Let the Pain Not Spread: Ira Batra Garde

We received an email last week from Ira Batra Garde, who wrote:

I have attached a poem I wrote yesterday. It is my response to the airline tragedy, and to all the rudeness we see expressed by strangers toward strangers, on the streets of San Francisco these days. I hope it can help us all heal a bit from the open wounds we must all encounter, day after day, in these tragedies and expressed anger everywhere. Writing it helped me to transform the tragedy (and tragedies) a bit for myself.

I am a physician and a psychiatrist. I was born in India, and immigrated to the United States when I was eight. I am currently writing a novel which seeks to explore the possibility of spiritual and psychological healing which can be transformative, breaking the cycle of violence and wrongdoing which can otherwise travel across generations and through cultures.
The airline tragedy she refers to is last month’s Germanwings crash. We, too, believe in the power of healing stories. We’re happy to share Ira’s poem, and we can’t think of a more fitting time to do so—it is National Poetry Month in the United States.

Let the Pain Not Spread

Let the pain not spread
Build a porous wall around it
Lest it seep into the soil
Harvest it
Plant flowers in it
Lest it rise in a tightened fist, gritty scowl, hardened stare
Or fall,

                                driving a buoyant angel

from the sky