Child’s Play

Photo by Ashley Williams

I went out every evening,
To play with my friends;
Life was pretty straight,
Without the crooked bends.

We made a lot of goals,
We scored many a run;
We made many baskets,
And had a lot of fun.

Then came the sticky virus,
And made our lives a hell;
It took away our freedom,
And tolled the death knell.

Now I stay at home,
Each and every day;
I miss my dear friends,
As I miss my play.

I look up at the sky ,
And watch the birds fly;
Among the fluffy clouds,
Gliding in the air so high.

I sit before the laptop,
And stare at the screen;
Watching my teachers struggle,
To teach and help us win.

I am getting used to my prison,
Like animals in the zoo.
Still craving for that freedom,
And sighing just like you.

Photo by Todd Trapani




Learning about the Future Tense
Let’s talk about the Future. Photo by Ali Pazani

The simple Future tense is used to indicate an action that will take place in the future.

The guests will soon be here.

We shall go to Colorado next week.

Who will help me set the dinner?

They will attack at dawn.

Tomorrow will be Thursday.

SENTENCE TYPE                STRUCTURE                 EXAMPLE
PositiveSubject + will/shall +V1 + Object I shall like ice-cream.
InterrogativeWill/shall + Subject + V1 + Object?Shall  I like ice-cream?
NegativeSubject + will/shall+ not + V1 + Object I shall not like ice-cream.

Situational use

  1. To express an action that will take place in the future – I shall go there tomorrow.
  2. With clauses of condition and time – He will miss the train unless he drives fast.
  3. For announcing a decision– I will buy a new laptop.
  4. For expressing hopes, expectations, promises – I think she will be very successful one day.
  5. For giving instructions through questions – Will you be quiet?
  6. With actions associated with adverbial phrases of a future time – My father will be sixty in March.

[ We use ‘shall’ with ‘I’ and ‘we’ and ‘ will’ with ‘ I, you, we, he, she, it, they’]


 Future Continuous tense is used to indicate some action that will be going on at some point of time in the future.

I shall be reading a book in the evening.

I wonder what she will be doing tomorrow.

Her children will be waiting to greet her at the airport.

We shall be celebrating her birthday when she returns home.

We shall be travelling all night.

When will you be visiting again?

By this time tomorrow, I shall be lying on the beach in Hawai.

SENTENCE TYPE                STRUCTURE                 EXAMPLE
PositiveSubject + will/shall + be + V4(-ing form of verb) + Object I will be eating ice-cream.
InterrogativeWill/shall + Subject+ be + V4 + Object?Will I be eating ice-cream?
NegativeSubject + will/shall + not+ be + V4 + Object I will not be eating ice-cream.

Situational use

  1. For expressing events in progress in the future – I shall be seeing you tomorrow at this time.
  2. For predicting the present – Don’t disturb-he will be sleeping now.
  3. For predicting a natural course of events – The train will be arriving soon.
  4. For polite inquiries Will you be staying here for a few days?
  5. For expressing pre-decided future plans – I am going to Rome on Sunday.


Future Perfect tense is used to indicate the completion of action by a certain time in the future.

By this time next year he will have taken his university degree.

I shall have finished this novel by tomorrow.

In August he will have stayed here for two years.

He will have submitted his project by next month.

The builders will have completed their work by Tuesday.

SENTENCE TYPE                STRUCTURE                 EXAMPLE
PositiveSubject + will/shall + have + V3(past participle) + Object I shall have eaten ice-cream.
InterrogativeWill/shall + Subject+ have + V3 + Object? Will I have eaten ice-cream?
NegativeSubject + will +not + have + V3 + Object I will not have eaten ice-cream.

Situational use

  1. To indicate actions that will be completed before a certain time in the future – I shall have finished my homework by 8 o’clock.
  2. For predicting the present – He will have left by now.
  3. For expressing past in the future – Tomorrow he will have been 80.


Future Perfect Continuous Tense indicates an action represented as being in progress over a period of time that will end in the future.

He will have been making preparations for his wedding for two months by July.

You will have been learning Sanskrit for two years by next month.

They will have been living in Iran for three years by the end of the year.

I shall have been teaching you for half an hour by the time this lesson ends.

They will have been playing for two hours by the time you reach there.

SENTENCE TYPE                STRUCTURE                 EXAMPLE
PositiveSubject + will/shall + have + been + V4(-ing form of verb) + ObjI will have been working for an hour by then.
InterrogativeWill/shall + Subject+ have + been + V4 + Object?Will I have been working for an hour by then?
NegativeSubject + will/shall+ not +been+ V4 + ObjectI will not have been running for an hour by then.

