. The shadows of terror | London Progressive Journal
A non-partisan journal of the left.

The shadows of terror

Mon 8th Oct 2012

Through the narrow route

All residents of this part

Pass to their residences

The almost one kilometre lane

Leads from the Western road

To my bungalow which sprawls in solitude

Somewhere near the terminal point


By the day when we passed

The lively rows of houses on either side

Stared at us and animated our journey

As the occupants of the nearby buildings and passers-by

Exchanged genial pleasantries

As cultural courtesy demanded


Guns cracked, bombs boomed

And thunderstorm of kidnappings followed

In the wake of deprivation and privation

The occupants of the foremost side building

Afraid and needing to protect their possessions

Summoned their landlord for an urgent meeting


The object of the meeting was a fence round them

The considerate landlord nodded his head

And in few days had thrown a fence

About his building

The neighbouring households saw the fence


Good protection against unscrupulous callers

They admired and set about erecting theirs

In a month the competition was over

And the route was alienated

Our road has become lonely

So has our journey through


No more the warm cultural pleasantries

To season our coming home and going out

Worse still, at night

The tall fences of protection

Cast thick shadows upon the route


Areas criminals realise how

Safe crime would be

In those heavy shadows

So by their cover they waylay

Snatch handbags, cut gold, sparing no valuables

Then ravish young brides and wives


The shadows from the fences have become real terror

No more late coming or going

It soon dawns on the neighbours

That the barricades they erected

Leave more terror than they sought to prevent


But it is not easy to pull them down as

It was to set them up

Communalism with its camaraderie

Has taken leave of the route

Individualism with its lure for crime

They have enthroned in fear inspired by greed

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