Mirror Magazine


100 Words - "Waiting"

Thank you for all your many contributions for 'Waiting'. Writers, please note that your full name should be sent in with your contributions and should you wish a pen name to be used, pls indicate this separately. Also, remember the 100 word limit.

The theme for the next "100 Word" page is "GRAINS". Please send in your contributions before May 23 to Madhubhashini Ratnayake, C/o The Sunday Times, No. 8, Hunupitiya Cross Rd., Colombo 2.

At the bus stop
The blazing sun was burning the earth. She was looking for a bus with heavy burdens. The crowded private buses were passing her. They didn't notice her. She was alone at the bus stop. The lank gray hair... thin frame... ragged awkward cloth... she was alone. The sweat was running off her. She sat in a corner of the bus stop. Another bus will come, she thought. She began to chew a betel leaf.

A hasty red bus made an enormous noise. She felt happy. She stood and strolled towards it. But it didn't see her.
- K.K.G.I. Dilmini

The agony and the ecstasy
It was the waiting hall in the hospital
My number was thirty four
The agony of waiting was already upon me
When all of a sudden
I saw her.
Calmly seated, with half closed eyes
Charming, cute and beautiful.
Waiting becoming a pleasure
I was already dreaming
How lucky would I be
If she became mine!
Waiting at the door step
When I returned from work
I would stroke and caress her
to show my love and gratitude.
Suddenly from somewhere
On to her wagging tail
Sprang two plumpish kittens.
Shattering my dreams
She moved away.
And waiting became
An agony again!
- Nimal Jayasinghe

"Why are you in the dark?'' he asks.
"It's kinder. It's not waiting to grab me and expose me and ridicule me like the light. It only hints at degradation."
He grips her by her cold lean arms and shakes her violently, as if trying to bring to ground an unripe mango that he has waited too long to taste.
"You can't live like this forever. You can't just... wait. You can't.
You can't," he shrieks. "Just watch me."

The arrivals' lounge
Iron birds swoop down with a roar,
But the time has not yet come.
There's a sea of people around me,
All with expectant eyes like mine.
The sliding doors - they open,
And each time my heart races.
Would it be her?
Would she look the same?
Would she say I've changed too?
The conversation - how will it start?
A hug, a smile, a simple hello?
A quick glance at my watch.
It's getting slightly late now.
I hope there is no delay.
No, let that not be.
What if something is wrong?
Years have passed but
These few minutes are torture,
Before her head bobs up finally
Behind her suitcase and trolley.
- Nishadi de Silva

Waiting with trembling limbs,
Benumbed with fear,
Surrounding by stench
Of blood and gore and body fluids,
The old bull with broken legs
Is waiting for the knife,
The butcher's blade
To strike and slice
His quivering flesh.

Millions more are waiting
Dreaming of meadows, streams,
Green hills and tranquil pools,
Unsullied by the cruel deeds
Of humankind...
Waiting for fulfilment - poor fools
Of their futile dreams.
- Jegatheeswari Nagendran

Waiting to cry
Scantily dressed little ones
Frolicking in the filthy streets
Hungry mouths sucking
Buds drooping
Without ever blossoming
Innocent eyes frustrated
By wolf calls
The feeble trying to cross
Amidst heavy rush
Stir a storm deep within me.
Waiting to burst out
But unable -
Just a lump
I cannot gulp or cough out.
Like the dry zone farmer
Awaiting first drops of monsoon.
I wait
To cry my heart out
And be free.
- Thushara Chathuranga

He waits for me to make the first move. My eight-year-old son Ranga says the way I spoke to him is bad. I have committed a grave offence by ordering him to stop quarrelling with his four-year-old sister Sarasi and asking him harshly to go to bed. His voice is choking with emotion. Any moment it will burst like an inflated balloon.

I soften and simply say, "You know Ranga I love you". Teardrops pour down his cheeks. I cuddle and hug him and he responds tenderly, reminding me of my unhappy childhood.
- Ranjan Amarasinghe

The waiting game...
An embryo waits in the womb
to be born.
A child plays
until school begins.
A teenager awaits
adult freedom.
A woman waits for marriage -
A wife awaits
Soon she reaches
She loves her play
with grandchildren.
Until they too,
grow up.
I have reaped
my full harvest.
Am thankful for
its gifts.
But now the waiting
is hard
Alone in my room
I await my exit
From this life.
Perhaps to begin again
The waiting game
All over again?
- Punyakante Wijenaike.

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