Situational use

  1. To indicate actions that will continue and will be finished sometime in future– He will have been teaching here for ten years by April.

Other ways to Express Future Tense

Future tense can be expressed in several other ways:

  1. Simple Present Tense – He retires next month.
  2. Present Continuous Tense – I am inviting them next week.
  3. Be + about to – The plane is about to land.
  4. Be + going to –  He is going to be a doctor.
  5. Be + (infinitive) verb – The President is to visit China next week.


‘Going to’ is used to indicate:

  • Intention

We are going to spend our holidays in Kashmir this summer.

I’m going to have my own way.

When are you going to finish your homework?

They are going to sow pulses this year.

We are going to have a new car soon.

  • To state something that is probable or likely to happen.

Look out! The ice beneath you is going to crack.

There is going to be a recession this year.

How long is this pandemic going to continue?

It is going to rain tonight.

He is running fast, he is going to win.

  • For stating future actions without reference to external circumstances.

I am going to tell you a story.

She is going to have a baby. 

He is going to be a chef.

  • For stating past events which was past at that moment.

When he found her, she was going to drown.

The last time we met you were going to open a start up.

[ Always use the root form of the verb with- going to:  Going to + V1:     Going to + eat]

Present, Past and Future went to a bar. It was Tense.
Photo by Tomas Ryant

Que Sera Sera/ Whatever will be, will be/ The future is not ours to see/ Que Sera Sera/ Whatever will be, will be.

Doris Day

Benefits of ‘OM’ Chanting

‘OM the primordial sound is the eternal sound of the Universe. Chanting of Om tunes us spiritually and physically with every element of the Universe. Its rhythmic utterance creates vibrations at the frequency of 432 Hz, which has a calming effect on the body and the mind. It is the same frequency that can be found everywhere in nature. Om is chanted thrice indicating the past, the present and the future existence of our soul.

 The three syllables of Om are:

A – U – M

Symbolizing the wakingdream  and dreamless state.

The chanting of Om thrice before meditation helps us realize our highest potential or the infinite consciousness which is hidden from us by the veil of Maya or illusion. 

We often find ourselves living in a state of confusion; especially in this world of social media. To develop our concentration and willpower the chanting of Om is beneficial.

Om chanting –

  • Detoxifies the body
  • Controls hypertension
  • Improves memory retention
  • Increases focus and willpower
  • Improves our concentration levels
  • Improve the blood circulation in our body
  • Reduces stress levels and relaxes mind and body
  • Improves oxygen levels in the body imparting a glow on it
  • Strengthens spinal cord improving its efficiency
  • Improves control over feelings and emotions
  • Increases alertness and awareness of mind
  • Rejuvenates the digestive system
  • Rejuvenates  the nervous system
  • Rejuvenates  circulatory system
  • Improves hormonal balance
  • Increases immunity levels
  • Improves quality of sleep
  • Reduces blood pressure

The overall result is an improved personal and professional life. Om chanting has tremendous positive effect on students. Children above 8 years can improve their academic performances with the regular practice of Om chanting before studying. They will be able to focus better in studies with improved concentration levels and memory retention capacities. The vibrations in the brain while chanting Om deactivate certain parts of the brain resulting in relaxation of the mind, reducing stress and depression. Chanting Om strengthens the body and mind, awakening the power within.

The outcome of chanting Om depends on the correct method of doing it

Photo by Felipe Borges on
  • Sit cross-legged in a silent area.  Keep hands straight, positioning them on the knees. Palms opened upwards with index fingers touching thumbs keeping the other three fingers straight. 
  • Keep the spine absolutely straight including the neck.
  • Take in a deep breath and think of peace and happiness around. Life is an illusion and we have the power to think as we like.
  • Breathe lightly and monitor the flow of breath and listen to the vibrations and sounds of the body.
  • Relax the mind and body.
  • Breathe in as much as possible and pause for a while.
  • Breathe out till the air is exhausted and pause for a while.
  • Repeat the process thrice.
  • The fourth time chant the ‘A’ in the Aum as you breathe out and feel the vibrations in your abdomen and navel area.  Chant the ‘U’ and feel the vibrations in the chest. Similarly, chant the ‘M’ and feel the vibrations in your head.
  • After each exhalation pause before taking in a long deep breath and pause before the next chant.
  • With each chant expand the mind and body so that oxygen is absorbed and flows freely through the body.
  • A straight and correct posture ensures circulation in all the organs helping them to work efficiently.
  • When the Om chanting ends, chant –“ Shanti hi, Shanti hi, Shanti hi – Aauumm...” to invoke peace and calmness in life. (The word Shanti means peace)
Photo by Karolina Grabowska on

Initially start with three chants and increase it to nine with time. Try concentrating on the area of the third eye or the forehead. The mind has limitless capacities waiting to be discovered. We do know about the sixth sense or intuition but do not know how to rein in its power.  The opening of the third eye will help us in achieving our aims with ease.

