Silence and Darkness

I lay in my bed
Waiting for the soft lull of sleep to embrace me
To take me to the land where dreams come by
I know it won’t come soon
I know she faces the blockades
Obstacles block her way

I wake up to the low drum of the machine
I sleep to the blaring of the neighbor’s TV
Every moment in between is as loud as the other
The horns of vehicles speeding by
The excavators in their pursuit of development
Violence on my brothers and sisters
The rape of the natural world
Does it pierce my ears alone
Or is it my heart that suffers more?

If sleep finds her way through these
Could she also pass the bright night?
The flood light glowing outside my window
Keeps everyone safe, they say.
What dangerous world do we live in?
To keep one safe, ones must die:
The bugs, the plants, the birds, the frogs.
Don’t they know lights kill these all?

Moonlight and fireflies don’t bother me much
Neither does the beetles’ mating calls
I bet I could learn to sleep through
The mosquitoes buzzing around me
I long for the day when these are the only voices
That pierce the silence and darkness of night.


Salonika is an organizer at DGR South Asia and is based in Nepal. She believes that the needs of the natural world should trump the needs of the industrial civilization.

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