Tuesday, December 4, 2007

It was the night of the first snow. She slipped her hands into the sides of her yellow fleece shorts, smiling fleetingly at the warmth seeping into her fingers. She had never understood why he did it before.
He couldn't get the cold out of his burning fingertips. His flannel pyjamas were a terrible replacement.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Trying

Spirals.
Flowers. Some with sepals.
Blissful stars, fiendish crescent moons. Spiked suns. And all that galactic nonsense.
Meticulously doodled on white paper.
One whole page devoted exclusively to these little masterpieces.

The upturned lines on the smileys started drooping.
The images became frenzied, riotous.
The dark blue ink, mutinous.

She wished they had been words

Monday, October 29, 2007

Pages of my Life

Pages of my life—archived and new!

It is like an old family album and the stories behind every pose, every smirk and every true grin.
It is also like opening a new book, smelling of crispy paper.

This had to happen. But why did I let it be?

Maybe because Hope is never archived.

Monday, October 22, 2007

the list

leg wax. mani-pedi.
new colorstay lip stain.
charge camera.
don't max out credit card.
new black dress. (#17)
dangly earrings.
only salad. no soda (soda bloats.)
dkny Be Delicious - For Her.
round hairbrush for singing.
The World is Mine.
paddle hairbrush for brushing.
practice five-second semi-demure stare.
red wine to squash flutterbyes.

The Uptown 6

Three pennies.
A small pencil.
A red umbrella with watermelons printed on it.
Two keys on a key chain.
A white hamster.
A cell phone.
A broken locket.
A baby.

She stared at the bizarre collection of images, bemused.

New York City Subway Lost and Found

She wondered if she could get her virginity back.

soundtrack

As she watched him walk out of the door, she heard the last few strains of 'their song' drift in from the neighbor's radio. She smiled bitterly through her tears, remembering when she had said to him, bathing in the afterglow, "I wish my life was a movie, just so that the music would play."

wonderland

She blew smoke rings at him and proclaimed that she felt like Alice's catterpillar. He laughed at her childishness and blew a smoke ring back at her. Glancing at the skull on the pack, she wondered if catterpillars got cancer. Then he blew one ring through another, and laughing delightedly, she forgot all about it.

Daily Planner: Year 2007

Daily Planner: Year 2007

September 6th, Thursday
Things to do today:
1. Get up
2. Survive
3. Go back to bed

September 7th, Friday
Things to do today:
1. Get up
2. Survive
3. Go back to bed

September 8th, Saturday
Things to do today:
1. Get up
2. Survive
3. Go back to bed

cigarettes and love

He smokes Marlboros. The first cigarette she ever smoked was a Benson and Hedges - Special Filter. So was the last. He kissed her after every cigarette. He said he loved the taste of cigarettes and her grape lip balm. He still smokes Marlboros. It probably wouldn't have worked anyway. The brands were all wrong.

new

New house, new room.
"New experience," they said, "learning new things is good."

New place, new people.
Hellos, goodbyes and high-pitched giggles.
"Did you just get in? Oh! Me too!"

New clothes, new shoes.
Itchy new labels and new band-aids on new blisters.

I miss Old. I wonder if it misses me too.
An almost imperceptable nod.

Suddenly, it was as if he could feel his dignity shrivel up inside of him and scurry away in disgust. He felt the almost hysterical laughter choke in his throat as he glanced down at his hands with a defeated sigh.

Three little words --- that's all it took.

"Hold my purse."
(apologies.. updates have been long pending...)

"There's someone else."

Three little words --- that's all it took.

It had been far too placid, she decided. She had expected fireworks but all she was left with was an odd sense of detachment.

She stared at herself in the mirror, bemused.
Nothing to mark that she was not the person she had been yesterday.

Thursday, September 6, 2007

I Adore When It Isn't Me

Her brow wrinkles in concentration and her ink-stained fingers tap the bench in rhythm. Coffee with what looks like whipped cream on top sits half forgotten next to her stack of notes. She looks up in time to catch a retreating smile. "I was singing out loud, wasn't I?", she asks the smiler. Exasperation Central.

Sometimes

I’m tired of reading between the lines and measuring the depth. I’m tired of placing everything under a damned microscope. I wish I could admire the beauty of the surface, for a change. I wish I could appreciate meaninglessness, irrelevance and anything that is about as much use as a chocolate teapot.
Only sometimes, though.

Poisoned wine

grailwithwinecropped.jpg



Poison,
Was laced into
The first glass of sweet wine you offered me

Since then even water tastes like fire



From betrayal is born vindictiveness
And for those of us who never forget
It is akin to the demon child born of a mortal womb

You will always be the poison in my sweet wine

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

Delusion

The past can be terribly deceptive. It’s like an old photograph. You see a smiling face, a loving arm around someone, and your eyes start glistening with unshed tears.
I look so happy…
Photographs can lie.
They’re just images you create.
Smiles can be faked.
The past can delude.
All because you want to believe.

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Mirror

Remember that day in the coffee shop? You know who appeared on that empty chair beside you. You tried to hide her, didn’t you? With extra cups of cappuccino and silly laughter and inane conversations. Do you think your friends noticed? No, you did a pretty good job.
It’s a pity reflections can’t be killed.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Of Peace

Days passed into weeks, into months. And in that time, she slowly started to forgive, because forgiveness is the start to peace. And perhaps this is why peace makes the most profound and costliest bruise: its acquisition comes only through heart-wrenching sorrow. And she forgave, because the memory doesn’t eat their soul. It devours yours.

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Pride and Prejudice



Elizabeth and DarcySometimes,
you close your eyes
to shut out the whole world
Pretending,
you’re the only one in it
For a piece
of that illusory peace



~o~o~o~o~o~o~o~o~o~o~o~o~o~o~o~


pride-prejudice.jpgSometimes,
you close your eyes
And leave them shut
Just to see if,
when you open them
the other person is still there


~o~o~o~o~o~o~o~o~o~o~o~o~o~o~o~

Speakers interchanged
But the words stayed true.

Monday, August 20, 2007

Waiting to resign


Once upon a time there were just dreams and doings
Victory and failure;
Zenith and nadir,
See-saws and slips
Happiness and despair.

Today, there is Acceptance.
And an unfathomable piece more than simplistic outcomes.
There are differing motives.
Incomprehensible facts,
Complicated states,
Unknown pitfalls.

Despite the sudden up swell,
Resignation has still not arrived.

Sunday, August 19, 2007

The right choice

She bit her lip in frustration. She couldn’t believe she was in such a situation again.
Choices. Argh. Why did it always have to be either this or that? Why me? Why me?
No. She had to choose. She had to make a decision. And the right one, for that matter.

"Beige. The beige bag."

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Lady Cleo

The ‘queen’ reclined there; surveying a freshly showered dark night shining like a knight’s gauntlet that lay beneath her.

Some faces, familiar hukka smell, chocolate fondue, her stretched, bare legs appeared in a dream.

In the half-light of lanterns there was no harm in being all that she wasn’t.
Daybreak was still a while away.

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

Real passion

The week

What a week! she winced
Every morning waking up with a bad headache
A foul taste in her mouth and the most unpleasant feeling of all…
That the world was just the way she had left it the previous night
Improved not a whit, insurmountable problems waiting to plague her again
No respite.

~o~o~o~o~o~o~o~o~o~o~o~o~o~o~o~o~o~o~o~o~


The night

Evening was a haze of cigarette smoke and alcohol
Replacing the daze of screaming and insomnia
Tonight, bodies entangled
An ode to the twisted tango of her emotions all week
Yet, underneath the stupor…
Dad, how could you? Forgive me, ma, just couldn’t take it anymore so I ran away. Leave me alone!

