Once you walk the soldier’s path of pain,
Might make you humble enough not to complain.
You get privileges that he can’t dream of.
You plan your parties and long drives, as on the bed when u lie,
He served in scarcity of oxygen, an altitude so high.
He does not belong to any civil society like you,
Where you get up in the morning,
With people to hold a cup of coffee in front of you.
He was trained in the barracks where his daily alarm was firing rounds of AK-47s
Then with his rifle in his arms, feeding himself in muddy trenches.
You celebrate Christmas dining with your family with delight,
When the Sergeant at the border orders him, “STAND UP AND FIGHT!”
You celebrate the festivals of lights, lighting crackers and exchanging gifts,
Where he might be exchanging bullets and grenades at the heights.
Your sullen children may crack jokes with you and share their secrets,
While a five-year-old soldier’s son writes,
“Father I have been a good son while you were gone,
I protected mother and family as you asked me to.
Return home soon, we wait for you.”
Now his son is eighteen,
But that makes no difference.
He still looks at the medals of his father and wishes to serve the country like him.
Because he believes whether he is five or eighteen,
Sacrifices a soldier makes at line of duty is what glory means.
Social privileges are to be given up to make sure,
Our civilians live a life, they so allure.
Illustration by: Shreyas Gangopadhyay