The third eye is the most potent source of intuitive wisdom which removes negativity, develops creativity, and knowledgeable insight, leading to the highest form of intelligence.  The third eye provides clarity in our thought process and guides us towards things that need our attention and actions.

Imbibing the habit of Om chanting on a regular basis can work wonders for the body and mind improving the quality of life and providing a radiant glow that comes from within.

Photo by Karolina Grabowska on

On Abetments and Deterrences

Photo by Asep Abdulrahman on

If you want to wipe out someone,
Use your words.
You can completely destroy;
someone’s hope,
someone’s like,
someone’s love.
Pushing him to the brink;
So that he toppels over the edge.

If you want to save someone,
Use your words.
You can reinvigorate and build;
someone’s like,
someone’s love,
someone’s hope.
Pulling him from the edge,
So that he springs to life once more.

If you really love someone. You must be willing to live not die for that person. – Sumita Tah

Advantages of living in a small town over living in big cities.

Photo by Pixabay on

I have always preferred living in small towns to living in big cities. Occasional travel to big cities, are fine for entertainment or work related purposes, but I have always dreaded living permanently in big cities. The few years that I have spent in a big city for educational and work related purposes have passed in a daze.

 In those days, whenever I came back to my home in a small town, I found it uneasy to find people idling after work. I kept wondering how they tolerated such a slow paced life – without ambitions, without trying to improve and update themselves and secure their future. It became even more intolerable when I visited my ancestral village and observed the village folk leading lives with hardly any pace at all. I saw the men folk sitting under the old neem tree talking among themselves; totally satisfied to have their seasonal yield and to live in their ancestral homes without any major changes in their lives. The temporary change in my thought process at that time was a result of environmental conditioning at an impressionable age.

Living in big cities undoubtedly has multiple advantages. The multifarious facilities of health care, education, shopping, entertainment, are enough to lure the multitudes from small towns to migrate to cities. Life in big cities has the ability to cast a magical spell on its denizens. The challenges of day to day life are so many that residents hardly have time or inclination to ponder over the relevance of such a fast paced life – A life without any time to invest on people and things that really matter. It has its benefits too – It helps us to avert situations which make us uncomfortable.

Photo by Marcus Ireland on

The major disadvantages of a big city life are commuting time, excessive population and pollution. Fresh food without preservatives are availed only by the super rich, who can purchase high priced organic food delivered to their homes. Others have to make do with food products with added preservatives to improve shelf life. That too, if they can afford time to cook meals for the family; otherwise they have to make do with take-away food, cooked in reused oils that are terribly harmful for the body.

Photo by Pixabay on

The comfortable life in cities, come at a high price that is paid by health and relationships. Parents hardly get to spend quality time with the children on regular basis. Children are not able to move about freely on their own due to high crime rates in cities. Therefore, things that are learnt through worthwhile experiences get lost along the line.

The major disadvantage of living in a small town is the lack of good educational, health and work facilities. Procuring better paid jobs is the major reason for migration from small towns to big cities. However, if lifestyle expenses are taken into consideration we would find that living in big cities are definitely more expensive than living in a small town. The options of going on a spending spree are less in small towns and hence the scope of savings is definitely more. The rent of accommodations, groceries and other services are much less than those in big cities. Living in a sprawling accommodation in a pollution free atmosphere with less competition and commuting time is definitely rewarding for people who prefer a life away from the hustle bustle of big cities.

The pandemic has increased the appeal of living in small town with less population. The close knit communities provide a stress free comfortable atmosphere in which kids can grow up freely. The post-covid era will see people opting for a more meaningful life in small towns and country sides. Hopefully, it will decrease the population load in the big cities and improve the quality of life in cities too.


There’s beauty in diversity. Without variety life would be bland. Beneath the superficial difference, there’s an inherent sameness in all humans. This tanka is very apt for the recent times.


