#NaPoWriMo Day 15: The Apple & The Tree.

Today’s prompt via napowrimo.net is to write a poem about the habits or traits we have inherited from either of our parents.

I found this a very interesting prompt to explore because, personally, I don’t see a lot of traits I have inherited. There was a lot of thinking involved, but I could narrow it down to some very specific things. And of course, genetics are very real, so I found a couple of things to write about in this poem. Don’t miss out on the endnotes to read more about the poem.

Make sure you go check out the poems written by my best friends (Kittu’s Modern Mixtape and Amour Infini) for more amazing and brilliantly written poetry!

Happy reading! Xx


I paint my canvas in different shades of red,
Empty bottles of paint at my feet,
The final stroke of the brush sends me back to years ago,
To that one summer day and its sweltering heat—
The wall covered in the same shade of red that stains my hands now,
And empty bottles of paint lay by my feet then, too,
But I distinctly recall the brush in different hands,
Hands more nimble,
Far more delicate and able than mine could ever be,
Painting black and white figures over the wall in red—
Red has always been her favourite colour, I think,
The apple never falls too far from the tree.

And I would watch,
My face cupped within my palms,
Sitting by the doorway as she painted the wall,
Wishing I would wield the paintbrush the way she did,
Painting sceneries on blank walls,
As though giving the dead another lease of life,
Wishing I could turn drab surfaces to art,
And years down the line, I did.

I run my fingers across some fifty bottles of paint,
The colours bright and vivid,
Reminiscent of all those jars of coloured sand
That Ma used to draw colourful patterns with;
Hands pouring measured swirls of sand in perfect symmetry,
And I would just sit and watch,
Wide-eyed at the precision of it all,
Wishing I could create half as well as Ma ever did,
After all, I learned only from the very best,
I guess it runs in my blood, something she passed down to me,
Ma has always found peace in art, I think,
Perhaps the apple doesn’t fall too far from the tree.

And I would watch,
Face cupped within my palms,
Sitting with my knees tucked under my chin,
How Ma always blended the yellows with reds,
Colouring the lifeless corner of the ground to life,
Wishing I was half as patient as her,
Wishing I could create in colours the way she always did,
And years down the line, I did.

I look into the mirror,
Searching for traces of her likeness in me,
I’ve never seen it, but I’ve been told it’s there,
After all, I’m the apple borne from her tree;
I’ve been told it flashes in the smile on my face,
The smile that soothes like a salve on my worst days,
In the quiet words of assurance and encouragement
That I drown my tears into Ma’s warm embrace—
They say they can sometimes see,
Too much of my mother in me,
And why wouldn’t they, I should think,
I am the apple that didn’t fall too far from the tree.

~© Shubhangi Srinivasan.


This poem, if it isn’t obvious already, is about the similarities I share with my Mom. We’ve both always been passionate about art, even if it was in very different ways. I’ve also been told, way too many times, that my smile looks like hers (I don’t see it, but hey, I guess it must be the case!). Nevertheless, it was a very emotional poem to write. I am so glad that I could actually put this into words because there are too many things there that can be said, but I really can’t find the right words. I hope you liked reading the poem!
Yours truly,
The Shubhster. Xx


Featured Image by Nathan Hulsey on Unsplash

5 thoughts on “#NaPoWriMo Day 15: The Apple & The Tree.

Add yours

  1. This was just so heartwarming to read, babe! And my god, you’ve painted the perfect picture of you and your cupped hands and face, maybe even a little tilted. Ugh, so cute!! I’m so glad I read this before sleeping!❤️❤️❤️

    Liked by 1 person

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