If I had a superpower
I want it to stop myself from thinking
what others are thinking
So that I would not fall short
of goals I had never sought.
And just live my life. Like I want.
And not like what I think they think is my wont.
Near people it’s never quiet
even in silence, I hear voices fight;
personal takes on what is wrong and what is right.
When actually their field of vision are narrower
than a one dimensional line.
Stop! Pause for a breath
Pause into silence and keep it fed.
Take in a lungful of fresh air
And let me, to myself be fair,
without shamelessly being drawn
against others who are individuals of their own.
It’s not teenage angst
I’m not in that age gap anymore.
It is instead a suffocating pillow you snuff
on my face every minute and still expect me to smile in return.
Which my superpower tears to shreds
with an ugly scowl.
Because people are not measured in smiles.
The secret is… you don’t measure them at all.
So I look into their eyes and pity their life
which has twisted them so they can only derive
pleasure from others’ plights
while they pretend their life is alright.
And smile. And pretend. And smile.
Each morning on the 25th, the first thing I do is look under my pillow. And each morning on the 25th, for as long as I can remember, I without doubt find something or the other there – a box of chocolates, a little toy, a book. So it has become a habit of sorts. These days, my younger sisters wake me up before I can look myself with the standard – ‘What did Santa get for you this time?’. Before I can tell them, they rattle off with their own list of under the pillow goodies. It seems this time our Santa did a little upgrade. He finally found the socks we’d hung near the bedpost so there was less danger of us waking up while he sneakily tried to stuff gifts under our pillows. Maybe this Christmas, we can pat ourselves on the back for becoming more considerate.
I remember having a fight with my friends when I was in the fifth grade. All because they had the gall to suggest that Santa wasn’t real. With narrowed eyes and puffed up cheeks, I declared, ‘Maybe you are just not good children’, and stomped away. Because I believed in Santa. Despite all my rationality. I had years worth of gifts to prove it. Every 25th without fail. And even as Christmas creeps near this year, I see my younger sisters writing a letter to Santa and asking their dad to post it, with all the surety that it will be read that only children can have. And I wonder if they fight with their friends about Santa’s existence or not. And if they reply in the same pompous tone as I did or not.
It took me, after all, quite a long time to realize that there is no such thing as ‘good’ and ‘bad’ kids, there are just some which are incredibly lucky.
And in some ways more than the others, I have been quite so. Rather than being bad children, maybe my friends just did not have any person in their house who believed in Christmas or wanted their children to. It is not our festival anyway. We already have enough with Diwali and Holi and Dussehra and Janmashthmi.
But festivals are fun. And carols jolly. And as I shop with my Aunt reading off from a list of gifts that her husband handed her which she needs to get before 24th eve, I still find one box of chocolates stuffed beneath my pillow when I wake up on the 25th.
PS. Talking about Christmas music, I’ve been listening to this for about 3 years now.