More than seven decades ago,

the most gentle of writers,

Edward Morgan Forster


respect for what is outside a book

should be inversely proportional

to what is  inside.


Mindful reading

is not for discovering

errors or typos

but to read between the lines;

to soak in the atmosphere

and muse with a curious

mix of detachment and wonderment

if everything between

the first page and the last

rings true;

if one is within the realm

of possibility.


Maugham had meanwhile alerted:

if every page in a book sparkles

one can be pretty sure

it isn’t a classic and

most certainly,

poorly reflective of life itself.

(Fantasies excepted)


Books on the shelves

and on the Kindle

are vying for attention.

While the clock will keep ticking


the heart beat will stop sooner

rather than later.

Hence, one has to reach

for only the best.


p17 (c) pradeep gopalan




When the hand moves,

words formerly in the mind

now submerged in ink

emerge out of the nib-edge afresh

to dry on paper

for others to discern

what one’s thoughts are.

If a nagging doubt persists

that words currently in mind

may fail to embody

both intent and expression

one has to only

stay still for a while

and defer release

until the most apposite words

have surfaced  to fit in.


p18 (c) pradeep gopalan





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