Judge Me Not

Judge me not by what I write

For I share a spoon from all I cook

Just hold yourself until I find

A purpose for me and for you a hook

 

Why read my words with a face so grim?

I think I scrawled them just for fun

Labels are fine for those who’ve reached

My journey my friend has only begun

 

And alone I wander in the wild so vast

With no one beside save my guitar

My fingers so eager to strum them all

All tunes melodious and utterly bizarre

 

For rejoicing the path is the point of it all

So gather some bruises – go out and play

Allow yourself to relish the breeze

Go stroll barefoot on a rocky hard way

 

These tiny little steps one after the other

Is all it takes to conquer the peaks

So ahead I stride listening to none

Just pausing whenever my heart speaks

 

Miracles it says do happen in time

To the one who walks – I need to remember

For all that glitters is rarely ever gold

Behind that glow smoulders an ember

 

© Sundaram Chauhan

The Daily Fight

Every day it returns

Carries on from the previous night

Without fail

The fight

First – you wrestle with yourself

Tame your doubts, your worries

Then you deal with the world outside

Nobody there – it seems – wants you to be working

Towards a goal they think

You are not worthy of

They snigger behind your back

And dismiss your attempts

And write you off

‘Cause how can you do something they can’t

And what a satisfaction it is then

To still keep working towards your ambition

To keep fanning your smoldering passion

Into flames

So high they consume you whole

So empowering it is

To wake up every morning

Feeling wiser and healthier

Because

The previous day was lived

To the best of your capabilities

You weren’t perfect

No. Rather far from it

But you persisted

Even when you could’ve given up

And today

In this morning

You’re up again

To protect your dreams

Not just from others – but from yourself too

The day stands before you

Saddled, well-fed, well-rested

Mount it. It’s restless

It won’t wait. It doesn’t – ever

Ride it

It sure will try to throw you off its back

Every now and then

But why to be afraid of a few bruises

If you hold yourself tight enough

You could direct its pace

And direction

Deciding to ride it was the difficult part

You’re already past that

By winning over your worst enemy – Yourself

Nothing can trouble you now

Nothing can even touch you

Good Day!

© Sundaram Chauhan

The Lone Tree

The lone tree

Standing alone

But standing tall

Shrivelled and stripped

Yet strong as a wall

 

They laugh at me

The greens in the distance

Huddled warm together

They pity my existence

 

Well-nourished they seem

In the company of their own

Here I struggle for a drop

Chipped, flaked, wind-blown

 

To tell you the truth

I was green as well

Then a season swept by

And took away my shell

 

Now I burn in the heat

Awaiting cool of night

Then shiver in the dark

Wishing for sky bright

 

But a bird dwells in me

It flies far and wide

It tells me many tales

My only friend and guide

 

Fly Fly – it sings to me

I stretch up on my toes

Screaming roots snap in pain

I’ll have to stay it shows

 

It squawks at me to try again

And touch the glowing dots

To beat branches in the air

And untie all the knots

 

I know I can’t do that much

But the fool knows that not

It keeps filling me with dreams

Now dreams are all I’ve got

 

I survive all the dreadful days

And look out with some hope

Can I really fly up there?

And glide down that slope?

 

But roots firmly hold me down

So I pray all day and night

For cruel winds to pluck me out

And give me once that flight

 

The bird calms me down

Do not despair, it says

Roots give you strength

To fly there are still ways

 

Spread your seeds in the air

Let thoughts grow their wings

Sow versions of you around

Imagine there are no strings

 

Imagine! There are no strings, indeed… says the bird that’s my heart.

© Sundaram Chauhan

Depths

Don’t ever stop

while walking

the tightrope that’s life

for the fear of falling down.

As downward it may be,

depth is but a distance after all.

And who knows

you might get hold of

a few diamonds

on your way as well,

for that’s where

diamonds are found – 

in the depths.

© Sundaram Chauhan

Break the Jinx – Recommence

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About a couple of years back, when I was very new to writing, I faced a difficult period where I felt a sudden and overwhelming indifference developing within me towards writing as a craft.

A conviction that my writing ambitions were futile grew so strong in me that I stopped hitting the keypad completely, terrified of the new state of affairs in my mind.

All this while, even if an amazing idea were to pop up in my head, I knew I wouldn’t go for it, quite contrary to my general approach where I didn’t let go of anything that was worth expressing. In the rare events when I found my life laden with disappointments and defeats, I used to write about conquering them or facing them or just about them as they were.

