From my Diary: On the Advent of 2022


As the last hours fade into darkness, waiting for the world to wake up to the dawn of 2022, a sense of optimism fills my being. What will the dawn of the new year bring? What will it be like?

However awful the past, however sad have been our losses, each year moves forward towards a new time we know nothing about. Not knowing can be seen as frightening or as hopeful. I choose to be with the latter. The current trends show that the virus might turn benign. Slowly and perhaps, warily, we will start taking baby steps towards a new normal. 

While we mourn the past, we continue to move forward to live in the present. The future unfurls out of the present. Our actions now will define the world for posterity. Will we survive creating new norms where we will adapt to live, perhaps, on the ocean? 

Midnight, 2021-2022
Happy New Year 🎉

The moment of magic 
starts as the old 
turns to new, a poem 
slips out of words

exploding like fireworks
at midnight as we wait
sleepy-eyed for the 
golden dawn of the 

first morn of the year.
The day gives life to yet
another fresh-born, 
washed clean by 

the downpour that 
accompanied the birth. 
How much hope each infant brings! 
How much hope each new-fledged year weaves!  

The day has dawned bright and clear. I am convinced this year will unfold with much goodwill and string the world together with hope and happiness. I can hear birdsongs from the trees outside my home. The river runs turbid from last night’s rain but it will clear as the mud settles just as I hope the pandemic calms to an endemic this year.

Earlier barbarism was an accepted way of life. We moved from that to a more humanist stance. At this point, we can hope that people who faced violations and violence due to political upheaves in the past, will rise like a tide to move into better times. Climate change to an extent will force us to take steps to live in harmony with the planet. Then, there will be those who, over time, will find ways to extend our frontiers into outer-space and create new biomes for humankind making it cost effective enough over time to make it affordable for all. 

The rains and storms will continue to come and go as will the changes that dot civilisations’ development over the years. The word future itself hovers in uncertainties and fills one with dreams that stretch out unfurling a plethora of images. It is for us to pick the scenarios we favour and move towards those. If selling dread brings money, selling hope brings good cheer and happiness.

Let us choose and choose wisely so that we can leave a better world for posterity.

New year is the time to make resolutions. We have a fresh chance. Let’s swing it beyond just carpe diem and give the future a gift of goodwill.

Happy New Year — 2022!

— Mitali Chakravarty

Happy New Year !


A whole new world

A dazzling place I never knew

These lyrics from Disney’s song in Aladdin highlight the beauty and wonder of our lovely green planet which changes with the passage of time. To keep discovering and rediscovering it would be our privilege. To cherish it and enjoy it would be a joy, especially with one’s loved ones and friends. But, reviewing this last decade makes one wonder — are we doing that? Why have we lost ourselves in all kinds of conflicts, including conflicts with nature and perhaps amongst the greatest creation of nature — humankind?

We have had a list of controversial leaders, especially those who denied the reality of climate change and led to worldwide protests from adults and children and those who closed doors to other humans seeking shelter and survival on the basis of borders drawn by mankind. It was also a decade when Yuval Noah Harari saw history as borderless and traced the tribal instincts of our race. Man moved towards making unmanned vehicles and flying to Mars for a holiday.

It has also been a decade that sadly saw violation of women to an unprecedented degree… and yet, I feel, there is a light. Women are learning to give voice and men join them in protesting the violence and rage. They function as humans together… against unfair laws and violence. Harari spoke of how tyranny and communism had been replaced by liberalism — I do not understand isms but I do know that after a thunderstorm, one sees rainbows and clear skies. I would presume the turbulence we see now is the thunderstorm. And after this, there will be a rainbow and a whole new world — a dazzling place!

Let  us welcome 2020 into our midst with hope for a  happy new year and a fabulous new decade!


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Oh, how weeps Mother Earth!

Near her toes, the forests burn.
Animals in death throes churn.
Sumatran anacondas die.
Smoke blinds the eye.
Hazy skies, poison air
People choke.
Life comes to a halt.

Brazil, her lungs they say,
Now fiery flames breathe.
With so much smoke,
Will Mother Earth choke?

Oh, how weeps Mother Earth!

Young blood is spilt as
Fire and
Water injure and
The elements that give us life
Have now been weaponized.

‘People fight for their rights.’

When will they stop the hate?
This endless fight?
This endless stress

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