Arranged Marriage: Third time’s the Charm

the first one came
head held sideways
looked away from her
and said
‘You are too good for me’

the second one came
head held high
looked down at her
and said
‘I’m too good for you’

the third one came
held her hand
looked into her eyes
and said
I like you just the way you are
You’re the one I was looking for
It seems you were meant for me
And I was meant for you
You are just right for me
I am just right for you”


The acceptance and rejection process in my above poem applies not only to the much maligned arranged marriages but also to all sorts of deliberate match-making, including online dating sites, where people calculate many different criteria before they decide to see that person.

The fact is, whether it is a love marriage or arranged, every match-making is mostly about the other person unconsciously falling fit into your set criteria of looks, age, race/nationality, religion, education/degrees, mannerisms etc. It may seem that it was a sudden clicking that developed into love but the clever mind and heart calculates.

In any case, it’s better to calculate first than to complain later.

~~~ ~~~

For The Daily Post’s writing prompt History of Language:
Third time’s the charm – Write a piece of fiction describing the incident that gave rise to the phrase, “third time’s the charm.”

The one you’re ‘Meant To Be With’

My poem defines a ‘soul-mate’ as not someone we pine for, but one your soul learns to live with and knows him/her well.


The one you are with, day and night
Is the one you are Born to Be With

To (not) take you to moon and back
To help your life gain ground on earth

Together buy food and groceries
To cook all the family meals

To remind each other about
The day for the rubbish bin

Together watch soap-operas
To fight for the remote control

To converse about bank balance
To get home renovations done

Together plan your child’s future
To worry about his/her career

The mate you share your life with
The mate who cares for your little needs

Soul-mate is not the one you pine for
But the mate your soul learns to live with

'Will these glasses help him see things my way?'

Take Me to the Moon

Also for the daily prompt  Born to Be With You:  Got a soul-mate and/or a best friend? What is it about that person that you love best?

Yin to My Yang

We are Paired Forever, Paired Apart or Paired Never

There are all kinds of pairs and partners in this world. Some continue to be pairs for as long as they live. Others drift apart. Then there are also people or things that are better off alone, or they just happen to be so.

Paired Forever are things and people who flourish together as a pair. There is so much dependency on co-existence that if one goes missing the other has no identity, the other becomes nothing.

If we lose one sock from a socks pair, that pair becomes incomplete and useless. We store the remaining sock for some time hoping to rediscover its partner, after which we get rid of this lonesome piece. Same applies to shoes or slippers, even more so.

Likewise, earrings have identity only as a pair. A single piece of earring, howsoever precious, is of no use.

Other than these, there are slightly less dependent type of partners. They too are ‘paired forever‘ created to be together but they merely compliment each other.

P1060139A particular knife looks good with a particular fork, and also they are practically useful together as a pair, but we can use this knife without its matching fork. P1060136Salt and pepper containers are another duo that form a part of the set although they can exist by themselves too.

Similarly there are cosmetic things around our homes, like shampoo and conditioner pair, or a nail polish remover that finds purpose in wiping off nail polish. A toothbrush needs a toothpaste, though it need not be a specific toothpaste. Likewise, we have ‘soap’ and an accompanying ‘soap dish’.

Around my house, I noticed decorative pieces that look better as partnered pairs. This partnership does not provide any usage except for aesthetic appeal. Even this elephant pair with with a broken leg looked good once although possibly now it brings bad Feng Shui, as only complete pairs bring love and luck. It’s a memory from my native land so didn’t have a heart to throw it straightaway.

These were non-living pairs that go together. Among living beings, that is birds, animals and humans, we have permanent pairs that not only look good together but also compliment each other in their utility and essential nature.

There are love-birds, those gorgeously bright parrots known for their monogamous love towards their partner. They cling to each other, feed each other and are depressed if made to live without each other. How many human couples can claim to have that kind of monogamous bond?

In Australia, we have beautiful white Sulphur–crested Cockatoos, very loud parrots that are commonly found in Sydney suburbs where they walk around on our grassy yards. They are often seen around together in very lovey dovey moods.


A happy pair of cockatoos walking in my front yard, and one lonesome fellow.

One morning, I saw a group of very noisy pink-necked Cockatoos. They sat on the roadside electric wires for half-an-hour. Some were happily paired, while single birds looked lonesome sitting next to the lovey-dovey pair.


Other than these totally devoted love-struck parrots, most birds do like to move around as partners. How about this rare picture of a gorgeous bird-pair clicked in Cairns, Queensland Australia?


             This bird pair in Cairns starts its morning together.  Half and Half

All these above living as well as non-living pairs are ‘made or meant for each other’ type of pairs.

Other than the above ‘Paired Forever’ pairs, we also come across pairs meant to be Paired Apart. At one time they were dependent on each other but with time they learn to do without each other.

However, some of these Paired Apart do continue to work as pairs, as and when required. They are together but almost like separate entities, and like two banks of a river, they co-exist from a set distance.

Many husband-wife or lovers’ pairs are happy like that. Two independent souls not suffocating each other but supporting just right. This casual pairing is great for one’s personal growth as long as the bond does not become so lose and casual that they cease to be a pair. Conscious bonding is necessary for such pairs.

Bond between most siblings is also more or less like that – firstly paired close then paired apart. This sweet partnership evolves and they drift apart over time. As they grow older, their life goals take them away and they leave the nest to settle in their own lives. Moreover, they soon form a pair with their married partner or lover. Priorities change altogether.

malana 2

Two sisters – click to enlarge

But at least during childhood, siblings play together and there is complete and possessive dependency in every way.

In this picture that we clicked in the poorer areas of a unique Himalayan village called Malana, two sisters can be seen moving around in synchronisation. It seems to be a give and take relation as the older sister looks after the little girl, while the younger one provides company. Likewise, in cities too, when parents are off to work, siblings form a close bond in their studying and playing activities.

Thus, we see most people do form a pairing bond at one time or the other, whether it is life-long pairing or a short term bond after which they move away.

And yet, a very less proportion of people are never paired, quite like most others are. Theirs is a solitary life, either self-chosen or destined.

Like, there are children who have no siblings. They form a strong bond with their available parent till they move out to pursue their own life and find their life-partner.

Then there are also people who waited forever for their true love to come along and found none till their last days. There are others who got love but lost their partner – due to circumstances in life or cruel death.

And rarely, there are some saints and ascetics who chose to stay single, without a desire to have any better half. Theirs is a pursuit towards higher goals and quest for truth

Either way, people who have seen loneliness often become stronger because of this. The whole world is their brother or sister, their bonds are not formed on the basis of demanding all-consuming relations. They get love from most unexpected quarters and give where it is needed the most.

Moreover, to be paired forever does not always mean it is true love or a close bond. Likewise, to be bonded and cared for in life, one does not need to form a pair. It is preferred by most but not always so.

