to fill up

By Ritika Kaushik

a completely blank sheet of paper
is not just a great temptation
but a task
that once undertaken cannot be undone

the ink cannot stain the paper
as it stains your fingers

it is confusing to decide
whether to do justice to the sacrifice of the tree
or to the words that emerge on the shore of my mind

like those shells on the sea
that are precious only when found

not only is it dissatisfying
to reach the end of the completely blank sheet of paper
[that was]

it is unnerving to realise
that the bullet you thought you’ll shoot
had decided to make the pistol itself its tomb

it is then you face the necessity of a
full stop
a comma
a semi colon
or a run on

About the poet:


Ritika Kaushik, a UGC NET JRF awardee, is currently pursuing an M.Phil/PhD program at the School of Arts and AestheticsJawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) with focus on Indian documentaries. Starting with graduation in English Literature from Delhi University, Ritika received a formal training in Film and Video production, Still Photography Media Appreciation and Communication Theory by completing a Master of Arts in Mass Communication, at Anwar Jamal Kidwai Mass Communication and Research Centre (AJKMCRC), Jamia Millia Islamia (JMI). Her student film Once upon a Sultan was screened at the JIFF’12 (Jaipur International Film Festival). After that, she had a tryst with the commercial film industry, working as an Assistant Director for the film Vicky Donor in 2011, a Rising Sun Films production, and was also involved with the education industry from 2011–2012, working with idiscoveri education in the capacity of Educational Content concept reviewer/content writer and as an Assistant Director for making R&D films for school students involving innovative teaching and content. She has also worked as a freelance writer for from 2008-2009, and has also freelanced as a media practitioner.


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