Small Talk

[ Dear reader, do you have an opinion about the things that happen around you? Do you openly speak your mind? Or, is it that just like me, you’d like to say a lot but watching the sun go down or talking about the weather takes precedence?]

I’ve spent the better part of the day wondering what I should bring to you here.

Should I talk about people blowing air

Or simply about what others choose to wear

I’d rather Put-in and investigate

How small offences alter a nation’s fate

Or, maybe, find out what made a certain Gate

Refuse to share the vaccine tech with smaller states

And there’s more that plagues the world and worries me no less

But today I’d rather keep away from this mess

For as long as the fire’s nowhere close by

I’ll spend my life watching the clouds pass by.

And so, the weather (read seasons) fits the bill perfectly today. A little small talk will harm nobody, really! Winter’s receding and I can’t get enough of this magical weather. The sun has finally begun to show up in my slender balcony and the greens that seemed to have lost their colour are smiling once again. The grey sky is blue and my words are no longer numb. I like to draw the curtains because the tops of some of those high-rise buildings are no more shrouded by a sea of winter smog. I can make out the skyline of this part of the capital from my bedroom window and I find myself embracing these simple changes that announce the onset of spring. It’s also a time for fine poetry.

The birds around me hopped and played,

Their thoughts I cannot measure:—

But the least motion which they made

It seemed a thrill of pleasure

Thus wrote William Wordsworth in Lines Written in Early Spring. He said some melancholic stuff too in this poem, but I’d rather keep it away and not spoil the season of periwinkles. You see, I’m in no mood for philosophy today. After all, we all know What man has made of man?

I’d rather talk about my latest read, ‘A School Story’ by M R James. I’m not a fan of ghost stories and this one did spook me out. Do you believe in ghosts? The hills keep reverberating with tales of chudails and phantoms and spectres. That’s where I come from. My own school had several stories about possessed dormitories and corridors. It was an old school, a hundred years plus. Anyone from the staff who looked even slightly suspicious had either studied or was a practitioner of the occult, or so we believed. There was a solitary room at the base of one of the many buildings which wasn’t much frequented. Our seniors had carefully passed on many stories about the basement room to us. So, one winter afternoon when it echoed a certain click-clack, we put on our investigator’s caps and after much tip-toeing, shushing and phasmophobia resolved the case. It turned out to be a damp squib. An old clerk who sat in the basement room typing away question papers for the annual exams. Silly memories are most wondrously cherished, and so when I read James’ story I was reminded of my own. Of course, his tale is more thrilling and open to conjecture. It’s also a story of revenge. The ghost of our ill-doing follows us everywhere. And no, I’m not making a statement on anything happening around the world. As I mentioned, I’d rather keep away from the mess. So, readers, no speculations here.

 But coming back to tender spring which stands at the threshold making the world alive again (Jennifer Gunner), let me ask what does the season do to you? There are a few lessons that spring instantly brings home to me. Let me share them here,

The blowing air, says she, is a little prayer

And plum blossoms bring

The lovely colours of spring—

A sunset purple or sky blue,

Green and white, a little light

Freedom to choose makes things bright

The chuckling cloud teaches to forgive

Small offences, it says, should hardly live

Backyard trees, their laden boughs bent down

Share lessons of humility with the renowned

And more such things that I could share

But, as I said, I little care

And mind you, I do not hint at controversy

I’m merely quoting what spring tells me

If you read between the lines

I’m not to be blamed for what you opine

For I said, as long as the fire’s nowhere close by

I’ll spend my life watching the clouds pass by.

I hope you enjoyed reading this post. What do you think, did I manage to share my opinion on the ongoings of the world? Or was it merely “small talk”?

This blog post is part of the blog challenge ‘Blogaberry Dazzle’ hosted by Cindy D’Silva andNoor Anand Chawla.

31 thoughts on “Small Talk”

  1. Nicely done Sonia… You certainly made your thoughts clear. To be honest through it was the memory you shared of school life that I liked most. Which school did you go to?

  2. Loved how you switch from prose to poetry. Loved the imagery in the poetry especially the clouds pass by and the story frame.Absolutely in love with your write up

  3. Loved how you switch from prose to poetry. A little bit of a story here, a subtly expressed opinion there. Indeed Small Talk can be in many forms & entertaining

  4. Loved this free flowing post, Sonia. I could relate to a lot. Particularly about speaking my mind but also mindful of the mess it would create.

  5. I really enjoyed reading this small talk. You don’t have to always have a something specific to talk about. Small talks are nice too.

  6. Who needs paragraphs and narratives, when small talk can be woven so beautifully. The poem, the quotes, the book reference, the slight satire, everything together made a fabulous read.

  7. Reading this was such a delight, Sonia! Did you have a twinkle in your eye as you wrote this one? I would say you did!
    Loved your poems, and the quotes you shared. I read between the lines too, and there were so many jewels there !

  8. The tank was not small.It was big enough to tealize many things and the poems were really cool way to express it

  9. Engaging in small talk with your loved ones is a form if stress buster. Sometimes are so caught up with bigger worries we forget about the small talks which actually form a sweet moment of bonding with our lives ones. Your post reminded me of spring and flowers and I felt like I was walking through a field full of roses.

  10. Small talk about too many little things which is actually going on in the minds of many of us. Spring brings lots of freshness and positivity and so does this post of yours.

  11. If this was small talk what would you say when you get into a real conversation? Such a happy post that touched on so many matters. Loved your mini-poems.

  12. Yes, you did manage to share your opinion of what’s going on the world–in a subtle and very thought-provoking way, particularly in the lines, ” For I said, as long as the fire’s nowhere close by / I’ll spend my life watching the clouds pass by.”

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