Pocket money

December 8, 2011
Scene: A lower middle-class home with only the head of the family earning a meagre salary
Characters: Father and his teenage daughter
Situation: Month-end; Father needs urgent cash…Asks his daughter if she has something left from her pocket money. The college-going girl’s deadly yet pathetic stare sends the man into his past, only to be jolted back into the present as he hears her suggestion to the monthly problem…
A tetragenarian father
On the date of 20
Asks his college-going daughter –
‘Did you spent your pocket money this month?’
………..…The days of scarlet blood
Thoughts of a robust future
Faith in the best education pocketed
Confident of tearing shackles
I held my first pay pack.
Humble a son
Succumbed to his mother’s choice
Beautiful a girl, I loved her whole
Partner she became, our dreams were green
Wife she became as her womb grew heavy
Mother she chose to be
Far-sighted was she
Decided two kids and no more
Dignity mine was kept
Reputed schools my kids stepped in
And when grades they collected excellent
Pride mine soared high
Sublimed in joy
The world was at our feet
But college did they step in
Status of mine jolted out
Their career became my thought
Donations and bribes apart from fees and influence
New arrivals and cosmetics
To excursions and study tours
Politics and authenticity to
Reservations and corruption
Made me knock at my courage constantly
My wife dusted her certificates
Rhymes she recited for a valuable sum
As our dream became childrens’ careers
Our efforts never flickered once
Their personal vehicle was our determination
Their strength was our love
We won on all fronts
But for their ‘whys’
Why can’t we own a bike of our won?
Why don’t we plan a holiday to a hill station?
Why can’t I pursue painting as a hobby?
Why should the movie wait for next month?……….
‘Here papa
Why don’t you increase our pocket-money
So that every month-end
We can give you the increased amount
At least we’ll get to spend our pocket-money.’
Nisha Sanjeev

1 Comment

  • hermit
    January 10, 2012

    Case well-presented. Sometimes forgetful people make chance discoveries of their cash from the most unlikely places and become overjoyed because they thought they were broke.