NaPoWriMo Day 22:

Our (optional) prompt for the day asks to engage with different languages and cultures through the lens of proverbs and idiomatic phrases. Many different cultures have proverbs or phrases that have largely the same meaning, but are expressed in different ways. For example, in English we say “his bark is worse than his bite,” but the same idea in Spanish would be stated as “the lion isn’t as fierce as his painting.” Today, I’d like to challenge you to find an idiomatic phrase from a different language or culture, and use it as the jumping-off point for your poem. 

Well I ended up using a couple of them, seven to be exact, though I took care to attest the meaning within the poem. Hope I haven’t overcooked the broth 🙂


Poem: Do what it takes


You may think the sky has fallen, but be certain of the ground you stand

As things that are pernicious for you, may not be vile for everyone

In Turkey they say, “If the world flooded, it wouldn’t matter to the duck



Energy comes from within, it means when Kenyans say, “The dog is propelled by its tail

Know the value of things around you; “Those who don’t know a falcon, will eat it,” Arabians proclaim



And hey, don’t squander your time on trivialities,

Yes you guessed it right, “The eagle doesn’t wage a war against frogs,” believe my Italian mates



When clouds obstruct your Sun, just become a cloud and blend in

“To live with wolves, you have to howl like a wolf,” how aptly Russians say



Don’t let defeat hold you back; “Fall seven times, stand up eight” (Japanese)

Trust Turkish when they say, “Those who want yoghurt in winter, must carry cow in their pocket”

To achieve your goals, you have to do what it takes!



                                                                        ©Vandana Bhasin