Monday 3 November 2014

Masters in my Room

With a loud ‘Oh God!’ I begin this post, as serious as it may be,
An invocation you may call it, or frustration, to put it simply.
I stood before my book shelf watching spines just newly born,
Thinking what my favourites think,  the ones now dead and gone.

From one genre to the next I went, (did I pronounce that right?),
To talk to the masters about book trends, and what was on their minds.
To see how books and writers have evolved into something new,
To see if we have grown new wings or bid them a quick adieu.

I noticed in a corner Chaucer stood with a knowing smile,
Could he have read the latest Humour best-seller on the vine?
He shook his head from side-to-side, confused me, then he said,
Winne whoso may, (my child) for al is for to selle.’

Amused I stood musing, when Dryden to Pope did say,
An immortal War with Wit’ wages the King of Satire today.
All Arguments, all arguments, but most his Plays perswade,
That for anointed dullness (nothing more), he was really made.

Just then lovelorn Donne glided in, and a hand by his heart did lie,
Was this about the Love story readers swooned over, now swore by?
While I just managed to write an Elegie, to my Mistress Going to Bed,
Such love the writers must now know, to bring lovers back from the dead!

The talk of Love disturbed his reverie, by the gurgling stream,
In walked Wordsworth, took a seat, ho-hummed to then proceed-
What Love you speak about, I just know not what you mean,
No trees, no sun, no Abbeys divine, of Nature books are clean.

So many Thrillers abound today, who has space for a cherry tree?
Shakespeare looked as if he knew, adding mystery to the scene.
Oh mercy, droppeth from the Heavens now, and fall upon her head,
I saw that book’s end coming right after line 1, page 1 was read!

Kundera’s political eyebrow shot-up in brave support,
Kafka in complete profundity said reading's ‘a trial’, no more.
Amitav Ghosh and Anathamurthy in a whisper together said,
Heads bent, shoulders down, a frown and then ‘Is literary nearly dead?

While Lawrence winked and asked ‘So, they think they know all about sex?
Premchand, Manto and Chugtai moaned their own legacy’s death.
Virginia Woolf woke-up from her dreams, only to think anew,
Why have writers closed all windows in what was once a room with a view?

In flowing robes Homer sat till now - quiet, blind, unseen.
Till he roared ‘How epic! How epic! This glorious sea of mediocrity!
Yeats wanted the gyres to turn, a ‘Second Coming’, a beast we need,
But Eliot, out of patience, shouted ‘Shantih Shantih Shantih’.

From me alone with my book shelf we had grown to quite a few,
Confirmed it was that Classic once may never again come true.
Alas! They vanished, one-by-one, those masters from my room,
‘Oh God!’ I sighed with loss once more, before I picked up the broom.

What you see below was a wise young owl, creative and with craft,
But in such pressing hurry to print, this smile he called his art.
What happened next is sad, so, so sad oh tragedy abound!
Just a wide-eyed face was left of what was once a wise young owl.

[Written for WordPress Daily Prompts : 365 Writing Prompts. The prompt for today was - It builds character - Tell us about a favorite character from film, theater, or literature, with whom you’d like to have a heart-to-heart. What would you talk about?]


  1. Ha Ha, a satire! Good one, and your scholarship shows!

    1. Thank you! :)
      As for scholar-ship, takes one to know one. ;)

  2. Sakshi, The masters will always remain in the minds of the readers. Old is definitely gold and new will become old someday. your poem belongs to that category, awesome :-)

    1. I agree, Sulekkha. Masters become that because of the timelessness their works carry; the real definition of Classic. Yes, new will become old but how many of us new age writers will be remembered by my great grand child I know not. It is this that makes me feel a sense of loss.

  3. Wow...loved falling right through your literary 'pensieve'... It's as if you've taken the words right out of their mouth! Hats off Sakshi! Truly epic.

    1. Well, you see, I tried my best to (mis)quote them verbatim, but my own voice interfered with that. Just used what I remembered - saying or associations.
      Now you do mean that as epic and not Pope's mock-epic right? I'd be very, very happy with the latter too! :D
      Thanks, Amogha!

  4. beautifully written though i wonder how many people will 'get ' it .... :)

    1. It's for those who will 'get' it. Like you!
      Thanks for stopping by, Bond. :)

  5. And I bow to your mastery yet again :-D Such beautiful piece of writing, and the way you quoted the literary greats ... awesome! Simply brilliant. But that's what I expect whenever I visit your blog :-)

  6. ..many great writers have left their imprint..the world bows to them and the have your own style..that shows in writings..that makes you unique..and you write wonderfully..and you are a league of your own..keep writing.. :)

    1. Good to be identified with one's 'own style', Rigzin.
      I just took a print-out of your comment and pasted it right above my writing desk! :D

  7. hahaha loved the satire... you poetic take on today's literary scenario is absolutely brilliant. I sometimes randomly go and read Wordworth or Dickinson, just to appreciate the beauty of language again.

    1. I turn to them too, to know what one needs to look up to in the crowd!
      So happy you liked this, Rajlakshmi! :)

  8. Very well done, Sakshi! I share the feeling of loss that you speak of here :(

  9. Such a beautiful write expressed wonderfully. Loved it.

    1. Thanks a lot!
      You made me remember this post. :D


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