Slowly

Good things happen slowly
Wait for them

Reckless drivers risk their hold
Lose their way

The first-sight love washes away
Devotion stays

Step-by-step work for your goal
Learn details

Slow and steady wins the race
At a uniform pace

Things will come to you slowly
If they are for you

If not, they will leave your path
Slowly, move away

© 2016 Alka Girdhar

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Where Do You Go? My Lovely

Where am I these days? It seems like it was long ago when I last wrote a blog post. Actually speaking, it wasn’t that long, but it seems to be so.

In general, for someone like me who has no fixed writing schedule, someone who writes as and when inspiration strikes, this is a normal act…this act of being an Elfie, this act of vanishing from the scene. I have done this before, only to keep coming back.

Writing happens only when thoughts and ideas overflow. While it is true that with all the prompts and challenges around, there can never be a dearth of ideas but if one does not feel the urgency to write and also when life’s other tasks get too compelling and time consuming, then writing takes a back seat.

And it is then, that is when I have distanced myself even slightly from my blog, that I start wondering – Why do I blog? How could I have written so many posts? What drove me? Wouldn’t it have been better to have spent all this time writing a book or two, possibly more (I am already in the process)?  What do I do now with all the half-finished articles and poems saved in various folders for the last many years, long before I started blogging?  Self-doubt and self-questioning overpowers, hence an urgent need to be back to blogging; lest I forget it and more importantly, lest it forgets me.    

Now. Did my rambling answer my earlier question – Where do I go?  Yes and No.

Whatever. I’m reminded of two lovely songs, with the same beginning note – “Where do you go, my lovely?”

The first song reminds me of the times when we had just migrated to Australia and we could hear it being played everywhere; a street-side blokey song of a heart-broken young lad. Its beats are great for dancing, but we writers end up bothering about lyrics like “You left me with a heartache deep inside, girl you should see me cry all night.” Full lyrics here

The other song is a classic from the 60s, not a classical as such but about an ambitious girl trying to act rich and classy.

This second number is less woeful than the above song but the guy seems miserable nevertheless, as he enlists all the classy things that this girl, who is his childhood friend and who’s now a social-climber aspires for…diamonds and pearls, Picasso,  links with top guns who gift her with riches.
The singer wonders at this once poor girl who’s trying hard to be rich at all costs, but is she really happy in her heart?  He knows the real woman in her still seeks old times, and not money. High hopes young man!  Full lyrics

See, how my post seems to have strayed aimlessly from here to there! Not a good sign, ehh? Or is it? To let the words flow as they do. The muse is anyway hard to please and tame, so while she was here, I embraced her in all her wayward moods.

For now, better forget about defining the purpose, the goal of my blog. It will discover itself sooner or later.
That’s how it is with life – it takes a life time to define the purpose of life.

Apology Unrendered

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Have seen it time and time again
Those who hurt us in some big way
And never feel sorry, come what may
Never realize and never acknowledge
But act as if theirs is always a superior way

They’re sure to hurt us more and more
In the same manner  Continue reading

I’m everything I am…because you loved me

You were my strength when I was weak
You were my voice when I couldn’t speak
You were my eyes when I couldn’t see
You saw the best there was in me
Lifted me up when I couldn’t reach
You gave me faith ‘coz you believed
I’m everything I am
Because you loved me

Happy Mother’s Day to you all!

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Pampering Whimpering

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Pampering Whimpering

Ted! Where are you?”

Here mom! A last minute brush up for the party” Ted raised his tone as he replied from the lounge room.

I’ve been looking for you all over the place”. Mom’s face had somewhat mixed expressions as she entered the room. “What? Are you buckling up her sandals?” 

“Tiara’s dress is too tight…not easy for her to bend down. We’re already late, mom!”

“But why are you late? Don’t you think she takes a bit long to dress up for a simple party!”

Not a simple party mom! It’s my office party and I want her to look good”

“But you cooked the lunch too. Was Tiara away somewhere?”

“Mom! She was away for hair-styling!”

“Oh well! You could’ve told me. I had cooked ample food in my tiny kitchen. You never come over. Like you did when you were younger” Mom said as she began to walk towards her room

But mom, what would Tiara have eaten on coming back from the hairdo?”

“I know, she doesn’t relish my simple food”

“Mom! Be happy. We’ll come back late tonight”

The pair walked away arm in arm, laughing. Mom sighed. When she was young, Ted’s father had never been so caring. She often wondered where Ted got it from – this knack of wife pampering.

