The first prize winner in the poetry contest , Mother by Shruti Bhushan .
As she slept
Eyebrows creased, eyes shrunk, I opened the door, letting the light outside
fall over her face.
I quickly sneaked in and swiped the curtain silently.
In the dimness of a bulb, her face was a setting sun.
Her lips, parted, had a whistling sound as she breathed.
I went close, swiftly kissed her forehead.
Her under-eyes-skin bulged out a bit more than before.
They demanded my touch.
I moved back.
In my blanket, I assured myself- she looked pale, but alive.
And I slept.