Life is Like that…

This image, which I stumbled across accidentally at Pixaby defines the paths of life so well; colorful and joyous at places but an abyss in the center is always waiting to devour us. How we cross it depends on our acumen and proficiency.

As children, we only knew physical pain. We did feel hurt at times but it was absorbed within. We didn’t know it is called emotional trauma, didn’t know it could last longer and revisit us.

We didn’t know what is selfishness; probably constant reprimands helped us in refraining from any such acts. Sibling rivalry was overlooked, as we were unaware of in-depth analysis of behavior. Ignorance was bliss.

We only knew love and couldn’t discern hypocrisy of some people who exploited our emotions. Bullying was an unknown term; obedience was the answer even when hitting was intuitively disliked.

We didn’t have digital devices to quell our thirst of knowing more and believed in whatever our parents and teachers told us. Moral values were imbibed naturally through them. Stories of grandparents were enough for us.

‘Life is not a bed of roses’…this adage never seemed convincing to me when I looked around and saw from the eye of an immature, growing adolescent, with rosy dreams and soft thoughts… that all is well with the world…considering the small, protective cocoon that I lived in, formed those illusions.

The journey of life actually unfolds its reality when we step into this fiercely competitive, engulfing world; waiting to devour us, defeat all our sincere and honest efforts!

Some disappointments, some frustrations and disillusionments become a part of our journey.

Do we give up? No, we want to explore more.

As it becomes more meaningful and challenging; we learn to define our goals, snub some desires and struggle to move ahead with renewed vigor.

But it remains interesting.

Whenever we face the roadblocks, we wonder why is life so tough, why do we have to face a new challenge everyday, why can’t it be smooth sailing?

Sometimes, it seems that life is just a big vacation – when you nestle in the center of a place, surrounded by pine forests with snow covered peaks staring at you, …with whiffs of peace and contentment all around.

A serenity that coaxes us to slow down, to savor the little moments of joy.

Such a scenario changes our opinion, fills us with new enthusiasm to do something new, something different.

Have you ever felt this exhilaration? The illusionary aspect of life is a significant contributor.

Just look at the ocean, feel its vastness, sit by its side and look at the waves rushing at you. They speak to us, if we can understand the profound lesson each wave leaves for us:

Life is that simple yet seems complicated. However high the wave, it has to touch the shore and surrender. Everything meets a natural end. Every moment around us is so transient! All the hues of life merge into each other. None of them belongs to us.

Accept life as it comes, welcome all its ups and downs with resilience. Draw energy from positive thoughts and people. Dwell on your blessings. Keep your cool in the face of provocations and disappointments. Embrace your agonizing moments to exorcize them from your life.

Thank you for reading my reflections. If you liked them, please share this post at your favorite social networks.

© Balroop Singh

Things We Take For Granted

Today’s blue sky is special because we’ve seen it after 24 days.

We take many things for granted but today I am talking about blue skies and healthy air. Air that has been crying for attention for many years all around the globe. We battle with smoky air every year.

California wildfires rage every year but they started too early this time.

They were trigged by the lightning that danced across the skies on August 16 in the wee hours of the morning. It chose to touch the earth 10849 times! It crashed on my slumber too. I tried to go back to sleep but was impelled by the continuous thunderous strikes to get up and see. Dawn was breaking when I stepped out on my patio to watch this rare spectacle.

Dawn after lightning

A beautiful dawn
Wore a mask of devastation
Who could discern?

My grandchildren rang up early to share their interesting stories about being scared by the sound and then walked down the stairs to watch the sky from their living room. My imaginative grand daughter added much spice by linking them to Star Wars as my grandson nodded with delight.

The aftermath was horrendous with 367 fires, which have been blazing in the bay area and disseminating smoke all around us. Did we ever dream of being cooped up inside our homes, with windows closed due to unhealthy air?

As if Covid-19 was not enough! Plumes of smoke and ash in the skies polluted air quality miles away from actual fires. The blanket of smoke sat around us for almost a month. “We’re very worried about that combination this fire season, about wildfire smoke exposures and a raging pandemic,” said John R. Balmes, a medical professor at the University of California at San Francisco.

Pictures speak louder than words!

Today my heart goes out to those
Who look up, beady-eyed, at the skyline
Ferociously licking the infernos
Which were once their homes
Ensconcing all their dreams.

Please click to read the full poem

Thank you for reading. This is a short respite as many fires are still uncontrollable while the authorities are wondering whether climate change has any role to play!

But the blue sky looks promising today.

Balroop Singh.

Walk with Me

I know this path too well
I’ve walked and crawled
I’ve been bruised
My bleeding feet ferret out thorns.

I refuse to retreat
My resolve stays firm
I am not taking any turns
I know nothing would change.

Let’s turn the page and write again
Let’s forget the past and embrace pain
If you walk with me
All chains fall apart.

Our fear of losing love is a lie
Our quest for peace is still alive
Shadows of doubt may lurk
Our promises extend beyond qualms.

Your love may have changed its connotation
My love carries the same formation
Time may have diluted its colors
Who can compete with this tyrant?
©Balroop Singh   

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Check my latest book: Moments We Love

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Serenity

Sue Vincent’s #Writephoto

Serenity is a state of mind, just like happiness. It has to be nurtured just like positivity. It is a learned emotion – if I may call it.

There is no need to search it, as it lies within us. It wears transient robes. It makes us smile when we look at a calm lake or a beautiful waterfall.

We may forget it when we get back into the competitive race of life. It recedes into the forgotten realms of mind, as it can be easily vanquished by the demands of time.

It doesn’t believe in competition yet it is a pearl that is most precious.

I got this pearl just by luck. Impulsive by nature, I could be easily provoked when I was young. I happened to marry a man whom I named Mr. Serene. I didn’t know him before marriage and had met him just once and that too after insisting upon the fact that I need to see the man I was expected to marry! I don’t belong to medieval times but my cultural background encouraged arranged marriage and I was too young and naïve to protest.

I discovered that my husband had been gilded in serenity. He reminded me of King Midas! Come what may, he would remain calm. My outbursts wouldn’t affect him; his smiling response could put a wall to shame. I may break his favorite vase, I may lose gold, I may spend whatever amount of money…he would never express any dissent. My mom calls him as gentle as a cow but I also discovered the ways to escape his horns.

Slowly I adapted to the colors around me. I too draped serenity. Though I love to spend time in the company of Nature, I’ve found calmness within my thoughts. I know how to evoke positivity, how to accept life as it comes and believe that all situations of life are transitory. Love life and be calm.

 ©Balroop Singh

Thanks to Sue Vincent for an inspiring Thursday #photoprompt Serenity

You can click here for poetry.

Check my latest book: Moments We Love

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Tokens

tokens
Sue Vincent’s #Writephoto

Fascinated by the feather, I touched it
Waves of fear shook me
A strange figure greeted me:
“Welcome to the land of sorcery

Watch from a distance
You are a part of this world.”
I tried to follow my first instinct
“Run,” my mind shrieked

But embedded to the ground
I couldn’t lift my foot
Dry leaves danced around me
With weird whispers.

A mute spectator, a one-eyed stone
I sit and watch the people
Who visit every week
With offerings of fruit and gold

They return every fortnight
Eyes gleaming with hope
Only I know the crater
That collects all the booty.

I can’t hear the laughter and the ridicule
My ears have been sullied
Faith has strange sensations
It refuses to see reason.
© Balroop Singh

Thanks to Sue Vincent for an inspiring Thursday #photoprompt Tokens

You can click here for more poetry.

Check my latest book: Moments We Love

If  you have liked this poem, please share it at your favorite social networks.