Sitting in the crowd, watching people perform, you wonder how it would feel to be onstage. Backstage, you shake uncontrollably as you peep through the edges and a million eyes are glued onto the performers. The fear of making mistakes, appearing silly or going blank overwhelms. You have seen it happen to people. At the height of it all, you don’t dream of applause but wish for a magic wand that can skip time.

Once you step onstage, you see nothing. The bright lights blind you. You say the lines as if no one else is there. Beyond the glow there are no faces or dreaded opinions. Your lines are the truth. You let them go where they belong; in the open. They set you free as they part.

As an introvert, sometimes, I feel uneasy around people. It feels like any moment, I may be invited onstage and the spotlight of attention will be flooded. Perhaps, I fear they will know what I am thinking. Not that I think evil but it is private. It can be hard to open up. It demands trust that the other person will at least listen if not understand.

Try for once to ignore that spotlight of attention. See that you’re uncomfortable and not escape from it. Say what you’re thinking. It is bound to make you feel better, lighter.



“Who makes clouds?”
“Where does he live?”
“In a cave by the river.”
“How does he make clouds?”
“With the help of Wind.”
“Have you seen him?”
“Then how do you know this?”
“Nobody has seen him. He only talks to the Earth.”
“Tell me more …”
The Earth was barren and upset with the ghastly silence that stalked her. Trees kept to themselves and wolves spared no one. A Cloudsmith sensed her plight but lent no words. His words, like his friends, were few but chosen.

So, to the Wind he went and spoke about solitude. What he said made little sense but the wind waited till the end. “What do you want to do?” asked Wind. “I want to make clouds, some white as joy and other dark like a doubt. They will be known as hope flying across the sky. When they bring rain, the Earth might smile.”

So, it was done as agreed. First, raindrops tickled the trees till they burst into laughter. When the dust washed away from them, leaves rejoiced. After lightning slaughtered the silence, it scared off the wolves. Wind, with all its might, shook Earth out of its sleep. As the Cloudsmith awaited his reward, a smile shied at him. He vanished into the clouds and drew a silver lining.


Talcom Dove

He ran away from school,
Red-faced like the result.
It never was the failure
But weariness of insult.

When he rushed inside,
His mother began to cook.
For a sweet smell in air,
She stepped out to look.

Walking towards his room,
She stopped at the door.
Talcum from her dresser,
Now covered all the floor.

To avoid eye contact,
Through mirror, he looked.
Shocked by powder puff,
Silently waiting, she stood.

“You failed another test!”
“Even dove you couldn’t spell?”
She hoped to see his best,
With anger now she swell.

Invisible under the talcum,
was a paper on the floor
deftly cut into a figure
whose spelling he wasn’t sure

Holding it by two corners,
With fingers small as rhyme
Out came a shape whose edges
Were as crisp as sunshine.

Without a haste he hove,
The cutout of talcum dove.