Wednesday, September 3, 2014

For the man who gave me Asterix

You would be in your armchair
steel tea glass in hand, a book or two on the armrest,
legs crossed in dayless leisure.
I would arrive,
smelling of chalk dust and skipped homework,
clutching an Asterix adventure,
yet another disappointment.

It had happened again.
My Caesar was great,
but Gaul was greater.
Druids in white, fat men in stripes,
valour in a droopy moustache,
what could a poor emperor do?

Oh how it must have amused you,
the rigid disbelief of this brash schoolboy
who worshipped Caesar just because
lines from a school play rippled in his blood,
"Friends, Romans, Countrymen..."

You would commiserate
and generously hand over the next volume,
impishly fostering hope.
Perhaps this time, I would say, perhaps,
and you would grin.
And the cycle would repeat itself.

The truth found its way to me, eventually,
far away from your armchair
yet your wisdom stays with me,
an old man's mischief.

***

I heard yesterday
that you had passed away.

I wanted to come back to you
and borrow books from you again,
to walk past the tree in your front yard
that grew fearlessly across the stairs,
to sit silently waiting for you to look up from your page,
to sneak greedy glances at your library
until the book finally came out of the shelf 
accompanied by the magic words
(delivered with a faux sternness and a wagging forefinger)
"No food or milk near it, no creases."

That was it, our secret adventure,
the life inside of us we can never lose

all those evenings

our foreheads pressed up against
the window of childhood,
I, in a hurry to leave mine behind,
you, eagerly reaching out for yours.

8 comments:

Harinath pavani r said...

Mr Dheeraj
it is a very nice poem.
congratulations

indira said...

My dear,how nostalgic the poem is!
I could recollect those days,how we both borrowed books from him,you asterix and I Rajaneesh. life is mysterious!

raj pavani said...

Dear Dheeraj -

I am Sekhar . "Old man's son". I thank you for sharing your memories . It's amazing that your tribute came in poetic manner which will certainly reach my father and his soul will certainly will be happy. I do remember watching your stage shows from Shakespeare Novels (They were staged in front of Arabindo school).It was brief period, my father certainly made connection . Wish you all the best to you and Indira akka. Sekhar

Anuradha said...

Deeraj,
I am Anu. How sweet of you to express your childhood sweet memory in poetic way. The destiny chose to keep Your Oldman (My Dad) as your childhood memory,forever. So, you both couldn't meet again. God Bless You Always.

Madhavi Pavani said...

Dear Dheeraj

I am Madhavi(old man's daughter).How sweet of you to express your feelings..simply superb.God bless you.

Subbarao Elapavaluru said...

Hello Dheeraj,
It takes me back to my 10 th and Plus 2 days when I was reading these wonderful comics with Rafhamamma in TPT .day would not pass without talking on Getafix or Cacofonix and the surplus energy Obelix gets from drinking the potion when he falls accidently into the couldron
Nice tribute to a multifaceted man
Jaya the way he always call me .

Subbarao Elapavaluru said...

Hello Dheeraj,
It takes me back to my 10 th and Plus 2 days when I was reading these wonderful comics with Radhamamma in TPT .day would not pass without talking on Getafix or Cacofonix and the surplus energy Obelix gets from drinking the potion when he falls accidently into the couldron
Nice tribute to a multifaceted man
Jaya the way he always call me .

Dwiti said...

Brilliantly written...
I guess emotions have a way of flowing into words....

our foreheads pressed up against
the window of childhood, I, in a hurry to leave mine behind,
you, eagerly reaching out for yours.