Being sizzled

As I start hanging the laundry, I can feel the scorching sun burning my skin. By the time I hang the last piece of cloth, the first one is already dry and my hands slightly tanned. My potted plants look droopy and withered. No amount of water quenches their thirst or mine.

Scalding tap water
groans and gurgles grudgingly
bathing no relief

The only place to provide some kind of relie, through the season, are the hills. But with most city dwellers making a beeline for hill stations, they have become over crowded, noisy and water deficit. The summers of my childhood were spent outdoors, my kids beat the heat with air conditioning. 

Indulging self in
luscious, juicy summer fruits
cool vacation dreams

Written for dVerse. Today’s host, Frank, says: Let’s join in the celebration of Summer! Write a haibun that alludes to this hottest of seasons.


Fuzzy warmth (a haibun)

It’s the season of mellowness in the northern plains of India. Of snuggling in quilts and lazy mornings. Of pashminas and knitting. Of pickling and sunning.

The trees clothed in tattered leaves stand forlornly, the shrubs cling on to their leaves stubbornly. The temperatures are cold enough to take out the woolies and barring a few days of sunless shivering, it is a great time to be outdoors in the benign sunshine.

It is also the season of gastronomic gratification. Winter greens and lush coloured vegetables in abundance in the markets are any epicurean’s delight. Moreover the humble peanuts, seasame seeds and jaggery confections are everyone’s favourite munchies. Needless to say, hot, piping chai is the preferred beverage.  

The haze we thought fog
actually smog, marring
the winter skyscape

Written for dVerse. Today’s host, Frank, says: Let’s warm ourselves up by writing about winter! Write a haibun about this chill season.

Tomorrow (a haibun)

No portentous clouds loomed on the horizon at the dawn of 2021. In fact, the first day of the year dawned sunny and bright, promising to be better than the previous one. But things started going downhill pretty soon and in its passage, the year, left lives and livelihoods in ruins.
As the year drew to a close, there wasn’t much to celebrate but being alive and together as a family, filled us with immense gratitude. A quiet, home-cooked, wholesome dinner, with favourite music in the background and bantering kids; I feel blessed! 2022 will find it difficult to emerge from the long shadows cast by the preceding year yet life is all about living with hope.

Four solemn faces
anticipation in eyes
whither tomorrow?

Written for dVerse. Today’s host, Li, says: Your challenge today, if you choose to accept it, is to write a haibun about this year’s holiday celebrations.

Night fears (a haibun)

(From Pexel)

My tired eyes refuse sleep with reluctance, like an alcoholic refuses that last drink. Fear keeps my eyelids pinned open. Somewhere, drifting between extreme sleepiness and the need to be awake, I doze off. Only to wake up with a jerk. Groggy and disoriented, I walk up to his room. His CGM* reads 53. In panic I search hurriedly for the glucometer and the testing kit, fear making me butter-fingered. The commotion makes him stir. He looks up, gives me a lopsided smile and goes back to sleep. With trembling hands I take another reading…it reads 78. I sink to the floor shaking with relief.
It is 3.00 am and sleep has bid me goodbye. I sit in the balcony waiting for dawn. Most nights are uneventful, some cause this drama. But fear has become a part of the night routine. The threat of hypoglycemia can do that.

Moon my namesake** smiles
as I give her company
I hide my heartache

Written for dVerse. Today’s host Frank says: Let’s feel the spooky sensation of this coming Halloween/Samhain! Let’s celebrate that emotion of dread. Let’s write our haibun that states or references fear.

*CGM: Constant Glucose Monitor. Used to monitor glucose levels of diabetics, especially type 1. ( My fourteen year old son is Type 1 diabetic.)

**namesake: Punam in hindi language means the full moon.

Off the block

(From shutterstock)

Words, words, words! However much I write about them, there is always more to write.
They gush forth like a river in spate, giving me no pause to stem their flow. They gurgle happily like an infant asking to be mollycoddled. They are like an earworm refusing to be quietened. They fall over each other clamouring to be captured and meet the eye of the reader.

It is often the paucity of time that puts breaks on their ride. Some wither away, some die with exhaustion and some go in hibernation refusing to be cajoled to grace the pages. Only the hardy ones survive to tell their tale.

Perhaps it is my pact with them that I will give voice to them without being judgemental which keeps them from deserting me.

Raindrops keep falling
a backdrop to my musings
constant thrum of words.

Written for dVerse. Today’s host Frank says: Feeling a little blocked? Vent about it! Have a story to tell about a recent writer’s block? Go for it? Never had writer’s block? Tell us your secret! However you approach it, write your haibun that alludes to this perennial frustration of writers.

School it is!

The consent form for offline classes lies open on the desktop. To send or not to send is the dilemma we face. Our fourteen year old was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes a few months ago. He is excited at the idea of going back to school finally. But should we expose him to the possibility of infection? Is it worth the risk! I can’t overlook the fact that he is listless and inattentive during online classes. Missing live interaction with teachers and classmates. The most voluble student with a hundred queries now skulks in the virtual classroom.

He decides it is time for him to reclaim his life. With masks and sanitizers and the school staff completely vaccinated, we are ready to take a chance, albeit with trepidation!

The sun still burning
clouds chasing each other
could children do so

Written for dVerse. Frank Tassone says: Whether you begin a new school year yourself, you send your first (or last) to college, or you recall your own back to school adventures, write your haibun alluding to back to school!