A to Z 2021 – Reflections


If someone brings up “April,” my mind immediately hollers ‘A to Z.’ I love ‘A to Z Challenge’ for it makes me commit to 26 days of Research and Writing. The striking slice is that it makes me write every day no matter what. I have been through days of professional and personal tiredness; 3.00 am, the bed looks beautiful, but then, I spend an hour more working on the A to Z. By the way, this was my fifth year of successful completion of the challenge. Every year I have been writing 8 line poems on the theme I select. I kept to the eight-line poems and then did a Travel around the world from A to Z.

Looking for country details, research, reading, selecting the specifics to write about, then abstract it and pen a poem, well, it was challenging than I thought. Some days got tricky because I had a lot to pick from, and then for a few days, I had to write on what I had. Letter X is always a challenge. I had days where I kept staring at my screen for an uncomfortably long time.

I have compiled my challenge into an ebook. Here goes my compilation, and with love, I close my A to Z challenge of 2021.

The ebook can be downloaded here:

A to Z Travel Around the World

I would like to thank all the readers who supported all through the month with reads, ratings, likes and comments. Thank you for being an inspiration. You also check my poems on the theme #LargerThanLife at my Instagram handle: prakash.hegade

Zimbabwe – Victoria Falls


It’s April of 2021 and Day 26 (Finale) of the A to Z challenge. This year, I am doing the theme – “Travel the World.” I am visiting countries from A to Z and presenting stories with 8 line poems.

Day 26 Country: Zimbabwe

Victoria Falls, one of the seven natural wonders of the world, is shared by two countries: Zambia (to the north) and Zimbabwe (to the south). It’s approximately twice the height and width of Niagara Falls. It is said that the noise of the falls can be heard from 40 kilometers and the spray and mist of falling water rises over 400 meters above and hence can be seen from a distance of about 50 kilometers. For the same reasons the local tribes called it as Mosi-o-Tunya, meaning “the smoke that thunders”. The water makes a roaring noise as it falls over the cliff and down into the Zambezi River below. The waterfalls has a width of 1,708 m. The falls is at its peak during April and lowest in October and early November.

Credits: by Diego Delso, CC BY-SA 4.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=7375063

Poem:

How can one,
Honor the limits,
Give them medals,
When you know,
The more you know,
The less you become,
The more remains,
In the more of unknowns.

One fine day, nothing will makes sense. Then another day, nothing still will make no sense. One fine yet another day, we will find the true meaning of what it all was.

Yemen – Dracaena Cinnabari


It’s April of 2021 and Day 25 of the A to Z challenge. This year, I am doing the theme – “Travel the World.” I am visiting countries from A to Z and presenting stories with 8 line poems.

Day 25 Country: Yemen

Dracaena Cinnabari or dragon blood tree, is a dragon tree native to the Socotra archipelago, part of Yemen. The tree has a unique and strange appearance. It is so called due to the red sap that the tree produces. Its fruits are small fleshy berries which turn from green to black as they grow, and then become orange when ripe. The trunk and the branches of the tree are thick and stout and display two-way branching, where each of the branches repeatedly divides into two sections. This is a species selected for making conservation related decisions, because protecting these species indirectly protects many other species that make up the ecological community of its habitat.

Credits: by Boris Khvostichenko(User:Boriskhv) – Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=7175533

Poem:

And that gem,
You loved,
You missed,
For no one’s mistake,
Is what,
You secretly look for,
When you say,
Nothing.

You let go because that is the way. You let go because of the pointless rules. You depart because you know why and no one else. Then, that, secretly defines you a ‘nothing’.

Mexico – Mayan Temples


It’s April of 2021 and Day 24 of the A to Z challenge. This year, I am doing the theme – “Travel the World.” I am visiting countries from A to Z and presenting stories with 8 line poems.

Day 24 Country: Mexico (X)

Mayan temples are one of the reasons why people visit Mexico. There are over 4,400 Maya sites throughout Latin America, of which many of them are located in Mexico. Palenque, Teotihuacan, Chichen Itza etc. are among the most renowned temples in the world identified by their grandeur.  The ancient stone temples of the Maya are ought to be around 2000 years old. Many Mayan temples were hidden among jungle surrounds for centuries until archaeologists have discovered and uncovered them. The Pyramid of the Magician, located in the ancient Mayan city of Uxmal, Mexico, is the tallest and most recognizable structure in Uxmal. Chichen Itza is one of the most spectacular Mayan temples and can be seen in figure below:

Credits: by Daniel Schwen – Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=7647000

Poem:

Then,
You just need a step,
A place to stand,
And own it.
The step,
Defines another, more,
Giving you destiny,
Never imagined.

It all starts with a step. Single step. It might be absolutely absurd on how the future looks like but it’s beautiful to let time define the ultimatum.

Turkey – Cappadocia


It’s April of 2021 and Day 20 of the A to Z challenge. This year, I am doing the theme – “Travel the World.” I am visiting countries from A to Z and presenting stories with 8 line poems.

Day 20 Country: Turkey

Cappadocia is a region of exceptional natural wonders. The area is a popular tourist destination, as it has many areas with unique geological, historic, and cultural features. It has awed the visitors not just from above the surface but also from beneath the ground. Cappadocia is a semi-arid region in central Turkey and is known for its distinctive fairy chimneys, tall cone-shaped rock formations, swooping rock valleys, mesmerizing landscapes. Cappadocia is one of the world’s top destinations to take a hot air balloon ride. Tourists say it’s a fortnight long exploration, each day capturing million striking memories. I insist to check other pictures on web.

Credits: by Ivankazaryan – Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=90872624

Poem:

From up there,
High in the sky,
Are dancing angels,
For the,
Words you gather,
Songs you write.
Put up a show,
Worthy it.

