Dreamland

dream
Sue Vincent’s #Writephoto

Purple robes of Mother Nature
In sync with her dreams
How long has she yearned for them?
I stand spellbound.

Celebrations start at dawn
Only couples are invited
Royal robes flutter fragrance
Sun shies away.

A whisper rides on breeze:
Far away from the land of conflicts
Welcome to the domain of dreams
Love blooms here.

Skeptics – please stay away
Echoes of love might devour your designs
We hold harmony in our hearts
Tethered to respect for all.
© Balroop Singh

Thanks to Sue Vincent for an inspiring Thursday #writephoto prompt Dream

You can click here for my poetry.

Check my latest book: Moments We Love

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My Mother #HappyMothersDay

 

My Mom

Who never wore armor
But is an epitome of strength
Who never wore a make-up
Yet her beauty is admirable

Who could digest rudeness
And forgive her perpetrators
Who could keep turmoil within
Alone, on dark dreary days

Who could rise from the abyss of grief
And sacrifice all her desires
Who possessed the mettle to push
The hungry wolves away!

Who could use any curse word
To keep you on the right track
Who forgot to smile
Yet could raise happy kids

Who has never said ‘I love you’
But depth of her love is immeasurable
Who could knock off societal diktats
To nurture the dreams of her children.

No judgments could waver her confidence
No despair could drown her fortitude
Raging circumstances steeled her
To endow her with incredible power.

She redefined the power of women
She lived through difficult times
Please don’t criticize her
You can never fathom her strife.

Who are you to judge her?
You don’t even know a moment,
Millions of which seared her soul
Yet it glistens brighter.
© Balroop Singh, January, 2019

send me flowers while I am alive

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Do You Respect Books?

Respect for books

This post is inspired from some images that have been created by book enthusiasts to emphasize the importance of books.

Who can deny the role of books in our lives? But reading comes with book ethics, which have either deteriorated or are not inculcated these days.

We grew up with respect for books. We were told books acquaint us with the goddess of knowledge and we should be thankful that she chose to smile at us. She would stay with us only if we respect her pals. This belief was instilled from a very early age and books were no less than treasures for us.

In school, if a book or a notebook would fall down inadvertently, we would apologize by paying obeisance to it by touching it to our forehead three times. Such a respect for books could be linked to The Bible, Shree Bhagavad Gita, Guru Granth Sahib and The Holy Quran.

We were told that books could never be put on the floor, never under the bed or the couch.

We were told to treat books like sagacious friends who could guide and absorb all our emotions, friends who loved without demanding anything, who could fill our hours with delight, and were like a warm wrap around our shoulders.

We believed all this and learned to respect our books.

When I read, “a book is a window on the world,” I knew that I couldn’t sit on this window to watch the beauty but have to peep through it to discover the massive difference that exists within the societies and the people living in them.

DpY-Bt5UcAA5gjrI am sharing some deplorable pictures, which disrespect books. They have been shared on social sites but are distasteful. Who walks on books? What message are we passing on to kids?

Books may be ‘a doorway’ to another land but we can’t step on the door, we have to open it gently with our hands and enter that kingdom.

44077932_1880701278709277_4875350547445579776_nThis picture may be having some cute factor but I wonder who thought of photo shopping such a picture! I disliked it the moment I saw it yet I have put this image here to highlight my point.

And here is another!!

How_to_Read_a_Pile_of_Books

 

This image speaks volumes about the attitude of modern generation   towards books!

 

What do you say for this one?DrBw9AMWkAEzVUR Are you sure you would create such a library and step on it everyday ten times in a day? I may seem old-fashioned but there is nothing modern about placing books at your feet. These pictures seem to have been created but they pass on an egregious message.

I have picked up all these images from social sites and haven’t checked whom do they belong to. If they infringe the rights of somebody, please feel free to mention and I would remove them.

Do you respect books? Checklist:

  • Do you sit on them?
  • Do you put them on the floor?
  • Do you admire pictures that show both of above?
  • Do you fold the corners of pages as book marks?
  • Do you highlight the important points in books with a marker?
  • Do you borrow them and forget to return?

I am waiting for your reflections and please share this post at your favorite social networks to convey the message. Thank you.

Balroop Singh.

Can You Hear The Voice Of Nature? An Emotional Connection…

Voice Of Nature

This is the question I have often asked myself…

Nature speaks to us through its ineffable beauty; its voice is powerful and intense in all its forms.

And I have learnt to hear beyond the whispering willows… the whining of Mother Nature.

I could immediately relate to the veiled laments when my dear blogger friend Nihar asked the same question in his book… “Voice Of Nature”

So could Haiku, the little protagonist of this book whose innocence mingles with the wisdom and perception of his new friends who want to live with the same dignity they were born with.

The story of this book is set in Nandankanan Zoological Park, a 400-hectare zoo and botanical garden in Bhubaneswar, Odisha, India.

A critique on our relationship with flora and fauna, how we respond to them and how much of spontaneous love children develop for them, forms the basis of this book.

Haiku, a little boy is symbolic of human apprehensions, which often dilute at the altar of self-importance, pleasure and leisure.

Haiku’s own loving relationship with Mogli, the white tiger, Bani uncle, the ancient banyan tree and Kuki, the little bird speaks volumes about the future of our connection with nature.

The fact that Haiku can understand the language and emotions of animals, birds and trees symbolizes that we can hear the voice of nature if we possess the inclination and the disposition.

If we can think beyond our own interests!

If we want to nurture our relationship with Mother Nature.

We love to visit zoos; we have created such places to gloat about the care we shower on our animals but we forget that we keep them caged for our own amusement in the name of saving them from extinction.

Animal Love

Caged Mogli is the center of attraction but he yearns for those old days when he was free!

The banyan tree has been a witness to the disengagement of mankind.

Kuki, the little bird is trying to decipher the reasons behind all this. Her shouting at the tree cutters proves inconsequential.

None of them are familiar with the words ‘selfish’ and ‘profitable’!

It is ironic that the banyan tree is rooted yet it has gathered all the knowledge about the people who visit Nandankanan Zoological Park and the white tiger has been confined to one place yet he is expected to put up a pleasant face! Both of them seem to be hopeful and the hope lies in the little boy.

If we could “find God in nature, in animals, in birds and the environment”, as Pat Buckley said, we would think more like Haiku!

Nihar’s book inspires us to understand the divine bond of harmony, which exists between nature and man. It grimly reminds us, “There is a blurry boundary line between nature and civilization.” We must redefine it.

Albert Einstein also exhorted us “Our task must be to free ourselves… by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature and it’s beauty.”

I would like to express my immense gratitude to Nihar Pradhan for sharing his book with me before its publication. I read it with great awe and admiration. It raises the hope that the younger generation would enhance their efforts to restore the lost glory of Mother Earth.

It also reminded me about my visit to Sariska National Park in Rajasthan, India where I could experience the beauty and bounty of wildlife and plant life. A home to numerous majestic animals including Leopard, Wild Dog, Jungle Cat, Hyena, Jackal, and Tiger, this Park was said to have 25 tigers, living in their natural habitats but we couldn’t spot a single one!

Doesn’t it show that they possess a better protection sense?

Please share this post at your favorite social networks to express solidarity with this noble cause.

Thank you for your support. Please add your valuable comments, they are much appreciated.

Balroop Singh

Can Women Escape Domestic Violence? An Emotional Approach…

Domestic Violence

My friend Lisa is writing a story on women’s escape from domestic violence. This post got an inspiration from her unstinted efforts to help ‘The Great Escape’.

Is it possible to escape domestic violence? I have often wondered…

If this could be probable, why would a woman of 21st century swallow everyday abuse, why would she compromise and be told to ‘ADJUST’! Adjust to intimidation and assault? To slapping? To emotional blackmail?

If this could be conceivable, why would female feticide be forced upon a young mother who yearns to hold her child in her hands!

