Life Poems: Leaflets From My Life - My Father's First Letter On Life & Lotus - Poem by Dr. Geeta Radhakrishna Menon

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Leaflets From My Life - My Father's First Letter On Life & Lotus - Poem by Dr. Geeta Radhakrishna Menon

My dear father,
Who was determined to educate me well,
To the best of his ability.
Remained throughout my life,
A Guardian Angel!

I was sixteen then,
I was to travel with my Dad from Cochin to Coimbatore
To graduate in English Literature.
But fate intervened.
On our way, we stopped in Palakkad, my native town,
To meet my Grandparents.

I was the eldest Grandchild in our family.
When they saw me, they were so overcome with emotion
And so much of love, that they refused to let me go!
My Grandparents lived in an old palatial house
With so many trees, fruits, flowers, roots and creepers.
Thus, my father left me in the care of my Grandparent's
After admitting me into a college in the same town.

As I stepped into the long corridors of
Mercy College in Kerala,
I had no idea of where I was heading towards.
But I was sure of one thing
That I was going to enjoy my new freedom,
To explore nature and its new environment,
To make a lot of new friends,
To learn and grow up into a new young lady.

My father missed my presence in the house.
So, he began to write letters to me.
Every month, he wrote a letter with a story.
The stories always had a message and a philosophy.
I still remember his first letter
And the words in the letter made a huge impact on my mind.
The gist of the letter was that I should tread the path of life,
Very carefully, with awareness, and conduct myself so well
That I should become an example to others around me.

My father wrote:
I should aspire to become like a lotus.
The beautiful lotus stands on muddy waters,
Yet, remains so pure and perfect;
Untouched, untainted, uncluttered and unhampered.
The pink petals are ever fresh without a spot of dirt on it.
Like the lotus, I should focus only on my goal,
Never to be swayed by temptations,
Never to be distracted from my studies,
To remain like a jewel in the lotus that never lets off its lustre.

Comments about Leaflets From My Life - My Father's First Letter On Life & Lotus by Dr. Geeta Radhakrishna Menon

  • Gold Star - 258,389 Points Rajnish Manga (2/22/2020 11:01:00 AM)

    I read this poem about two years ago and was mesmerised by the respectful and humble tribute a grateful daughter to her father. Ever since that day, I was planning to to do its Hindi translation but somehow it could be done. Now, the work is finished, as such, I feel privileged to post the same. Dr. Geeta Radhakrishna Menon has been very kind to grant permission for its translation. (Report) Reply

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  • Gold Star - 73,171 Points Mj Lemon (5/11/2018 12:13:00 PM)

    Geeta, this is a magnificent, transcendental work. Not so much in literature deals with the father-daughter relationship. Only a father could understand the quality of a lotus flower on muddy terrain! A perfect 10! (Report) Reply

    Gold Star - 102,594 Points Geeta Radhakrishna Menon (5/12/2018 12:00:00 PM)

    Thank you so much Mj. Feels so good to see you on my page. Really happy that you liked this poem.

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  • Gold Star - 45,943 Points Lyn Paul (5/6/2018 2:17:00 AM)

    A beautiful story expressing family love and life. (Report) Reply

    Gold Star - 102,594 Points Geeta Radhakrishna Menon (5/12/2018 11:58:00 AM)

    Thank you so much Lyn. Happy that you read this poem.

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  • Gold Star - 256,271 Points Kelly Kurt (5/5/2018 8:41:00 PM)

    Oh, Geeta. Your memories have been implanted in me. Wave functions collapsing. Life, seemingly chaotic. Ends becoming from unintentional means. I will indeed read the other part.
    (Report) Reply

    Gold Star - 102,594 Points Geeta Radhakrishna Menon (5/6/2018 12:15:00 AM)

    Kelly, thanks a lot for reading this poem.
    A true story retold in a very simple manner without any frills.

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  • Gold Star - 75,362 Points Unnikrishnan E S (5/5/2018 11:17:00 AM)

    Part 6
    Loved this simple but profound poem. A 100 and onto my poem list.
    (Report) Reply

    Gold Star - 102,594 Points Geeta Radhakrishna Menon (5/6/2018 12:10:00 AM)

    Thanks a lot dear Unnikrishnan, I am so happy that you liked this simple poem.
    We are lucky to be born to excellent fathers who taught us the dignity of labour.
    I was touched to read about your father who worked with the farmers. I have great respect for farmers. Even though my father was in the army, he respected all people who worked hard.
    Thank you Unni, once again, for such a lovely review.

