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A gripping story of a pond lady's rise and fall...and a friendship that bloomed from a crisis.
In the cool and dappled waters of the lily pond,
She silently lurks…partially concealed by a large frond.
Basking in the still and balmy heat of May,
She lazily floats…waiting for an unsuspecting prey,
To buzz, swim or fly her way.
Breaking the thick veil of calm,
She croaks, belting out soulful songs.
For a feast, she keenly longs…
She casts her enticing musical spell,
On the beings that in the vicinity dwell.
With disguised calm setting her lure,
Radiating charm and appearing demure,
From ennui and dullness offering a lyrical cure!
She is stocky and striking, with clammy skin and slimy drool,
Hailed as the Lady of the Pool,
She takes pride in her well-earned acclaim.
Her songs’ reach and her powerful tongue’s aim,
Have brought her respect and fame.
As the feared and admired Lady of her watery lair,
Her ears can pick up even the faintest stir.
As she relaxes in her soft and leafy lily coach,
Her senses promptly alert her to a creature’s approach.
She flicks out her impossibly long elastic tongue,
Capturing and snugly tucking the winged creature under, to avoid being stung.
Her pressure firm on the ambushed little bee,
Suppressing its weak struggles to flee.
Then she continues her melody unbroken,
While her meal squirms in a dreadful place forsaken.
Feeling smug, she gloats without care,
Just then…a chaotic motion in the air!
A flutter of enormous wings,
A flash of peachy white…springs.
She pauses her singing,
Leaving the tune dangling…
Before she could blink or fret,
Down swoops the great egret.
The Lady lets out a thrilling shriek,
As the bird dips its long and powerful beak.
For a hasty and quick yet wholesome bite,
Grabbing the Lady before she could pick a fight.
Musing about the tough and chewy morsel,
A delicacy and a yummy marvel.
It clamped its jaws firmly around the precious find,
Meanwhile, a storm swept inside the captive Lady’s mind.
Desperation and hope waged a tumultuous war,
She was a feast the egret had long hungered for!
She wriggled and jiggled in the bird’s strong jaws,
On how to get away, she was at a complete loss.
Shock and fear rendered her mum,
Suddenly from under her tongue, she heard a hum.
“Let me help you!” faintly buzzed the bee,
It cried, “Quick! Set me free!”
“Trust me and you will see!”
It made the Lady feverishly wonder,
While her heart hammered like thunder.
Does she let the bee go free or relish her very last meal?!
Will the freed bee stick to its deal?!
Her thoughts battled inside, raising a din,
She let her warm hope over cool logic win.
Lifting her tongue she gently released the wee beast,
The one she had held captive as a tasty feast.
The little winged one flew out with a joyful whoop!
Moving purposefully in a deft loop.
Sneaking past its amphibian predator,
Who was now its co-conspirator?
It attempted to keep its word,
As it explored the inside of the bird.
Venturing down till it reached the egret’s throat,
It delivered a mighty and powerful sting.
Making the egret twitch, turn and fling,
The feisty bee and the writhing frog waiting within.
The egret’s head went into a tailspin,
While its beak’s hinges went numb and slack.
Watching its prey escape, it could not even quack,
It flew away zig-zigging across the azure sky, thinking, “Anyway it was way too rubbery a snack!”
The Lady frog travelled through the air in a long arc,
Back to her old abode, the beautiful water park.
Feeling triumphant like a reigning queen,
Landing on a lily pad so green.
The bee alighting right next to her,
Looking bright, fit and into motion ready to spur.
The two slowly eyed each other.
The bee with wary wonder,
While the Lady with grateful desire.
Their eyes glowed with a yearning for friendship!
The Lady croaked, “That was quite a trip!”
“A heroic one at that, don’t you think?” the bee let out a quip.
An idea, in unison, struck the two,
“There is something we can surely do!”
“I can sing, dance and make some music too,” murmured the bee, steadily holding the Lady’s googly gaze.
The Lady crooned, “Join me then! We shall set this place ablaze!”
“Let’s fill it with dance, songs and music!”
The quaint park was transformed quick.
A buzz and a croak and a cluck and a swish!
Swirling lilies, twirling butterflies and dancing fish!
And no more egrets this way flew…
Whichever way the wind blew!
Image Source: Vector Stock
I am a mom of two, an author of story books for all ages, Coffee entrepreneur, self-publishing coach and consultant and Chairperson for ALL (ALL Ladies League) Bangalore Readers & Writers. I write under read more...
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Stop pretending that arranged marriage is one big fairy tale. That’s the Sooraj Barjatya school of thought that looks great on celluloid, but not so much in real life.
Dear Sima aunty,
Some shows are ‘so bad, they are so good’. The newest season of Indian Matchmaking falls in this category and is my latest cringe-binge. You must wonder why I feel that way.
Let me start with an example. Our families always encouraged us to score a hundred in academics. No one, not even our most chilled-out relatives, would tell us that scoring a sixty or a seventy was okay. We belong to that tribe of high-achieving women, who do nothing half-heartedly. Why do you go about advising, ‘Everything no one will get. Even sixty-seventy percent is good.’
Gender stereotypes, though a by-product of the patriarchal society that we have always lived in, are now so intricately woven into our conditioning that despite our progressive thinking, we are unable to break free from them.
Repeatedly crossing, while on my morning walk ̶ a sticky, vine-coloured patch on the walkway, painted by jamuns that have fallen from the jamun tree, crushed by the impact of their fall, and perhaps, inadvertently trampled upon by walkers, awakens memories of the mulberry tree that stood in my parents’ house when I was growing up. Right at the entrance of the house, the tree caused a similar red and violet chaos on the floor, which greeted us each time we entered the gate.
Today, as I walked by this red-violet patch, I was reminded of an incident that my mother had narrated to me several times. It had taken place shortly after her marriage and her arrival in this house from her hometown.