I Am Not Homeless

Old woman and respect

She haunts me all the time
I close my eyes
And her battered image
Looms large before me…

Unkempt hair, soiled clothes
An eerie, emaciated figure
Always at the bottom of stairs
Sweeping the floor with her stole.

Always cleaning…
Cleaning the dust from the footwear
Kept outside the Sikh temple,
I visit sometimes.

Never does she enter
To pay obeisance
Never does she miss that, though
Never pays attention

As she rubs her forehead
At the bottom of the stairs
Again and again…
A thousand times, it seems.

I look at her each time
A thought reverberates…
Who is this lady…
Why is she so desperate?

I sit at the bottom of stairs
To attract her attention
She looks at me
With empty expression!

I mustered all the courage
To ask: are you homeless?
She muttered, under her breath
I have two sons!
© Balroop Singh. (2010)

Inspired from a real life incident, I wrote this poem to calm the turbulent emotions within me.

My culture nurtures and upholds strong family values. Anyone who doesn’t respect and care for parents is looked down upon. The responsibility is often handled by the sons but daughters too have taken up this task since they are becoming economically independent and traditionalism is giving way to modernisation.

Thanks for reading this. You can click on Sublime Shadows of Life by Balroop Singh to read more such poems. If you are a poetry lover, Emerging From Shadows would inspire you to read more!

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How Much Of Laughter?

Laughter

Laughter – a spontaneous overflow of fun, a stress reliever, a mood changer, a health therapist…not only provides a cushion to our emotional hurts but also helps us in dealing with the jolts of life effectively.

I have written about laughter therapy to remain emotionally healthy yet it is not listed under the most popular posts!

Why do we forget our laughter skills, as we grow older and resilient?

Humor is the most difficult genre for writers and most of the jokes degenerate below a decent level. That’s why yoga instructors have been promoting self-laughter. Probably Laughter Shows add hilarity sounds for the same purpose!

“The burden of the self is lightened when I laugh at myself,” observed Rabindranath Tagore.

I have been told many times to laugh softly but I always dismiss that advice…how can you decide how much to laugh? Isn’t that weird? I wonder how people can close their mouth and laugh!

I have never learnt to laugh gently as I didn’t want to. The real power and therapeutic effect of laughter lies in what comes from our heart, without any ifs and buts.

I have faced many stern looks of my hubby but did I ever care?

When I laugh…it just goes out loud and clear! Whenever there was a loud laughter in our staff room, our Principal assumed one of those must be me! Once she heard that and came to reprimand but I didn’t happen to be there, luckily! So much for my reputation!

Another scenario, which is embedded in my memory is laughing in libraries, when, as youngsters, we had to face the stern eyes of the librarian and ran out to laugh…such is the power of spontaneous laughter!

This Book Makes Me Laugh Like My Grandchildren!IMG_3861

This book came as a birthday gift for my granddaughter, Athena but nobody paid any attention to it as it said, “Take away the A.” A book about alphabets is considered to be useless in the modern times when alphabets are available in colorful forms, puzzles and each toy sings an alphabet song!

It also appeared to be weird because it had sentences on one page, which could be of no interest to a child of two as most of the books at this stage are pictorial with little stories or rhymes.

The book sat at the bookshelf till one day I decided to read it for my fun-loving grandson who just likes to open books, collects all of them around him and gets distracted within a moment.

This grandma is different, I told myself! No such tricks with me! When nobody takes interest in a book, I read it to myself to draw their attention and most of the times it works. Sometimes I change my voice to convey the emotion and attract their response.

This book caught their attention beyond description! The innovative style of the author is incredibly remarkable.

Each letter is mentioned in such a manner that no child can miss the fun that this book stimulates.

When you take away the ‘A’, BEAST is BEST!

Without the ‘B’, BRIDE goes for a RIDE!

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This book plays with letters in a creative manner to take away one alphabet and create a new word.

It doesn’t just highlight the ABCs but also introduces words in an interesting and humorous manner.Chair has hair!

Without the ‘C’, CHAIR has HAIR!

‘JAM I AM’ is equally funny.IMG_3870

Once we discovered the fun, it became our favorite book and is now read everyday.

When you take away the L, PLANTS wear PANTS.

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The moment we reach this page, we all break into peals of laughter.

We must have read it a hundred times but the fun never seems to wane.

Children don’t wait for humor to laugh…they create their own funny situations and even inspire us to laugh heartily…that is why they are called the flowers of our garden, always lending warmth and fun to our lives.

“A good time to laugh is any time you can.” – Linda Ellerbee

Do you laugh loudly or do you think it is embarrassing? I am waiting eagerly for your answers.

Thank you for reading this. Please add your valuable reflections, they are much appreciated.