~o~o~o~o~o~o~o~o~o~o~o~o~o~o~o~o~o~o~o~o~


Morning after

She thought she might’ve been able to call them moans of passion
They were after all…moans…of passion
It was just great sex, wasn’t it?

She shrugged, unhappy realization
It never is.

A night of great passion is always followed by a hangover. It felt exactly the same as every other morning this week.

The Rose Garden-5

“Honey, am home!”
She went straight to the loo mirror, ran her fingers through the freshly re-bonded hair, highlighted with blonde streaks. For a moment she drifted into the first anniversary, then the second, finally lost count……
She took out the carefully hidden gift and ran to the Study

The doctor declared he was gone by 3 pm!

Dream Away--3

She who breathes smoke and fire also waits for someone who is quiet,
She who runs with the deer also slows down to keep pace in heels,
She, who creates, also breaks it up with just a single stroke!
She who turns around and wields her sword without armour
Also wishes to rest beneath his shade.

Friday, August 3, 2007

Lonely

Specks of red, blue, green light
Shadows of moving palm fronds
The sky a reddish-grey haze-- like a shoddy, old blanket!

Glittering drops of water down the glass, some scale a zig-zag path like a scared snake, some others rest a while deciding where to go.

Someone lies there, counting every drop and then,
loses count.

Thursday, August 2, 2007

Dream Away--2

A home with a chequered red napkin in the kitchen, a dark wood bookcase, some lilting music in the air, a warm Sunday lunch a warmer homecoming on a Monday evening.

A home in moments and an inaudible flutter of an eye.

She, so wanted to dream them and she did.
Just that they never came true.
-----------------------------------------------------
[The other side of Bibs' Dream Away]

Wednesday, August 1, 2007

Trust Walk


Will you walk a mile with me on the gravel path, on the murky city sands?
Will you talk a while with me by the grey sky and the rolling sea?
Will you stop-by when I wake up in the still night, a moment before dawn?

Hey Stranger,

Will you bring your true song to me?

Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Wisdom from the 55er-Oracle

Too many cooks are better than one in the bush. Forewarned is forespawned. Tis better to have loafed and lost than never to have loafed at all. So think wisely and as well as possible. Depending on how deep it is. The well, that is. Half a loaf, as they say, is enough for dinner.

Been away for a bit. Stuck in a morass of work right now. But I wrote this as part of what started out as Choliwali Chronices and is fast becoming my life-work. Hehehe. It doesn't make much sense here (it doesn't make much sense in the original either) but I couldn't imagine writing a 55er and not posting it here. Apologies for all the nonsense :)

Monday, July 30, 2007

Ray of light

ray-of-light-2.jpg

He looks at her from the corner of his eye
Thinking she won’t notice
Secretly hoping she will
So secret, he won’t even admit to himself

She feels his look
Like sunlight, warm on her cheeks
Her eyes stay downcast
Shielded from his blinding gaze
Warmed nevertheless by its intensity

Then it starts to rain.

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Helplessness

His helplessness grew. It consumed him. He heart felt heavy and it weighed him down. ‘It's moved closer to my stomach’, he thought, ironically amused.
Helplessness. He wrote it in the air making the‘s’s nice and loopy. He drew it again. In a circle surrounding him as he whirled around. He laughed. Again. And again.

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

They lost him--VI

He checked once more-- the final draft—before handing it over. The lady at the counter wore a blank look like the other side of an important piece of paper which exists just so.

“My father….you see, this is my father” he stammered.

The lady nodded and stamped ‘24’!

In the ‘Missing’ column,
a father- numbered!

Time, Perhaps? VII


She’d been cleaning and washing for days. The winter sun would often envelope her back like a warm pashmina as she sat there mending quilts.

Then one day, she skipped breakfast and bade a teary farewell to parents.

Soon she pulled out the pre-selected saree and brought the stool near the fan before she ran out of

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Pot of gold

lips.jpgHer parents say that she was born talking.

Then she discovered writing
English grammar compositions
Stories and poetry
Letters and emails
Chats and instant messaging
SMSes, orkut scraps
Resumes and reports

Then she stumbled onto blogging
And anonymous posting
Even editing and deleting
And much later, private publishing

But silence is yet to be learnt.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Recycled message


After this

You washed up my shore
Like a bottle with a message, once more

But it hasn’t been long
Yet it seems so wrong

A recycled kiss
Something, terribly amiss

The cigarette smoke
With your signature stroke

As my soul retreats
Your audible heart-beats

Give the midnight hour a shake
But, can we remake?

Monday, July 16, 2007

Song 55s--In dino....

Circa 2007
In an old shoe-box, with little slits lived Lady Birdie.
A peck here, a pull with her beak there revealed the sepia toned world outside. Of a small unkempt room, a worn-out couch, lots of paper, records, bottles, shoes and what not.

In that year of insignificance, she’d still not given up on the Sky!
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------
[Hai tujhe bhi ijaazzat, karle tu bhi mohabbat……from the film Life..in a Metro]

Gold-digger

Happy birthday!

Paper rustling, excitement tinged with apprehension
Glittering, blinding.. sheer intoxication
I can’t accept this, it’s too expensive!

So what? It’s just money.

Too much of it!

It doesn’t matter, there’s plenty.

Exactly.
When it is about something else,
that matters more,
even if there’s very little of it,
I’ll be delighted to accept.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Song 55: Suicide Note

I wanted to believe you would win?
The black raven's song, a caress, shoddy shades of clotting blood.
The Bottle, broken like shattered dreams.
The trembling heart. Closed my eyes.
Did not wish to see. Lived in an illusion.
Some thoughts, invented. Placed carefully. Built a new world of intangible thoughts.
I wanted to believe.

**
The song is called Suicide Note by Johnette Napolitano.
I am too lazy to hoist the song here, if one wants to hear it. Leave a message, I shall mail it to you.

Afterglow

When we kiss, do you close your eyes?
Or are you looking over my shoulder to see if someone better comes along?
I keep my eyes open,
checking if you close your eyes!

How come you don’t trust me?
Because you don’t trust me.

How do you figure that?
Because you ask too many questions!

Turnabout isn't fair play

She picks a gob of mud and aims carefully
Splatch! It spatters down his clean (too clean she thinks) face

Then she sits back to sip her drink
But it makes her choke
Arsenic!

...she thinks in panic

And so the loquacious one is silenced
But it wasn’t fair play!!

Are her final unspoken words

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Sometimes...

IV

Sometimes, she rides on the crest of the wave like the Chinese dragon-rider from her childhood. She loses count of day and time, flying with the moist breeze.

Sometimes, she somehow wants to whip and push the day, the week, the month with all her might waiting for an oasis which never appears.

Only sometimes, though.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
V

Sometimes, she wonders what if she just vanishes, one day, like those on the ‘missing’ columns in the newspaper. Or perhaps like the Cheshire Cat, from feet upwards till only her words remain choked mid- air.

Sometimes, she wonders what her epitaph will say. Will anyone come for her funeral?
And then she shudders.

Only sometimes, though.

Another life VI

She is in a transparent capsule of bubbled glass which has taken the shape of her head, limbs, hips and the feet jutting out like an odd bunk-head.

Sometimes the world watches her from afar like an unknown symptom.
Sometimes they try pricking, tapping where the glass has a weak turn.

Just like that

Thursday, July 5, 2007

Song55: Wonderful Tonight

He was driving back home. He did not even know why he went back, nothing really awaited him there. His house seemed to sense his loneliness and claw at him.

He wished he had her , but most of all he wished he had told her how wonderful she had looked the night she drove away.

***
My first attempt at a song fifty five. The song wonderful tonight- eric clapton

Tuesday, July 3, 2007

Mangalasutram

“It’s too late for you, now….”
“Utterly talented but crazy.”
“Hard to handle”

Two women.
Poised. Smart. Genuine.
Uusally mis- understood.

