The Old Boy- Kamala

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What’s it Ramesh,

Behave yourself,

Not the kid anymore,

An old boy you are,

Going a young man.

I say am not,

And makes mom angry,

I say don’t want to,

That I like to remain the kid,

I don’t wanna grow.

Mom concerned,

She threw the ball,

At me in an affectionate,

Despair as she’d heard,

This bluff at times.

So what do you think,

You goanna be then,

Stay Lilliputian here,

Or a squirrel gathering,

Nuts around village?

Learn from your brother,

Look at him how Sandeep,

Can manage his things,

How does he behave with,

Elders and what belief,

They have on him, huh.

See the group of friends,

He’s got, the way he,

Deals with them always,

How organized that kid,

Is about anything he,

Keeps his hands on.

His friends are young,

Brave and elderly,

He wanna become,

A grown up man than,

Anyone else on this side.

Until fifteen he learnt,

On scholarships so that,

No money went from our

Den and he works sharp on

Getting a job for he sure,

Would grab the best.

He’s got this,

He’s got that,

He gets even,

He gets right.

He’s bright,

He’s best.

He he he…

Yes, I retort am the black sheep,

And will not be Sandeep,

I wanna be what I wanna be,

I am no fast tracker bee,

I don’t want to,

So let me be this way.

Mom wouldn’t leave,

Easy so I don’t win,

That stubborn rhyme,

And she wants me to,

Learn and be on track,

Until then she would,

Stay watching over me.

Sandeep has as always,

Taken the cake off from,

My plate that cannot be,

Allowed anymore I decide,

So one day I ran off,

To decide if I gets the best.

Weeks later I gets caught miles away,

From a canteen washing plates.

Taken by police then brought back,

To house by mom,

Whom I could hear sob,

When we were returning home.

I received the best whack,

That day and was not given,

Food or water for hours,

Was locked inside the weird,

Storeroom while Sandeep,

Was busy outside on lawn,

Cleaning his sport bike.

As expected mom opens,

The door and hugged me,

I was speechless learning,

That she was still crying,

Whimpering she was scared,

That I’d acquired that hapless,

Nature of my dad, the departed.

Years vanished along persistent,

Lashing the clouds away hurry,

Greeting the shining blue confident,

As changes refresh the reluctant scenery,

And here I stand on this land,

After several withered years.

Mom had long back gone,

With her left the exquisiteness,

Of the land now desolate grown,

For a stranger as I stray the numbness,

None bother (Sandeep stays unknown,

Great shock to Mom!!).

The land would be developed in,

Few months as my grand daughter,

A brainy architect plans a heritage inn,

In memory of her Grandmother.

So as I deviate to this untaken road,

My mind saunters to hear them,

Hopelessly as the grown up kid.

‘What’s it Ramesh,

Behave yourself.

Not them anymore,

An old kid you are,

Our Grand old boy.’

May be..

8 COMMENTS

  1. Melancholic. Absorbing. Strong layers of defensive and reactive childhood experiences it seems …Is it semi-autobiographical, Kamala??: >..The shift towards the end makes the nostalgia stay with the reader. Though you could have shared a little more of Ramesh for us.  Readers demand never ends, i understand. Ramesh is wonderful. That stubborn, unloved black sheep at many homes. The agony he shares brings in images blistering. honest and powerful lines. All the best Kamala.

  2. Will parents ever realise? That Sandeep is Sandeep,but Ramesh IS Ramesh? This poem actually speaks for those thousands of children who cant speak for themselves. Or should I say ‘Whose voices we ignore?” Nice one.

  3. Dear Tara and Ganesh: Tons of thanks for the encouraging words are affectionate reactions to the poem. It’s indeed wonderful to have a platform as strong and liberal like IndianRuminations. Theirs is a pathbreaking movement. So let me thank the Team involved, and lets all be part of their gallant effort to make the site an enduring and word of quality.

  4. Thank you Darsana for the detailed look through. Well its not semi-autobio, lets say quasi fiction. Yeah Ramesh is limited here. The intention was just a glimpse an old man gets while treading on some of those moments uninvited. Thank you for all the support and suggestions. Reader’s support fuels the poet to stay focused.:

  5. Dear friend,
    Thank you for stopping by. Yeah comic-tragic-comedy, he he…that what i think. Thank you for reading.

  6. A revelation on the travel of life. Memories that linger on until one passes. Touching poetic short story.

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