Why would a woman be assaulted or killed for petty demands like dowry or standing up for her rights?

I know I am presenting a very negative picture despite being a robust optimist.

But I have seen domestic violence, its shapes and shades. I have seen it grow and flourish despite laws against it.

Domestic violence is not just perpetrated by a husband or a partner. Families too are a party to it. To my mind, violation of basic human rights by anybody around us – a parent, a sibling or a relative – is domestic violence.

According to National Coalition Against Domestic Violence ( NCADV ) Domestic violence is the willful intimidation, physical assault, battery, sexual assault, and/or other abusive behavior as part of a systematic pattern of power and control perpetrated by one intimate partner against another. It includes physical violence, sexual violence, psychological violence, and emotional abuse.

I have seen so many women in such situations. They don’t even think that a mistreatment in a family means domestic violence. They don’t have the courage and the confidence to confront it.

Not just a husband unleashes domestic violence upon her; his mother is more to blame for nagging, verbally and physically abusing, making her work like a slave and not giving her enough to eat.

This is the story of most of the homes in many Asian countries.

Real story:

I had seen this woman in my early childhood…working all day, carrying out all the odd jobs of the house, from looking after the cattle of the house to cooking for the family as well as all those who worked in the fields. My most vivid memories are of those days when it would be raining heavily and continuously but she would be as active as ever, with just a gunny bag on her head, attending to the milking of the cows, early in the morning.

Abandoned by her husband at the young age of 25, she chose to live in his home all her life, probably due to societal pressures. She devoted all her life to her only child and grand children, giving them all they needed, without even a single word of complaint.

As I look back now, trying to understand the definition of domestic violence, this image seems to be more disturbing than physical violence in the homes. This memory is etched in my mind. The emotional wounds that I can feel even today for my aunt, after almost 5o years are irreparable.

Even today I can hear that unspoken message…where can I go?

Even today I can see that agony in her eyes saying…what can I do?

Who is responsible?

Women too are equally to blame for accepting such a behavior. Fifty years ago when economic independence and social taboos didn’t let them take any action, it could be understood but in the present era when there are no such constraints, women accept domestic violence as part of their life and destiny.

The sordid saga continues…

Domestic Violence

Another real story:

She is a highly educated, successful doctor and financially independent woman. There was a time when she could take her own decisions, when she was single though many of her friends couldn’t.

She married according to her own wishes, having found her soul mate at the age of 20. She has been living with domestic violence of unspeakable volumes but could never gather the courage of reporting it, stepping out of her marriage or divorcing her husband. She is a widely travelled woman but cannot step out of her own home, without her husband.

People say women have been empowered and emancipated! Really?

“We live in a world in which women are battered and are unable to flee from the men who beat them, although their door is theoretically standing wide open. One out of every four women becomes a victim of severe violence. One out of every two will be confronted by sexual harassment over her lifetime. These crimes are everywhere and can take place behind any front door in the country, every day, and barely elicit much more than a shrug of the shoulders and superficial dismay.”Natascha Kampusch

Who can help?

No soft words or empathy, no laws or stern action against those who inflict such a cowardly act can help.

Only women, yes those women or victims who accept such a beastly behavior can help.

Unless you help yourself, all others effort go futile:

  • Refuse to tolerate domestic violence
  • Never hide it to protect your self-esteem
  • Stand up for your rights
  • Don’t equate it with destiny
  • Communicate your dissent the very first time
  • Speak your mind out loudly and clearly
  • Seek help
  • If the perpetrator doesn’t change, be bold
  • Never believe in their false promises
  • Never give a second chance to such offenders
  • Be firm and take your own decision
  • Walk out of such relationships as soon as you can!

Do you know that 603 million women live where domestic violence is not considered a crime!!

If you are living in a country that recognizes domestic violence as a serious offence, you must report it.

My dearest friend Kim supports this cause most vociferously at her website. You can visit her for advice and help.

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

Thank you for your support. Please add your valuable comments, they are much appreciated.

Balroop Singh