Rome burnt as Nero* played the fiddle.


Fiery flames walk highways, creep into homes,

stalking, burning, killing not only coronal heat but hearths.


Inflamed by the surreptitious smoke

seeping under the smouldering trees, breeze rips

incensing fierce fires that unquenched swallow

clean air and belch apocalyptic hellish skies.


Did Nero build palaces by burning Rome?


I cannot breathe. This is without the knee. I cannot breathe.


wait for rain — that may not come

wait for cool — emperors are busy


Coal cinders glow at night angering the Earth.


Hooded men caper to the song of the grim reaper.

Statues crumble under the gaze of the angry blaze,

no longer victimised violenced by hate.

History, annihilated by the inferno,

awaits now to be rebuilt —


Rome was rebuilt in Time.


Can the Blacksmith forge another World?

A New Order. A New Sunrise.

*Nero ruled the Roman empire from 54 to 68 CE. He is said to have played the fiddle while Rome burnt. Though historically inaccurate, the statement conveys his lack of concern.

Mitali Chakravarty is a writer and the founding editor of Borderless Journal



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