The Monthly Elixir

Nikhil Bharadwaj
Nikhil Bharadwaj
from Hyderabad
3 weeks ago

It’s a seemingly unrelenting and unremitting

Wait for the impending inflow of my monthly elixir

When it does quintessentially ooze in, I revere it like a souvenir

According it a grandstand arrival totally befitting

As thirty days of penance comes to a fruition

To hail the red letter day thru a red carpet reception


Bearing on his neck the poundage of a dead albatross

Just like the weary ancient mariner

I too cut a rather sorry figure

And I too have a rhyme to narrate, adding no gloss

Stop by if you care to hear lamentations in pain

Or by all means gently pass by if you choose to refrain


The moisture capping the coastal sands

Hope to linger a fleeting second more

As the lashing waves on the shore

Retreat into the waters kissing the tearful lands

Just as the villainous breeze sweeps away the moisture

Likewise my fugacious bank balance faces the impending gallows of expenditure


In periodic segmentations, my money hopelessly dissipates

By the 5th, a quarter, thru the monthly rent and maintenance

Already wiping out my cheery countenance

By the 10th, another quarter emancipates

Itself from the wretched account, popularly known

As EMIs of the educational loan



Half my income vanishes in effortless dissolution

In half a month, as I find myself clamouring for a fortnight's oxygen

Woefully wallowing within the contours of my salaried smidgen

As my heart hopes to seek new avenues of remuneration

The likes of home internet reimbursements and the modest Sodexo pass

Subsist but meagre commiserative emoluments not helping the impasse

As liquid cash gushes out like a foaming waterfall

With no end to the rainy season in sight

My wallet paints a picture of deplorable plight

Shred to pieces, no one to hear its pitiful bawl

Lies the poor, black, square tattered ragamuffin

As a barrage of invoices is hammered into its coffin


I however do pander to occasional indulgences of recreative diversion

The odd movie or two, or to procure an utterly useless gadget

Violating the sacrosanct rule book of my shoe string budget

Which serves to remind that I am still Homo Sapien

Between taxing shopping rigmaroles to SPAR

Topped by embarkations on holy pilgrimages to ATMs near and afar


The rusted debit card edges which bore the brutal onslaught

Stand out as wounds of valour in the epic battle of 'Sustenance Eke'

While my overheads surmount peak after peak

By the end of the month, I am singularly fraught

As quarter after quarter passes with no promotion in sight

A plethora of unfulfilled promises have turned daylight into night



As the final week wearily trudges towards the finishing line

Streaks of light gratefully appear at the distant end of the dark passage

The day eventually arrives, an ointment applied to assuage

Typically day number Thirty or one less at Twenty Nine

When the employer graciously refills my parched coffers

"Poor chap lets atleast keep him alive while he suffers"


Salary day is the only day, looking back in retrospection

Have I looked forward to in Sixty Three months of corporate melancholy

As a heady concoction of blood, sweat, toil and tears lies in the trolley

To a lower form of existence, I have yielded to, in candid introspection

Nonetheless, this one day I will cheer for the nonce, casting aside my throes

The ineluctable cycle will resume tomorrow to spin its monthly quota of woes  


So the rent, the cable, the…Right I won’t go all over it now again!

But moans and sobs will soon start to reign

Morbid ruminations whether I choose to talk or feign

Will fall on deaf ears, and eventually flow down the drain

As efforts to augment my paltry savings go in vain

Bill after bill will continue to rain down with disdain












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