Shail talks of four news, in the last week, in her regular column. Diwali-themed trains, a station and five buses in Singapore to run until October 31. Taj Mahal is being communalised by a BJP MLA, supports UP government to remove it from the booklet on tourism. Northern Michigan University is offering a marijuana-focused degree but stoners cannot apply. New Zealand library staff solved the case of missing books. Homeless people, without fixed addresses, did not want to lose these books and returned to read these. A Different Truths exclusive.
Festival Lights in Singapore
The festival of lights
splashed colours across the globe;
Diwali themed trains, buses in the Singapore wardrobe.
Majestic elephants on walls, doors welcomed passengers.
Exotic rangoli designs warmed public contours.
Little India in mighty Singapore,
Land Transport Authority
chipped in their bit
to add to the festival fervour
to celebrate joy, peace and light
very bright; an apt example
of unity in diversity.
One of the Seven Wonders of the World,
UNESCO World Heritage site –
the beautiful Taj Mahal now in the midst of a nasty fight.
Wasn’t it enough that Mumtaz gave up the ghost
mothering innumerable children until Shah Jahan built
her a monument of love, loneliness and architectural beauty?
Lived, loved and gone.
A history usurped, constructed and torn.
What was before and isn’t there now
is there any logic in debating the if’s and the how’s?
History a blank piece of paper is definitely not,
to be read, turned over and sliced.
For ages, people know of the nation
for its monumental tomb of love
that transcended life and death.
For years have people longed for a love so rare.
Just or not, a fact it is of eternal beauty
which cannot be destroyed by hatred and scorn.
The very leaders who swear to bind the nation
bend over backwards to dig the country’s grave
by dividing thoughts, infusing abhorrence
all for a monument that has served to attract,
to unite people of all races across the globe.
‘Blot’ low grade thoughts, not a nation.
Spread love everywhere, not run a hostility station.
Stoned to Study
Marijuana is not illegal!
Yes, you heard it right,
loud and bright.
If you hadn’t had enough of the weed on the sly
then, for a course in Michigan University you can apply.
Biology, chemistry, financing and even marketing
of the cannabis is all available for you
but there’s a catch; it’s only for the study interested few
because it is not roller skating into a pot of weed;
medical usage of the grass is the current need.
Not a fast learning course into intoxication it is;
instead, a four year undergraduate program whiz.
One of a kind in the world.
Opt for it if you wish to make a difference to the medical twirl.
Lost and Found
Poverty does not deprive one of the desire to read.
Even the homeless can wish to peruse the written word seed.
Library just the right place to connect with the mystery
of worlds lost, conquered; of love deprived, acquired.
Inspiration to some, joy to others.
No wonder then, staffers at a New Zealand Library
in for a shock when they discovered books
missing, borrowed, hidden to be read later
no home to be taken to,
no hearth to comfortably edge into,
to curl up beside a warm fireside and delve into a favourite book.
The Auckland Library magnanimous in heart
dedicated a shelf entirely to the reading homeless
so that books could be borrowed, stored and still be read.
Because even the roofless and the destitute
deserve the joy of devouring books without a secure bed.
Photos from the Internet
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Shail Raghuvanshi is a freelance writer, editor, content writer, book reviewer and poet. A post graduate in Journalism and Mass Communication, she has 20 years of writing experience in newspaper, magazine, radio, television and the internet. Her poems, short stories and articles have been published in leading magazines, journals and e-books apart from featuring in anthologies. A daughter, a wife and a mother, she is the eternal optimist. Faith, friendship and family make her life complete.