Friday, June 22, 2012


Leave the comfort zone!

Sitting pretty and strong was the Knight on e5,
Thought I, White just couldn’t lose till the knight was alive,
Every piece would love to find its own nice heaven,
But that just didn’t exist for the poor bishop on d7!
Pillsbury with white who had a position that was so nice,
Did something next, I just couldn’t believe my eyes!
He simply threw all the positional principles into the trash,
And  snapped off the Bishop on d7 with his knight in a flash!
How can a great master like Pillsbury have done what he had,
How on earth could he have exchanged a hero for a piece so bad!
I sat down coolly and for a while I thought,
I started to understand things which superficially one cannot!
Though the Knight was sitting on the best square that one can find,
Wasn’t it true that it was blocking the entire white army behind?!
While for the Bishop on d7 there was absolutely nothing right,
Didn’t it just defend the weakness on e6 with all his might?!
With those two pieces no longer there,
The weakness on e6 now began to glare!
Some wise man had rightly roared,
Its not what comes off but what matters is what remains on the board!
And So I say
Things that you prize the most must be given up some day,
The clouds will have to make way for the sun’s ray,
To become stronger you will have to experience the pain that will make you moan
And for that you will have to come out of your comfort zone!
For in life if your hands are always full with the things you like,
Then by this thought you will be haunted
That there was never enough space for the new things that you always wanted!
                                                                                                                      -Sagar Shah
                                                                                   (Inspired by the game Pillsbury-Showalter 1896)


  1. Hi Great Job.. It amply shows that chess is a way of life for you. The most complex of life situations you can rationalise with chess board positions.. Really amazing... even for a not so literate chess player like me.

    Dharmen Shah

  2. Your poem depicts truth of seem to be on the journey to become a chess poet..amazing beyond are the one who can explain even the inexplicable..

  3. Dear Sagar, I had just posted a comment, but looks like it didn't get through. Let me try again. I really loved the poem. I think it speaks a truth that is difficult to get through to people unless it is expressed in such a poetic way. It certainly made me feel uncomfortable as I am at that stage in life where it feels good to just coast along and be content with the way things are. However, looking back I must say that some of the best memories I have are from the times when life was most uncomfortable :-) So thanks for the wake up call and the inspiration. All the best!

  4. That last comment was from Anand Shah by the way :-)

  5. Awesome poem Sagar bhai! We always say chess teaches us a lot about life but this poem shows exactly how many great things we can learn from chess! very inspiring work! keep it up!! :)

  6. The subtlety of chess and its uncanny resemblance to life beautifully expressed !