The Alipore Post Poetry Month – Week 4

So, www.the.aliporepost.com (and it’s corresponding Instagram handle) was celebrating poetry writing last month. I have always enjoyed writing but this was different. I wrote poetry for 30 days. And then I put it up on social media.

I have lots to say, apparently –

  • The first 7 days were the easiest, funnest and most exciting.
  • It’s hard though, extremely hard to put your imagination out there for the world to see.
  • By day 10, I did not like how some of my poems could be perceived differently by others. (I’ll come back to this on day 15).
  • There were some poems where my feelings would show through even if I went through 25 edits and many filters. By edit 26, I would take away the filters and let my feelings show. At it’s rawest. Only way I liked what I wrote.
  • By day 15, I took my poetry very seriously. Surprisingly, at this point I stopped caring that it could be perceived differently by others.
  • I also figured some of my poems are best reserved for the heart, words would never be worthy of these.
  • By day 21, I realised there is something even harder than putting your imagination out there. It is having to show up consistently just like you would a dayjob, even on days you were terrified and worried sick about your loved ones given the pandemic shitshow in India.
  • I tried different styles of writing, read different styles of poems. IMHO drama very rarely makes for a good poem or good writing.
  • Yes. I valued honest feedback, as long as you had been up on the stage trying yourself too. The rule of thumb I follow/ed is if you are not out there getting your hands dirty but are constantly doling out criticism sitting in the audience, I will likely toss it out the window. True for writing, true for life. (Thank you Brene Brown, for the wonderful advice).
  • Damn, I really enjoyed social media.
  • By day 30, I was a proud girl. By day 30, I was also a very relieved girl that April did not have 31 days.
  • Life immediately after writing poetry for a month consists of rhymes popping up in daily conversations. It’s kinda cute 🙂

Week 4 Prompts –

Day 22 Prompt – Instruction

The first time on a flight,
I listened to their safety guide,
remember feeling uncomfortable,
when they advised,
before you help your neighbour,
put on your oxygen mask first.

It made sense of course,
but the directness pinched,
years of conditioning,
put others before self,
and here they were telling us,
take care of yourself first.

Now I find myself saying it often,
softer at first, then louder than ever,
remember what the wise ones say,
you can’t pour from an empty cup,
do what you have to,
take care of yourself first.

A handy instruction,
goes a long way in life,
when panic hits hard,
refrain from acting in haste,
breathe in breathe out,
and put on your oxygen mask first. 

Day 23 Prompt – Moon

Every once in a while,
she comes out of her room,
shaped like a shy smile,
whispering her way through,
glowing softly in the night sky,
the beautiful crescent moon.

Day 24 Prompt – Jasmine

They call it the Jasmine,
a modern classic drink,
mostly tart with a hint of sweet,
and then a nice strong bitter finish.

Looks nothing like its namesake flower,
a deep sunset instead of the white in color,
but just like the jasmine’s intoxicating scent,
the drink’s a buzzy mix, loaded and potent.

Day 25 Prompt – Broken

When you look at yourself today,
consider ever little tale,
of how you made it through,
despite a broken yesterday.

500 steps more than expected,
a cake baked well,
the blogpost you completed,
despite the world feeling like hell.

Finishing that long pending read,
learning the first stroke of swim,
sharing a laugh with the neighbour’s kid,
despite the light within feeling low and dim.

Fixing your dying plant,
getting playful with the downstairs cat,
just getting up from the bed,
despite the fear running strong inside your head.

So when you look at yourself today,
consider every little tale,
of how you made it through,
despite yet another broken day.

Day 26 Prompt – Migration

Ask a tree,
how it survives,
staying in the same place,
when migration is not an option,
one season to the next.

Some lose their flowers,
some change colors,
some shed their leaves,
baring open their soul,
making obvious their grief.

How quickly it accepts,
the flowers served their cause,
as did all the leaves,
what kept it standing put,
was the firm depth of it’s roots.

Finds itself green again,
older through the transition,
not the same color though,
changed with the season’s play,
a shade deeper than yesterday.

The tree winks back at me,
looking through its journey,
of how it survived in the same place,
when migration was not an option,
one season to the next.

Day 27 Prompt – Reunion

The school group reunion,
20 years later,
they put on their best,
greet each other,
and settle into place.

Silence for an hour,
as they measure one another,
struggling against memory,
to find the friends they knew before.

Two hours pass,
till someone picks up the mic,
croons an old favorite,
and loud laughter erupts.

More people gather,
start singing without a bother,
breaking through the years,
of not knowing one another.

They would remember that night with fondness,
of how they rocked back their way in time,
not about who their friends were now,
or what they did in life.

The school group reunion,
20 years later,
they put on their best,
greeted each other,
and sang away the night together.

Day 28 Prompt – Monsoon

The season after summer,
bearing the brunt of it’s temper,
soaking in the heat,
letting it sit a bit,
then cooling it down,
and pouring it all out.

Sometimes a light drizzle,
or a pleasant downpour,
when it can control the heat,
with not too much effort,
giving us all ample relief.

Sometimes a raging storm,
howling and thundering,
using all of it’s force to ease the heat,
getting burnt in the process,
shedding hot tears of release.

The season after summer,
bearing the brunt of it’s temper,
soaking in the heat,
letting it sit a bit,
then cooling it down,
and pouring it all out.

Day 29 Prompt – Hope

We know what it’s like,
to block away feeling,
let hope succumb,
take comfort in being numb.

But feel you must,
even if it’s darkness,
that’s taking over your whole,
heart and soul.

We know what it’s like,
to fight against the scare,
and be brave enough,
to take that first step.

Because deep down within,
you know the drill,
that light expands,
if you will let it in,
pushing out the night,
one day at a time.

We know what it’s like,
to finally find,
a tiny glimmer of light,
and clasp it tight with all our might.

Then feel it ease,
into your soul,
clearing the fog,
as it flows along.

We know what it’s like,
that gush of surprise,
to find hope radiate,
of how tomorrow will be kinder than what it is today 🤍

Day 30 Prompt – Daydream

Here I am, looking at you,
in broad daylight,
through the everyday chaos,
and all these people in sight.

Some of them would like to wait,
but look straight ahead,
avoiding my gaze,
too direct for their taste.

Some of them look back,
and raise their brow,
shake their heads,
muttering a few words in tow.

But you, I see you firmly halt,
catch my eye from afar,
like recognizing like,
daydreamers that we are.

Some of them are in a hurry,
and glance up for a second,
wishing they had walked through,
for now they want to dream along too.

Some of them stop abrupt,
to pinch themselves, a little scream,
realising that they are stuck,
in someone else’s daydream.

And here I am, still looking at you,
in broad daylight,
through the everyday chaos,
and all these people in sight.

Instagram handle – @words.and.other.comforts

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Blog at WordPress.com.

Up ↑

%d bloggers like this: