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NaPoWriMo 2018: Day 16 – Games we played

Today’s prompt is to write a poem that prominently features the idea of play. It could be a poem about a sport or game, a poem about people who play (or are playing a game), or even a poem in the form of the rules for a sport or game that you’ve just made up (sort of like Calvinball).

One look at the prompt and I wanted to give up. It’s been a long time since I played a real game – which  involved teams, running, catching, sweat, fights, winning and losing and the adrenaline rush.

Then came back the memory of a game played, forgotten and I don’t think crossed the borders of our country. Writing this poem was a trip down memory lane. In a matter of minutes, I had traveled thirty years back in time…to evenings after school, friends, games in the community.

Lagori is a game that ties all Indians belonging to the seventies, eighties and nineties, the memory of which will make them smile. Sadly my kids have absolutely no idea what I’m talking about…

Players- any number

divided into two groups with no special gear

Just seven flat stones piled in a tower, 

a good aim, a ball,

legs that run and hands that build,

That’s all.

The first team must attack, 

The player aims at the stack

Three chances.The tower must fall and the stones must scatter-

The players then run helter – skelter.

Move Or be hit by the ball the other team throws

If it touches you, you lose. That’s simply how it goes.

And then it’s their turn

to hit and run…

But not enough just to run; in order to win

The stones you dropped must be put back in,

the tower built back,

Again into a stack

With care, you must put the last stone on, 

And scream “Lagori”

Win a point and be done

Now its the other team turn,  

And thus it goes…

Played on the street,

And in schools, on the court,

A precious memory

Part of many an Indian kid’s childhood story.

lagori3

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27 Comments »

  1. I was all smiles while reading this poem 😉 It brought back all the memories of my childhood. We used to call it “Pithoo”. My children still play it with their friends.Wonderfully penned Smitha! I am still struggling with the prompt today, just not in a mood to write 😦

    Liked by 1 person

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