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  • Gold Star - 75,362 Points Unnikrishnan E S (5/5/2018 11:15:00 AM)

    Money was very scarce, but never spoke to us about it. And always found time for public service, though didn't speak high about it. He was one of the founders of our farmers credit cooperative scociety, and was its honorary secretary for many years, until the society was big enough to pay for a whole time secretary. Many more.

    Great poem. Thank you.
    (Report) Reply

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  • Gold Star - 75,362 Points Unnikrishnan E S (5/5/2018 11:14:00 AM)

    Part 4

    When we were old enough, we also joined him, and learned all the agriculture related works, to work in the field. The work in the fields kept us in good health all through. And formed our characters, taught us to respect labour, inculcated a fantastic work culture. And encouraged us to read, provided books.
    (Report) Reply

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  • Gold Star - 75,362 Points Unnikrishnan E S (5/5/2018 11:06:00 AM)

    Part 3

    I remember fondly, how my father taught us dignity of labour, by example. He was a school teacher. But, his days started early in the morning, when our workers start their day in our fields. He used to join them in the field and work in our fields until it is time to start for school.
    (Report) Reply

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  • Gold Star - 75,362 Points Unnikrishnan E S (5/5/2018 11:02:00 AM)

    Part 2

    Your parents never talked to you about amassing physical wealth, but living an untouched, untainted, uncluttered and unhampered life. A great father. And of course, like father, like daughter.I
    (Report) Reply

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  • Gold Star - 75,362 Points Unnikrishnan E S (5/5/2018 11:01:00 AM)

    Hi Geeta,

    Every parent desires that his/her child grows up as a good human being. This is signified by your using the metaphor of lotus, which is quite eloquent.

    The parent would like the child to tread the path of life carefully, and conduct oneself so well that one is an example for others around.

    (Report) Reply

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Read all 23 comments »
Life Poems
  1. 1. A Psalm Of Life
    Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
  2. 2. Life
    Charlotte Brontë
  3. 3. Life In A Love
    Robert Browning
  4. 4. O Me! O Life!
    Walt Whitman
  5. 5. Love In A Life
    Robert Browning
  6. 6. The Buried Life
    Matthew Arnold
  7. 7. Life In A Bottle
    Robert Browning
  8. 8. Full Of Life, Now
    Walt Whitman
  9. 9. Human Life
    Samuel Taylor Coleridge
  10. 10. Too Much Of A Good Thing (Life Life Li..
    Udiah (witness to Yah)
  11. 11. Life
    Samuel Taylor Coleridge
  12. 12. How Life Is For Life (Tanka)
    Muzahidul Reza
  13. 13. River Of Life, The
    Thomas Campbell
  14. 14. Life Is What Life Is
    Edward Veilleux
  15. 15. An Image From A Past Life
    William Butler Yeats
  16. 16. What Is Life?
    Samuel Taylor Coleridge
  17. 17. Life (The Real Meaning Of Life)
    C.N.Premkumar (love poems, V ..
  18. 18. Each Life Converges To Some Centre
    Emily Dickinson
  19. 19. Xxxvi Life-In-Love
    Dante Gabriel Rossetti
  20. 20. Life Is Love, And Love Is Life
    Anna Jonson
  21. 21. A Life Went Wrong.......The Denial Of Life
    saadat tahir
  22. 22. Life Goes On
    Elizabeth Quinn
  23. 23. Love Love - Life Life
    Mohammed Asim Nehal
  24. 24. A Life Of Death, Or The Death Of Life
    Andre Veilleux
  25. 25. Views Of Life
    Anne Brontë
  26. 26. Life Beyond, The
    Rupert Brooke
  27. 27. Ploughman's Life, The
    Robert Burns
  28. 28. Leaflets From My Life - My Father's Firs..
    Dr. Geeta Radhakrishna Menon
  29. 29. The Country Life:
    Robert Herrick
  30. 30. (c) 1 (Life/Philosophy) Life Is....
    Renu Rakheja a.k.a Tranquil ..
  31. 31. Choice? (Life Life Life Life Life)
    Udiah (witness to Yah)
  32. 32. Weave In, Weave In, My Hardy Life
    Walt Whitman
  33. 33. Life Is The Body's Light
    Robert Herrick
  34. 34. End To Life And Life To Come
    Cassandra Reiman
  35. 35. Life Is Just Like Life
    Rahman Henry
  36. 36. One Life To Live One Life To Love
    pinky porwal
  37. 37. Life Is Life
    Samir E...
  38. 38. Long Life (Life Is Too Short, But Just ..
    Tricia Mae Chua
  39. 39. Tie The Strings To My Life, My Lord,
    Emily Dickinson
  40. 40. The Plaudite, Or End Of Life
    Robert Herrick
  41. 41. Imagine Life Rights Click Here To Liste..
    Bernadette Gannon
  42. 42. My Life, My Worthless Life
    Gary Witt
  43. 43. Life...After Life
    (brief renderings) Joe Fazio
  44. 44. Life Raft Of Life
    (brief renderings) Joe Fazio
  45. 45. Life, Purpose, My Life... My Life...
    Yiannis Baki
  46. 46. Shopping For Yourself (Life Life Life ..
    Udiah (witness to Yah)
  47. 47. The Life Of A Pumpkin Begins At Its Poll..
  48. 48. Life Of My Life, You Seem To Me
    Torquato Tasso
  49. 49. (109) (Meera) Family Life Or Devotee L..
    Rajaram Ramachandran
  50. 50. A Life Without A Life...
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Life Poems

