Most Std XII students would have read this poem by Helen Spalding. As I don't like poems, I thought it would be boring but, I must admit that my dear principal is the secret behind me not dozing off during English classes that deal with poems.
One day, she came to the class as usual and placed her books on the table. We thought she would start a new lesson but instead she said: “Being in Std XII, you will be soon parting from your friends, school and will experience parting. I would like each of you to stand up and express your feelings on parting.”
The boys went first, and they had answers like “sad”, “end”, “sorrow”, etc. The girls' had “missing”, “anxiety” and “sorrow”. When I said the word “happy”, my principal was surprised. She wanted to know why I had said that. When there is a parting, there is something new to get on with, new to experience, and most importantly, something new to learn. Even after class, I was thinking of all those partings which I had experienced in my life. Parting from my dad for nearly eight months when he got a transfer, parting from my friends in Delhi, and the place where I grew up till I was 13.
But, in all these partings I had never felt sad or depressed. I was always excited and happy about stepping into a new surrounding, language, culture, tradition and people. I have moved on with new friends, teachers, new language and a new set of problems.
Miles to go…
Coming back to the class, I understood that the poem “Curtain” is about two love birds getting separated due to a political fight. So I turned the steering of my thoughts, went into a flash back when I was in Std XI. A very young age to be in love but still, even now I could feel the same numbness I felt that day I parted from him.
A person I spoke to about this said, “Love comes out of independence, and independence comes out of maturity!” That made me realise that I am just 17 and have got loads of experiences to undergo. I am still an individual who doesn't know who or what I am like. That said, I shall still stick with “happy” to describe my feelings on parting.
KARTHIKA SURESH, XII, Amrita Vidhyalayam
Keywords: Helen Spalding