I have found that it is not enough
To think you can sing
To think you can write
To think you can create
To think you can innovate
To think you can change

If you are left to only thoughts
Why there would be only wind,
Thunder and sound
And never any rain

That mountains will always
Stand in your path
More formidable from the distance
That other voices will always
Have their say
That logic will usually
Rule the day

I have seen courage in action
Of a little seed fumbling underground
Finding its way
To send one green shoot tentatively
Seeking the Sun
Knowing that there was no guarantee
Or safety above ground
How long can you incubate
Needing the comfort of the umbilical cord
Or the prophesy of a crystal ball

That unless you step out of thoughts
To walk out of the door
You will never know
The temperature outside
Or that the storm that had to be faced
Was more sound than fury
You will never know
That shoes were meant to get dirty
That hands were meant to get calloused
That your heart was built to handle pain

With the power of every little step
Your feet that walked the many miles
Sometimes questioning the compass
Many times questioning yourself
Would increase your appetite for risk
Would flex the muscle of the spirit
Would build your stamina
Strengthening the core

To remember that all will cross the finishing line
But life is not an endurance race,
A pageant, or a contest
About who reaches first, middle or last
Or whose name graced the Hall of Fame
It is about making peace
With your recollection
Of how you finally cast yourself

—Shaku Selvakumar April 2013

Voyager http://vladimirkush.com

The Critic

The critic and I met by Mirrorside
For our usual chat today
“You have put on weight”
“You have no clue what to do”
“What sort of parent are you”
“Did you know she is better than you”
“You never get anything right”
“You will never amount to much”
“You should have started then,
Now it is too late”
“What is wrong with you”

I started to interrupt
Wanting to have a say
So I whined
“Oh yes, you are right
It has been so difficult
What could I do
I have tried. I have no time
I have no this.
I couldn’t do that.
All those others had a leg up.”

And thus the conversation continues
The same everyday
The critic needs me and I have to stay
Perhaps I haven’t figured
How easy it would be to silence her
To seek acceptance
To break the connection
To walk away

—Shaku Selvakumar April 2013

Forgotten Sunglasseshttp://vladimirkush.com
Forgotten Sunglasses


Did you promise to work on your dream
but found many ways to let the day slip away

Did you schedule a meeting
and turn up fifteen minutes late

Did you run two miles
and gorge your face with cake

Did you look in the mirror
Peer at imperfections and make a silly face

Did you let your so called friends
Make you feel insignificant

Did you give your heart away
without first speaking to your head

Did you bite your tongue so hard
Swallowing the words that had to be said

Did you let every other
Become priority number one

Did you say nothing as your boss
Took credit for your work today

Did you want to say no
But predictably said yes instead

And when you lie in bed tonight
Will you tell yourself it was alright
Will you procrastinate, putting it off for tomorrow
Will you promise to compromise
Will you continue to expect less
Will you keep working on your so called halo

You may think you are a martyr
Complain that everything under the bridge is just water
You may think how does it matter

Oh dear friend
You are nothing but your own saboteur

— Shaku Selvakumar April 2013

Full Steam Ahead http://vladimirkush.com
Full Steam Ahead

The Best

The best is not yet to come
It is not a place in the future
Or a memory languishing in the past
It is not a trade with the present
Or always born in fair weather
Or a dream in fetters
It is not waiting for planets to align
Deferred for an auspicious time
When your ship can finally set sail

It is anytime
Any how
Any place


When the heart
Is curious
Skipping a beat
At the thought of something new
Eyes in wonder
As another flower courageously blooms
Arching towards the sun
And spirit wide open
Quite naive
Despite the wounds
Or the frequent bloodletting
Surrendered with grace
Till your dying day

The best is your constant
Bet on yourself

—Shaku Selvakumar March 28, 2013

Ulysses. Picture courtesy Vladimir Kush
Ulysses. Picture courtesy Vladimir Kush