Tainted soul


Every night when I would put my babies to sleep

I would whisper, “you remain you, pure and innocent

don’t let the world tarnish your pristine sheen”

but alas it couldn’t be so!

as they grew up I was the first

to soil their pure soul with a teeny-weeny spot

when I taught them to be wary of strangers

then their teacher crumpled their soul a bit

when she favoured those brighter than them

or when their father reminded them that

they were luckier than others

to have food on their table

gradually as they grew older

someone or the other who was family or friend

tainted their soul bit by bit

and left their mark

branding and distorting their soul

infinitesimally every time

believe me it was all done with good intentions always

for that was our way of teaching values

their well-being the foremost thought

in our collective…

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