the big JUNGLE

Welcome back to Day Eleven at NaPoWriMo. It’s alphabet ‘J’ at the A to Z Challenge. The prompt for today is to write a poem about a very large thing. It could be a mountain or a blue whale or a skyscraper or a planet or the various contenders for the honor of being the Biggest Ball of Twine.

This one made me think…a lot. So many of those big things, big animals, towers, a big life, big troubles and big love. Finally, I settled for a big forest!

Almost into Day 12 now, here is my offering, tentatively titled ‘the big JUNGLE’.


The forest behind my childhood home was big,

and big were the twenty deodars

I counted on my little fingers,

when I started to do numbers.


There also grew a not-so-big walnut tree

in very close proximity. Together they housed

the big langurs and the monkeys

chattering about their winter woes,

sunning and nitpicking their daily chores.


Then there were the tangled bushes

I often made my way through,

wild blossoms in big clusters

along a twisted pathway grew.

And perched upon my window sill

I sometimes spotted the birds of hills,

twittering and tweeting from summer to spring.


When the winds in the forests blew,

swishing and swooshing

they went hoo-hoo-hoo.

The sounds of the jungle

I carried in my heart

when I started for a city

bright and smart.


A new road has come up

in my childhood home now,

the big jungles gone, the deodars torn.

The monkeys and langurs

are city-dwellers like me,

birds trying to figure out

this mystery.

Winds find no trees

to trap them in,

their swooshing turned

to quiet murmuring.

They say a BIG shopping mall is in the offing.


Inspired by my life in the hills and the nature writing of Ruskin Bond. This post is part of BlogchatterA2Z

26 thoughts on “the big JUNGLE”

  1. Sonia, this is such a lovely piece of writing. I don’t know if I should say it was beautiful coz it brought back fond memories or it’s sad that it brings forth the reality.

    The forests behind my childhood home was what made my home, a home and today when I see them all replaced by concrete structures, it pains. It feels like being alienated.

    Thank you for making me walk down the memory lane; the forest wafts stay packed in every cell to come alive through reminiscence, I guess:)

  2. Pinched my heart. And it pinched my heart all the more when I saw a metaphor here Sonia… Childhood innocence as jungle where everything was in harmony, the mall is the all weathered cosmetic adulthood and the road as an ‘ego’.
    Your poems are not only evocative but thought provoking as well. Kudos.
    PS: Big ball of Twine was something I had never heard about. Thanks for the link, I could satiate my curiosity!

  3. The last line broke my heart.

    I’ve seen this big “progress” destroy the idyll we (you and I) were once a part of– again and again for the sake of commerce and it breaks my heart.

    Thank you for penning it down so beautifully.

    There are so many lines I’d pick as my favourite. But this : “Winds find no trees
    to trap them in,” haunts.

    1. It is Liz. Very heart breaking. In India we harbour the desire to own several houses and with our kind of population construction is really over the top.

  4. So sad and yet so beautiful. When I was in Dehradun, we used to live near 2 litchi baugs. We weren’t supposed to walk through them because of bees. God I hope their land has not been reclaimed to build another house.

  5. Damyanti Biswas

    A new road has come up
    in my childhood home now,
    the big jungles gone, the deodars torn

    Such powerful lines Sonia! Thank You for sharing!

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