by Neil Chopra

If heart’s burden cannot find its due reprieve,
Laughter’s song lightens a once heavy load;
Steps quicken as heart chases in disbelief
As if feathers affix worn, leaden soles.
Worry is purged, if just for a moment;
Breath is exhausted, bringing its own pain
Ladened with stinging, welcomed and potent,
That should not, even if it could, be tamed.
A bountiful gift in endless supply
As long as heart allows its unwrapping;
Infecting anyone willing nearby,
Curing the trouble they’ve took to masking.
If weight upon shoulders won’t ease as time passes,
Laughter can hold it before heart stumbles and crashes.

If decorum looks down on those who fool,
Propriety finding lips tightly pursed,
Maintaining a face obeying the rules:
Mind cries for escape from the wretched curse.
Sober submission to serious thought,
Webs entangling this vagabond mind;
While stinging satire is never forgot,
Unraveling narratives line by line.
If reality strives to hide the truth,
But lies raise it up high for all to see,
Who then is guilty of a mind so crude?
Which one could the true imposter be?
If grave tidings can be exposed through laughter’s wit,
Let the messengers be those who have mastered it.

If only scowls meet japes at your expense
And face does redden in silent brooding;
If thoughts are consumed with contrived revenge
Intent on a path to facts disproving:
Your fragile soul’s brittle cage will weaken
And succumb to the most tepid vise;
Your shame will overtake for no reason,
Pleading for a quick escape or disguise.
Let your cries turn into ones of laughter,
Able to withstand the deprecation;
And let the soul be strengthened thereafter,
Joining in the howling crowd’s elation.
If time comes when laughs cease to meet your reflection,
Be deathly scared, and in somber’s grasp be destined.

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