May 13, 2017

on mother's day

i'm not sure how i feel
about mother's day
even though i've been a mother
for more than a decade

do i need a particular day
to feel like you care
breakfast in bed and gifts
can't i get them at other times, however rare?

i wonder sometimes if i deserve it
have i really been so great
or have i just done what i was supposed to
as determined by the fates

i've birthed and nursed and cleaned
and fed and wiped and burped
i've read and sung and danced
and clapped until my hands hurt

i've sat down when it was time for lessons
and read and taught as well
i've cut out pictures from books
and cursed the glue for its smell

i've driven back and forth from classes
and then played down in the park
i've run up soon after to make dinner
before it's gotten dark

as much as i hated those PTMs
i've gone to school off and on
to smile, sign and say see you soon
before the next term rolls along

i've done all these things
without thinking about them a lot
but do i want to feel special on one particular day
no, but here's a fond thought

i want you to remember
all the things we talked about
when we weren't discussing lessons or chores
yes, those few times you didn't pout

about friendships and love
and about the world that we live in
for there will come a time
when all of it seems like it's sinking

then, i may not be close by
and yet i won't be far
so call, ping or text me
let's catch up in a bar

and talk, cry and laugh
about everything under the sun
we'll need it, and then some more beer
before we go off and have some fun

that's actually all i want
this mother's day and the next
and the next, and the next
cheers, until you send me that text

May 11, 2017

0 numbers

one two buckle my shoe, three four shut the door
and so on went the nursery rhyme
but what would've happened if there had been no numbers
since the beginning of time?

we would've learned history
without having to learn dates
they would've just been stories
of people and their fates

we wouldn't have complained
in english class
about the number of pages
we had to read, to pass

when we sketched maps
in geography
scaled or not
we wouldn't have to worry

science labs might've been
so much fun
explosive, likely,
they would've become

not to forget physical ed
and the bore
of counting sit ups and
push ups galore

and imagine not having
a math class ever
arithmetic, geometry, algebra
never!

accounting, taxation
and similar subjects gone
no P&L and balance sheets
to make us moan

have you realised by this time
that numbers and i mix like milk and lime?
yes, their coming together makes great cheese
but only in small doses for me please!

May 10, 2017

loss

it's been just a week
but memories of four years
feel like a lifetime

May 1, 2017

may day

it's may day today
malls and stores remain open
for labour to splurge

April 28, 2017

why do humans speak?

humans miss signals.
a tender look
a familiar smell
a gentle brush
an unspoken word
hence, humans speak.

humans miss sensibility.
tears equals weakness, but anger means strength.
hence humans shout.
sadness equals depression, but revelry is a panacea.
hence humans scream.

listen, think and feel. don’t always speak, dear humans.

April 22, 2017

moves

moves are painful

they force you to look at
all the stuff that was boxed up
all the things that were hidden from sight
all the dust balls that were quietly swirling

they force you to decide
what to keep and what to throw
what has done its time and what has a few years
whether something still has a place in your life

they force you to recall
moments from photos
memories from keepsakes
milestones from cards

they force you to confront
what was beautiful before it turned ugly
what was memorable before it became a memory
what was once your life before it killed you

they force you to say goodbye, even if only temporary
they force you to express, which you may not have otherwise done
they force you to appreciate, when you might have taken for granted

moves are painful but they are necessary
to help you remember why you did what you did
to help you process why you're doing what you're doing
and most importantly, to help you see why you're better for it

April 18, 2017

the dance

she was awkward on the dance floor
two left feet was an understatement
there was no grace

he wasn't graceful but he loved to move
his body was loose
there was nothing tentative

it hadn't been long since she had seen him dance
but she wanted to dance with him
she wanted to feel as free as he felt
she hoped that he would ask her, and wondered why he didn't
but she didn't take a step towards him

he'd seen her move in her awkward way
and found something endearing about it
he glanced at her off and on hoping for something
but when nothing happened
he decided to take the plunge

he pulled her, but not too close
he also pushed, but not too far
and he twirled her about at a dizzying pace

she was tentative, but she didn't say no
she hesitated, but began to try
and soon they were dancing madly together without a care in the world

one song, then a few more
the time just seemed to fly by
with onlookers watching in envy

but they were both tiring
they had begun to step on each other's toes
it wasn't obvious at first
each giving in to the other's misstep

soon they were completely out of sync
moving with no apparent coordination
each pulling the other in a different direction
with the twirling leaving them faint

so they suddenly stopped, both were jolted apart
completely unprepared for the disruption
it had been brief, but it had been intense
and both couldn't figure out the next step

neither was happy, they felt weary
so they decided to step back a bit
to take a break from dancing with each other
and practice their moves on their own

it felt a bit strange to be back to dancing alone
after such a whirlwind time
they glanced at each other, and they shuffled their feet
forcing themselves to stay in step with the beat

it took a few songs but they got into it
they didn't feel as stiff
and even managed a smile

was it the music that changed
or was it the rhythm in their heads
something felt a bit different

slowly, and hesitantly, both held their hands out
to see if the other would take it
and they moved closer together

he took one step out and she followed
and then it was her turn
back and forth like this they went
and there even was a twirl

they were happy to be dancing together again
but both realised that something had changed
and were eager to discover each other
but this time more slowly
without treading on each other's toes
unless they were doing the newspaper fold dance

April 11, 2017

memory

how vague and one-sided it becomes
how seamlessly it merges, yet also tears things apart
how it brings back a fondness, or unleashes wrath
how it formulates new feelings conveniently overwriting the old

what was once affection turns to anger
what was once concern feels claustrophobic
what was once best left unexplained, becomes inexplicable

was it a joke, or was it masked prejudice?
was it a shoulder to lean on, or was it a crutch?

same people and same situations, but disparate memory.

March 25, 2017

hope

parched land and dry wells everywhere
hot days, getting hotter as time passes
but dark clouds loom
and a small bit of green struggles to break free
hope

long days and longer nights
never-ending pile of deliverables
but an unexpected ping
and an offer to share the load
hope

a sleepless night and a tired morning
upheaval and uncertainty yet again
but wide smiles and tight hugs
from big mouths and little arms
hope

hope is easy. sometimes.

when what we want, happens
when how we envision, others see
when what we see, is beautiful
when whom we want, is there

but there are other times when
hope takes a rain check
hope goes missing
hope seems impossible
and hope is all but a lie

but don't stop dreaming
reach out
look up
hold someone
hope

read and write
sing and dance
run and jump
stretch and fly
hope

do what you do best
do your best
and hope

March 18, 2017

black dog

the dark cloud covers
but its approach you can't feel
till it is too late