Two women.
Witness to life around,
The gory battles fought alone,
The comfort of soaring high.

As the Nadaswaram tuned in and some more ghee revved up the holy fire,
The Writer missed their chapter!

Come IV

Come here,
where the Nadaswaram and the Madalam invoke a new path
where roses, jasmine, sandal, sugar candy can’t wipe the tears of a gifting father
where the tunes of the Laali and the shared moment beneath the Arundhati make a promise worthwhile

Come here,
to a new bond to the south of the Vindhyaas

Monday, July 2, 2007

Room with a view

The room has a view. An expensive view.

view-from-above.jpg


She says,
Take a walk in the mud. Stay out in the rain so long that you never feel clean and dry again. When you return, you won’t need to stand at the window to see the view.

He shrugs,
Too late, I already paid the rent.

Friday, June 29, 2007

The Conjurer

Anyone can write a story.
So the little boy tried. He wrote and conjured a tale about happiness and magic, tinted with magical shades of love.
And now the little boy has grown up.
As he looks for the story, he realizes that anyone can write a story.
Only now his words reverberate in third-person.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Love

It had been seven months since she saw him last. Watching the lazy smoke rings float away, she made a decision. Picking up an old, yellowed postcard, she began to write.

I miss you. I haven't changed the sheets since you left. They still smell like you. It makes me retch.
I like being thin.

Sunday, June 24, 2007

Dance 2

In the half-light, her dancing shoes tapped on the wooden floor and the air buzzed oft-repeated tunes. She swayed in a dervish motion and her white, fleshy calves tweaked like the floor beneath.
Something inside her swelled fighting her composed numbness; the last flicker of a fully-molten candle.

Outside, it hadn’t stopped raining for two days.

Thursday, June 21, 2007

In search of me...

When the sprightly morning breeze touches my face,
When the hurried day gradually mingles in slow motion,
When the darkness of the night is cracked by thunder,

I search

Not for another one, not those locked-up moments,
Nor the frozen dewdrops, from the autumn of yesteryears!

The un-awareness churning in half-dream,
Bubbles of boiling water!

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

True!

The wound up clown kept clapping…out of beat. Against the flood light beneath the window, it was a million white needles showering from the jet black sky.
A child somewhere fought with motherly logic to fly a kite, one torn that very moment leaving him with the tail.

Clowns and kites are hardly ever true.

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Come III

In response to Ideasmithy's Telling All

Come here,
where the air whips up cigarette ash, the tattered moments fly out of windows in the sky, fluttering in the air till they vanish forever into nothingness, where every day someone leaves all that he ever had, everyone that she ever called her own.

Come here,
where days are fire balls of lost love.

Telling all

For Shreyasi, who understands what I don't say as well. And for the person this conversation happened with.

~o~o~o~o~o~o~o~o~o~o~o~o~


How are things?
What things?

You know...are you dating anybody? I haven't heard you talk about any women.
I haven't liked any women.

Turn left here, it's around the corner. What were you saying?
Nothing.

It wasn't nothing. Tell all!
I said, I haven't liked any woman.

Ah.
What?

Nothing.
Really?

Well......all?
All.

Ah.

~o~o~o~o~o~o~o~o~o~o~o~o~

Friday, June 15, 2007

Ode to fifty-five moments

[This is an emotional one for me, almost like the last parting of the school farewell and also like the first day of college in their respective grief and joy, reflective of life as it is.
This post is for Ideasmith who made me write my first fifty-fiver, for my partners (Wiseling, Revealed, Ginger Girl, Kyra, Spazsim Chasm) in creation and inspiration on 55s and Then Some.., for all my silent readers and the enthusiasts (Dreamcatcher, Rambler, Bibin, Moushumi) who egg me on
To all of you, named and un-named,
I take a bow!

On the realistic side, Google Analytics says my Fifty-fived Charmers is the most visited section
So here I raise a toast to…]

My life’s trails etched on you
The smiles, the thirst, the pain

Those that have brought me to you
Those who have treasured me for you

Each new day
Of getting drunk—the tides and ebbs
The aftermath.
One more you

My life eternal
To you, my fifty-fivers
Not one word more, nor one less

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Once more III

Then there’s this push to get It rolling
All to merely keep It moving

Words, views, pictures, memories
Taken out from little nooks and crannies

How many times more?
Tell me, isn’t It a bore?

All to merely keep It moving
The It and its unknown meaning.

How many times more?
For you,
Once more!

Monday, June 11, 2007

Once more II

The row of diamonds on her finger glistened, petite! Guarded by the imposing pearl and cat’s eye on either side. He looked on intently without talking.

The waiter pulled out the lighter.
For an ephemeral moment, their eyes met over the candle’s flicker and something whizzed down her.

Icy yet warm

For the last time, perhaps!

C'est la vie

My words of the moment felt strange and looked around surreptitiously as it rode on its wooden horse of Time.
It suddenly took out its sword to wield against an approaching dragon but took a few steps back to see that it was but its own future, my words of the past!

C’est la vie!

Wednesday, June 6, 2007

Bar-frog

Hungover on reality....
Or high on illusion?
Life is nothing more than a visit to the bar!

What’s your poison tonight, sir?

How about a cocktail of the two?

Coming up …. one average human being on the rocks.

No, hold the ice, give it to me neat..

Impossible, the ice keeps it from exploding!

Tuesday, June 5, 2007

Once more

How many times more?
Once, twice, thrice over…

Once more there is a resolution that it should stop here, no more knocks, no more stopping by
No more of being a mud-cake

Once more there is a weak breakage, there’s gathering will, there’s feeling bad ….

Another revolution of the giant wheel
For the last time, perhaps!

Friday, June 1, 2007

Dance!

The field was set with a reddish canopy.
Gradually the wind started rolling from the ground, upwards, taking with it deadwood, dried leaves, the garbage of urban life.
Then in a sudden flash the world lit up, followed by a thundering growl and a blinding sheet of water all around.

What a Dance of the Summer Rains!

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

shit. finally.

Finally.

After all the complaining, whining, nit-picking, thinking, grumbling, over criticizing, rethinking, hair splitting and denouncing.

After all the quarter-life crisis’s, the ends of the world and the manic depression. After all the mood swings and emotional roller coasters.

After all that messed up nonsense, I’ve finally figured - I am completely incapable of happiness.

Shit.

Monday, May 21, 2007

De-bugging


They tell her to take him out of the ‘system’, remove that part of her which has become him.
They tell her to take an early morning walk, be healthy and flourish.

And she wonders, “What, if I throw everything in the air and say what I ought to, to the one I need to?”

An ever-lasting smile


There was noise, lights and people around.
She was munching a snack, letting the tamarind-flavoured dip tickle her tongue and spirit.

Suddenly she watched him smile at an unspoken thought.
An immediate muffling of the world by something, which seemed to reach deep within and squeeze her innards.

A few moments later, the television was un-muted.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Acts of little faith

Presumption and Ego came to me.

Presumption cooed,
I’ll make you happy!

Ego thundered,
I’ll make you sad!

I shrugged and said,
As you please

She only made me laugh
He just made me cry
Disappointed, I didn’t pay my fare

The failed act faded
I was left holding the used ticket to the show.

water people

The person you love is 74.8% water

Think about it. More than half of the person you cannot live without, is made up of a colourless, tasteless liquid. More than half is something that is so common, it’s hard to see why you love them. And more than half is something we take for granted.

Caged II

And I do not want to be here
In front of this inane piece of paper
With thousand thoughts crossing my path.

My mind crashes on things I must do
And right now too
My heart forever holds the dimpled faith

But I never want to be here
Here, where today never seems a Sunday!

Monday, May 14, 2007

Song-55s--Yesterday once more...

