- Category A: ‘Utsav – The Celebration’ by Kesar Patel
- Category B: ‘A Family Bound’ by Ramya Ramanathan
- Category C: ‘A Being of Incomplete Perfection’ by Siya Singhal
Utsav – The Celebration
(By Kesar Patel)
Every festival of the year,
Brings happiness and lots of cheer,
Whether India or America, far or near.
Embracing different cultures, people and diversity,
National or international, seasonal or religious, celebrating
all festivals is a symbol of unity.
New Years gives us a chance to start afresh,
To put old things behind and progress.
On Makar Sankranti kites soaring so high,
Until the evening when we have to say goodbye.
Maha Shivratri is an auspicious day,
To honor Lord Shiva, we fast and pray.
Colors spray on Holi day,
As adults and children splash and spray.
April arrives and commotions appear,
The Easter bunny has spread the cheer,
A variety of candy and toys in eggs so bright,
As we complete our hunt tonight.
On Raksha Bandhan with a sacred thread,
Grows the brother-sister bond that no one can shred.
The nine days of Navratri are around the corner,
Where Goddess Durga annihilates Mahisasura’s honor.
Diwali the festival of lights where lamps are lit and color so bright,
Takes place over these miraculous five nights.
Halloween is the festival celebrated each year,
With trick or treating and costumes to fear.
Christmas is all about warmth, goodwill and cheer,
As we decorate the tree with ornaments bright and clear,
We can almost hear Santa near!!
Every festival of the year,
Brings happiness and lots of cheer.
A Family Bound
(By Ramya Ramanathan)
The baby woke and breathed in life,
And a silent string shot out and tied
tearful husband and breathless wife,
And bound both, as the child opened wide.
From tot to toddler now had grown,
And this string had strengthened into twine.
Happy three in a smiling home,
two dull lives became something quite fine.
Years passed, now she became a teen
And it seemed that twine began to fray.
She’s ill-tempered, self-conscious, mean,
And this home was in disarray.
Heart-to-heart and self-reflection,
A plastic knife can’t cut through tough rope,
For with each small imperfection,
For a stronger bond, they held hope
Years came, she saw with swimming eyes,
that this rope still held a fearsome knot.
She held it and looked to the skies
to thank them for the joy they brought.
That little string had turned to rope
and the three were forevermore tied.
And even come the entire globe,
They could not break it if they tried.
A Being of Incomplete Perfection
(By Siya Singhal)
In perfectly tied shoelaces and the brightest of smiles, lies the voice of another.
In each footstep of a child, there are two; you and your mother.
At the tender age of 2 she pulls your entire existence into the comfort of her eyes.
A protector, she walks your path, first
Why is it that,
To a child, there is no greater beauty than that of their mother?
To a child, there is no greater friend than their mother?
And to the child,
There is often no greater enemy?
Pushing poisonous words through burning throats and damp eyes.
There is no greater joy in the world than her child’s laugh
And nothing more murderous than their pain.
Why is it that,
As children, we often hope to be independent beings,
Nothing like our mothers, yet becoming their reflection
With every passing day.
Why are we our mothers’ only happiness.
Yet the only beings with the capacity to cause her the greatest pain?
Perhaps it is the gift she gave us that no one can escape, no one can replace.
A piece of her soul, is the cost of this life.
There is no greater beauty than the mother’s face because we see the rest of our face in hers.
There is no greater friend because we are a piece of her 100 piece puzzle.
Carrying the experience of the other 99, she selects one, for a new beginning, rendering her incomplete.
And when that puzzle is jeopardized in the crossfire of pain filled remarks,
When you lie awake, eager eyes searching for an answer in the ceilings.
A sinking heart, taking you with it.
There is one persons, encapsulating eyes, comforting arms and protective smile that can cure your void.
In an embrace she fits the missing piece in the puzzle, your soul in hers, snatching the imprint of pain smeared all over it.
After all, she has done the same with the other 99.