‘Acceptance’ by Daya Bhat

‘Roses are beautiful’

But why do noses wrinkle and tongues wag?

‘Roses are beautiful, thorns are ugly’ say the noses and tongues.

‘What’s a rose without some thorns? Wait a minute, hold that thought

Let’s rediscover, thorns are beautiful too’ I say

I choose to pause and think about the needle edged thorns.

Their tips shining under the sun, honest and unhidden.

The ‘ugly’ that makes the rose relatively ‘beautiful’

Isn’t that the beauty of the ugly?

I take a closer look, yes they are beautiful, I remark

And my eyes seek the truth hidden in the ruby velvety layers

There it is! An unseen note written on the tender petals,

‘If you wish to pluck beware of the thorns

I don’t hide them, I don’t deny they exist.

You pick me, you pick them too but a secret I can share

There is a way to deal with them.

Wrap your fingers gently around them, whisper in their ears

‘You are loved as much, you are accepted as much you shall stay.’

Feed them love, not your judgment. If you point your fingers at them, they prick.

So then on that note dear noses and tongues, Iron your wrinkles and silence your wags.

A closing comment may we please make?

Roses are beautiful, thorns are too.


Poet’s Bio: Daya Bhat has published her poetry collection ‘A maiden of 29’ with the Writers Workshop (India). New Asian Writing has previously published her poem ‘Undercurrent’. Her short fiction has featured in the New Asian Writing 2014 anthology, The Bangalore Review and most recently in eFiction India. Her English translation of Ravindra Bhat’s Moorane kivi, is to be published soon. Her prior occupations are related to teaching and computer software. Her other interests are painting and blogging. She lives in Bangalore, India.

Illustration by Alan Van Every (Featured image on the front page)

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