Monday, March 12, 2012

A Book of My Life

I started writing poetry in 2002 or so. Don't remember the exact year, but I was in 9th grade. I started because we had this poetry assignment in English/Literature class that required a few original poems in different genres. I couldn't write poetry, had never tried it, didn't think it was for ordinary people like me, etc., etc., so I asked a classmate of mine to lend me a couple of hers that she already had. I know - I lied, and it wasn't wise or smart or ethical because the assignment called for original poems of our own. But, hey, I wasn't and still am no poet, k, so it made sense to just take a couple from a friend. Surprisingly, she didn't mind, either. She did suggest, after the assignment was over, that I try to write. So I was like fine -- and I wrote my first ever poem. I'll share that some other time.

But lemme tell you what I used to write like. I was pretty lame. I often wrote on love, but, hell, this girl couldn't write poetry at all. I still don't consider myself a poet, BUT I do think I've improved significantly. Well, it has been a decade, y'know, and I read a lot of poetry as well. I'm going to share with you one of the poems that I think has remained one of my favorites ever since I wrote it. It won a poetry contest when I was in 11th grade ... 2005 (don't laugh! I was young, k?). Back then, I used to write the date AND the time the poem was written at! Which is very interesting, now that I look back. I'm actually glad I did that because I remember every single thing I was feeling when I wrote this poem. It was, as the date/time says, Thursday, February 12th 2004 at 12:25am (I finished the poem at 12:25). It was raining really hard outside (I love rain, and I think it's very romantic, and I'm a very romantic personnnn), and I had just gotten ready to sleep. I was very sleepy, but this idea came into my head as the raindrops kept "drumming" against my windows. I immediately got up, turned the lights on, and got a pencil and a paper and started writing this. It didn't take long to write at all.

The poem's called "A Book of My Life." Also, you're allowed to judge me. All my readers are. I don't fear judgment. BUT I'll admit it myself that this poem isn't a good one :) If I had to rate it myself on a scale of 1 to 10, 10 being excellent and 1 being horrible, I'd say it deserves a 3.5. Then again, no more than one or two of my poems would get a rating of more than 8.5 from me. Just so you know what to expect. But my poems before 2008 were pretty dumb and lame, LOL :D And I don't mind that. All of my friends wrote like that (the friend whose poems I claimed as my own for the above-mentioned assignment also wrote this lamely, but I think most young people, and many older people also, in America write lame lines that rhyme and call it poetry. I rarely come across someone whose poetry moves me. I don't think western poetry can ever do to me what eastern poetry (Arabic, Pashto, Persian, Urdu -- I'd add Hebrew and others if I knew these languages!) does to me. So I don't expect you to think this poem below is great. BUT I'm sharing it for two reasons:

1. Yesterday on the plane (visiting family), I wrote a romantic poem that's been on my mind for a while now. I finally did it. It was killing me, but the mood was just never set perfectly for it to be written. And then somehow, looking out the plane window made it so possible and easy for me to write the poem in one go. I mention this poem because, in it, I allude to something I say in this poem below: "chapters glimmering with the word love." So tomorrow or another day when I share that new poem with y'all, and you read this phrase in it, you'll know what it's a reference to.
2. I love this poem. And although it's not among my best, it's one of my very few poems that I can read time and again, and I've even memorized many of its lines. I've recited the poem out loud as well (I forget where/why), and when I recite it out loud even now, I read it with such emotion, such love, such nostalgia, such reminiscence. Nostalgia for what, reminiscing what, you might ask. Nothing. It's just the tone of the poem that makes me read/recite it that way. And I love it that way. I absolutely love it.

So!! Here goes it!

A Book of My Life

My eyes closed, my hands shaking
My heart blazing like the sunset
My mind soaring above the clouds
As I get this idea for a new book
A book of my life
A book so long, so much to say in it,
Such strong feelings to translate into words
For this is the big book of my life that I plan to write
This hundreds-of-chapters-long book
Has pages leading not anywhere
A story of me and you out of nowhere,
Without a beginning and with no end
For it is the book of my life that I plan to write

This book that reveals the real me
That tells only the truth
Of my life, of my time, of us as one
That doesn’t include anyone but me and you
Its chapters are full of laughter from within our hearts
All that laughter we share
And smiles from our lips
And tears shed from our eyes
And those obstacles we overcame and made it this far
And it has chapters glimmering with the word “love”
Which I accepted only from you
Which I offered only to you

There are chapters full of all the dreams we share
And so many things that need to be done as one
It has chapters full of words spoken at wrong moments
Times I spoke when I should’ve kept quiet
And times I remained silent
When I should’ve spoken my mind
It’s full of regrets and pain sweet as honey
And those constant little mistakes
That I made so many times
Some, people learned from
Others, I was never forgiven for

This book of my life that I plan to write
With the help of this paper and pen
And the rain dripping outside
Those little drops drumming on my windows
I’ll write it with help from the sun,
The sun that keeps playing hide-and-seek with the rain
And the tall trees won’t mind lending a branch
Those tall trees that stand even taller
To hear my whispers to the clouds
And those twinkling stars that continue leading us in Love

But you see, I need no help
To write this big book of my life
Because the only thing I need is unlimited time
So I change my mind about writing that book of my life
And I'll let all these hidden feelings
And dreams and thoughts stay inside
And not let them come out
Until unlimited time arrives

Written on: Thursday, Feb. 12th, 2004 - 12:25am


  1. My dear Shanu, you are so very talented!
    lots of love!

  2. Thank you, Sepo :) You are generous with your compliments! Bless you!

  3. I absolutely love this one. So beautiful.


Dare to opine :)

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