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Sonali Sethi Mar 2019
'Let's hang out this weekend' I type
My thumb hovers over send
If I don't press the button,
Will you still be my friend?

2 missed calls from me on your cell
You say you're busy, I understand
If I want you to call me for once,
Is that too much to demand?

I'll smile and laugh and you'll never know
How much it hurts when you don't reply
Some people are just like that, I tell myself.  
It's not enough reason to cry

I want to tell you about my day,
My troubles, my joys and everything in between
I want to know about yours too
But my messages just get left on seen

Would you notice if I don't text you?
Do you even feel my absence?
Yes we've been friends for years,
But I'm running low on patience...

I'll re arrange my plans to meet
When you show up out of the blue
And ignore the voice in my head that says
'Would they do the same for you?'

Days pass and I swallow my pride,
My thumb hovers over send
If I don't press the button
Will you still be my friend?
Sometimes it feels like you're the only one putting in the effort.
Sonali Sethi Apr 2018
At the crack of dawn, in an open jeep
We sit, as chirpy as the birds
Our eyes wide open, ears perked
Waiting for a call to be heard

We begin our journey, full of hope
The thrill of adventure in the air,
Binoculars at the ready
To meet a tiger's deadly glare

We canter through the dense forest
Through the shallow river and the whispering trees
Past the gentle deer and the mighty elephant
And a sense of danger in the breeze

We wander along the gravel path  
Beneath langoors swinging from the branches,  
And from the grass, the jackal watches,
Patiently resting on its haunches

We drive through twists and turns and ups and downs
The elusive beast refused to be found...
This time our efforts were for nought,
But we'll see him next time around!
I went to a tiger reserve recently. Did not see a tiger but had a wonderful time driving through the forest!
For pictures, check out my insta page, those.who.wander24 :)
Sonali Sethi Sep 2016
When you've  run out of tears to cry,
When you want to speak but your throat feels dry,
When every step you take feels like a mile,
When you've lost the will to even smile.
What do you do?

When you wish you could sink into to the floor,
When you feel you can't take anymore,
When you're tired of hearing, "Are you ok?"
When you've drained your stack of lies to say,
What do you do?

When you thought you were done but the feeling comes back,
And slowly your world starts to fade to black
When you just want to stand still in one place
but you're swept into Life's ruthless race
What do you do?

When you feel your emotions taking you for a ride,
When you've  exhausted all your places to hide,
When you itch to bang your head against the wall
or sit in the corner and do nothing at all,
What do you do?

When you can't be free of that throbbing headache,
And sleep seeems like your only escape,
When all you want is to be okay
but Life doesn't really work that way,
What do you do?
Sonali Sethi Feb 2016
"I want to be a boxer" he said
Stomping his foot, his face red.
Angry at God for not making it happen
Now! Before his resolve does slacken

"I've got the skills for it." he whines
He neglects his practice half the time
He doesn't realise, it seems,
The difference between a hobby and a dream

"I've won many a fight!" he shouts
Those brawls with friends don't really count.
He did once won the junior championship
And into each conversation, he lets that slip.

"I can make it!" he says, His gloats, incessant
His actions, childish, His views, arrogant.
“Life’s so unfair!” he always cries
Though with all his heart, he never tries

He’s chasing the rush of winning a battle
But at the thought of war, his courage rattles
“If only I could follow my dream…” he muses  
One day perhaps he’ll run out of excuses

His wistful eyes gaze at boxing rings,
Lost in the visions of glory they bring.
“It’s my calling.” He brags, unable to see
The clear path leading him to his “destiny”

On self -made hurdles, he always trips.
It seems on reality he’s losing his grip.
In this mind, there is ample confusion
On the difference between a dream and delusion

As time passes, one day it’ll be clear
That all that stopped him was his own fear
But until then, he lets the truth be unheard
For isn’t it easier to keep blaming the world?
There were so many times when I thought that it was crazy to keep writing and I'm just fooling myself if I think I'll be a writer some day. I thought it was stupid to keep believing in my childhood dream. Sometimes when I'm feeling especially hopeless, I feel like this poem is basically how the world sees me.
Sonali Sethi Feb 2016
“Everyone goes through this,” they say, comfortingly
“Everyone gets over it.” I hear, disheartened
“So many people care about you.” They say, encouragingly
“Don’t disappoint those who care for you.” I hear, dejected
“You’ve done so much to be proud of!” They say, smiling
“What happened to the you who did things?” I hear, terrified
“This happens to me all the time; don’t worry.” They say, reassuring
“Be better.” I hear. I’m not you. And I’m petrified.  
“These things take time. Be patient.” They say, concerned
“Get over it already.” I hear, numb
“Ignore your brain trying to get you down.” They say, supportive
“Don’t trust yourself.” I hear. Save me. I’m not ok.
I’m afraid of my own feelings.
“This is normal.” They say.
I spend 3 hours just staring at the ceiling.
“Take it one step at a time.”
I feeling like I’m slowly withering away.
“Don’t give up!”
I’m just going through the motions everyday
“See? You’re getting better!” They say, cheerful.
For them, I try
“I’m fine.” I say, hesitant and fearful
They believe me, satisfied.
*I’m a liar.
Sonali Sethi Jan 2016
I am the mask.
I sit on the shelf, untouched. It’s been so long since she’s used me. The paint on me has started to fade and cracks have appeared all over my body. Yet, I do not complain. I sit quietly and patiently. She will come to me when she needs me. I wait.
When I hear her voice again, my spirits rise.  She is right in front of me. Perhaps this time she’ll use me. She has unintentionally teased me so many times by coming so close and then walking away.
She stands before me, her eyes brimming with tears. She stares at me with despair etched on her face. I attempt to quell my excitement as she contemplates whether to put me on or not. I try not to get my hopes up. She screams and with that final cry of anguish, her decision is made.  Her hands shiver as she reaches for me and presses me against her tear stained cheeks.
She leaves the room smiling as I settle on her face. The cracks on my body are now held together by her misery. The paint on me shines with a fresh coat of her tears. I listen to her laugh as I do my job.
For I am the mask, I am her happy face.
For those times, when you feel like **** but you still have to do the 'adult' thing and smile.
Sonali Sethi Dec 2014
He drives along the empty road
Till his headlights fall upon the deer
He stops, inches from its body.
Its dark eyes widen with fear.
Hazel brown eyes: Just like his daughter’s

He blares his horn repeatedly
To scare it off with the loud sound
A vain attempt; the stag stays
Unmoving, it holds its ground.
Obstinate creature: Just like his daughter.

He groans in frustration,
The animal stares in silence;
Its eyes shine with a hint of anger
It’s stance the picture of defiance  
Quietly rebellious: Just like his daughter.

Through his window, he shouts at it
To move off the narrow road
But the deer just stands, looking confused,
Instead of running off to its abode
It doesn’t understand: Just like his daughter.

Doesn’t it know to run away?
He’s never seen such behaviour;
Such a myriad of emotions  
Expressed by a simple deer.
It’s an enigma: Just like his daughter.

He looks helplessly at the deer,
Unsure of what will happen now
He’s almost out of options but
He knows he’ll find a way somehow.
After all, he never gives up: Just like his daughter.
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