What if…

a poem by Kasim Master

What if, I wasn’t born?
What if, I had lived
this life, differently?

What if, I had taken
another route in
the journey down
the years?

What if, I had not
lived to this age?

What if, I was not
wed to the present

What if, life had
given me a
partner, different
from the one,
I have today?

What if, the
great love of my life
in the formative years
was indeed my mate?

What if, at the
autumn years,
I had remained
as myself, and
not let slip into
a love, I couldn’t avoid?

What if, the event
whose pleasure
has fled, and
consequences remain,
had not taken place?

What if, today
I can tread
a road, not strewn
with memories, and
as a new man?

What if, I had
not taken the path
of least resistance
and gone looking
for some substitute
to fill the vacant
spaces in my life?

What if, I had
taken the step-
difficult – but whose
difficulty would
have gone,
and rewards remained?

What if, I could
forsake the see-saw
thoughts in my mind
and learn to control
their flow, and be
at peace with myself?

What if, I could
rise above the torment
of the memories
of that deprivation,
and surrender the bondage
to that attachment,
and gain tranquillity?

What if, I had
cared for what
I had, and not gone
hankering after,
some forbidden fruit,
whose taste still lingers
but no longer as
savoured treat, but
as a bitter after taste?
What if, my attitude
had not been born
out of my perceptions, and
from thinking subjectively,
but fashioned
out of objective thinking?

What if, the feeling
of bitterness in
my mind, was
replaced, and a
sense of peace
was to take its place?

What if, the mind
was rid of its
wants and needs
and a soothing tranquillity
was to take its place?
What if, my actions,
were not mere
reactions to events,
occurring by rot,
but the consequence
of reasoned behaviour?
What if, memories
didn’t come to haunt,
but that the past
faded, and remained so,
[just as days
come and go –
and never return],
why should remembrances
of things past be a
burden on the mind?

What if, I clear
the debris of the past
from my mind,
and start a new
saga, from the start?

What if, I can control
my emotions, and let
them not run amok,
and plan my actions
through reason, and
not through the heart,
keeping at the same
time, depth and warmth,
in all that I do?
What if, I am alone,
that cannot deter
my being fulfilled;
loneliness can hurt
only when, it affects you
and you feel lonely
thereby, but never,
if you are happy
with yourself!

What if, at times I am
depressed, with the
weight of ugly
thoughts that beset
the mind, I shall
overcome; and
bounce back, for if
I can live with myself,
there is no one,
whose presence or
absence, can make me feel
depressed or alone!

What if, at times
I crave for company
and feel the wont
of some friend,
I shall abide!
What if, spectres
from the past
spring surprises,
when unbidden you
come across an
item, of their
exploits, what’s to
be fazed about?
When once something’s
it remains gone,
and should thus remain!
what lies in ruminating –
what should have been?

What if, what if…
so many what ifs;
one could go on questioning;
it’s time such questions
are set to rest!
And a life commenced
with a faith and a trust
in oneself, to make
the best of it!