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Balroop Singh.

This is not a book review or a sponsored post.

 

 

 

 

Pangs Of Change

Relationships never endRelationships
They take a new turn,
They move on…
Each relationship suffers
The pangs of inadvertent change

Change we all like yet distrust
A change initiated by us,
By our own loved ones
For those who grow dearer…
Forgetting former bonds

New perspectives, newer attitudes
Lead to shrinking of close ties
A slice of life drifts away
When they try to hide
What their voices betray

A heart-wrenching abyss of estrangement
Forms unintentionally
Long nurtured ties weaken
As people around you seem to change
Confused, you too may falter!

The hypocrisy of endearing words
Becomes hard to swallow
When the true emotions have melted
A look of disbelief, lingers
A stoic acceptance, the only choice!

Ah! the amiable attribute of acceptance
It calms all the emotions and keeps us grounded!

© Balroop Singh.

You can click on Sublime Shadows of Life by Balroop Singh to read more such poems.

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Walls Do Respond To Emotional Attachments – Home Is Where The Heart Is!

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It is quite natural to get attached to homes if we have invested our hearts into them. Even the walls of such homes become receptive.

Recently I happened to read an article, which stirred my emotions intensely and took me down the memory lane.

My dear friend Lisa Thomson says, “A house has no feelings or attachments. It doesn’t love us back. Walls really don’t talk, and that’s probably a good thing.”

We convert a house into a home when we get emotionally attached to it.

HOME THAT NURTURED ME:

The home in which I grew up is still very much a part of my ardent memories as this was the place that nurtured me from the age that was most impressionable.

The excitement of an eight-year-old child is still very fresh in my mind. I can smell the fragrance of new paint and wood even now. Whenever I go down the memory lane, I can experience the friendship of all the nooks and crannies that I explored the very first day I stepped into this house our father got designed for us.

This house cherished my dreams, cushioned my lonely moments, provided solace to my disappointments, gave shape to my adventures and inspired me to aspire high.

Every wall was a supporting shelter, how much I could share my thoughts with them, silently!

The walls of my room empathized with me when I didn’t sleep well due to examination fever. They rejoiced with me when I turned up the volume of my radio, to celebrate my little moments of joy. They resounded with my giggles in the afternoons.

As I grew up, every brick seemed so precious, every tree of the little garden I loved seemed to cherish my thoughts and provide solace to my distressing hours.

Then came the time to leave my treasured surroundings, my home.

I can still feel the tears of poignant parting on my cheeks.

I hate this age-old tradition of some countries – to leave your maternal home after marriage. The one who created this tradition must be a man for according to this orthodox convention, he doesn’t leave his home; he has the choice to continue living in it or sell it.

I thought I would keep coming back to my home whenever I wanted and I did during the initial years of setting up my new home.

It remains the epicenter of my dreams even now. All family get-togethers are hosted in this home even now… but in dreams.

I can no longer visit it in real life because it was sold…and that is another story!

love for home

HOME THAT DEFINED ME:

Despite all those attachments I had with that home, which remains the backdrop of all my dreams, I was pleased to find a new one that anchored me and promised myself to make it more loving than the one that had raised me.

A home cannot be built in a day…it encompasses in itself the dreams and the aspirations we hold close to our heart, the hopes that we gather with each passing day, the goals that we achieve together.

A home lounges on the care and affection we shower on each other, the time we offer to understand the needs and desires of a family, to live through the difficult times together and to support each other despite minor differences.

This home I acquired became my treasure house, a nest, which was filled with the babble of my little children and the love of my hubby. It accumulated and absorbed all the memories, all the celebrations and the moments of intense joy, of raising my kids and exult at their little achievements.

I have no doubt that even the walls around me shared my elation.

Time just whizzed by and before I could realize its pace, my kids grew up into fine individuals, ready to soar!

Now I could grasp the truth of this statement and what my friend Lisa has articulated: “Home is people. Not a place. If you go back there after the people are gone, then all you can see is what is not there any more.” – Robin Hobb

THE VOID:

Though my work kept me very busy and the walls of my home as welcoming as ever but time stood still.

A part of me seemed to have walked away with my grown up children.

Now I just clung to my home and the loving memories that were attached to them. I tried to make it warmer with more pictures of my family.

I have been trying to understand the ironies of this life, which provides natural attachments.

I have been trying to detach from all those people and homes, which hold us to ransom, extracting all our emotions.

I have moved once again from my home, into which I had put my heart and soul to be near my children.

Now I have double memories and none of my dearest homes – one got sold and the second lies locked with all those treasures I had amassed!

Do you have any such memories and attachments? Do they haunt you?

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Balroop Singh.

Image credit: http://society6.com