In fact, Ted did have his dad as a role model. For he did all that his dad did not do; albeit he got carried away and did that a bit too much.

© 2016 Alka Girdhar

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For:  Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers hosted by Priceless Joy

It was already Saturday when I checked this week’s prompt picture for FFfAW. Recently I had decided not to write any more stories for a while. But this prompt did the trick…again.

Being One With Him

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Being One With Him

Ask her. How does it feel to be one with him?
She will have no clue. For she is now a part of him. She is him.

It’s as if they aren’t two souls, but one.
They even look like one, well if you see from the distance
Their cells have long lost their own growth
Blended into each other
They’ve found a newer meaning in this union

But it wasn’t always so…
She started out differently
So dissimilar, so distant they were
But it happened
This unison – where the lost soul merged into The One.

When a small soul meets that bigger soul, then that is what happens
Losing itself – a creeper becomes a tree; a river becomes a sea
That higher soul so pure and benign; habitually embraces tainted souls
Unenlightened souls of mere mortals
Souls that have lost all hope

Many such souls have sought and got
And many more, seeking more and more
One day
They all will find Him
And merge into Him

© 2016 Alka Girdhar

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My above prosaic poem was inspired by the tree Thursday photo prompt hosted by Sue Vincent of The Daily Echo.

‘She’ is our human soul…losing herself in her beloved or in God.

If you liked this tree inspired poem, then here’s another similar poem You Lose and then You Win. I’m sure you will like it.

Cry Baby – a flash fiction

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Cry Baby

My first day at my new university so far away from my homeland and here I am, already full of mixed emotions. Her letter added to my commotion.

I open the paper with tremulous hands.

“Missing you! When will you come back?”   

Crying for me. This girl has nothing better to do. It’s not that I don’t like her. But liking was not enough. We were kids no more who give and take without selfishness.

Ambition, success, power, money – her rich parents were looking for all these in a guy who would keep their only daughter happy.

I had almost shouted at her “I have no money. And mind it! Money doesn’t grow on trees!!

She listened dumbly with tearful eyes. Always crying. Silly girl!

That’s the last I saw of her before I crossed seas, to find my worth in a new country. To prove myself to the world.

Here she writes again. Cry baby!

I can’t do anything about her”, I hear my agitated voice while drops of water streaming from my eyes drench the paper-shreds that I slowly set free, to let them float on river water. Parting ways, each shred carves its own path.

© 2016 Alka 

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Written for Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers, hosted by Priceless Joy.
Picture prompt by TJ Paris

If you liked my post, please do share your valuable comments. Thanks.

These Festivals of Light…of Hope, Faith and Love  

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Most of the prominent festivals celebrated by us humans, irrespective of faith or religion, are in some way a Festival of Light.

Not all are referred to as that, but they are so because lightening up of the surrounds – to whatever degree – is an essential part of Diwali, Christmas, Gurpurab, Eid and many others that I have unintentionally not listed here.

Festivals of Light are also festivals of darkness, for they go hand in hand. But how’s it so?

Light seems bright only because of darkness. Try lighting a lamp during the day. During broad daylight in a well lit room, if we accidentally put our electric bulbs and tube-lights on, we put them off instantly…‘Oh! That was accidental. We don’t need you as yet. Let darkness arrive!.’

And when after its long and tiring work-day, as sun begins to set and darkness takes over charge…that’s when we definitely and immediately need light in any form, howsoever little.

Thus if there’s no darkness there would be no value of light. Darkness renders light indispensable to us. In moments when darkness is unbearable and fearsome, it is the illuminating light that provides everyday comfort, while taking away our fear of the unknown thus adding to our happiness.

All in all, these facts were well known to our human ancestors who thronged the earth ages ago. Hence, after their initial hit and trials of rubbing stones to produce fire (and light) they experimented in all possible ways to create light so as to make their lives easy.

In very olden days, esp. here as I talk in the contexts of India, when there was no electricity, people depended on earthen lamps, candles, lanterns to get rid of physical darkness and facilitate visibility.

At the same time, they very keenly sought spiritual light in the form of ancient wisdom that’s written all over in the ancient books.

“Aum Asato ma sad gamaya
Tamaso ma jyotir gamaya
Mṛtyorma amṛtam gamaya
Aum shanti shanti shantih “

The above lines in Sanskrit that were taken from the Upanishads textbooks mean –

“From Ignorance, lead me to Truth;
From Darkness, lead me to Light;
From Death, lead me to Immortality
Peace, peace, peace !!” –

Given the importance they gave to the very concept of light, those days in India offering ‘light’ to others in any form was considered a noble task of charity. ‘diwali-smallDeep-daan’, is the term used for thus donating light, that is lighting a ‘deep’ or an earthen lamp for others. It’s a charity of light, and the purpose was to help others dispel darkness around them.

