Courtesy: Poets United



Once we took our VIIIth Grade students to a picnic. We hired a bus to take us to the spot. The day was bright so were our girls. During the journey even the shiest ones were also coming out of their shells. They had brought a music system with them with a plan to shake legs when opportunity came. It was no potluck food festival so the cooking was to be done by teachers taking occasional help from the girls if they wished. The bus meandered through the narrow road in between the vast wavy rice fields. The bird watcher that I am was excited to see from the bus window hanging nests of baya birds from date palm trees. The occasional green ponds here and there were spotted with duck families swimming with all the time in the world. Then we arrived at beautiful Saranbari, our chosen spot for the day. Ah, it was indeed a slice of green tranquility.


Our girls began to get down one by one. The moment they touched the ground they were transformed into butterflies. Believe me, it is true. They spread all over the place fluttering their wings. Some hugged trees and some soft tiny grass flowers that bloomed on the pond banks scaring the wits out of the little black cormorants that flew off to nearby trees with probably pounding hearts. They had never seen such noisy butterflies in their whole bird life. Some of these highly stung pretty winged souls were into a singing contest with song birds with their Bollywood numbers blaring out from their music system. How did we feel? Can’t say. Sadly and gladly we the teachers remained as we were, humans, happily burdened with the task to make our excited butterflies stay safe with their wings intact and feed them with non veg. nectar. A few of them folded their wings and joined us lending their hands to our surprise. Aw…such motherly golden souls they were! However at sundown all had to return to their old form to remain once again “…long in city pent*”


Pearly day

With rainbow glow

I cherish


*from the title of Keats’ sonnet “To One Who Has Long Been In City Pent”


Posted for Susan’s Midweek Motif ~ Picnic @ Poets United


19 thoughts on “Picnic

  1. You took me to a splendid picnic: I saw the birds and rice and butterflies in “a slice of green tranquility.” If only youth could swim like ducks “with all the time in the world” and not have to transform back at sundown. I will cherish this poem as the narrator does the day!

  2. Let them fly like butterflies whilst they can! As we watch we know that freedom can be spreading our wings, singing, dancing and also watching on and cooking food – a feast of a scene..

  3. Some of these highly stung pretty winged souls were
    into a singing contest with songbirds with their Bollywood
    numbers blaring out from their music system.

    They would remember it all their life. The teachers sacrificed some quality time with them. But to them, it was the time of their life. Not many youngsters were privileged. Only far-sighted teachers were willing to do this. A noble thought fulfilled, Sumana!


  4. What a beautiful ethereal poem, Sumana. This is a different style than your usual, and I like it. I loved the poem’s progression….I hardly noticed the journey into fantasy, as all images seemed so very real.

Thank You :)

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