What You Were

What You Were

Tell us about a time you couldn’t quite get your words or images to express what you wanted to express. What do you think the barrier was? For bonus points, try again.


A poem in which an emotion is personalized. Hope you get what it is before I mention it, cos this is what that emotion feels like for me:


I never wondered about you enough

To describe what you felt like in a word

When I tried to tell them about you

After you had gone and left me here

All that came out were soundless tears.


You didn’t surprise me or make my heart

Dance with my hands in the air, in ecstasy

You just made me feel like you belonged in me,

That I had been born to feel this way everyday

To always have a smile singing inside me.


I couldn’t find words that matched

Nor descriptions deserving enough

For once, books utterly failed me

But I could hear your when I was alone

When words lost their voices and gained meaning.


You were there when I felt the dew

At dawn on my bare, trembling feet 

In the lonely tree which gazed above

When I was stuck in a traffic jam

In the sky when it was blank,

That hour where the stars had disappeared

And the sun was yet to wake up.


Now that you’ve gone,

They are all silent

They gaze at me 

Like I have betrayed them.


And then, I realized what you were,

That there was a word which trapped you.

You were Happiness. 


Beneath the Coconut Trees

Beneath the Coconut Trees

When you’re away from home, what person, thing, or place do you miss the most?

The sunlight striking the water rushing towards me

The slender leaves of the neem tree swaying lightly

The breeze whispering gently about spectacular sunsets

The ugly white house in the middle of all this beauty.


In the water always flowing gently to meet me,

I lost myself again and again, in every wave.

With the blue sky peering behind the coconuts,

I gaze up, my mind neither happy nor sad

Just alive, just there, just at home. 


A Family

A Family

Daily Prompt: If you could pause real life and spend some time living with a family anywhere in the world, where would you go?

Pausing time for a little while,

I fly like a ghost, unseen, to

Visit a family tucked somewhere

In that corner of the earth.


I see the father, returning home

Exhausted from work, and yet,

Stalling his entry inside.

I see the mother, worriedly

Carrying medicines and water

To a daughter hooked to a tube

In the dark room upstairs. 


I listen in to their fears

The father’s fear of making money

To allow his precious child to live

The mother’s heart which quakes

Every time her daughter breathes

And the daughter’s sorrow at her parents

Having grown so old because of her.


And yet, as the father walks in,

The wife smiles and holds his hand

And announces, “She’s doing okay”, 

And as the father gazes at his daughter,

The kind of happiness you find only in heaven

Lights up their lives in that brief, eternal moment.

Fortune Cookies

NaPoWriMo Day#21: Rewrite Lines for the Fortune Cookie

Look under the table. You’ll be surprised.

Are those shoes really comfortable?

Sometimes life is gentle, sometimes it may slap you.

Are you with people you really love? Sure?

Chocolate is the best cure for depression.

You’d love a day away from all this, won’t you?

No, you cannot sing like Adele.

The person sitting on the next table is staring.

Close your mouth.

Be happy. Don’t try, just be.

You could do it. Just believe.

Trust her.

Love like you used to.

Laugh. You look pretty.

Tomorrow is going to be a bad day. Enjoy!

What you’re looking for is right in front of you.

Eat your cookie.