The familiar swell within just before the eyes met, the usual courtesies, meaningless giggle, some small talk for lack of a common context, the twinkle in each other’s eyes, the momentary faraway look for the sake of ‘what if’, some gulps of cremosa.

How many times does one need a replay?
All for a nest…..

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------
[I was reminded of one of my favourite songs by The Carpenters and hence the title]

Yeah V

To shake up the doom and gloom atmosphere that suddenly reigns!

Have you ever felt like life is effortless, that your place in it is insignificant but perfect, that you are loved, that you love, that the sun is just exactly the right distance away, the wind blows at exactly the right strength, you are at exactly the right place at the right time?

Yeah :)

Yeah- IV

Have you ever felt like the walls are caving in on you with an insurmountable force, that the ground beneath has been trembling and your feet had gone numb to tell you so, that the ceiling above has cracked and you are shrinking in yourself till a huge blast sucks everything out to Nothing

Yeah!

Saturday, May 12, 2007

Yeah -III

Have you ever walked on fire, simmering, spread out fire like a fluorescent carpet, feeling the singing deadwood beneath your feet, Trusting that nothing can hurt you and knowing that it actually didn’t touch the soft skin where your feet shapes out like a bean pod, knowing that Life is but a Real Trust-Walk?

Yeah!

Yeah-II

Have you ever run through blinding dust-storm, not knowing what lies beyond, where you are going, whether you’ll Be in the next moment, just running till you almost feel that you are flying with the storm at your feet, soaring into the Nihil above, staring at the Creation beneath until a grounding spray of freshness?

Yeah

Aphrodite

apparition-of-the-face-of-aphrodite.jpgShe spoke to me

Not a word said
Yet her silence whispered secrets
only a true mate to my soul could know

As I contemplated her silence
She seemed to blur

I saw her speaking to another
Or was it a reflection in her mirror?
Was it me?

I stayed wondering,
Eternity only, for company

Friday, May 11, 2007

yeah

Have you ever walked down the street, staring pointlessly at the nearly-melting tar road, hoping and praying that a big, freakish bolt of lightening would just strike you, singeing you to the bone, just so you don’t have to walk another step or live another minute of this crappy existence you call a life?

Yeah.

Movie 55s--Stealing Beauty

On a journey of life
Half retold
Of love, virginity
And unknown fatherhood.

Of discoveries
Secrets, unknown beings
Of death, farewells
And bouncing reeds

Poetry, beauty
In abundance lay
Of diaries, stories
And Tuscany days.

The after-glow of the setting sun bathed Lucy, saying love hasn’t waited but the unspoken journey for her dead mother has….
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
[Inspired by the 1996 film 'Stealing Beauty' by Bernardo Bertolucci]

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Movie 55s--Bark!

Sense non-sense
Quiet bedlam
She, a live zombie

Not a word
Not a blink
Creation of medicated sleep!

She’s been barking all night telling this world of her shared canine existence!
She’s found solace in looking at the world sideways;
The world’s not forgiven him for loving her still!

And I wonder who’s walking whom?

Wednesday, May 9, 2007

Choices are Impossible to Not Regret

She wanted the Steve Maddens. They were beautiful. Fawn, strappy, sexy kitten heels. The sort of shoes that were her. She almost bought them. And then she saw the Nikes. Thought about how she needed to run. Imagined that she wanted to leave the familiar behind. She bought them.

Some people should stick to Maddens.

Another crosspost. Sigh.

Caged

There are half a dozen worksheets open in front of me; the cursor blinks waiting for the next word.
There are people, noises, voices, and fears in the head.
How far is home?

Every now and then something flutters, claws and cries inside me.
Breathless being!

Soon, a serpentine trickle of blood leaves its mark.

Tuesday, May 8, 2007

I wouldn't exchange places with it

There's a HEB plastic bag waiting to cross the road with me. It bobs politely by my side, patiently waiting for the lights to change and then crosses. I watch it climb higher, rolling onto its back. A break for the sun is what it's attempting. Yayy, bag. I worry about it, though. Remember Icarus?

Sorry, I cross-posted but it's been too long since I posted here.

First time

“Two, please,” I told the guy behind the counter.
Keya’s eyes were alight with excitement. I was more composed.
She reached for hers with trembling hands.
“You’re almost twenty!” I teased.
“It’s your first time too,” she retorted. “Even you were never allowed this stuff”
I grinned, and took a bite of the cotton candy.

Monday, May 7, 2007

Blues

Light green and turquoise blue to perfection.
Beautiful blue kundan on her ears.
A hint of kohl smudged through the day.
A splash of mocha on her lips.
She couldn’t believe the reflection she saw in the loo mirror!

Such is the lure of not being any given day,
Of course, it is Monday….

Friday, May 4, 2007

Calvin and Susie?

When the moon makes black and white patterns in the room and the world has slowed down, there are meandering
thoughts,
dreams,
revelations.

The room looks like a stage set for an impending show, exciting and unknown.
She pulls some moments closer and hopes they don’t go where they have always gone before…

Affectionate, they!

Thursday, May 3, 2007

Come II

Come here,
Where the casuarina has been shaped by the whispering wind gone by,
Where the evening star always hugs the dark
Where you will know the tales of the old tree bark.

Come here,
Where your footsteps will talk to the one behind
And your soul will meet the one whom you always hide.

Tuesday, May 1, 2007

That thing you do...

In half-slumber,
In unknowing.
In trying to hold onto the floating riff-raff
It’s that thing you do!

In surprises, fleeting glances,
In not answering when I ask,
In speaking when you do
It’s that thing that you do!

In my dreaming,
In my wanting to hold you
It’s always that thing you do
To Me.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------
[Inspired by the 1996 film 'That Thing You Do!' written and directed by Tom Hanks. The lyrics are here.]

The Rose Garden-IV

She woke up with the first alarm. Another morning jog bunked!
But why not?

She imagined how X,Y,Z…might be right now. Loved, caressed, on vacation.
She has a usual work day to traverse. Lone ranger.

Jealousy, self-pity and utter monotony swelled within her and she quickly closed her eyes, only for the next alarm ring….

Black Hole Sun

6.52PM.Sunday.29th April 07.Bangalore.From my 7th floor window.

I hate sunsets.
They leave me melancholy.
I dread the twilight halo
and let it pass
hiding in my windowless cubbyhole
on weekdays.
But Sundays are particularly tough.
All of my seventh floor apartment windows face west.
Ironic?
I try to ignore, but the orange glow
seeps in under the heavy drawn curtains
taunting me.


***********

You are getting obsessive
my mother says.
So I decided to work on it.
Last Sunday evening
I pushed the curtains aside
braved the disparage carroty blaze
And stared out for a while.
The sun
placid and unfriendly
all consuming and shameless.
The familiar inexplicable hollow feeling.
When will I learn to deal with it?

Butterflies

Ashes flutter around me, as time moves by. Mounting heaps of clichés, trying to fit them within the clockwork of human thoughts.

It will not work. I rest. Eyes closed, hoping to not see.

Blot out the thoughts and pin them like dead butterflies.

Preservation.

Eyes close, eyes open. I rest, I breath. I live.

Monday, April 30, 2007

Swimming in a fish bowl


I wish I had a choice; there must be another way…

There isn’t, life is like the bits of shaving cream that’s still there after you are done, equal parts of white lather and tiny pieces of hair. It all gets flushed at the end.
What does it matter? Life? Live it or lump it.


***


The title is a reference to the song, Wish you were here by Pink Floyd. The lyrics can be read here and the song itself can be heard here...

The Painting

Light streamed in through the frayed curtain. Rhea was already awake. She was frowning at the painting she had hung on the wall last night. There was something vaguely disturbing about it…
Realization struck. She shuddered.

