Memories

What are you right now?

But, Memories. A pot full of memories.

Like the wind carries the aroma of the daffodils,

You carry the aroma of all the places you have been.

That little scar on your knee

that tells the story of the time you fell down the stairs.

Rainy days and the smell of petrichor

that remind you of little puddles and paper boats.

The smell of old books,

that reminds you of grandfather’s books.

The song in the cafe,

that reminds you of your first crush.

Those flowery short

that remind you of summer evenings at the beach.

That smell of cigarettes

that remind you of his kiss.

That sun flower wall paper that popped on your screen,

reminds you of the ones you you saw when you were sixteen.

The smell of the strangers perfume in the elevator

reminds you of the kind your dad used to wear.

The way you braid your daughter’s hair,

reminds you of the way your mother tied yours.

The stranger on the train

reminds you of your childhood best friend’s face.

The old song that plays on Spotify

reminds you of the ringtone on your first phone.

You are a sum of all your memories

Each stimulus, triggering your mind

Playing with your heart’s strings, of the days you left behind.

Buzzing thoughts

Like the busy streets of New York,

Swarming with cars and people.

My mind buzzes with thoughts

Worries, fears, notions and more

However unlike the people on the streets

These thoughts have no destination

They come and go as they please

Even if it makes me feel unease.

They overcrowd and leave little space to breathe

Burying me deep underneath.

They take away my joy at times

At times they become my idea for writing

Some times I try to bury them with work, music and travel

Other times I observe them from a distance and marvel.

Fall

Fall of leaves and hopes

When I was younger

A walk in the park, in fall evenings

Crisp cool wind and the golden glow before the sunset

Illuminating the glass windows of tall buildings

And auburn leaves falling all around me,

Were enough to make me smile wide.

I’d imagine I was in a movie

And feel warm and fuzzy on the inside.

I’d hope to stumble into

My celebrity crush on the streets

And dream of walking Paris streets.

I would dream of growing up

Of having the freedom to go where I’d like

To pursue my heart’s calling and

Live however I liked.

Foolish dreams made of stardust and hope,

Swept away like fallen autumn leaves

By the merciless rake of adulthood and more.

Now I walk the streets, and feel the wind against my chest,

But my preoccupied mind and unobservant eyes

Ignore the wind, the leaves and the sunset.

I have the freedom, but I am confined.

I can go where I want, in theory

But I can’t take that first step, not today, not really.

For things need to be done, bills need to be paid,

People have to be pleased and deadlines have to be met.

Too afraid to take a chance,

I continue this monotonous dance.

The onset of autumn brings along memories

Of a golden time that made me beam.

But I can no longer feel it, for I lost my ability to dream.

(C) Sneha Pathak

Who do you want to be today?

Who do you want to be today?

The possibilities are endless

Do you want to be the best writer out there

Or pretend to be someone who just doesnt care?

Do you want to finally clean up the house

Or do you want be the most loving spouse?

An ideal daughter, calling and looking after her parents

Or become the life of the party at every event?

Do you want to improve your skills and knowledge

Or do you want to leave your boring life, and pursue your dream of being on the stage?

Do you want to run away to the beach and have a vacation?

Or excel at your job, battle for that promotion?

Do you want to pick up a new language, just because

Or do you want just sit back and take a pause?

So many possible turns this day could tak

So many choices, all yours to choose and make.

Each day you feel like a new world of opportunities and choices has opened up, changing the game

Each day, however ends up being the same.

Just as your New year, new me resolutions vanished into thin air

What were they anyway, do you even remember or care?

So whoever you decide to be today,

Come tomorrow, you will forget about it and go down some other way.

(C) Sneha Pathak

At least you tried

The skies cry

Cleansing the city.

Or at least trying to.

The mother sings a lullaby,

Hungry child in arms,

Hoping for him to fall asleep

To avoid hunger, or at least try to.

The girl scribbles in her journal

Letting out the demons, the pain and the loneliness

She tries to forget how hurtful words can be, how cruel, how tormenting

At least she tries to.

The man returns home drenched

Weary of another day of grind,

He smiles a warm smile for his dying wife.

At least he tries to.

They try and try,

In the muddy swamp

To find a way.

For hope I was told,

Can only be produced

Never bought and sold.

Never borrowed or lent

It can be revived, even if out of shape.

Or so they say.

I wrote this poem

To talk of futile hope and optimism

At least I tried to.

(C) Sneha Pathak

The perfect couple

Pretty as a picture

Their life seems so rosy

To the world outside

They seem to be living warm and cozy.

For the music at their parties

Drowns out the screams

Their smiles are so perfect and dazzling

No one seems to guess

The reality so very troubling.

For they play the perfect couple

Of martial life, beautiful without a ripple.

But the storm underneath they manage to conceal

Their tired, swollen eyes, they give away how they really feel.