~~~ ~~~ ~~~~

For: Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge: Pairs
Daily Post’s wekly challenge: Partners.

All pictures are self-clicked. Please click on them to view their full-sized version
©Copyright-All rights reserved by 2015-2016

Angry Young Woman


Have you ever seen an angry young man? You have? I have. No no, not one of the disillusioned middle-class angry writers who were called Angry Young Men. Not even the authoritative and super-rich hero of Mills and Boon novels, an angry young man with an attitude problem that makes girls swoon.

I’m talking about a real angry man, the everyday type who goes crazy if his bank statement from the remote year 2004 goes missing from the house. Now, how in the world is the lady of the house supposed to know whether the document has run away from home, gone for a walk or is merely playing hide-and-seek?  She already has tough time keeping Continue reading

Fairy Tales or Gory Tales

My two poems in response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Once Upon a Time.”

Fairy Tales or Gory Tales
Girls, do you think, after a while
In the middle of ordinary life
Love will come from somewhere
And give you a fairy tale?

No prince will come on a white horse
And sweep you off your feet
Modern princes are out for fun
Romance and love is not their need

Modern Cinderella dreams of Gucci
She’s not happy with her faded jeans
She’s not happy mopping the floor
She dreams of luxury fit for a queen

Fairy tales and false dreams
Are for the faint hearted
At the end of the day
Life is a harsh reality

Life is meant to be lived
Hour by hour, day by day
Living is meant to be earned
Drop by drop, penny by penny

Love won’t come and woo you
Love is meant to be reached out
Love is meant to be earned
To be given more, with less return

So girls watch out!!  Once in while
In the middle of ordinary life
Love may come from nowhere
To give you a nightmare

Because…keep in mind
Life is not a fairy tale
It’s more painful than a fairy tale
Yet more beautiful than a fairy tale

***   ***   ***

Modern Cinderella

Once upon a time…
there lived a funky girl
who was as cool as
her designer clothes
and as vibrant as
her shoe collection.
Shoes that she never lost
like dumb Cinderella did

She had a few boy-friends
To one, she became a wife
Both had a few lovely kids
Both paid-off their mortgage
to own their house
Both traveled the world
and lived happily
till they could

© All rights reserved 2015

Conjugal Contract

The benign benefactor
saw her
convinced her
challenged her

Come live with me
and get the gifts
A huge hamper package
new city, home, friends
money, food
Can’t promise love though
and in return
you must give up
all that is yours

she took the offer
to begin her life

Years down
the package lies limp
half-open, half-closed
in her empty hands

Some gifts good and bad
she devoured dubiously
Most fell down fractured

One exquisite gift
in the mystery box
she adores
holds on to, too tightly

This bundle of joy
was not even bargained for
but is there for her

© 2014 Alka Girdhar


My poem in response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Mystery Box.”  that says:
‘You wake up one morning to find a beautifully wrapped package next to your bed. Attached to it is a note: “Open me, if you dare.”  What’s inside the mystery box? Do you open it?

My friend had the above experience, and I wrote my poem when she was sitting next to me.