That was a bad hiding-place, she thought contemptuously. The spider, now on the floor, twitched briefly and lay still.

Saturday, April 28, 2007

Come

Come into my dreams, and into my only freedom. There is a thundering world underneath, and if you come close enough, care enough, you may hear a choked breathy whisper. Come; see the secret about a secret: you will hear the greatest truths and the grimiest lies, and I shall be buried under every distinct sound.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

love story 3,4 & 5

He started smoking. She asked if he’d mind some coffee given that they were both cold and waiting.
Waiting for something. Anything actually.

“How did your wedding go? Show me your wife’s photo.”
“Alright. I don’t have one on the phone.”

“Life doesn’t stop. It comes a full circle.”

Her bet was always on Life.

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

The road was emptied by the sudden shower.
Their shadows moved through broken branches, leaves, broken pieces carried by the dust-storm. Occasionally the headlights of speeding vehicles would startle them. She tried very hard to keep-up with his gait.
There was not a cab in sight.

It was raining on the tumult of the storm.

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Two days later, her phone beeped

“I don’t know whether I should say thanks. But you made me feel better, much better.”
She wrote “We better our own selves; the world is just a vehicle.”
But was met with “There is a word ‘Rekindle’. That’s it.”

That evening it rained again.
“Love story, come again.”

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

love story 2

Their story was broken when it had just begun.
He knew it all the way, she didn’t.

And then an evening of sudden summer shower, the dust rose in a storm giving way to water.
They were caught in a café across a rickety table, drenched and not knowing what to say.
Love and rain…..
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
[Wendigo, I guess I discovered this one late]

Song 55: Here Comes The Sun

She doesn't believe in heartbreak. Though she knows how easily her heart can break. She doesn't acknowledge failure. Not cos she's always succeeded. She isn't an idealist. Not cos a cruel world battered her ideals out of her. She believes in life. Not cos it's beautiful. But cos it goes on. Cos nothing stays.

Glad C&b put this one up. Lovely song. One of my favourites :)

Sunday, April 22, 2007

Nothing at all...

In my moments of emptiness, I have Nothing to say.
That is when I want to speak to you, The Most.

Amidst
“Will I?
Won’t I?”
I manage to hide behind meaningless texts, which are not me…

Don’t you have anything to say?

It’s my worst Nothing that wishes to tell you my best Something
--------------------------------------------------------------------------
['When you say nothing at all'--lyrics by Paul Overstreet, covered by Alison Kraus & Union Station and also by Ronan Keating]

Saturday, April 21, 2007

Song55 : Here Comes The Sun - The Beatles

Things seemed sharper, brighter.

A cool breeze, warm sun.

Laughter and smiles around him.

He felt...joy...inside. A light, carefree, happiness about life. Then about himself, and everyone else. It made him giddy.

Silly fool!

He laughed to himself.

The sun smiled down upon him, as he hopped, skipped and blended into the world.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

UFO

Since the beginning of time, am at the periphery.
Running my own orbit.
I try every now and then to defy all forces and rush into the sanctum-sanctora. Into your core.
It hardly brushes past you.
When you do really get touched, I have my eleven minutes of fame.

They call me a UFO, then.

Monday, April 16, 2007

Resigned to victory

He exclaimed,
You’re a worthy opponent. A good sparring partner!

She sighed wearily,
There is more to life than verbal battles. Don’t you get tired?

He asked,
Why? Our conversations are so much fun!

She retorted,
We don’t have conversations; we have custody battles for the last word!

She won that round. But of course.

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Caprice

She spun wildly, her crazy footwork sending him into a delightful tizzy. Soon, more appeared. Behind the apple bush. Beneath the willow. Beside the sapphire stream. The patter of tiny feet filled the silent night.
The wind noticed, and whispered a warning.
They twinkled out of sight, leaving him with a broken midsummer night’s dream.

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Morning

Shrill alarm. Snooze. Re-snooze. Shards of a dream—a memory—lingers. Muffled screams, tense muscles, bloodshot eyes. Shake it. A moment of truth, realized. Accept it. Turn head, look out the window—the sun is not quite awake. Perhaps it never will wake, at least not for today. Thunderous gray skies promised much needed release.

Thick as thieves

She broke the rules first. It was like taking money from the wallet of someone who’d steal from her eventually.

And he did. Wondering why she didn’t agonize over closure, the way other women did.

She’d never tell him that the story ended long ago. With the realization that they were both capable of theft.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Vacuum

Apathy. Denial. Shrugged-off acceptance. Laughed-off justifications. We dont need no education!

It surrounded him. Why were they like this? Why did nothing interest them? Motivate them? Spur them? How could they always just be like this?

In front of them, the unconcerned lecturer went on spouting his theories to whoever listened. Also apathetic. Just differently.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

hazaaro.n Khvaahishe.n aisii ki har Khvaaish pe dam nikale

She looks out of the window. White clouds float in the sparkling azure sky. Her dreams were many. But she has learned to let go. It doesn’t hurt anymore.

He looks out of the window. The brightness hurts his eyes. He lost all his dreams and the pain remains. Why did he let her go?


Lyrics: Mirza Asadullah Beg Khan/Ghalib 27th Dec 1796-15th Feb 1869
Singer: Jagjit Singh

Javeda Zindagi (tose naina lagey...)

She’s been driving all night.
Behind her the sky has a silvery clarity--a pearl being turned to light.

She rolls down the window. A whiff of fresh swift covers her face with her hair. This neutral, early April breeze— it seals the ending of the hot, sticky night.

Seals a lot of endings right…

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
[Song Javeda Zindagi from the Film 'Anwar']

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Song 55's-IV, Little Boxes II

On her way, the butterfly touched down. At times, the flowers spread their petals and reached out to her. At others, they were so proud of their beauty and fragrance.
But they were all flowers who didn’t wish to fly, happy being rooted at the same place for their lives.

Happy being named a ‘flower’!

Song 55's-IV, Little Boxes

She was born to him, an austere and her, a dainty flower. Creative and poor.

When she could decipher words, they told her,
“Spread your wings, our little butterfly.
And learn to mend them too.”

To this day she flies having crossed miles, braved storms and being blessed by the wind, caressed by the Sun.

[Little Boxes by Malvina Reynolds, sung by Pete Seeger]

Sunday, April 8, 2007

Athena

The thrill of her chase used to be about impossible dreams in the future
And wrestling them into submission

Now that nothing’s impossible anymore,
She finds herself thinking often of the past
Conjuring visions of how life would’ve been, if it hadn’t gone the other way

Nothing spells unachievable
Like what may have been…and wasn’t.

athena-refusing-the-advances-of-hephaestus.jpg

Friday, April 6, 2007

Sleep, or Lack Thereof.

The cell phone read 3:34 A.M. I do not know why I was awake, but I resigned myself to another night of broken dreams. It had only been two hours since I had finally crawled into bed. I vaguely remember the last night I slept continuously and without interruption.

Will I bend before I break?

Thursday, April 5, 2007

Song 55s IV: Scarborough Fair II

She slips in and out. The window’s been reduced to a watery reflection of the hospital room. Darkness crouches just outside. Piled clouds shoulder each other out of the way. Big bullies. Doctors gravely shake their heads. Suddenly, a smile plays among the wrinkles and liver spots. Once in the hereafter, what dreams may come.

Scarborough Fair, Simon and Garfunkel

Song 55's-III, Are you going to Scarborough Fair?

She was working at her family barn. He was riding back home from town after a long, long time.
And their eyes met.

She ran away on a stormy night. When morning lit up, they found her on the cliff bend on the way to the rolling plains below.

He had a bet on more….

[Revealed, just made a start ...]

