Postcards from nowhere

001.JPG

Days and nights stretched out endlessly

As she sat in a corner, listlessly

Knees drawn to her chest, a vacant gaze

The world outside whizzed by in a haze

She occupied her corner wishing she could

Perish without a trace- at least that would

Put an end to her misery, stem the torrent

Of guilt and anger that continued to torment

Her- ever since that calamitous day when

She and her friend had the accident-

It was a regular day in their high school lives

Bored of studying, they had gone for a drive

In the New England winter, the roads were treacherous

 

Glazed with ice, but she was not nervous

Her inexperience, alas, cost both the girls

Her car skidded, the worst nightmare unfurled

Her friend lost her life, she escaped barely hurt

Physically, but her mind just became inert-

To the world she was living, but deep within

She had lost her soul to atone for her sin..

Guilt plagued her, gnawed at her constantly

Hollowed her out, no hope she could see..

Her life, her career plans, all were derailed

She felt in her life she had already failed

Counseling, psychiatric visits were of no avail

What afflicted her actually, no therapist could nail…

**

One day she noticed at the window sill 

Of the corner where she would sit still

A postcard with the picture of a landscape serene

Saying “Do something!”- she took that to mean

This was a sign from her lost friend in some weird way

She gathered all her strength, got out that day

But retreated back to her shell soon after that

And in her dusty corner again she sat

Until the next week, when at precisely the same hour

There appeared yet another postcard

Saying “Do something!” yet again

She did not let the warning go in vain

She ventured out further, talked to a human being

Things she had forgotten, she again started seeing

Week after week, the postcard appeared mysteriously

On her desk, each time she looked at it curiously

(They were not from her parents, that much she knew)

Each time they inspired her to venture out anew

Gradually some semblance of normalcy returned

She started working, college credits she earned

Finally, years later, she was back on track

The weekly postcards now made a tall stack

The message was the same, it never differed

Yet every message had her towards action spurred

**

On her graduation from college, she did see

A special visitor cheering for her vigorously

She was astounded, for the woman who satin the audience

Was the mother of her deceased friend- 

Suddenly she understood the mysterious origin

Of the postcards, they were being given

To her by this mother who had lost her daughter

(She had assumed this woman hated her!)

 

As she tried to thank her friend’s mother

Both had tears flowing, they tried to comfort each other 

“I lost my daughter, she cannot return, but I

Did not want you to lose yourself while alive

My child is gone, but you could honor her memory

By being what she thought you both would be…

When I heard you were in a state of stupor

I knew I had to somehow break your fever

Thus the postcards on which my grief-stricken mind

Could not, despite trying, any better words find

I decided to pursue this tenaciously

And you brought my efforts to fruition graciously.”

**

The guilt that she felt would continue

To haunt her lifelong, perhaps that’s true

But she has succeeded in moving past that day

Hope she never goes back, for that I do pray.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Floral entreaties

dsc_1086

You knew I was naive, you knew I was a lover

Of exotic flowers of every hue and color

So I was carried away when you sent

Expensive flowers to impress me, my friend

Accompanied by tasteful cards, handwritten

Etched with soulful poetry, you knew I was smitten

From humongous hybrid roses to orchids rare

I cherished every bouquet, treated them with utmost care

Knowing you had gone to great lengths to procure

Those lilies, dahlias and carnations, I am sure

You sacrificed items of need so that flowers you could buy

Every want of mine you wanted to satisfy..

**

As the years passed, our love morphed

Considerably, romantic gestures were dwarfed

By the daily grind of life, and both of us forgot

About gifting flowers, we missed it not

Thirty years later we found found ourselves occupied

In planning our daughter’s wedding, when I spied

The most breathtaking floral arrangement

For the wedding arch, everyone was in agreement

That the flowers I chose would look the best,

We commissioned the florist, putting the matter to rest

But..the image stirred some old memories inside me

I looked lost in dreams, you noticed; I did see..

