’re a man” my boss replied

I looked around, in the darkness
my earphones tucked in my pocket
money distributed across all pockets
and my laptop bag clutched safely in my hands

I held the phone tightly in one hand
Flashlight on and the other hand clutching the bag
Another 10 minutes of this adventure
I’ll be home, safe and sound

I started praying to an invisible God
to let no visible attack come near me
counting down the seconds to my place
10:00… 09:59… 09:59… 09:57

I sensed someone move beside me
I quickly shone the light to see what it was
It was a steel plate, reflecting my phone’s light
I was startled by my own reflection

I stepped on a twig and it broke under my weight
The snap was audibly loud
This is the moment when something will attack me
I thought to myself and stood still in my tracks

As long as I am not moving, I won’t be attacked
But the longer I stand here, the more I’ll be attacked
I took a step, slowly, making sure there’s no twigs
Another few minutes before I reach my apartment

After eternity, and a few more reflection startles
I reached my apartment safely
I breathed a heavy sigh
I’m safe, for today

Tomorrow’s another day
For now, I need some rest – both mind and body
I need to leave before it’s dark here
The stress in this area is not easily managed

Surya T

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