Poems by
Radhika Basu Thakur

Ode to My Alma Mater

a poem by Radhika Basu Thakur

Running up the stairs, being late for assembly,
Not succeeding in sneaking in, being asked to give up my diary.
Always to sleepy to sing hymns in assembly,
Yet ever willing to sing the Holiday Hymn and Loreto Chorus were we.
Beginning class, praying for the bell to ring,
Playing cross and naught when we’re supposed to be studying.
Missing first period because of First Friday Mass,
Mastering the art of eating in class.
Staying back in school, day after day,
To make charts, or practice for an upcoming play.
Whether Farewell, Teacher’s Day or We Care it be,
Ever ready to burst into dance and song were we.
Re-living the joys of a fest gone by,
Mentioning names, making people feel shy.
Exams approaching, the tensing of nerves,
Visiting the church, praying to God with all our love.
Always wishing the break were longer,
Even when we were given an extra fifteen minute breather.
Announcement of a holiday, the shrieks of joy,
The excessive excitement on entering the office and seeing a boy.
Getting hit on the head during a basketball match,
Playing throw ball, desperately trying to make a catch.
Not cutting our nails, skirts being too short,
The number of times with our captains we have fought.
The instant bodily injuries and pains,
Bunking Indian Dancing was always our main aim.
Marching in the sun for Republic Day practice,
Our only consolation being all the classes we got to miss.
Living in anticipation of the fete in December,
“Get the raffle sheets tomorrow and PLEASE REMEMBER!”
Chatting in free periods inspite of homework not done
Convinced we’ll come up with an excuse when we actually need one!
Catching up on gossip and water fights of course
Socialising in the bathroom was always the main source
Mr Roy’s canteen, Walter’s sweets,
Always pestering people for birthday treats.
The Chemistry laboratory beautifully arrayed,
Breaking test tubes we seldom left dismayed.
The Sick Room inspite of its rocking bed,
To which we ran with the slightest pain in the head.
The Green Room with its assortment of mirrors,
Admiring ourselves like Hollywood stars.
The Big Hall, the centre of all activity,
With its wooden stage, wooden floor and wooden gallery.

Thirteen years of school life coming to an end,
Wishing in vain God had a few more to lend.
From this school there is so much I have gained,
Every moment in my heart is deeply ingrained.
Every joy, every sorrow, I will always take with me,
It has made me what I am and what I will be.
My school,
My Alma Mater,
My second home,
Loreto House.