Wednesday, April 4, 2007

Exactly: 1 month. 15 wordsmiths. 180 posts.

wow

The Ultimate game

The player sighed
All these games, all rookies
It was tiresome

Time 'twas, to play the master stroke on the ultimate game
His inspiration was fueled by the insight that,

The culmination to creation was destruction.


He swallowed and rested, satiated

His last words read,
Who did you think you were kidding? I won anyway.

Tuesday, April 3, 2007

Judgment

He looked beseechingly at her.
“I am going away for long. Can we re-look at it?
Am sure you’ll have things to know from me even if am not there as yet….”

“It’s not that! My soul doesn’t bloom with you.”

She turned her gaze blinded by her own judgment.

Painful…
Not wanting what she gets.

The girl from yesterday

He left her. Just like that.
She kept staring at his picture and the eyes of her unborn daughter he promised they would have.
She continued living on the memories they had made.
It has been weeks. But she waits for him everyday.
Her foolish heart didn’t know she had become the girl from yesterday.

Song 55's II: Durr (II)

He is alone. Again. His latest fling didn't work out. Again. You wonder why. He is perfect, after all. Rugged, well travelled, sophisticated, he always says the right thing at the right time. You know you would be perfect together. And you are. But then he is alone. Again. And you don't quite know why.

Monday, April 2, 2007

Song 55s I: Duur (Strings)

Wiseling and I had a conversation from which this particular brainchild was born :). I wrote a post recently (on my blog) about Song-people. How songs so often conjure up an image of a person in your head. Not based on the video or the lyrics or even the singer alone. But just from the general feeling you get when you listen to the song. Wiseling came up with a 51 for Duur and I thought it might be fun to do Song-55s. I'm going to start with Duur. And if any of you have a different take on it, or even the same take but in a different way then feel free to jump right in. Course it goes without saying that if you have a different song then you just start your own Song-55s chain for that song. Try if possible to link to the song so that if one of us hasn't heard it, we get to listen to it.

His eyes open to darkness. A startled second skips before he remembers where he is. Drat the time difference. But he's used to it. Been here, done this. Many times. And familiarity hasn't even begun to breed contempt. The world's his mollusc. Travelling's his thing. And nothing beats the feeling of wind in his hair.

As beautiful as sin

Sitting cross-legged in the dark on the balcony
Uncharacteristically, enjoying the rain outside

Late in meeting a ‘no-future’ boyfriend she wouldn’t see for a week
He’d parted with longtime girlfriend..again

It wouldn’t ever be more possible or less tempting
I’ve to leave

Try not to go

Hesitating…
Forget the first word

...............................................
Secrets cause no casualties.

Sunday, April 1, 2007

Artistic temperament

I don't like you. I just find you entertaining.

People always paid her these back-handed insults. Thinking they were so subtle. And dramatic.

On reflection, she was the artist and others, always audience.
An artist makes the audience feel the inspiration. When the audience imitates the creation, they validate the artist.

The studio beckoned again.

Saturday, March 31, 2007

Letting go

"How about a drink?" he asked.

"No, thankyou."

He looked perturbed.
"What's wrong?"

"Did you know that you can miss something you never really had?"

"What do you mean?" he asked, confused.

"I am constantly haunted by your absence. I would rather not be tormented by your presence. And the absence that it silently promises."

Friday, March 30, 2007

Best Friends Forever

"You know he's been cheating. Why won't you sign the papers?"

"I won't let him be happy." countered Zoya, bitterly.

"But you're denying happiness to yourself, too."

She looked shrewdly at her best friend.
"And you as well?"

Aarti looked up, startled.
"What do you mean?" she stammered nervously.

Zoya sighed in resignation. "I know."

The Revenge of The Insomnia

“You a med student?” “Nuh-uh”, shaking her head. “Really? Not in med school?” Really, really she wants to say, trust me, I’d know. She just smiles. Walking off, he tells his bud, “She really looks like she’s in med school. Y’know?” She runs to the mirror. Just how dark are those circles under her eyes?

Another life....

She is lost, sad and listless. And then a pop:
“You will have to promise me a signed book, from the first batch that comes out.... no excuses allowed.”
She gets blinded by the shutter bugs, the mics jostling for her words. Her photos splashed all over.

“Have you completed the appraisal normalization?”
Another life…..

Ego & Alter-ego

I

“So how do you find my writing? How about commenting?”

“My comments are an interesting insight into the writer, not for the larger world.”

“Am curious….”

“There is a distinct aroma of rebellion---like a caged bird, who has unlatched the door (but may be slightly frightened to fly out) -- what an outdated analogy!!!”
II

“No, it is awesome.”

“But I do see a person, who wants to challenge convention, who sees different shades of the world that most people see, but probably is also saddened that other people around her do not see things in the same manner.”

“There is pain, vulnerability.”

“You can also be vulnerable to happiness, right?”

Thursday, March 29, 2007

date

She flounced airily in, wearing one of those lacy creations. Threw a smile here, a wave there, whispered conspiratorially with the hopefully-flirty waiter. Her usual came in from the kitchen; she sat down with a set jaw to another solitary dinner. She’d decided to stop feeling sorry for herself long Fridays ago.

love story

The rain forced them into the bus shelter. As usual she was wearing something that made her look like a wet porn star. As usual he hadn’t wanted to pay for a cab.

Leaning against the bike with no plans of an evening and a shared damp old dusty smell, he wiped a trickle off her big nose.

life story

She woke up one morning and decided to be a writer. She could go on forever about Travel! Or Food! Children’s stuff, fantasy, the cup brimming over. She would start her first book tonight.

As life ebbed away 36 years later in the psychosis unit bed, she figured it had been a good shot anyway.

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Quantum Mechanics Isnt All Cool

The world flickers. He makes it still again. A herculean effort. Eyes wrenched open.

"E equals m to the power of 3/2 into v 3/2 into T 3/2 into pi 3/2 by q into...

Thus we see probability density becomes independent of fermi level."


Why can't I be independent of fermi level??

He sleeps.

Memories

"Ssssshhhh! They're sleeping." Helpless giggling. Simply cos. Tip-toe tip-toe tip-toe. Giggle. "Ssssshhh". Open fridge door. Yellow light. Milk. Two frosted glasses (the good ones that amma won't let us use). Cookies from the jar. No plates. Only crumbs. Tip-toe tip-toe tip-toe. Stumble. Unstoppable laughter. Flushed faces. Furious breathing. Eyes screwed shut. Covers up. Amma smiling.

No more games

Her monotone, drained of exasperation, drawled
I can’t handle this anymore. I think we should stop talking. No more games.

A week later, much tempted, she thought
I didn’t say I wouldn’t call him though, did I?

Then she sighed and reminded herself that word solitaire was a game too.

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

will power

Don’t stare at him, don’t stare at him, don’t stare…I peeked at him from beneath my eye lashes.

NO…No looking at him! I squeezed my eyes shut.


“Maya, I hate to break your reverie, but could you please read ‘Ode to a Nightingale’ for us?”

The class waited.


Well.

This was going to be tough.

You

You were around; I could feel you, like I always did, even before I actually saw you.

You smiled as you saw me, knowing that I’d waited impatiently for you.

You opened your arms wide.

I ran towards the comfort of your touch.

I opened my eyes to gaze into yours.

You were gone…

A heavy wooden block

So she’s going through a block. (Ouch, a writer’s or what?)
First, she was easy, then sad and now restless. Sieving through, she got stuck on whom else?
But You

Does it not deter her?...I mean not receiving responses to text, calls and emails?

Well, she still says “Hi! Long time…”, holding her heavy block!

