Guest poem submitted by P. G. Murthy:
(Poem #470) The Comforters
When I crept over the hill, broken with tears, When I crouched down on the grass, dumb in despair, I heard the soft croon of the wind bend to my ears, I felt the light kiss of the wind touching my hair. When I stood lone on the height, my sorrow did speak, As I went down the hill, I cried and I cried, The soft little hands of the rain stroking my cheek, The kind little feet of the rain ran by my side. When I went to thy grave, broken with tears, When I crouched down in the grass, dumb in despair, I heard the soft croon of the wind soft in my ears, I felt the kind lips of the wind touching my hair. When I stood lone by thy cross, sorrow did speak, When I went down the long hill, I cried and I cried, The soft little hands of the rain stroked my pale cheek, The kind little feet of the rain ran by my side.
Death joins hands with sorrow seeking comfort in loneliness and nature. The anguish of needless death is present all around us even after centuries of culture, religion and the thin veneer of civilisation. Therein is the quiet relevance of this simple poem. The Comforters was written by Irish poet Dora Sigerson Shorter during the first World War. It is believed that her death was hastened by the sufferings of the war and the large numbers of the young and the innocent who laid down their precious lives. In suffering and sorrow one tends to be with one self and turns to nature. The poet has not relied on any pathetic fallacy but has gracefully summoned the wind and the rain, two ancient agents of nature, to her assistance. The soft wind and the gentle rain caress the face of the grieving soul coming alive, as it were, as friends in mourning. They act not as irritants but soothe the lady in distress in sympathy with her: 'The kind little feet of the rain ran by my side'. This is a simple poem with a musical rhythm that is soothing to the ear. P. G. Murthy