Tag Archives: Regrets Only

Happy Regrets

Regrets are blotched white-and-gold patterns
atop an antique carpet: a little too elaborate
to be laid out in the drawing room and mostly
too gaudy in taste, but at any rate,
they hold an inescapable pleasure.
For the purpose of amusement, you go through
the trouble of rolling it out delicately and tracing
the patterns with your fingers, feeling the distance
that crawls within each design, before gathering it up
again and stowing it away in an old wooden cupboard
that is seldom visited, except in bouts of extreme sanity.

There they are, in cozy woolen pockets of time, heavy with
the pressing weight of the unsaid, unread, unwritten,
letters locked inside a drawer with other magic totems,
waiting to be sent and waiting to be read and waiting
always to be remembered in one single stroke of absolution.

Swastika Jajoo


This Year

This Year
I sowed some seeds,
nurtured them,
My greens now stand tall.
Father trunks and
little families of leaves.
They hold our lives
In their store,
I could have planted some more.
Helped some women
face the mirror strong,
to let their hair flow long,
to look into sunlit words
not a lifelong marriage bond.
I held my hand out
Only to them four,
Could have taken along some more.
I read books,
experienced the honesty in art
it appeals to the heart.
The wealth of wisdom,
an infinite collection
I could have gathered more.
Enjoying exploring myself,
I outgrew the frame
my world offered on the shelf.
I refused to be stopped,
Learned to fly.
I could have risen higher. 

Sapna Dubey

I regret…

Looking at the sunset from a distance, I regret
The words un-uttered, the sentences un-phrased
For they shall never see cosmic light
The thoughts unwritten, the feelings concealed
For they shall never be in anyone’s sight
The people unknown, nameless faces
For they shall never be a piece of my life
The battles un-fought; tears un-wept
For they shall not realize of what I strive
Compunctions remain, nostalgia clouds me from within
As years slip into moments and memories are etched
While time passes from grief to grief
Searching in vain for spaces untraveled
For they never shall know what it is that I seek
But the biggest contrition perhaps was of not being “me”
Not knowing that there wasn’t any other way to be
Shedding the garb of pretense and unmasking the real self
Was not a resolution but a sudden cognizance
There was healing in self-reproach
Glory in condemnation of the soul
Coupled with the uneasiness of proxy subjectivity
The voices within me shrieked and repelled
And consciousness expanded before it burst into its rudimentary tinges
Setting free the very texture of my being
As I smiled at the regrets of the past
And my eyes waded into yet un-lived
Instants of futurity!

M.A ENGLISH (Final Year)


It was a half-moon imprinted on page 133
(or was it? Maybe it was just
a semi-circular blot)
Tracing it with the air of
a romantic, wondering…

but we part from love so soon-
The words dragged me forward, and I
paraded past thumbprints in my greed.
With bruised eyes, I lost myself
(Somebody had once whispered in a dream
that my face was dusted with shadows of grief.
It seemed too sad to remember that
It was only me.)

Fifty words in, I found it again:
A dried petal, a rose once bloomed
Its soft skin now crisp veins, trembling
(for my hands were nervous.)
Cracks threading through papery gloom.
(And the romantic spread out its skirts;
Sitting content near a bushel of roses.
The dream was shattered by a corset.)

But the words rose up again, enduring wave,
Entombing its brother;
I answered.

-Sanna Jain
1-B, English,
Lady Shri Ram College

That is Past

She may have spent years in the game but had never really been able to figure out what men made of her. Did she come off as exciting or interesting? On a scale of one to ten, how hot was she? Was she a tease or a prude? Or did her honesty make her seem…over-friendly? Oh fuck it, the right word was desperate. Was it evident?

Her constant search for validation led her nowhere, romantically. She was tired. Tired of waiting for romance to “happen”. Tired of conversations that led to nothing. Tired of holding a stranger’s hand late into the night and feeling a surge of emptiness inside. Maybe she wasn’t cut out for the chase. She was a little lonely, yes. But she would shrug her shoulders and focus on the “important” things. Like how her cat had eyes like two green pools. Like the smell that wafts from old books in the library. Like how, when the old man who sells her groceries laughs, he looked a lot like a sparrow. She ponders over questions of history and puts all her energies into being a good friend, a good person; even if she isn’t entirely sure what it means.

She hates herself for having read too many novels and for having watched too many movies. The fact that everyone around her seems to be falling in and out of love didn’t help. That didn’t help. It just didn’t.

Sometimes, she looks back on her past and thinks about the men who had loved her. She was grateful to them because…how often does it happen? Love? Not that it ever lasted, but for as long as it did, she was grateful.

Despite herself, she wonders if she should have changed and tried to be more like the woman he wanted her to be. Maybe she could have been more accommodating, less eccentric…

Life isn’t over yet, she reminds herself.

“Que sera sera.”, she hums while pouring out coffee into a cup.

Whatever happens, happens.


It has been a decade since he last saw her. He sips his tea and waits for the waiter to bring his order.

He looks through her Facebook pictures on his phone. She has grown older, like us all, but her smile is still the same. Unmistakably sunny. He smiles as he remembers how she would complain about it being toothy.

The relationship is vivid in his memory, like it was yesterday. He liked to describe it as “All heat, no warmth.” to his wife. But he knew he was lying. The fights and the sex had definitely been fiery but it wasn’t as though there had been no warmth between them. Lots of it, in fact. They’d had their moments of peace, of silent understanding.

He goes back to staring at her picture and despite himself, wonders what life would have been like if it had lasted. Waking up beside her every morning. Drinking his cups of evening tea with her. Her insistent kisses that always lingered for a second longer…

He shrugs his shoulders, reminds himself that he loves his wife and he is a happy man with nothing to complain about.

Yet, on days like this, he would grudgingly admit to himself that there was some unfinished business left between them.

“Snap out of it”, he mutters under his breath.

Perhaps, perhaps.


-Zehra Kazmi,
2-B, English,
Lady Shri Ram College


I buried my dreams deep inside
Until I had to dig for the poppies and daisies,
And surface with mud-encrusted fingernails.

I let the world dim my light
Now all I’ve got is a lantern,
To guide me to the end of the cave.

Gulab jamun syrup mixing with cold chips
Another year-end of handing pieces of my heart to strangers
While soggy potatoes languish in the bonfire
As an eager child still tries to save them,
As I try to save
The corpse of the years.

Anushmita Mohanty,
English, 1-B
Lady Shri Ram College for Women