Tag Archives: birthday

Of Birth

A one-man army,
Foes being two hundred millions,
I won in an hour;
With no shield, no sword, no guns,
I built a realm in ten months.

A one-man kingdom,
All the gates and doors being locked,
I ate, drank and danced;
With no friend, no foe, no kin,
I slumbered all day and night.

A Life in a cell,
Seven heavens being in there,
I drooled for more lands;
With no mission, no vision,
I dreamed to build an empire.

A life in riches,
Only darkness being in there,
I wished to see light;
And I have been a beggar,
Ever since I saw the light.

A Birthday Song: Re-remembered

A birthday was a dainty dream,
Kisses and sparkles of a day
Lost in the tides of time.
A birthday was a saturated fun
Of cooked food, aromatic spices
And the milk of a mother’s fondness.
A birthday was a chocolatey wait for school friends,
Orchestrated songs and claps, resounding among
A crowded classroom and a makeshift living room.

Every year, an announcement of age leaping
Body and soul of a girl growing, a young woman fumbling,
A grown-up woman, alone like a tunnel,
Wishes and cakes invading, eager and firm.
Each year going by like colored hues of a good-bye.
The numberless years, their memories,
The whiff of a tempest or two, beating above
The nameless silence of a new year
And its fertile, insolent promises.

A birthday is the dusky body of a day,
The mortal flame of a light as I lie
Between the goblets of my old days, in surrender.
My soul flees in between the twilight glory of birth,
The solitary bell of death. Love deepens, darkens
Among the murmur of waves that devours both,
And watches, echoes and voices, fled, migrated,
Like an old voyage.

The morning is full of summer love,
Sprinkled with wishes and songs.
Behind them, I hide like a spider,
Soundless, trembling, barefoot,
Leaning, picking up my distant, drowning days.

Copyright: Lopa Banerjee. August 11, 2014

Footnotes: Fragmented recollections of my birthday celebrations in my childhood, of my growing up years, and the years that followed to my womanhood. My first self-dedicated piece in the month of August, that ironically is both the month of my birth and that of my mother’s demise. This poem is slated for publication in the Spring 2015 issue of ’13th Floor Magazine’, published from The Writer’s Workshop, University of Nebraska at Omaha.

As The Clock Strikes Twelve

As the clock strikes twelve,

Yet another completed book is added to life’s shelf.

First will come the greetings and well-wishes,

And then will come thoughts of happy times and painful memories;

The thought of what should be that is not,

The memories of carefully-crafted plans that have all been lost.


As the clock strikes twelve,

Yet another date is ticked in life’s calendar.

First will come the delicacies, into which we’ll delve,

And then will come reminiscences of the journey so far.

Thoughts of plans that never lived to see the new moon,

Memories of resolutions that were gone too soon.


As the clock strikes twelve,

Yet another page is written in life’s journal.

First will come the hurrahs from friends celebrating amongst themselves,

And then will come a desire to escape from all the noise to hide under the radar,

To think thoughts of personal relationships that were handled poorly,

Memories of fragile hearts that were left hanging loosely.


As the clock strikes twelve,

Yet another race will start to make sense of this life.

First will come the brilliant thoughts and hasty scribbles,

And then will come reluctant cancellations and additional views.

An unwritten appeal to the universe to let the lofty heights desired be,

A silent plea to life to make the year one that ushers in fulfilment of dreams.


Happy Birthday to Me!


James Ogunjimi

September 2014