I used to have a ritual.
Of gathering thoughts
and polishing hopes.
I would pick a thought up
and then, a hope.
One by one,
I would ascertain
their worth.
If they passed muster,
I would take them along.

Long before I grew up,
I knew –
I had to invest –
in silence.
To bring forth
from the corners of memory –
all that has been;
and from a vague image
of a distant self –
all that should be.

I had an inkling –
that it was in stillness,
that time bridged
the distance
between the past
and the future;
That it was in silence
that the true reverberations
of the self were felt.

But somewhere between childhood and here,
the ritual receded
into a shelf
of long discarded things.
But once in a while when I stand still,
I can hear
the thud of innocence
against walls of reason.

Once in a while when I stand still,
I can yet freeze time
and rewrite my days
as if I were –
the master of my time.