Red is the colour 
Of blood that flows in our veins
It is not black, white
Black, white is not a colour
Just the darkness in our minds.

# Tanka

An old poem of mine written several years ago .

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Photo by Aleksandr Balandin

Happiness happiness where art thou?
I seek you here and there.
Happiness happiness where  are you?
I seek you everywhere.

I looked for you in work and love;
I sought you, with such care.
In leisure I tried to capture you,
In days foul and fair.

Oh! Why do you elude me?
When will I get my share?
It’s you I seek from dawn to dusk;
It’s you I seek in my prayer .

My heart once more wants to beat;
In tune with laughter fair.
Once more it wants to dance away,
Without a speck of care.

Happiness, happiness, where art thou?
I seek you here and there.
Happiness, happiness, where  are you?
I seek you everywhere.

Oh! Happiness I wait for thee
Door to my heart lies bare
Come to me, fulfill my life,
And those that I love and care.

Photo by Trinity Kubassek on

TENSE Present Tense

She is reading a book. Photo by Arthur Krijgsman

Tense of a verb tells us about the time of action or event. It is a form of verb, which is used to show the state and time of an event. Tense helps us to show whether we are referring to the past, present or future.

In English tense must be expressed in all finite verb phrases.

But, most English full verbs have only two tense related forms.

  1. The simple Present  –   find,       look,        live,      leave,    write
  2. The simple past        –    found,   looked,    lived,   left,        wrote

The other tense forms are made with the auxiliary verbs mainly ‘Be’ and ‘Have’ telling us whether the action is in progress or complete.

Auxiliary verbsPastPresentFuture
BeWas/wereIs/am/areWill be/shall be
HaveHadHas/haveWill have/ shall have


 (used in simple present and in future tense with ‘will/shall’)(used in simple past tense)(used in perfect tense with ‘has/have’ verb)(used in continuous tense with ‘ be’ verb) (used with he/she/it)


Tenses are divided on the basis of time as follows:

Tense chart for the word ‘Write’:

SIMPLE/ INDEFINITE  I write.I wrote.I shall write.
CONTINUOUS/ PROGRESSIVE  I am writing.I was writing.I shall be writing.
PERFECT  I have written.I had written.I shall have written.
PERFECT CONTINUOUSI have been writing.I had been writing.I shall have been writing.

Before studying forms and usage of each group we must remember that a type of tense form may represent different time situations.

 For example Present continuous tense may represent:

  1. Things going on at the present- I am writing an essay.
  2. Developing and changing situations – The world is getting hotter.
  3. Future activity – I am visiting Paris next week.


Present tense may be divided into.

  1. Simple Present Tense / Present Indefinite Tense
  2. Present Continuous Tense / Present Progressive Tense
  3. Present Perfect Tense
  4. Present Perfect Continuous / Present Perfect Progressive Tense


SENTENCE TYPE                STRUCTURE                 EXAMPLE
PositiveSubject + V1 + Object I like ice-cream.
InterrogativeDo/Does + Subject + V1 + Object?Do I like ice-cream?
NegativeSubject + do not/ does not + V1 + Object I do not like ice-cream.

Situational Use:

  1. To express a habitual action – I go for a walk everyday.
  2. To express general statement or universal facts – The Earth revolves around the sun.
  3. To express an event taking place at the given moment- Here comes the bride.
  4. To express a permanent situation – Everest is the highest peak in the world.
  5. To express a future action that is planned – The plane departs at 6:00 p.m.
  6. To express series of events – We take two cups of milk and boil it.
  7. To express conditional future – I shall go out if it stops raining.
  8. For quotations – The Bible says, ‘Love thy neighbour’.
  9. For imperative sentences – Do your work.
  10. With Non- Progressive Verbs – I like this cake very much.
  11. With Adverbs and Adverbials – He always speaks the truth.
  12. Historical present or graphic present – Alexander invades India.

(In simple present tense Third Person Singular take –s or –es with full verbs. E.g. plays, goes)


Simple Present Tense is used in the following real life activities:

  1. Story Telling – She holds her mother and breaks down.
  2. TV./ Radio Commentaries – Ronaldo passes to Rivaldo, Rivaldo to Carlos and Carlos shoots.
  3. Formal Expressions in Letters – I enclose herewith.
  4. Newspaper Headings – Blind girl climbs Everest.


