Poetry in prose or Prose in poetry

Poetry in prose or Prose in poetry

‘Cling,’ the message notification jolted me from my sleep. Rummaging through the bedsheets I found my handset under a heap. 

‘Have you started writing for quintale-51?’

I muttered under my breath, ‘Instead of me why couldn’t she ask someone?’

My ego stopped me from uttering the truth. I fervently typed, ‘I am almost done, Mrs.Ruth.’ 

There was a lull for a while. Either she had gone to the washroom or turned senile. For her self-esteem would have burst. She was the one in the writing group to submit stories first.  

‘This is going to be a tough one for her,’ I grinned. The prompt being confusing the chances of her submitting must have thinned.

The prompt setters had pronounced the submission deadline, giving no time for self-remorse. They avered that consecutive lines in the story should rhyme at the end, and the piece should not sound like poetry but prose!!!

A smile adorned my face. I thought Mrs. Ruth would not be in this month’s writing race. I had been judgemental about her potential in writing anything rhyming. I concluded that she was too old for grooming.

But my myth got shattered into pieces. She got back to messaging after a short recess. 

‘I have finished writing,’ she declared.

The words hit me hard I got scared.

I inserted some smiley emoticons, nevertheless.

‘That is great Mrs. Ruth,’ I managed to type,  camouflaging my distress.

She continued nagging me to hear her plot and began typing the first line.

I tossed and turned to rack my brain to come up with something if she enquires about mine.

Her story looked perfect with a plot, prose, and rhyme.

I excused myself as I (thankfully) heard the doorbell chime.

Under the pretext of answering it, I moved away from my phone. Seconds later I was with my laptop in my comfort zone.

Mrs. Ruth would be at the church till noon. My head had to come up with a plot soon. It needed time to think of rhyming words that sounded good. I declared that today there would be no food.

‘What the hell?’ screamed the spouse.

I screamed back, ‘Why don’t you cook, it is after all your house?’ 

He moaned and groaned but I warned him that I was ‘seeking’ something. He peered at the laptop screen but found nothing.

Meanwhile, post noon, Mrs. Ruth’s calls, I had to decline. Since I was meticulously writing rhyming consecutive sentences,  with a storyline.

By evening it was almost done. The whole experience had been no fun.

I had managed to write something which I thought read great. But it would be the judges who would decide my fate.

My sincere request to the jury is to grace me. In front of Mrs. Ruth I want to save my face you see. Yet one more request would be to keep me in a spot above Mrs. Ruth. Winning over her at least once has been my goal, that is the eternal truth!!! 


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Sudha Vishwanathan
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