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So Many Ways…

By Naiti Bhatt Email By Naiti Bhatt
August 2011
So Many Ways… I look around at others,
Completely different guises,
Yet the same in so many ways.

I look around at others,
So similar to the eye,
Yet so very different.

In the United States.

In India.

The national anthem,

Solemn yet exulting,
Familiar and welcoming to my eardrums,
This is my home.

Rich and proud,
With language not so acquainted to my ears,
But bringing out faint recognition of something.
Something else.

How can it feel so close yet so distant?

As the years go by,
I feel it more and more
And it becomes clearer and clearer
A longing for my family’s past
How my parents and grandparents grew up,
What they did when they were in their adolescence.

I hear the stories,
Families rejoicing,
Lighting firecrackers,
Spraying colors,
Prodigious times of festivities.

I see the sights of America’s past.

I see the sights of India’s past.

Times of sorrow and grief,
Of happiness and jubilance.

I realize that I can stay connected with my Indian culture,
While bearing red white and blue.
I can celebrate the things India celebrates,
Living the life that I am used to.
I am an American by birth,
Yet a brave Indian by heart.

[12-year-old Naiti Bhatt attends William Annin Middle School in Basking Ridge, New Jersey.]

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