Columbia astronauts
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For the Columbia shuttle astronauts - by Shashi

There is a new memory,
That is now engraved on our hearts
Of heroes and heroines who
Descended to the heavens aghast
A memory that will never
Be quite the same again
Except for the longing
Mixed with angst and much pain
That triumphant lift off
That bright sunny morning
Everything so perfect
Without a cloud overcast 

A haunting helmet now lies lonely
Across the meadows and barren vast
That once held the head so high
Now awaits your footprints from past
Your message of bravery
And silence of broken heart
So many unrealized dreams
Now shattered on unknown paths
The precious badge of honor
With a name especially your own
Lies shining amid deadly fields
With silence amid your haunted moan 

But you were only human
There was only so much you could do
You didn’t even have the inkling
Your flight were to be so doomed
In only took a few seconds
For the mighty structure to fall
Dreading the rapid succession
You fought gravity with your all
There was no where to run
And no where to hide
Except for sheer desperation
To make your final call 

Now we helplessly gaze
At the sky so empty
For the pain to soften
Into solace and some sensitivity
Until the despair evolves into depth
And fear becomes anticipation
From the emptiness of fragments
We hope to slowly learn to reminisce 

For we now know
You are one among the stars
In the deadly night of stillness
You shine from heavens afar…

Copyright @ Shashi 2003

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