Monday, March 26, 2007

Inspired by corny pick-up line

He nervously shuffled his feet.
"What do you want now?" she snapped.
"Jaanu, don't be mad."
"Don't be mad? You cheated on me seven times! Enough is enough."
He grimaced. "I love you. I'm sorry."
"Doesn't quite cut it."
"I would go to the end of the world for you."
"But would you stay there?"
She sat on her bed, in pyjamas, imaptiently chewing on a nail. She couldn't possibly call him again. She jumped, startled as she heard a car pulling in. No, false alarm. sigh.

The phone rang. Shivering with anticipation, she answered.

"Hello?"

"Beta, we're home. Come down and we'll take you to get icecream."

She smiled.

Martinis

Excitement writ large on two faces

Martinis. Classic.

Smiling, he murmured

How do I make it?
Childlike glee turned cherubic disappointment
Charmed, he promised fairy godmother-like
Don’t worry, I’ll find out!

Wish I had a flowing gown to match that classy conical glass!

I’d wish I was on a romantic date but this is better!


~o~o~o~



~o~o~o~


Martinis we said, not champagne!!!


No glasses available, ma’am

he tossed

Enthusiasm renewed, they faced each other

3 olives, 2 olives, here’s yours and here’s mine and here’s to us!


It’s so…Bitter?Awful!Absolutely!

Martini dreams discarded, they split a dish of calamari and reminisced often during the friendship born over a disastrous martini.

~o~o~o~

Embarrassed

“The beer is getting to you”
Naaah!” I slur, a little.
“Come, let’s go home”
As we step out, the maître de calls him aside.
He comes back grinning and whispers.
“Pull up your zip, Pee
W h a t?”
Here, lemme help you” he winks and pulls me close.
The elevator thankfully was empty.

Saturday, March 24, 2007

Non Sequitur

Words screamed red in his head. They were unclean. Unbelievers. Spewing blasphemy at his Sacred Truths. If he didn't do something now how would he explain to his God why he had forsaken Him?

So he blew up the 8 year old boy with the terrified eyes. An offer of proof for the Merciful One.

To thine own self be true

She looked about furtively
Pulled her coat tighter and entered
He was waiting at the end of the room
She was crying for the first time in days
But his serene smile gave her strength
Even as the blood caked on his wrist flaked off
There was no need for words
They were instantly one

~o~o~o~o~o~o~

She left discreetly, an hour later
Allowing herself the luxury of a faint smile
Before donning her trademark frown along with her coat
She couldn’t risk anyone seeing her
Self-preservation was her forte
And if seen, she had no answer to
What’s an atheist doing in church?

Friday, March 23, 2007

Me

I writhed in pain. Screams escaped my dry lips.
No one heard me.
Probably, because it was all within me…
I’m tied, chained.

To myself…

‘Leave me’, I screamed.
Someone smirked from above.
Pulled at my chains. Felt blood.
Someone laughed louder.
I pulled harder.

I’m free…

Gazed at the chains that’d tied me,

Emotions…

Another life....

I

Every night he calls when she is just by herself and none other. They talk till the skies clear up…they fight, dream, love. Often, he calls her into his arms. Often, he raises a red flag warning of their illegitimate addiction for each other.
They go to bed knowing one more day is breaking.
Another life…

II

Small lights flicker through the matchboxes in the sky.
She shrivels up in bed. The print in front of her gradually gets blurred. There is a wheezing noise in her head, like that of distant seas in a conch shell. The light gradually dims creating a haze. The empty bottle on the table.
Another life….

III

He locks the door of the study and the ante-chamber. Then he carefully dials the secret number on the safe and pulls it apart.
Trrring..ring…ring the sound of crashing gold. He lets them fall in a heap near his feet.

Then he takes out The Powder, nicely wrapped in cigar boxes and smiles.
Another life…

IV

She feeds her little boy, tells him an improbable story and tucks him in bed. Then she quickly grabs a bite and gobbles up the excess too not knowing when and where the next meal would be.
Then she checks her pre-packed bag, her make-up kit. Calls a rickshaw saying “Galaxy Dance Bar.”
Another life….

Thursday, March 22, 2007

The L-Word

“If you came home and found me making out with another guy, what would you do?”, she asked idly. “Tear his eyes out”, he said. She giggled. “What if you came home and found me making out with a girl?”. “Depends.” “On?” she lifted an enquiring eyebrow. “How you feel about threesomes”, he grinned engagingly.

Half baked conversation

Scene I

He: So, what plans do you have for the evening?

She (please ask me out): Nothing
Err..um..what are you doing?

He: Movie. Why don’t you join?

She: Oh sure.

He (Shit! I was playing around, doesn’t she get that?): (smiles)

She (wow blue skirt? No maroon drawstring….will we have a post-movie dinner? What is he thinking?)
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Scene II

She (am I looking pretty, my eyes..): Hey am ready, where are you?

He (Oh no!): May I finish off watching this game?

She (Oh no!): Yeah sure thing.

Pause….

Twiddling her fingers,
She: Well, why don’t we order pizzas? The movie can happen later.

Yawning,
He: Yeah I have got a dinner to attend.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Not Flaff, This

She sat staring at her inbox, willing it to blink..
"Why so down?" she inquired.
"I only get comment love when I am angsty.. I plan to embark on a hunt for angst.. I shall find it and be very unhappy.. and everyone will love me."
"You have discovered the secret to happiness, o wiseling."

Afraid?? Me? Hah!

I went for it.

Once strapped, however...

Words of encouragement around me, passed by like the light wind, both of which I felt not.

I was a perspiring mess.

Only failures lead to success! Or whatever. Dont worry.

I looked below me. First time wall-rappelling is not the best time to say that to yourself.



-------------------------

Note: Did I overshoot the time limit? Some idiot says a picture is worth a thousand words. Lol. Sad na? I specialize.

O.K.

Three a.m. Only two hours until she had to leave.
His snoring was deafening. The weight of his arm, unforgiving.
Looking around, she sighed. The walls were stained with patches of an unbecoming, reddish sepia. Like paan juice, she thought.
The creaking fan caught her attention. Ironically, it had O.K. stamped on it. She winced.
Scented paper, the most expensive kind. Two pens, one pink and one green. (Only pink would be too feminine.) She sat at the cafe, alone, carefully penning out a letter. On her way home she dropped it into the mailbox.

She smiled. Tomorrow, the postman wouldn't answer her hopeful eyes with ones filled with pity.

The Flake

She sat waiting for him, munching happily on her cadbury flake, ignoring the people shooting her dirty looks. He walked out, exhausted, smiling as he saw her. Noticing the chocolate, he looked at her incredulously.

"You're eating a bar of chocolate outside the gym?"

"Yup."

"But it's a gym!"

"I felt like a flake today."

Monday, March 19, 2007

The security of shadows

No, he doesn't have two heads. But sometimes she feels like she does. At the very least, two personalities. Here, her insecurity means nothing. But he makes her laugh. He makes her think.

"Beta, don't talk to strangers." runs through her head.
"Strangers have better candy," he smirks.

She smiles. "Maybe it's time to rebel."

To all the Non-believers.. Read and Weep :)

“Our team sucks. Cricket’s a really boring game, anyway. Don’t see why anyone bothers watching it. And that Sehwag! I can bat better!”

“ No, no, I’m at work. No world cup – schmurld cup chutti for me.”

“What!!!!!! OMFG!!! I can't even come home!! My boss will pitch a fit!”

Have Faith, Fickle Indian!

assumptions

She sat across me in the train. I scrutinized her- Pitiful, thirty-five going on sixty.

I envisioned her slogging over a fire in some chawl.
Slaving for a heartless man and ungrateful children…

Her phone rang. In perfect English, she said she was on her way for the meeting.

Suddenly, I was even more pitiful.

the disease

Everything was spinning. Nothing made sense. Random images flashed in her mind. Incoherent thoughts. Logic had deserted her.

She shut her eyes tight, as if to block out disjointed images from flooding her head.