**

I was busy in the hubbub of wedding planning

There was more to it than flowers, I was busy scanning

Every aspect of the wedding, appropriately anxious

As the mother of the bride, in the midst of this fuss

As I was getting ready, there was a knock on my door

On opening, the surprise I got left me floored

There was a huge bouquet that could only be described

As a floral connoisseur’s dream, my eyes opened wide

And duly attached to the bouquet was a card that contained

Mushy poetry, everything was just the same

As it had been thirty years ago, I cannot describe

The mixture of emotions that swelled up inside..

**

Happy to receive the flowers, I went outside

Watched with moist eyes my girl as the bride

She looked so radiant, and so did you

You had another surprise for us too

You made your speech and then there appeared

A gigantic bouquet, which was multi-tiered

That you presented to the groom and the bride

With anecdotes of how you had woo’ed your bride

This was something our daughter had not known

In giving her away, we gave her a tradition of our own..

Money can’t buy happiness

DSC04592.JPG

Money can’t buy you happiness, it’s a cliche, they say

Money can buy things that make one happy, any day

They tell me I am fortunate to be rolling in wealth

What can I tell you- I shed tears of sadness in stealth

Oh yes, I have money, in quantities that might appear

Quite excessive, in fact distastefully so, I fear

 

 

I must be happy, that is the general perception

Money gives me the freedom of choice and rejection

If I say I’m unhappy, ungrateful I appear to be

For not appreciating the fact that I am lucky

To be richer than most people around

Wherever I’ve  gone, this is the sentiment I’ve found…

 

Now I would like to plead my case and tell you

Why money can’t buy happiness is true

I have a plethora of choices that baffle me

Should I strive for mere comfort or revel in luxury?

While you drive a car that is affordable for you

I could do a Honda, a Tesla or a BMW

Having too many choices provokes anxiety

To the extent that sometimes I cannot clearly see

I suffer constantly on the relationship front too

Wondering what is more attractive out of the two

My personality or my money- I remain paranoid

Constant second-guessing disrupts my sangfroid

The circles where circulates my kind of money 

Are full of power games and subtexts that are not funny

When I try to befriend people who have less dough

The elephant in the room disrupts the flow

Of easy conversation, leaving me apologetic

For having money, I feel miserable and pathetic

I never seem to be able to belong anywhere

These are still trivial problems, of that I’m aware

Yet I cannot help but wonder how would life be

If I was born in a middle-class family..

 

 

 

 

My Miracle

dsc07042I had not heard, I was unaware

Upon my life, I think I could swear

That true love could happen more than once

I had never imagined I would get a chance

To fall in love a second time; precipitously

At first sight too, taking you in my arms nervously

That day my heart filled up to the brim, I thought

With love for you, more  capacity there was not 

For my heart to swell, but so wrong was I

My love for you kept growing under the sky

Over the years, I found, I had inside me

To love you, an endless capacity..

 

You lie asleep, your curls framing your face

Exuding peacefulness that pervades the space

Around you- while I watch your belly rise and fall

To me, you’re the world, though you are so small

Each time you run up to me and lock me in an embrace

My whole world is confined to that little space

Your guileless laughter and comments innocent

Remind me of the precious bond we have at present

I am operating on borrowed time, I do know

One day you will grow up and off you will go

To explore the world, fly with newfound wings

While I shall be shedding tears over your forgotten things..

But you are my miracle, you constantly remind me

That I did something right in life, though unknowingly!

 

 

 

 

 

The fault lies in my chronotype..

