Wednesday, April 24, 2024

Look to this Day by Kalidasa

Written By Diya Shah (Grade 12)


The art of literature and poetry, like windows to the soul, offer glimpses into the human experience, stirring emotions and igniting imaginations. For me, they are not just words on a page but pathways to understanding, empathy and self-discovery. Through the rhythm of verses and the depth of narratives, where every line is a brushstroke painting the canvas of existence, inviting us to explore the depths of our humanity with simple yet profound beauty.

As a teenager navigating the labyrinth of adolescence, I often find solace and inspiration in the words of poets and philosophers who have walked this earth long before me. Among them, Kalidasa’s timeless poem, “Look to this day,” has had a profound impact on my outlook towards life, instilling in me a sense of purpose and direction amidst the chaos of youth.

Look to this day:
For it is life, the very life of life.
In its brief course
Lie all the verities and realities of your existence.
The bliss of growth,
The glory of action,
The splendour of achievement
Are but experiences of time.

For yesterday is but a dream
And tomorrow is only a vision;
And today well-lived, makes
Yesterday a dream of happiness
And every tomorrow a vision of hope.
Look well therefore to this day;
Such is the salutation to the ever-new dawn!

Kalidasa’s invocation to seize the present moment resonates deeply within me. “For it is life, the very life of life.” These words are not just poetic embellishments but a stark reminder of the fleeting nature of time. As a teenager, it’s easy to get lost in the whirlwind of academics, social obligations and existential uncertainties. However, this poem urges me to pause and cherish the essence of life itself.

I vividly remember a moment during my sophomore year when I was overwhelmed by the pressure of upcoming exams and extracurricular commitments. It felt like I was drowning in a sea of deadlines and expectations. In that moment of despair, I stumbled upon Kalidasa’s poem, and his words acted as a lifeline, pulling me out of the abyss of anxiety. “The splendour of achievement are but experiences of time.” These lines reminded me that success is not merely measured by accolades and accomplishments but by the journey itself.

The notion of embracing the present moment is further underscored by Kalidasa’s reflection on the transience of yesterday and the uncertainty of tomorrow. “For yesterday is but a dream, and tomorrow is only a vision.” These words carry a profound truth that has shaped my perspective on life. I’ve learned to release the burdens of past failures and anxieties about the future, choosing instead to immerse myself fully in the richness of today.

One particular summer stands out in my memory, where I decided to embark on a journey of self-discovery. Inspired by Kalidasa’s wisdom, I resolved to make each day count. I explored new hobbies, forged meaningful connections with friends and family and embraced every opportunity for growth. Rather than fixating on the distant horizon of the future, I found joy and fulfillment in the small moments of the present.

Kalidasa’s poem serves as a guiding light, illuminating the path towards a life well-lived. “Look well therefore to this day; such is the salutation to the ever-new dawn!” These closing words encapsulate a message of hope and renewal, urging me to greet each day with gratitude and optimism. In the face of adversity and uncertainty, I find solace in the promise of a new dawn, where endless possibilities await.

In conclusion, Kalidasa’s poem has left an indelible mark on my journey as a teenager. It has taught me the importance of living mindfully, embracing the beauty of the present moment and finding meaning in the midst of life’s complexities. Through its timeless wisdom, this poem continues to inspire me to navigate the ebb and flow of adolescence with courage, resilience and an unwavering zest for life.


Featured Image Courtesy – Karishma’s Blog



Diya Shah
Diya Shah
I am Diya Shah a student of class 9 from Kolkata. I have had a flair for writing since I was 5 years old. Personally, I like to write poetry. I love writing opinion pieces and research work too. Besides creative writer, I am a teacher to young ones. I teach students of classes 4-6 and raise funds for NGOs and the poor.

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