Theme: Realization


I had the shock of my life today!
Perplexed, embarrassed and somewhat ashamed
I returned to my house
Unable to hide myself anywhere else.

Nita, that lovely girl on the opposite balcony
Had hit my eyes ever since we changed to this apartment.
What the hell, I sometimes think, where these girls had hid
When I was searching for a bride all these years?
I think God must have hijacked them all till
He imposed his will on me.

We had fair exchange of smiles, eye-contacts and hand-waves
And became quite familiar through this month.
I am sure she was following me and my movements
For why should she be surfacing at the exact hour in the morn or evening?
I would not have wavered as I did, had I seen her three years before.
And her positive response emboldened me to make the first move.

But out of the blue came this providential chance
When my wife said yesterday:
'Nita wants to know if you can help her with her project report.'
Assuming a casual demeanor stamping the bursting pleasure within,
I asked my wife : Nita? Who?

She then answered how she frequents their house in my absence
Their's being the only Brahmin family around.
From that moment on I was eagerly looking for a real chance to meeting her.
And when things work in your favor,
Chances surface on their own accord.

'Coming Sunday we want to go to Karthik Vanamahotsavam,
Why don't you take a day-off and follow us?' my wife asked last evening.
I just didn't want to commit myself unless Nita is a party to the party.
After ascertaining the participants and Nita would be home on Sunday,
I cried off with apologies in the last minute citing emergency work.
And encouraged my wife to go...seeming not to spoil her sport.

'Hello, Uncle!'
She waved and greeted loud from balcony as I opened the gate.
I looked behind me.
I was the lone entrant.
She repeated the greeting looking at me.
An inexplicable weakness seized me.
'She called me Uncle!' my heart squealed.
I could not believe my ears.
It still echoes in my ears...

Am I looking that old already
But for few streaks of meteors on a night-sky-hair?
I did not even have a child of her age,
And she called me, Uncle!
No one had ever addressed me like this till today!
And she called me Uncle!

But for few kgs gained because of that bloody sedentary job,
And the rotundity in features because of my late marriage,
I am just as fit to marry her now
Yet, she called me Uncle!
And I did an involuntary gesture which
By no means can be termed as reciprocatory greeting.

The fire in me extinguished,
The spirit in me destroyed,
The man in me feminized,
My heart petrified,
I don't know how I answered her queries...

Perplexed, embarrassed and somewhat ashamed
I returned to my house
Unable to hide myself anywhere else.


More By  :  N. S. Murty

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