So, from what I’ve heard, after sunset our ancient people used to habitually and regularly go to choraha – the road-crossings and light a lamp there.

Numerous such lamps would become a full-fledged light system, and these groups of lamps would illuminate the pathway of every passer-by. This was esp. beneficial on the darkest of nights, and that’s what it is on every Diwali night, as it is a new moon or moon-less night each Diwali.

Moreover, thus lighting up each other’s path meant not only illuminating others’ path but simultaneously radiating your own path as well.

Yes!!  Lighting up others’ path automatically lights up your own path as well.

But. In order to light up somebody’s path, you have to have a light of your own, even if it‘s meant to be given away to others.

So, please do give it a thought.

Nowadays we don’t have any dearth of man-made electronic light devices. But even now, although we take light for granted, this same light continues its traditional role of giving us happiness. Thousands of years later, this festivals of light still continue to be symbolic of light’s victory over darkness and victory of goodness over evil.

In my immediate surroundings, on my street here in Sydney, I feel we need more street-lights as it sometimes gets too dark. Reporting this to the council has not yielded forth any positive results yet. So everyday, at around sunset time, I make sure I put on the lights in my outer verandah and outer porch.

This light overflows to the street beyond my house and possibly helps people coming home late, esp. as many university students do that. It probably deters the thieves as well.  I do this for few hours each day, particularly on the darkest new-moon nights that have no moonlight of its own.

Help those who have no light of their own, no hope and love; those who have lost their inner light and brightness. That’s the true essence of every festival.  That is, other than wearing good clothes and eating lots of sweets.

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Mysore Palace in South India here lit up for Diwali

Some more Diwali Pictures as Ornate as can be.

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It’s All about Expression, Connection, Fixation…and Love.

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It’s very simple. The reason why I blog.

It’s the reason why cave-men wrote their scripts on cave walls.  And the reason why a graffiti-artist takes it out on roadside walls.  And the reason why a toddler speaks his first words at mother’s call.

It’s the reason why a dancer cannot stop herself from dancing.  And the reason why a fine voice just cannot restrain from singing.  And the reason why a foodie hogs on food to the point of binging.

It’s the reason why sun comes out each day, to bless and kiss us all.  And the reason why the morning birds chirp and pour out their heart.  And the reason why I feel a need to talk, talk and talk.

It’s the reason a social-activist fights for a cause, giving her all.  And the reason why a scientist seeks truth and light, renouncing wealth and all. And the reason people fall in love, doesn’t matter if it makes them fall, consumes their all.

It’s the reason I have a craving for my morning cup of tea. And the reason why my sweet-tooth for words, brings me here to my blog. And the reason God sent me here to meet you all, to know you all.

For where else and who else would bear and like my writing, like you do all?

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My poem was written in response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt Million-Dollar Question:  Why do you blog?

Also shared for Writer’s Quote Wednesday.

© 2015 Alka Girdhar

Modern Love Story (a short story)

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A Modern Love Story

She liked him for all right reasons. Who wouldn’t want to marry this charismatic son of a steel magnate. But how to know him?  That was the problem.

When a mysterious woman miraculously invited her to one of his parties, she quickly availed it.

Looking her best was the next challenge. Her exquisite satin red gown came from a designer thrift-shop. She borrowed a pseudo-Chanel clutch from her friend and diamante stilettos from her newly wedded cousin.

All went well. Being a good dancer she impressed the rich hunk, who was anyway dandy very easy to impress. But the vibrant party was in full swing when she got too carried away. Due to her fascination for all things expensive, she couldn’t resist fine wine that was offered to one and all for free. She overdid it, and that did the job. She forgot the invitation lady’s warning; that she must get back before midnight or else her party-wear will change into her everyday apparel.

Now. Two minutes to go before midnight, before her gown turns into ripped jeans and a tee, and her heels become flip-flops… while her pseudo-Chanel purse hangs like a canvas school bag that she was wearing while still at her home, before the party.

How can she go back home so quickly? She can’t. Intoxicated that she is, she’ll have to take a bus back home next morning.

Cinderella had better sense than this gal from a modern fairy-tale.

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First written for: FFfAW  a weekly story challenge.