I Am

Babies are soft and velvety
Tender, fragile and silky
Rose leaf softness as such
invites a finger’s touch

But
when you live with them
and dearly love them
You feel
Softness is going inward
Round cheeked flesh
wobbly as custard

The boneless splay
of the tiny hands
Admiring them whole day
Joints are melted rubber
Cuteness they spread
even when they slobber

And
when you kiss them hard
as an evidence
of loving their existence
Your lips sink down
And
Seem to never find bone
Holding them against you
They melt and mould, too
As though any instant
They will flow into
your body again

But from the very beginning
Each child carries
a streak of steel within
And that very thing
says, ” I am”
And that’s where
It all begins

 

Priya Vanjul
Priya Jain

In the second year
Bones get harder
Child stands upright
Skull grows solid and wide
Like a helmet
protecting the softness within
And ” I am” grows too
And that’s the very origin
Looking at them
You can almost see
Like a heartwood, so sturdy
Through the translucent flesh
You can see the glowing flash

Facial bones emerge at six
At seven, soul gets fixed
Process of encapsulation
Reaches its elevation
In the glossy shell of adolescence
Where we loose our essence
Now all the softness is invisible
under the nacreous layers
of personalities, that are multiple
We develop many faces
To safeguard us from messes

In the next years
Hardening spreads from center
As one finds and fixes
Facets of the soul, the childish
Until “I am” is set
Detailed and delicate
As an insect in amber
As a butterfly in colour

© Priya Jain

Capt. Priya Jain is a pilot with Air India. Spotting aircraft in the skies in her childhood gave birth to her dream of flying an aircraft, a dream she achieved at the age of 17. While flying gives her a high, writing keeps her grounded. But she finds both equally liberating. Priya started writing at the age of 14. When she was in Class 11, she paid tribute to her teachers through her first poem, titled “SHE”. “SHE” was printed in Hindustan School Times, the edition of Hindustan Times that is meant for school children. That gave her the motivation to write more. She writes blogs about poetry, flying experiences, dilemmas in life, philosophy and Haikus.

For Priya, writing is a need, as well as a form of therapy. Wheels Up! is her first book.