‘Are you lonesome tonight?’

A raspy voice asked.

In a hurry I wiped my tear streaked face and pulled the covers down, to my neck

To greet the voice who had dared to infiltrate my night-time,

Astonished I was to find no one there!

Albeit, I knew, in the dark, I wouldn’t have been able to make out the face,

I knew, I would have at least seen an outline, at least a trace.

‘Are you lonesome tonight?’

The raspy voice repeated.

I turned over in terror, looked right and left as my bed, my safe haven started to become the pits of Tartarus, as the Acheron waters started to drown me in

No one, nothing! Yet, the voice has felt so palpable, so real

After some ragged breaths; to calm myself

I looked out of the window, at the sky

At the majestic abode of wonder, the august land of beauty and splendour ,

Clad in royal blue with silver stars for jewels, accoutring the handsome fluffy clouds with honour

I felt relaxed at the familiarity of the ever-changing sky

And smiling at the serenity it brought, I sunk into the comfort my bed, still in the pool of tranquility

‘Maybe,’ I thought, ‘Those caustic words had been a product of my imaginati-’

‘Are you lonesome tonight?’

The voice came yet again, fostering a conflagration in my mind

With fast and loud heartbeats I somehow managed,

‘Who are you?’

I had tried to sound confident and full of authority

But even I had heard the terror and despair in those empty words.

‘Who are you?’ I asserted trying to muster all the courage I could

No reply.

Letting out a sigh I pulled the covers over my head

In hopes to block away anymore voices and sounds as I ached for the peace of night.

I felt the moon watching me in the sun’s light

It watched me as I twitched and turned and trembled and tottered

It watched me as I longed for the silence of the night

Which though once I had dreaded, was the only thing that could comfort me that night.

‘Are you lonesome tonight?’

I bolted upright.

In the dim moonlight, the source I tried to sight

‘Who are you?’ my voice was barely a whisper

‘What do you want?’ I screamed as I asked the voice

The voice who had asked the same question I had myriad of times asked myself, that night, the previous night and the night before

How tenuous I felt! How esoteric I was!

I wished for meaningless sleep and longed for those incoherent dreams and to wake up the next day and like every day live without a cause.

‘Are you lonesome tonight?’

The same voice, the same monotone, the same words.

Bawling my heart out

Switching on the light to see the face of the voice,

I stood astounded! No one, no source I found.

I foolishly hoped it was a prank by a friend and would soon come out and shout ‘Got ya!’

But even my mind knew that wouldn’t be the case, as friends are something I didn’t possess.

To my mortification, the voice spoke yet again, right then

‘Are you lonesome tonight?’

As if it had heard my vacuous thoughts

Moving to the mirror I found

My hollow eyes staring at me as the words ceaselessly rang in my head

Again, and again.

Yes, it dawned on me, ‘I am lonesome tonight’

My ears and head hurt as they rang with those words

As my eyes started to pour

A loving hand to hold me I craved to have

A smiling face to tell me that it would all be alright and that I would be fine

A truthful set of eyes I desired to look into, which would say that I was worth it,

A person to call my own

Someone with whom I would feel at home.

I laughed at my ludicrous thought

The sardonicism in it prominent

I looked into my empty eyes again and took in

My state; my tear streaked cheeks and out of place hair

It was eccentric of me to feel sorry for myself

But at that moment, as those words went on and on in my ears and mind

‘Are you lonesome tonight?’

There was no one who had my commiseration more

‘No,’ I thought, ‘I ain’t lonesome tonight.’

For I have scars, tears and a crushed heart with me

‘No,’ I thought, ‘I ain’t lonesome tonight.’

For I have treachery, disappointments and the hurt of betrayal with me

‘NO!’ I screamed, shrieked and bawled

‘I ain’t lonesome tonight!’

‘No,’ I cried and wept till that voice of mine went away

And my eyes filled their usual spurious light

The dark gloom to be replaced by the phony gleam

‘No!’ I exclaimed till the wretched thoughts went their way

Never to be heard of again.

For days, then weeks, then months, and now years

Until last night,

As when I tucked into bed, a raspy voice asked,

‘Are you lonesome tonight?’

Night-time, the unofficially official time associated with monsters, vampires and all proclaimed evil means different things for different people. The idea for this poem evolved from the quote ‘Why fear the silence of the night, if it’s the only thing comforting you at night?’ I am usually a light content writer, and this happens to be the first time I dared to burst my bubble of teen drama writings. Through this I wish to address the feeling of feeling absolute loneliness. The feeling of not actually being lonely, but feeling lonely, nonetheless. I wish to address the fact that our mind is so powerful that to escape this loneliness it could create delusions or even hallucinations. Through this poem, I hope to tell people that they aren’t alone, whether that thought is comforting or not.

Author ~ Riya Pote Editor ~ Ananya Chaure

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