Wednesday, May 1, 2019




Tap on the gate, she got up wide awake!

Rushing to the door

Saw her lover waiting;

He clasped her,

She wept against him begging,

“Love me a little more,

Take me away with you, at once!”

“Haste not, rush not!” Warned the fire

Burning on the hearth.

It shone against the helpless babe,

Lost asleep in the cradle,

And lighted the table where lay the dinner

Earned by her noble bread-winner.

“Come back, ruin not your life!”Yelped the dog

Tugging at her dress,.

Pleading with its eyes.

Babe gave a sigh-half smile., .

Turned over, whispering ‘Mama’

Even in sleep!

She felt cold all over.

Thrusting back her lover’s arm,

Ran in swiftly, ere the door could close

Shutting away all that she held dear,

And on her own hearth stood

A woman safe and warm!


Oh,what blissful times

They were!

Whole family gathered

Under one roof,

Under the aegis of one revered head!

They would all be there,

Each one of them

For functions all

Be it big or small, for an hour or week,

From toddler to eighty plus.


At home or otherwise,


At places different;

No easy matter to get leave,

Or afford  travel expenses

Each time called home.

But not once- not once

Did any seem to mind it-

Nor missed,

Any of those gatherings

Big or small- for a day or hour.

Strengthened  by one another,


By the atmosphere affectionate,

Took leave with hopes of reunion,


Till one day

Each on his destined day,

Left our shelter,

With no hopes

Of reunion whatever..

That family,

The family I grew up with

Amidst care and warmth,

Is now safe

In the family album,

Tucked away as antique.

New families sprouting,

Younger generations


Groups of their own,

Airing their own views  new!

Considered as  kid

Not very long back

By our elders now gone,

Oft do I feel out of place,

Myself becoming an antique

Slowly., . . . . . .

A store house of memories


Selling reminiscences

For bits of company

From youngsters having no time

For neither elders  nor family functions

Be it next door - for just an hour-

Or even for a gesture!

(From the discarded heroine of his novel)

Author dear, why did you take away

My years. . . . . .

The years built up

By your very same hand,

And usher in

Another character new?

But the Hero?

Was the same treatment

Meted out? No?


Much against his wishes!

And that-

After building up our love,

Shaping it with feelings tender,

Conversations poetic, actions artistic,

Watching it blossom with all your power


So much so that

I yearned

To be a part of him

And be his sole heroine!

You could have

Should have,

Made me so!

Easily so ,

In that novel, one of ‘Pen-fancy’

To you?

But to me, my very breath!

Half-formed thus, I wander

Like a ghost

Among your chapters,

Slicing your ‘MUSE’


NUGGEHALLI PANKAJA: Senior poet  and  bilingual writer  Nuggehalli Pankaja  is a recipient  of several prestigious  awards,t he most recent being  one of the highest-  from Karnataka Sahitya Academy for  Literature  in 2017, and Karnataka State woman Achievers award for Literature in  2018. She has to her credit  many Kannada books  in all fields, and  English  poems, humor,  short stories  etc  published  in various leading newspapers and  anthologies.  Two popular Kannada films have  been made based  on her novels.  She has also translated  ‘The KARNATAKA PART’  from   Kannada language  to English  for the English Encyclopedia  brought out by the  prestigious  Kuvempu  University  of Manasgangotri,Mysore

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