The scars on their body

Well hidden my seams

The scars on their heart

Well what of them?

For they follow the whims of their heart,

They had promised to stick together

Till death do them apart.

(C) Sneha Pathak

Letters to those who hurt me

I write a letter.

Several letters, one for each

Set of eyes that made mine overflow with tears.

One for the teacher

Who castigated me for years.

One for each bully

Who picked on me when I was weaker.

One for the friend

Who let me down in my time of need.

One for the aunty

Who broke down my self esteem.

One for the nameless relative

Who questioned my life choices.

One for the colleague

Who backstabbed me without cause.

One for the lover

Who made me cry every night

I pour my heart into these papers

Hoping it would make me feel lighter.

Telling these people off,

For all the times they hurt me carelessly.

Words spoken, cruelly and hastily.

And I write one final one

For the girl who writes these letters.

One to thank her,

For because of her pain, I became better.

I thank her for being patient

For pulling herself together

For braving through stormy weather.

I am the product of her endeavour

Of her courage, and her fear.

Where would she be

Without these experiences?

They moulded her,

And she moulded me.

I tear up the other letters

And keep just the one

I rise, like a Phoenix

As I watch the other letters burn.

(C) Sneha Pathak

Your momentary mediocrity

Today you woke up

Perfectly ready to conquer the world

Be the best version of yourself and to shine unparalleled.

But as the moments trickle away

You decide to be mediocre instead.

For today is such an ordinary day

People keeping their heads down, going their way.

The breakfast is the same as always

The coffee is just regular

The commute to your 9 to 5 is exasperating, as usual.

The different faces you see each day,

Are still the same, sheeps with their heads down, going one way.

How supremely better am I than this kind

Wonders your potentially exquisite mind.

The world doesn’t feel ready

To witness your potential today.

So you work ordinarily

No less no more than the day before.

You make small talk with your coworker

You wanted to the conversation to sparkle some more

However why waste your knowledge and skills on this ordinary being?

So you indulge in those meaningless moments fleeting.

You go about the day, like the sand on the beach

Pushed around by waves, back and forth

Without any sense of self worth.

You write a poem, a simple ordinary verse

Avoiding depth of thought and talking superficially about the universe.

For the exemplary work of art you can create in a moment

Isn’t ready to be shown yet to these masses, who can’t comment.

It will go unnoticed, unadmired

For their little minds can’t appreciate your genius if they tried.

So you live in mediocrity, ignorant and at bliss

For today too, a day has gone by

And the opportunity is missed.

But you know today wasn’t the day to be better and to live upto your capacity.

So today, again, you settle in your perpetual mediocrity.

(C) Sneha Pathak

She wants to be the star

She wanted to be like the stars

Not for the way they sparkled

Even in the darkest nights

Not for the joy

They bought to people’s eyes.

Neither for their omniscience

Nor for their luminance.

She wanted to be like the stars

For they were indifferent

To the opinions of the humans.

They shined bright,

Positively assured in their own right.

To see them in a dark, cloudy sky

To really see them true and clear,

One needs to travel to the mountains

Climb high and up, keeping aside fear.

Only those deserve to see them,

Who take the effort and pain.

For a starry sky, is not just beautifully vain.

She wants to be mystical

Like the stars that make you wonder

About the magnitude of the universe

Of your life and purpose.

She wants to make you think about existence,

She wants to talk to you, of life and its essence.

She doesn’t want to be a passing notion,

She wants to be the thought that keeps you up all night

Of questions that make you reach higher

For answers that are not easily found

She wants to be a star,

Not to make your wishes come true

But to stand apart from the crowd

To be born each night anew.

(C) Sneha Pathak

Patience and Kindness

I gave a part of me to people and things

And when they left,

I kept feeling something is amiss.

My balloons of joy, tied to another

Stayed weighted near the ground, going no further.

I let others hold the rein to my joy and sorrow

I lived in suspense, wondering how they’ll make me feel tomorrow.

I let things external to me, define my being

I kept focusing on trivialities, the bigger picture I was not even seeing.

What they thought of me, defined my day

What about what I thought, didn’t I have a say?

One day I woke up, and decided to listen only to one soul

The girl in the mirror, she will play the lead role.

I decided to let go of emotions that were holding me back,

Ghosts of past, worries of future I tied them all up and threw away the sack.

I focused on smiling a lot more than I did

Of my demons though, I wasn’t yet rid.

I drank some warm tea and listened to soulful songs

I tried to find joy in little things, not worry about what could go wrong.

I gathered around me people who made me feel warm

I had to shut my walls to those who had caused me harm.

I read some poems and ate some good food

I tried to actively focus on the state of my mood.

Everyday I thanked someone for being there with me

Of the burden of unrealistic self expectations, I tried to slowly break free.

I can’t say I have conquered my mind,

But one thing I learnt, is to be patient with myself and to be kind.

(C) Sneha Pathak