But not writing at all – was new, to say the least.

This confusion resulted in the longest stretch I have ever had without writing a single word. And, I still regret it.

But the period didn’t go without gifting me a lesson, a rather harsh reminder that writing, irrespective of how much you love it, is simply a habit.

You might feel you are effortless and natural, and writing is an integral part of your being – but for all that, it still isn’t self-sustaining. Try resting your faculties for one week, for any reason, and you will find it harder to come back.

The next week will present a much more compelling case for not sitting and stringing together words. Give an ear to yourself in such times, and it wouldn’t be long before your so dearly maintained blog goes defunct.

Interestingly you tend to somehow convince yourself that it is all for good – that you never really meant to write that often anyway. That you already have a job, or a career to look forward to, and a blog was just an experiment, probably a waste of time.

But no, it’s not, and it will never be, whether you harbour desires to author books some day or not. Writing is much more than that. It’s an outlet; it’s freedom. A friend, and the best one at that. You’ll always have an edge over others if you know how to write, whatever may be the field of your work.

Remember, just as writing is a habit, not writing is a habit too (and unfortunately an effortless one). So please pick up that pen again. Read your earlier works if you need reassurance, as you might after a gap, and write.

Break the jinx by writing anything, but don’t give in just yet. You know you are full of thoughts that need writing down. You know you have the talent, even if that requires years of honing to reach your desired level.

Just remind yourself of the reasons that forced you to take pains to understand how a blog works, and get going.

Happy writing!

Flexibility and Rigidity

When circumstances

pull you down,

be flexible like rubber,

not rigid like steel,

so that you can

bounce back on hitting the bottom.

For steel will only crack it further

and create a new one –

still deeper.

© Sundaram Chauhan

It Really Is Your Choice

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Some things will work

And many will not

But nothing will stir ’til

You budge from your spot

Don’t ever think that

The moment you blink

Some music will flow

Beer bottles will clink

You’ve got to begin

Quit pondering anymore

The time is to act

To push open the door

You know you’re good

And that’s your true voice

It all depends on you

It really is your choice

Others come mocking

But who the hell are they?

This game is but yours

Alone you have to play

The doubts aren’t real

Afraid them you not

In walking the path itself

A treasure you’ve got

© Sundaram Chauhan

Does Anonymity Bring Freedom?

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Does anonymity give you more freedom in expressing your true thoughts? The wild, peculiar, never-tested-before ones you hear tapping the insides of your scull.

I think yes.

The other day a friend said to me, “For long I have been wanting to write about a few subjects that stir me inside, but since they are either too bold or too personal to reveal, I don’t go ahead.”

That means he has consciously put a filter right at the place where creativity originates. As a result, it will only leave out the ideas that are non-controversial, and safe to share – not necessarily the best ones.

That is not how imagination prospers. Things offend others all the time, so if there is something you truly believe in, don’t worry, give it words. If you have trouble doing that with your name flashing there, going anonymous will help immensely.

It’s known that people judge others after reading a piece of their writing. That happens a lot if your readers are the people you know in real life, and you write a lot about your personal life. Therefore, unless you put a lot of checks in place, you run the risk of divulging something that you ought not to.

If using your name is making you constantly conscious of your image, and impedes the process of thinking honestly, you will produce a work less in quality than your true potential promises.

I am not promoting anonymity if you can write without being troubled by what others would think of you. If you can do that the debate is over.

People not afraid of anything while bringing forth the ideas they think are the best are doing justice to the art of writing.

But if you have to hide some and show some to be able to come up with something – best go anonymous and show it all. And, original ideas take courage to be brought out in the open. They are often first met with resistance and criticism.

So be courageous and write your heart out. Choose any of the ways but don’t hold anything inside. If it flows from your heart, it’ll make a good piece of writing, howsoever bold it might be.

© Sundaram Chauhan

A Blessing You Are

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Rushing and gushing

and pouring over rocks

like a river tumbling down the hill

embracing all the shocks.

You stride ahead in life

giving shape to boulders

blessing one blessing all

holding us by our shoulders.

I see you when in dark

I reach you when I’m lost

You leave it all and pull me up

Whatever is the cost.

 

© Sundaram Chauhan

(Image Source)

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