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Haiga: Light

Photo Courtesy: here

the flickering lights

millions of throbbing fireflies

stars blinking in awe

This is a ‘haiga’Haiga is a Japanese concept for simple pictures combined with poetry, usually a meaningful haiku.
Shared with Carpe Diem’s Haiga Festival

Eyes of Treee


There’s a pain with every falling leaf
With every flower, a dream is lost
The agony of parting, eyes of trees.
Cloak of foliage, young and green
Leaves are souls; flowers, queen.

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Prowess of the mind
Wink of the destiny
Thy name is success
Sweet and shiny.
It demands.
Soaring high.
It brings.
Fills the sky.

Failure, I
Must remind
Is the condiment
That brings
To the broth
Thy name is success
You tame
Failure with your
Indomitable determination.

When I was a child, my Baba (father) used to tell me a poem which closely resembles the one above written by me much later. The crux of  Baba’s poem was, success would nevertheless come to you provided you’ve that much courage and confidence to accept the failures. My father is a self-made man and, he knows very well that one has to give up a lot to gain something, be it reputation, wisdom or money. From my very childhood, he instilled the fact in my mind, that, there was no shortcut to success. You’ve to work hard to be a successful person; to gain the honour and admiration  everyone wants to have in this world.

Every night, Baba used to tell me short stories. Those were very much creative and always had some moral in the end. Perhaps my inclination for writing was induced by his stories since I was a child. I also learnt the ability to govern and discipline oneself by the use of reason. He made me understand, that, nothing in this universe occurs without any reason and, even if there exists something like destiny or fate, that too, can be reigned over by wisdom and prudence.

According to Baba, these two things, wisdom and prudence, are the guiding factors in one’s life. He still says to me that, with willpower and determination, everything is possible. To him the word ”Impossible” looks like ” I’m possible.” His positive approach towards life, his courage to keep smiling even in stormy weather, have made me a much stronger human being as a whole.

I remember one of my school’s annual events when I fell ill. I still wanted to participate in the 100 meters race. My mother discouraged me and said that my physical condition would worsen from the strain and hence I should refrain myself from participation. But my father said, ”Let her try, winning matters least. The fact that she has tried her best will give satisfaction and enhance her determination”. I secured the third position in that competition.

My Baba was like that. He believed in me, he had faith in his daughter for he knew that, his teachings and guidance can never go wrong.
He was not a strict father but, at times he could be as unyielding as anything. As a child, I had some grudges against him when he blatantly refused me to buy expensive dolls, when he was particular about keeping a rough account of my pocket money. But, now I realize his wisdom. Those discipline and self-restraint have helped me to make great strides. I’ve learnt the rightful use of money. I now understand that he wanted to make me understand the value of everything in life. His tutelage has made me a better person in every realm of life. I’ve learnt to live life in my own way. I’ve gained that circumspection to plan and invest properly so that my family shall ever be able to live a comfortable life. He taught me that we shouldn’t depend on anybody to lead a meaningful life. Apne Parivar  ko Apne Dum Pe Jeena Sikhao, that was his mantra and, he has done that successfully. #MyFamilyMyPride

Watch this  beautiful, heart-warming video by HDFC Life to understand the real meaning of Apno Ko Apne Dum Pe Jeena Sikhao in the sweetest possible way.

This entry is a part of the Indi Happy Hour “Apno Ko Apne Dum Pe Jeena sikhao” Campaign, in association with and Indiblogger

23388117In a five-day long test cricket match, a batsman generally takes some time to make himself comfortable at the crease, to understand the bowling strategy of the bowler. He is never in a hurry to play a critical shot that can take him back to the pavilion. There are some books also which take a lot of time to gain pace. So much time that you may find it an alluring option abandoning it. But somehow, you continue reading to see what’s in store for you. Ritoban Chakrabarti’s When She Smiled is the book for which I’m making such prelude. The book, by now you’ve understood, is a slow one without any significant twists or turns.

Set in the backdrop of the picturesque hill station of Shimla, the story revolves around a fifteen-year-old Bengali boy, Mrityunjoy Roy, who returns to Shimla after spending two years at the Sainik school and, rejoins his alma mater, DAV School. Here he meets Akanksha, his classmate and falls in love head over heels. Her mesmerizing smile and gorgeous looks enthrall Roy and, the teenage boy experiences the first love of his life. Akanksha joins Roy’s tuition classes and, their friendship intensifies. Quite naturally, the loving friendship or puppy love makes others looking upon Roy with green eyes of envy. Then something happens and, Akanksha chooses a different path far away from Roy. Roy thinks himself bereft of everything in life. All his laughter, joy, and hope gone with the girl he loves with all his heart. At the same point of life, he confronts with another harsh reality, the death of a near and dear one in his family. The adolescence boy fights with himself to restore normalcy in his life again and comes in harmonious terms with his destiny through a series of events.

The storyline is simple and so is the narration. I liked the way the author has presented Shimla, a grand pictorial delineation. Roy’s ecstatic expression on the first snowfall of the season, “Waking up to the first snowfall of the season is the best feeling in the world“, makes me smile. I feel nostalgic recalling my own experience that resonates with Roy. The  little mischievous acts of  camouflaging story books within the covers of the textbooks has enlivened my childhood. I also liked the short, poetic dialogues exchanged between Roy and Akanksha. The way a teenage boy feels of his first love and the labyrinth of the relationship, all are drawn quite beautifully.

The characterization of Roy’s parents, the way they fight over trivial issues, their feeling that spending on recreation or entertainment is not a wise enough decision, present a wholesome picture of that point of the time, when mobile phones, internet, and such other gadgets were not an integral part of life. When parents were much rigid and, their sole consecration was to make their children academically sound. The very chord of the story dates back to that era.

But, I’m sorry to say that the author has overkilled the story with too much of monotonous descriptions. The writing style is not engaging and things also become quite predictable with the progress of the story. Just as a house can’t stand erect without a strong foundation, in the same way, the book lacks a tight plot. The story is emotionally charged, good for a prime-time serial or some Bollywood movie.  Moreover, I’m not satisfied with the language used and, there are some grammatical errors too, the author would have been more cautious with the editing.

Throughout the book, I was searching for the reason of the title, When She Smiled.  My hunt ended at the closing chapter and though the author has justified the reason for the title, I find it somewhat vague and abrupt. The ending, in fact, could have been much better and interesting. However, I believe, the author has the potential to produce something more enjoyable and worthy. I wish fair wind to his sail for his next publication.

A good read for CB fans may be, or you can read it to ‘kill’ your time while waiting in the hotel lounge or in an airport. For me, it was just an average, one time read.

From my side, it’s 3/5

This review is a part of the biggest Book Review Program for Indian Bloggers. Participate now to get free books!
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The Connection

I was gliding softly. The place was confined and, I had no way to escape. I waited patiently. I knew one day my confederate would find out a way to end my captivity. She was working on it, meticulously. Her success was slow but sure. She stopped in front of me for a moment, her velvety black body reflected on my shiny surface. She purred and, her green slinky eyes gleamed in ominous amusement.


Abhay was late for his office as usual. While rummaging the cupboard for his tie, he shouted for Ramya, “Where the hell are you? Busy feeding that stupid cat? Will you bother to come and help me?”

Ramya didn’t care to answer. She was tired of this everyday drama. She knew that Abhay couldn’t tolerate her cat, whose silky black body resembled the most expensive Persian fur. Ramya failed to fathom how an innocent creature could have so much impact on their conjugal life. Abhay was too much superstitious. Was it her cat’s fault that her mother-in-law tripped down the stairs, the very day it was brought to the house? It was just a little kitty then.

Six months ago, Ramya, while returning from her office, found that poor creature by the side of their main gate. It was shivering, a small black ball, with half-open eyes. Ramya at once fell in love with it and from that day, it was able to steal all her attention. She caressed her pet as it was busy drinking milk from the big bowl.

Abhay was shouting at the top of his voice. His usual petulance reached its nadir. Ramya couldn’t take it anymore as she heard him hurling some abusive words for her and her cat. She put the cat aside and stood up,” everything has a limit and, I’ll make him understand this today.”

As Ramya strode off to her bedroom, the feline creature quietly went down to the lawn and sat beside the gate, where she was first discovered by Ramya, six months ago.

I was enjoying their harangue, as they were attacking each other with the filthiest of words, sounded musical to me. I was feeling impatient for I knew that the moment has arrived. I was waiting eagerly for the impending blow. Then it came. The man named Abhay erupted in anger as he picked me up with all his might and threw me down on the floor! Oh! Sweet sound of shattering glass. Millions of reflections on the floor. The woman stood still, utterly shocked and, I was free!

As the man hurriedly came out of the house, I danced in joy getting my first prey after years. My ally was there; she was waiting outside. As he went out of the gate and was about to cross the road, she made him stop abruptly in the middle. A speeding car failed to stop and, within seconds I felt rejuvenated. The smell of blood, fresh and pure…I was satisfied. 

Me and my feline cohorts, we were reunited, once again. 

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Haiku: Summer Morning

1-Mumbai 043

crispy fresh and bright

sun in full bloom of summer

waking up the birds

Shared with Carpe Diem


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