With No Last Rites 

You and I, we sit around and kill time.

We are living. We are living every moment for what it is – a moment. There is no making a name for ourselves, no saving our stories for later, just the comfort in how panic evades us as we watch time slipping through our fingers to fall into the past. We are living, looking onwards without so much as a single backward glance.

Our fathers turn 50 this year. They are left with wrinkles on their faces and in their minds, like souvenirs from vacations of a past which they no longer remember. They have lived, too. They can tell time better than we do.

The weight of human life after fifty years of living is crushing enough that we start to forget – age is a number with a penchant to unlearn. And so I say that nobody will remember us fifty years after we say our final goodbyes. The world will unlearn us. No books will bear our names. We may not even fill the compact pages of history, stay off the record with our reticent lives pushed between the lines – did you notice how we never bothered to read between the lines?


We have lived, but nobody will remember.

We say that it does not matter. You say that time will stop existing once we die, anyway. I hear the clock nod in agreement every second of the day. We stand in our graves-to-be.

And we kill time.

Till one day, time will take its toll: it will make itself known when our bones rattle. It will brush against us, pulling us away from the future, stacking us in the shelves of the dusty past.


One day, long after we are done killing time because it will die with us, anyway;

Time will bury us, forever.


(Based on a line from Epitaph of a Small Winner by Machado de Assis)

One thought on “With No Last Rites 

  1. Vivek says:

    I never could fathom human’s obsession with being remembered or leaving a mark.. a name carved on a tree or shoddy words splattered on the wall in a filthy restroom.. or their traces left behind the seats on buses or scribbled, school benches. And I think it is okay to not be someone or be in history books and be in somebody else’s head as a ghost. I think it is okay to sit in a cave in a jungle and live in mother nature’s womb.

    Liked by 1 person

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