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Vighnesh Hampapura






Dead Man’s Land

If you travel the boundaries 

And reach the gate point,

Where they cease the barbed wire 

and cease the fire of arms,

and open the metals with arms— 

Dig the land there,

Six feet long and three feet wide, 

I live in that furrow, breathing, 

Soil in, Soil out.

Thus Spake the Mirror

And thus spake the mirror:

You close your eyes, and the world is absent. 

I have none the chances to close mine.

I may be a hundred eyes; 

But to close, and dream—

I have no eyelids, neither the ignorance. 

That’s your forte. Is it a fort too?

Truths you deny, or perhaps, don’t know;

Sweet lies that the senility of your innocence believes, 

To present to you that,

That is my forte.

You aren’t you.

Every time, you show me your face and beam. 

For? Half a minute?

Wash up, and look again,

You might see what I see: look— 

Two black shining eyeballs.

It shines, it’s youth.

It’s just black beyond!

Enthusiasm out of place. 

Desire out of darkness. 

Time out in repentance. 


Another foot of human error. 

Get up, go.

About the Poet

Vighnesh Hampapura is an English undergraduate student at Ashoka University, Sonepat. His interests include English, Kannada and Sanskrit literature, Carnatic music, and Indian theatre. He may be contacted at

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