"A profound unmitigated loneliness is the only truth of life"
- R.K. Narayan

He was a cub, strongest of the lot,
pride of the zoo was he
His roar had a fury, the fire in him
was there for all to see.

They all flocked to see him,
Many a child's breath he'd sway,
King of the jungle, they knew,
he will surely be one day.

A block away, in a corner forgotten,
stuck in bone and flesh,
sat a meditating hermit, searching
and praying for a soul afresh.

Seldom the hermit spoke, very less he ate,
never did his focus give way.
he will surely find his God soon, people
who knew him would say.

Then one day, the zoo felt the cub had grown,
and 'twas time to set it into the wild.
Around the same time the hermit, too, felt light
like God had liberated his dear child.

Children from all over, came to the zoo,
to witness the releasing of the lion.
Devotees from all over, came to the hermitage,
to witness the liberation of their doyen.

But as the cub took the first step out,
it seemed to shudder in fear.
Outside the cage was a life that it
never knew so well and clear.

The cub turned, ran back to its cage,
with fear it didn't disguise,
It wouldn't leave the cage again,
that made everyone, gasp in surprise.

A block away, the guru breathed his last,
amidst chants of people's fantasy,
Then there was a moment's silence,
and then began prayers in ecstasy.

Right then, the hermit gasped back to life,
with a smile, like he'd got a prize.
they hailed it as divine resurrection,
that left everyone, basking in surprise.
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