Parallel Journeys

At the stroke of midnight, I went out to buy a bottle of caffeine
In all that rain, you could imagine how drenched I would have been
I returned to my room and heard a Bing, a notification on my mobile screen
T-2 hours, it said, and I was ready to violate my sleep routine

All of India were watching, as the Chandrayaan 2 was to land
On the South Pole of the Moon and so far everything went as planned
I went to the live stream of the landing with the Coke bottle still in my hand
All the scientists expressed worry and thrill, emotions they couldn’t withstand

20 minutes to go for the feat and the rough braking process began
The mission control centre echoed with applause and the PM was a proud old man
5 minutes to go and those goosebumps in my skin swiftly ran
My phone notified me that I used 50% of my Jio data plan

As I swiped the message, the scientists exchanged looks of anguish and shock
“Communication has been lost” was the announcement that sent our country a knock
All the numbers reached the values of zero on the landing countdown clock
But the satellite turned a deaf ear and was still as still as a rock

Pandemonium replaced the air of joy and the tears dripped down the cheeks
All that effort was all in vain after perspiring for weeks and weeks
“Be courageous” were the PM’s words to the emotionally weak
I still thought patience was the key and hoped success would follow the mystique

3am, an hour had passed since the lunar messenger had to update
I held hands on my head with grief and finally gave up on my wait
I lay on my bed and thought to myself, what was the reason for this fate
I tried getting sleep, but couldn’t, might have been the caffeine or maybe because I was irate

Despite the frustration of failure, I still would give a standing ovation of pride
To all those in ISRO who tirelessly and whole-heartedly tried
We attempted to do what no one’s done before and it’s been a roller coaster ride
Even PM was flattered, embracing the ISRO chief while he horribly cried

Our neighbors mocked us for our defeat and considered it to be their fortune
But don’t forget that they have a moon on the flag while we have a flag on the moon
What’s deaf and dumb isn’t dead and I hope it will speak up soon
Until then, we can happily state that we were the first to reach the South Pole of the Moon


Rithwik Rao

Third Year ME

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