“Chronotype refers to the behavioral manifestation of underlying circadian rhythms of myriad physical processes. A person’s chronotype is the propensity for the individual to sleep at a particular time during a 24-hour period. ‘Eveningness’ (delayed sleep period) and ‘morningness’ (advanced sleep period) are the two extremes with most individuals having some flexibility in the timing of their sleep period.”- Wikipedia

chronotype-coffee

(Image source: http://quantitativemedicine.net)

So I am learning why it is so

Early in the morning I feel low

Perking up as the day goes by

Being most creative under the night sky-

Each day is a struggle when early I rise

I need caffeinated drinks of a certain size

To be able to get through the morning somehow-

I am jealous of those lucky people endowed

With the ability to wake at the crack of dawn

While the idea of doing so makes me yawn-

Turns out all of us have a “chronotype” 

While we can adapt, it’s difficult to change our tribe

So being an early riser or the one that stays up late

Turns out, these are actually qualities innate

Determined by genetics (of all things unfixable!)

That means waking early would be a struggle real

For me no matter how much I alter my sleep schedule

I’d always trudge lazily to morning meetings, as a rule..

 

Here’s the fun part that I am learning now

How to adjust to our bodily rhythms to allow

Our lives to get better, moods to elevate

Neither rise too early, nor sleep too late

Be more productive, make healthy choices

Be in sync with our bio-clocks, ignore other voices

So maybe I should learn to harness the power

Of my circadian rhythm, not worry about the hour

That my family wakes up (my husband and son

Are early birds, similar on the genetic spectrum)

Easier said than done, when the age-old dictum

Has been that the early bird catches the worm….

I guess I shall always struggle with early morning work

I can blame it on my genes, it’s not work that I shirk!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Don’t talk about it!

3-paintLife is complicated, we know that’s true
Fast-paced, stressful, anxiety-provoking too
So in the world today, culturally acceptable it has become
To talk about anxiety and various ways it can be overcome
From yoga to mindfulness, and therapy sessions
Expensive ways to combat anxiety are the new obsession
While these things help, I agree they do
I’d like to present a provocative idea too
Talking and thinking about anxiety is counterproductive
The more we acknowledge its presence the more we give
Ourselves the opportunity to get anxious
Instead of going about our merry way we lose moments precious
In thinking about our source of stress and how
To bring it down, as much as yoga or meditation would allow
What I think we should do is to pay no heed
To the feelings of anxiety, so that we don’t feed
That little monster, just starve it to death
This way we might nip our issues in the bud instead
That is what I am trying to do; it’s harder to practice
Than preach, I hope I can master this!

The Hymn of Creation

From Wikipedia: The Nasadiya Sukta (after the incipit ná ásat, or “not the non-existent”), also known as the Hymn of Creation, is the 129th hymn of the 10th Mandala of the Rigveda (10:129). It is concerned with cosmology and the origin of the universe.

“Who really knows?
Who will here proclaim it?
Whence was it produced? Whence is this creation?
The gods came afterwards, with the creation of this universe.
Who then knows whence it has arisen?”

dsc_0669

In the course of my reading I stumbled upon

The mystical,  awe-inspiring ancient song

Of creation from the Rigveda, five thousand years old

That poses to humanity a question quite bold-

About the origin of the universe, a conundrum

Borne out of a scientifically inclined cerebrum

 

The greatest paradox that challenged wise men

Was how the universe appeared all of a sudden

From nothingness- where was the cosmos hidden

For neither time, nor life, nor death existed then

There was no truth, there were no lies either

No day, nor night, no winds, nor ocean in the ether

The big bang theory vedic writers did not propound

They linked the beginning to a primal desire profound

That led to life and on earth its appearance

Yet they wondered who first became aware of the existence

Of the universe, for even God had not been there

Before the universe began, was it possible that He was aware

Of the very beginning of time, the creation of everything as is known?

Reading this Rigvedic verse I was deeply impressed

How folks in an era of superstition had expressed

An effort to understand the world in a scientific manner

Instead of placing everything under a “divine intervention” banner

 

To me, the idea of nothingness is a concept quite romantic

Just trying to describe the indescribable is fantastic

After reading this extraordinary hymn of creation

I had to share with you the evoked sensation!