NaPoWriMo 2018: Day 16 – Games we played

Today’s prompt is to write a poem that prominently features the idea of play. It could be a poem about a sport or game, a poem about people who play (or are playing a game), or even a poem in the form of the rules for a sport or game that you’ve just made up (sort of like Calvinball).

One look at the prompt and I wanted to give up. It’s been a long time since I played a real game – which  involved teams, running, catching, sweat, fights, winning and losing and the adrenaline rush.

Then came back the memory of a game played, forgotten and I don’t think crossed the borders of our country. Writing this poem was a trip down memory lane. In a matter of minutes, I had traveled thirty years back in time…to evenings after school, friends, games in the community.

Lagori is a game that ties all Indians belonging to the seventies, eighties and nineties, the memory of which will make them smile. Sadly my kids have absolutely no idea what I’m talking about…

Players- any number

divided into two groups with no special gear

Just seven flat stones piled in a tower, 

a good aim, a ball,

legs that run and hands that build,

That’s all.

The first team must attack, 

The player aims at the stack

Three chances.The tower must fall and the stones must scatter-

The players then run helter – skelter.

Move Or be hit by the ball the other team throws

If it touches you, you lose. That’s simply how it goes.

And then it’s their turn

to hit and run…

But not enough just to run; in order to win

The stones you dropped must be put back in,

the tower built back,

Again into a stack

With care, you must put the last stone on, 

And scream “Lagori”

Win a point and be done

Now its the other team turn,  

And thus it goes…

Played on the street,

And in schools, on the court,

A precious memory

Part of many an Indian kid’s childhood story.


Copyright©, 2018. All Rights Reserved.


28 responses to “NaPoWriMo 2018: Day 16 – Games we played”

  1. Mariam Avatar

    Great readingg


  2. Robbie Yates Avatar

    I think that, in writing this rhyme
    You thought of an earlier time
    And took us as well
    That’s why it’s so swell
    That’s what makes this poem sublime.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Smitha V Avatar

      Thanks Robbie. You’re so right. This poem went some twenty five years back in time. I’m happy you enjoyed it and happier you shared how you felt. Thank you again.

      Liked by 2 people

  3. NaPoWriMo / GloPoWriMo 2018 – Day 16 – “A Play On Words” by David Ellis | toofulltowrite (I've started so I'll finish) Avatar

    […] – NaPoWriMo 2018-16 — Day 16, a Poem, the Board Game – Board Games for Us 13. WHAT LIFE SAID TO ME – NaPoWriMo 2018: Day 16 – Games we played 14. HEPHAESTUS’ WASTE & COSMIC RUBBLE – Day 16 – Mindfulness as an Exercise, or […]

    Liked by 1 person

  4. robbiesinspiration Avatar

    This is a lot of fun, Smitha. A happy poem of childhood.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Smitha V Avatar

      Thanks Robbie. Our games were so simple and yet so full of fun.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. lifelessons Avatar

    What fun. I’ve never heard of this game, but I’m going to play it the next time I’m around enough people!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Smitha V Avatar

      And when you do, do share a pic. Would love that!


  6. V.J. Knutson Avatar

    Today I learned something new – never heard of this game before – and your description really captured the essence of our childhood fun – running around.


    1. Smitha V Avatar

      I’m so glad that this poem brought back happy memories for you too. Did you’ll play a similar game in your country? Thank you so much for your lovely comment. Its very encouraging.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. V.J. Knutson Avatar

        I don’t remember a similar game. Sounds fun.


  7. Feelings and Freedom Avatar

    I was all smiles while reading this poem 😉 It brought back all the memories of my childhood. We used to call it “Pithoo”. My children still play it with their friends.Wonderfully penned Smitha! I am still struggling with the prompt today, just not in a mood to write 😦

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Smitha V Avatar

      My God Vandana…I did not want to write too…the prompt did not interest me. Then lagori came out of the blue and this happened. Thank you for liking it. Was an effort. Lovely that your kids play it. My kids were wondering what I was talking about.
      And for your poem today…I’m sure you’ll come up with something before the day ends…some game we played. 😊

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Feelings and Freedom Avatar

        Ha Ha! See we think alike! I am trying to figure out what to write about…your poem has prompted some thoughts…let me try 🙂 Thanks

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Smitha V Avatar

          I always knew 😀. Great! You’re welcome. Will not take any more of your time. All the best!

          Liked by 1 person

  8. Preeti S. Manaktala Avatar

    Smita , how wonderfully written , this has been and still is one of my favourite games .. we used to call it ‘PITHOO’ !!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Smitha V Avatar

      Thank you so much Preeti😊. It was a fun game . Ok, so it has a different name in other places in India. Thats nice to know.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Preeti S. Manaktala Avatar

        Yeah ! up north , in Delhi it’s called this .. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  9. Nisthur Avatar



    1. Smitha V Avatar

      Thanks Nisthur…


      1. Nisthur Avatar

        Pleasure Smitha


  10. Sameera Avatar

    Nostalgic.😍😍 My favourite childhood game. The poem is beautiful. 👌


    1. Smitha V Avatar

      Thank you so much Sameera. It was fun, wasn’t it? 🙂 Made me feel young again 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Sameera Avatar

        Yes. We lost so much as we grow up..! 😊


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