Earth was hot
Steaming through cracks
Caked and dry.
Looked hungrily at the sky
Praying for rains that never came
Children and animals
Died like flies
Dumped in heaps for all to see
No vultures came to clean the debris
In the lofty metropolis
Roads melted and stuck to feet
And concrete cooked those trapped inside matchbox houses
The urban jungle became wilder:
Ferocious gangs of ravenous scavengers
Brawled and battled.
The city blazed.
More heat singed into flesh already oppressed—
Pressed tight with no place to go.
Spiraling dust lashed through the city
Flinging roofs and trash-cans here and there
Like a child throwing a tantrum.
A mile-thick, toxic brown haze hung over Earth
Like a shroud
And smothered whatever life remained.
Tides rose in all the oceans.
Cyclones and tsunamis;
And the seas…
Rising and falling, like water in a cauldron.
Hurricanes shook even the doldrums.
Trisha’s elbow poked my side and
I heard Ms. Das’s voice as if it came from far away:
“SRISHTI, WAKE UP AND PAY ATTENTION!”
The sky was bluish, not brown.
The sun was shining and it was a cool January day.
I beamed at Ms. Das and thought happily:
There’s still time. It’s not too late.
Let’s make amends and not tempt fate.
The sky’s still blue; let’s keep it that way,
Let’s prevent the apocalypse from striking today!