I know the angels up there are up for every kind of dance. Happy, hippy, lyrical and also with demons.

Qatar – Dallah


It’s April of 2021 and Day 17 of the A to Z challenge. This year, I am doing the theme – “Travel the World.” I am visiting countries from A to Z and presenting stories with 8 line poems.

Day 17 Country: Qatar

Qatar is classified by the UN as a country of very high human development and is backed by the world’s third-largest natural gas reserves and oil reserves. The capital Doha is a rapidly growing modern city with skyscrapers and blooming economy. The city leaves behind one mesmerized. Dallah, the coffee pots are known to be one of the best souvenirs of Qatar. They’ve been used for centuries to brew the traditional spicy, bitter coffee. The Dallah brewed coffee is part of the Qatari tradition of hospitality and ceremony. These are traditional coffee pots made of steel, brass, silver, or even 24K gold for special occasions or used by royalty.

Poem:

Some saw it half,
Some with mask,
Some saw it late,
Some oversaw.
What you brew,
The way you brew,
Is usually, always,
And only with you.

The stories of ‘you’ will be passed on and analyzed in the ways you never imagined. There are moments that are beautiful only because you know ‘your’ story.

Peru – Machu Picchu


It’s April of 2021 and Day 16 of the A to Z challenge. This year, I am doing the theme – “Travel the World.” I am visiting countries from A to Z and presenting stories with 8 line poems.

Day 16 Country: Peru

Machu Picchu is a 15th-century Inca citadel in Peru on a 7,970 feet mountain ridge. While its exact former usage still remains a mystery, most archaeologists believe that Machu Picchu was constructed as an estate for an Inca emperor. Machu Picchu is believed to have been built in the 1450s. It is both a cultural and natural UNESCO World Heritage Site. It’s well-known for its sophisticated dry-stone walls that fuse huge blocks without the use of mortar and intriguing buildings that play on astronomical alignments and panoramic views. Because the cloud forest grows over quickly in the area surrounding Machu Picchu, there may be unknown trails and ruins yet to be explored.

Poem:

Of all the stories:
That are heard,
That are discovered,
That are assumed,
That traveled,
Folklore’s,
The best ones,
Are the yet untold.

Have you ever noticed that most of your precious and memorable stories are the ones that you haven’t shared with any yet!?

Oman – Wahiba Sands


It’s April of 2021 and Day 15 of the A to Z challenge. This year, I am doing the theme – “Travel the World.” I am visiting countries from A to Z and presenting stories with 8 line poems.

Day 15 Country: Oman

Oman is famous for its ancient aflaj oases irrigation system, terraced orchards fortresses, sailing ships etc. Oman’s capital Muscat is famous for dazzling souks and superb seafood, and also its terrain brings the biggest adventures and hence the tourists. One of tourist attraction, Wahiba Sands is now known as the Sharqiya Sands named for the Bani Wahiba tribe. The desert has been of scientific interest noting 16,000 invertebrates as well as 200 species of other wildlife and 150 species of native flora. The area is defined by 12,500 square kilometres. Classic desert scenery with dunes & flora attracts visitors to this region and is also known for Bedouins (Bedouins are nomadic Arab Tribes who have historically inhabited the desert regions).

Credits: by Andries Oudshoorn – 080318-110 Oman – Sharqiya Sands – Al Areesh CampUploaded by mangostar, CC BY-SA 2.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=6840251

Poem:

It might be hard,
To count and note,
Every sand grain.
Because,
You can’t count,
You did not note,
You can’t let go,
Any sand grain.

We might think something to be an abrupt event, but every little thing counts and adds up to it. If we did not see, does not mean, it was not there.

Norway – Northern Lights


It’s April of 2021 and Day 14 of the A to Z challenge. This year, I am doing the theme – “Travel the World.” I am visiting countries from A to Z and presenting stories with 8 line poems.

Day 14 Country: Norway

Norway, having one of the lowest crime rates in the world, ranks first on the World Happiness Report. Also, ranks first in better life index, freedom index, public integrity etc. Lofoten in Norway is known for its dramatic scenery – you will be awed by the pictures. Northern lights or Auroras, are pretty famous in Norway. No, not that it’s only Norway where you get to see the northern lights but Tromso in Norway, is widely regarded as one of the world’s best places to see the Northern Lights. Auroras are the result of disturbances in the magnetosphere caused by solar wind. You can see a compiled image below.  

Credits: original uploader was 14jbella at English Wikipedia and Transferred from en.wikipedia to Commons

Poem:

The lights,
That paint the sky,
Like a magic charm,
Like someone there,
Wants us to wait,
Wants us to experience,
The beauty that is,
In every little moments.

It’s not always snow that gives you a chill. I am sure being there, amidst the greens in nothing less than magical.

Madagascar – Lemur


It’s April of 2021 and Day 13 of the A to Z challenge. This year, I am doing the theme – “Travel the World.” I am visiting countries from A to Z and presenting stories with 8 line poems.

Day 13 Country: Madagascar

With ring-tailed, the most known one, there are around hundred different species of lemurs in Madagascar.  They are native only to the island of Madagascar. Lemurs comes from Latin Lemures meaning ghosts or spirits. The mouse lemur is the smallest one and measures less than 27 centimetres. Gaint lemurs, weighing as much 200 kg are all extinct now majorly because of human activity though lemurs are popularly known for adaptations. lemurs play a huge role in maintaining forest diversity, structure and dynamics through the movement of seeds. For no specific reason aye-aye is my favorite and below is an image of that.

Poem:

Scream,
For the day and night,
And a little more,
Walk bare foot,
Feel the wind,
Carry the essence,
Make a chain.
Legacy, is a treasure.

We all need to leave behind something. In-fact, we all do, like it or not.