By Dr. Shailja Sharma

All special things are costly

There is a charge every time
You run a transaction to buy a bit of you
The smiles and the laughs
The tears and the grudges
The feelings and the thoughts
Whether you share them
Or house them in the heart
You pay the price and
It’s quite expensive to be even a bit of you
In the big market by humans
If you don’t participate in the chain of
Supply and demand
You pay the cost
For being you
It is all right to pay though
All special things are costly
So is each bit of you

This Moment flows and flows

A hiccup stuck for ages
Fire crackers in daylight
A stirring was needed
A spatula of time
To spread the moment
In its due space
Not a dime more
Nor a penny less
Just this moment
From the heart to
The Universe
This moment flows and flows.

Just Here

Not a word beyond
Nor a sigh behind
You-just you
Me-only me
In a moment of time
Under a shady tree
In the speck of light
Romance with the Gods
Romance of living a life
Beyond all lives
A time beyond all times
Of right now
Just here.

My Street

Previously published in Literary Yard

Shiny porous skin and
eyes full of story. Sun's sweet heat
glowing on its loose graveled
face. Rainwater resting in its
pits like the sweat of a playful child. 
The branchy mango tree-- its
braided hair.  My street.
Only laps away from the Mini-Market
where flavors of childhood were sold.
Now a parade of unfamiliar vendors
walks with the upgraded fruit. Stressed birds
flutter around unopened newspapers. 
The innocent street has new owners.
The playgrounds were taken away.
Some memories are buried
under new construction.
Play must be happening
somewhere else now. Or not.
Mothers worry little ones
could get lost on busy streets.
Just as small streets get lost
in a big world.

The Golden Ball

The sky's golden ball melts
into crimson ink like
a pomegranate splashing
on a baby’s face.
The setting-sun pauses
life by moving all trams, trucks,
dreams, and desires back
to their origins.
The sky is then tucked under
a dark blanket with star-shaped pins,
and all life rests.
The gold ball rises up again
and peels the dark sky until
a new day is born.

Dr. Shailja Sharma (Ph.D.), Texas, USA, has dedicated her career to the field of psychology and mental health. Apart from her scholarly publication and editorial service, Dr. Sharma’s poetry has been nationally and internationally published in peer-reviewed literary journals, literary magazines, and radio-shows. She is currently serving on the editing panel of a UK-based journal of poetry and artwork related to themes of mental health, health, illness, the mind, the brain, and the body. Dr. Sharma’s publications have appeared in many literary journals/forums of repute across USA, Canada, UK, and Asia. Dr. Sharma’s English poetry books, “Dear Mama: An Immigrant’s Secret Cry,” and “The She in Her,” are selected by Pittsburgh-based, Setu Publications, a peer-reviewed, merit-based publication. Her poetry books on mental health are lined up for publication in 2022. Her foreign language poetry books are scheduled to be published this year.

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