  1. Life

    LIFE, believe, is not a dream So dark as sages say; Oft a little morning rain Foretells a pleasant day. Sometimes there are clouds of gloom, But these are transient all; If the shower will make the roses bloom, O why lament its fall ? Rapidly, merrily, Life's sunny hours flit by, Gratefully, cheerily, Enjoy them as they fly ! What though Death at times steps in And calls our Best away ? What though sorrow seems to win, O'er hope, a heavy sway ? Yet hope again elastic springs, Unconquered, though she fell; Still buoyant are her golden wings, Still strong to bear us well. Manfully, fearlessly, The day of trial bear, For gloriously, victoriously, Can courage quell despair !

  2. Life In A Love

    Escape me? Never--- Beloved! While I am I, and you are you, So long as the world contains us both, Me the loving and you the loth While the one eludes, must the other pursue. My life is a fault at last, I fear: It seems too much like a fate, indeed! Though I do my best I shall scarce succeed. But what if I fail of my purpose here? It is but to keep the nerves at strain, To dry one's eyes and laugh at a fall, And, baffled, get up and begin again,--- So the chace takes up one's life ' that's all. While, look but once from your farthest bound At me so deep in the dust and dark, No sooner the old hope goes to ground Than a new one, straight to the self-same mark, I shape me--- Ever Removed!

  3. Love In A Life

    I. Room after room, I hunt the house through We inhabit together. Heart, fear nothing, for, heart, thou shalt find her--- Next time, herself!---not the trouble behind her Left in the curtain, the couch's perfume! As she brushed it, the cornice-wreath blossomed anew: Yon looking-glass gleaned at the wave of her feather. II. Yet the day wears, And door succeeds door; I try the fresh fortune--- Range the wide house from the wing to the centre. Still the same chance! She goes out as I enter. Spend my whole day in the quest,---who cares? But 'tis twilight, you see,---with such suites to explore, Such closets to search, such alcoves to importune!

  4. O Me! O Life!

    O ME! O life!... of the questions of these recurring; Of the endless trains of the faithless--of cities fill'd with the foolish; Of myself forever reproaching myself, (for who more foolish than I, and who more faithless?) Of eyes that vainly crave the light--of the objects mean--of the struggle ever renew'd; Of the poor results of all--of the plodding and sordid crowds I see around me; Of the empty and useless years of the rest--with the rest me intertwined; The question, O me! so sad, recurring--What good amid these, O me, O life? Answer. That you are here--that life exists, and identity; That the powerful play goes on, and you will contribute a verse.

  5. A Psalm Of Life

    Tell me not, in mournful numbers, Life is but an empty dream! For the soul is dead that slumbers, And things are not what they seem. Life is real! Life is earnest! And the grave is not its goal; Dust thou art, to dust returnest, Was not spoken of the soul. Not enjoyment, and not sorrow, Is our destined end or way; But to act, that each to-morrow Find us farther than to-day. Art is long, and Time is fleeting, And our hearts, though stout and brave, Still, like muffled drums, are beating Funeral marches to the grave. In the world’s broad field of battle, In the bivouac of Life, Be not like dumb, driven cattle! Be a hero in the strife! Trust no Future, howe’er pleasant! Let the dead Past bury its dead! Act,— act in the living Present! Heart within, and God o’erhead! Lives of great men all remind us We can make our lives sublime, And, departing, leave behind us Footprints on the sands of time; Footprints, that perhaps another, Sailing o’er life’s solemn main, A forlorn and shipwrecked brother, Seeing, shall take heart again. Let us, then, be up and doing, With a heart for any fate; Still achieving, still pursuing, Learn to labor and to wait.

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