Bite the ‘Solemn’ with a Bit of ‘Silly’


I have been handling solemn stuff since the last few days; adding new associations, revisiting old commitments and spring cleaning the stale and the forgotten. That’s all good work but once the ‘solemn’ gets a tad too serious, respite is necessary and that’s when a bit of ‘silly’ comes handy. You know ‘silly’? The absurd, the giddy and the foolish; the balmy, the childish, the crazy? Yes, that one! ‘Silly’ adds a breather, refuses to be taken seriously and insists on prodding and poking till you loosen up. I needed that.

Incidentally, my reading style had mirrored my life and changed to solemn too. I had started the month with Dickens and visited ‘The great expectations’ where Miss Havisham, in her macabre finery was morbid and grand, beckoning to me with a bony finger. She drew me in so completely that I had ceased to be Prionka and instead, morphed in to the orphaned narrator, Pip. Serious and sombre, when I had meandered from the heavy prose, it was straight in to poetry, particularly to the poetry offered by the lady in white, Dickinson. I have always been fascinated by poetry but  Frost and Dickinson were usually enjoyed at safe periodic intervals. Not this time. This time, I read and re-read all her poems till I felt a kinship with them. Soon, dazed by Dickinson’s reclusive and introverted life, I felt inclined to ask, if my verses were alive as she did.

This was exactly the fateful moment that my reading and my life showed signs of heaviness and ‘silly’ turned up as a savior and nestled between Dickens and Dickinson, I discovered ‘squirmy worms’! Yes, indeed worms! I chanced upon the complete worm song (written by an unknown genius) and read it out, aloud. Softly at first and then with varying degrees of emotions in soft, medium and loud voices. It was exhilarating and extremely enjoyable. Here it goes…..

Nobody likes me,
Everybody hates me,
I guess I am gonna eat some worms…
Short fat slimy ones,
Long thin curly ones,
See how they wiggle and squirm.

I bite off the heads, and suck out the juice,
And throw the skins away,
Nobody knows how fat I grow,
On worms three times a day.
Ohh…nobody loves me.

No, it has nothing to do with my situation and no, I don’t prefer eating worms either. Thank you. But I do find this delightfully silly and refreshing! It screams and says, ‘don’t take yourself too seriously’. It says, ‘move on’ and it says, ‘laugh’. It can also be a great conversation starter, depending on your age or inclination or perhaps aspirations. Who knows? Did I say ‘knows’? Then here’s another one about its homophone- a ‘nose’. This one is by Jack Prelutsky and it goes like this….

Be glad your nose is on your face,
not pasted on some other place,
for if it were where it is not,
you might dislike your nose a lot.

Imagine if your precious nose
were sandwiched in between your toes,
that clearly would not be a treat,
for you’d be forced to smell your feet.

Your nose would be a source of dread
were it attached atop your head,
it soon would drive you to despair,
forever tickled by your hair.

Within your ear, your nose would be
an absolute catastrophe,
for when you were obliged to sneeze,
your brain would rattle from the breeze.

Your nose, instead, through thick and thin,
remains between your eyes and chin,
not pasted on some other place–
be glad your nose is on your face!

And now, adequately delighted by the double dose of ‘silly’, my solemn can resume. What say?

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