SENTENCE TYPE                STRUCTURE                 EXAMPLE
PositiveSubject +is/am/are + V4(-ing form of verb) + Object I am eating ice-cream.
InterrogativeIs/am/are + Subject + V4 + Object?Am I eating ice-cream?
NegativeSubject + is/am/are+ not + V4 + Object I am not eating ice-cream.

Situational Use:

  1. To express an action going on at the time of speaking. – It is raining.
  2. To express repeated action – My sister is writing a book.
  3. To indicate an action that is likely to happen. – I am meeting her tomorrow.
  4. To indicate changes. – The earth is getting warmer.
  5. To indicate things which happen very often. – I am always losing my pen.
  6. To indicate distancing /less definite things–I am hoping that the economy will revive.

( when a verb ends with ‘e’ we remove ‘e’ and add ‘ing’. – come – coming:

when a verb ends with ‘ie’ we remove ‘ie’ and add ‘y’. – tie – tying:

when a verb ends with a consonant except ‘r’, w, y’  with a vowel before it we add the consonant twice. – cut – cutting)


I have done it.

You have done a lot for me.

They have missed the bus.

He has left for home.

He has broken his pencil.

Have you ever seen a ghost?

I have lived here for ten years.

SENTENCE TYPE                STRUCTURE                 EXAMPLE
PositiveSubject + has/have + V3(past participle) + Object I have eaten ice-cream.
InterrogativeHas/ have + Subject + V3 + Object? Have I eaten ice-cream?
NegativeSubject + has/have + V3 + Object I have not eaten ice-cream.

Situational Use:

  1. To express an action that has just been completed. – The sun has set.
  2. To express past action the effect of which still continues. – Lily has won a prize.
  3. For habits leading to the present – I have studied hard for years.
  4. For finished events with certain time adverbs – I have already spoken to him.

(Time adverbs- lately, recently, already, never, ever, before, yet)


The Perfect Tense refers to an event in the Past with Present or current relevance. When we use simple Past the focus is on the person, thing or circumstances while present perfect refers to a situation or event.

[ Has – used with – He/she/ it:  Have – used with – I/You /we/they ]


SENTENCE TYPE                STRUCTURE                 EXAMPLE
PositiveSubject +has/ have+ been + V4(-ing form of verb) + Obj I have been eating ice-cream.
InterrogativeHas/ have + Subject+been + V4 + Object?Have I been eating ice-cream?
NegativeSubject + has/have+ not +been+ V4 + Object I have not been eating ice-cream.

Situational use

  1. For an activity that continued from past and has just been completed.–You have been fighting.
  2. For an action began in the past and is still going on.- She has been working since 9am.
  3. For repeated actions – I have been playing tennis a lot recently.
  4. For expressing actions in sentences beginning with ‘For how long’ or ‘Since when’For how long has she been suffering from the viral infection?
  5. For expressing temporary activities- He has been living here for a month.

( for expressing permanent activities we use Present perfect tense.-He has lived here for thirty years.)


For and Since

The Present perfect continuous tense is often used with ‘for’ and ‘since’. There is a difference between their use.


‘For’ is used to denote a period of time ( time span or duration)

It has been raining for six hours.

He has been working here for twenty years.

He has been suffering for a long time.


‘Since’ is used to denote an action starting from a point of time in the past.

She has been painting since 8 o’clock.

He has been looking for his glasses since he got up.

It has been raining since Sunday.

Present perfect continuous tense is generally used with verbs denoting continuity.

E.g.  rain,    study,    work,      live,      wait,      build.

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Who Loves Tom Swift? — Nicholas C. Rossis

No, Tom Swift is not a person. A Tom Swifty is a phrase in which a quoted sentence is linked by a pun to the manner in which it is attributed. The standard syntax is for the quoted sentence to be first, followed by the (humorous) description of the act of speaking. The hypothetical speaker […]

Who Loves Tom Swift? — Nicholas C. Rossis

Treasuring Time

Time has a wonderful way of showing us what really matters.
Photo by Pixabay on

Time is true treasure,
Try to treasure Time;
For forgetting to value it,
Is surely a serious crime.

Time never stops moving;
But keeps its records in genes,
In stones, bones and memories;
For the future beings.

Use your time wisely,
Have habits that are good.
Complete your work on time,
As best as you could.

For if you cherish time,
And refrain from its abuse;
Then fortune will favour you.
And grant what you choose.

Photo by Aphiwat chuangchoem on

An inch of time, is an inch of gold. But with that inch of gold, you can’t buy that inch of time.

Don’t look at the clock, do what it does. Keep going.