Korigad Fort

Dying in  Cowrashtra.

The life of a cow sounds good on paper. And, the life of a cow is only a little worse than how we Indian men treat our women be it a kashmiri beauty or kanyakumari. The bulls fare a lot worse. For instance, in Maharashtra, old bulls (wonder what happens to cows) are driven up or find their way up the forts built by the Marathas and Mughals to slowly wither away and die.


Some look back
at a life
in a homestead cowshed,
and enjoying the greens
in the fields,
once the few days of ploughing were done;
Preening and making eyes
at the harvest time,
the frisky little ones,
fussed over
as they gambolled around.

Looking into worlds beyond
was about
being useful
even in death,
treated in respect,
by trained hands
in traditional technology...

green of the grass
has given way
other paper greens,
as avaricious powerlords
pour concrete
down the
farmers' throat.

Cheek by jowl
with other seniors,
stunned breathless in a truck,
to the abattoir

And some,
ending life alone,
on a greenless hill,
no food, no work,
no NREGA*** for cows,
from a party,
that once had them
as their election symbol*****,
and has now
switched instead
to a Hand,
most often found
in someone's loaded pocket.


*** NREGA : National Rural Employment Guarantee Act .


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