‘The tighter they shut,’ she thought, ‘the more I concentrate.’

It didn’t work. She stared blankly. She had it.

Writers Block.

Saturday, March 17, 2007

Seven Years’ Bad Luck

They installed Magic Mirror 2000 (wall-mountable) the next day, but the damage was already done. The old mirror had shattered – into a thousand pieces, no less. Sighing, the evil queen lamented, “I suppose that silly chit will escape the woodcutter.”
She eyed the poisoned apple ruefully. She didn’t really want to put it away…

Friday, March 16, 2007

Nomad XX

I might be making numerals up now *sigh*. But love the new twist :)

They loved each other, knew each other. But perfect relationships just didn’t work for her. She had been unhappy. Now, thankfully, he would never know.

He tried to stop looking for hidden messages in her posts, but couldn’t. Had she been unhappy? Had it really been an accident?

“She swerved instead of braking. Probably panicked.”

Courtesy Kaushik

You and I

“You didn’t!”
Yep, I did” he smiled.
“You booked five rows for her?”
“I would book the entire theater for you” he smiled again.
Liar! The show was houseful because of you!”
“I didn’t know you then”
“I would have killed you!”
“I would have kissed you”
“It’s never too late you know” she smiles.
She was unknown to me
but I know her now.
I have never heard her speak
but now her words float in my memory.
I have never seen her
but now her image is everywhere I see.
I have never met her
but I know somehow.
Unknown, unheard, unseen
She is now everything to me.

Courtesy Poorabednes

Thursday, March 15, 2007

Nomad XIX

He typed a comment about the accident, but didn’t publish it. She had always said that her blog was a journey that wouldn’t end.

She smiled as he left. He had always given her what she wanted, even when she didn’t ask. She wanted her blog to be like her, a story with no ending.

Courtesy: Kaushik

They're People Too...well, sorta

“What’s the one thing you wish would happen today?”

“Hmmm….”

She waits impatiently.“If you can’t even think of one thing, your life is really sad.”

“What’s your one thing?”

“I want these cells to mate”, wistfully looking at her cultures on the benchtop.

“You’re rooting for yeast sex?? And my life is sad?”

The Rose Garden-III

“Isn’t my lap so wonderful? Wait, let me see how beautiful you are….” said Uncle T, hoarsely.
His eyes glistened while small drops of sweat gathered on his temple and above his grey-brown lips.
He stank of something and she hated to be near.

It has been more than a decade since she screamed in pain.

The Rose Garden-II

It is a chilly evening; the smell of the freshly-baked chocolate rum cake mingles with YSL-Cinema and Daddy’s cigar. The wine can’t wait with excitement.
The twinkling light on the porch dulls the living room lamp.

Upstairs she follows the red bubbly slowly trickling down her wrist on the white floor.
Rebirth on Christmas Eve!

Time, perhaps? V

He thinks, loves and goes places, meeting new people and learning new words. He dreams of his home in the mountains with tall conifers and fresh, misty mornings.

She is right here with her dreams, listening to her own heart-beat.

In the quietude of Nothing between, will he reach out before they run out of

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Everyday VII

Every morning he woke up wanting to be with her. Every thought of hers he wanted to know. Every word she spoke had to be addressed to him. Every second she was away from him seemed a blank, airless void. Everyday he wanted her to be completely his. Everyday.

And then one day, he didn’t.

insight

“I hate the way my life is turning out…you know?” she says, looking down, fidgeting with the food on her plate. “I feel so tired and old… It’s annoying…” she looks up at him across the table.

He smiles and says, “Yea I know…”

She smiles and thinks, “He’s sweet”

He smiles and thinks, “PMS...”

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Time, perhaps? IV

They gathered in the visitors’ ante chamber. One-by-one they checked the clauses of dividing the heirloom of grit and gumption.

Then one of them walked into the silent, eerie room. The artificial respirator was the only thing that was seemingly alive.

He picked up daddy’s hand and held the pen before they ran out of…

Time, perhaps? III

“Hurry up! The crowd’ll be here any moment. I can already see the horizon reddened with fire.”
“I know. The news is that they have looted the treasury of the next village”

Their estate burnt behind them with cries of “Vande Mataram!” and they fled in a carriage towards the unknown, before they ran out of…

Time, perhaps? II

It was a slow spring evening. The house was dark and sombre.
The fan trudged along slowly, very slowly which made a noise keeping with her heart beat….dhuk-puk,dhuk-puk…
A little light trickled in from somewhere ensuring that nobody knew they were there.

They made love…once, twice, so many times, before they run out of ….

Nomad XVI, XVII and XVIII

I'm fast running out of Roman numerals I know.

Nomad XVI
A nomad. Without home and roots and anchors and binding, limiting ties. Going where the wind takes her, to faraway lands, places unseen.

In her head, she was that person, headstrong and independent. In real life, her adventures were limited to 20 minute taxi ride from home to office. And back. Six days a week.

Nomad XVII
Every once in a while, the routine, the meetings and the endless smiling got to her. Then she would sneak out to the fire escape and stand at the very edge, her back to the building and all it stood for. And the wind sweeping in over the sea would beckon with its wild tales.

Nomad XVIII
The wind was the perfect lover. It didn't try to woo her with flowers and fancy dinners and stories of feats of strength. Instead it talked to her till it was hoarse, and even after that. They were like Othello and Desdemona. She fell in love with its stories. If only it'd never stop talking.

Courtesy N

Sometimes VII

Sometimes, he wishes things had been different.

That he hadn't had to leave. Not that way.

That he hadn't been so blind before.

He wishes for just one more day of happiness together. Before...

Sometimes he wishes for strength to throw away her last love-note from his wallet.

Not only sometimes. But still.

He's helpless.

Sometimes VI

Sometimes, when she wakes up at 3 in the morning, it all makes sense. There is perspective. She knows she doesn’t matter in the grand scheme. But it’s ok. She can live with it. She goes back to sleep content in her insignificance. The vastness of space is accepted. Peace edges in.

Only sometimes, though.

Sometimes V

Sometimes they wonder. Sometimes they think clearly. Thoughts coming as a crystal clear stream, flowing gently but continuously down into the valley of their minds.

The thoughts are their own, not fed by others. Their pondering at once amazing, yet so obvious to them. They were always curious.

What do I want really?

Only sometimes though.

Monday, March 12, 2007

Sometimes IV

Sometimes they lose themselves in each other’s arms. They traverse their varied past, go over and over their present and catch fleeting moments in their eyes.

Sometimes they shudder to think of the unknown future but soon enough love like there is no tomorrow.

Sometimes they celebrate their unusual lightness of being.

Only sometimes, though.

Sometimes III

Sometimes he dreams of his villa on the hill, his family gathered in unison at the evening prayers, his flourishing warehouse of knowledge. His lover in his arms where the great river starts her journey.
His funeral, his insignia.

Sometimes he wants to pull the trigger and play the game of gold.

Only sometimes, though.

Sometimes II

Sometimes at day break, she feels there is nothing in here. Why does she have to live this day? Why does she have to do as it is done, talk when spoken to?
Why can’t she jump off the cliff?

Sometimes as the day darkens she feels like not going back home.

Only sometimes, though.

Lies XIII

"Oh yeah, amma. Such fun we're having."

"No, no dont worry about that. Ram cooks excellently."

"Oh, the sound? Some friends have come over. That's all."

"Oh." "No, no. I have to go myself. The guys are calling me."

"Ok. B'bye."

He switched the TV off and faced the silence. Darkness can hide some things.

Nomad XV

He checked her blog. Two weeks since the last post. Fifty six comments, the last thirty asking her to come back. Was it her obvious vulnerability that attracted people? Or her quirky sense of adventure, her stubborn refusal to settle down or to grow up?

"My deepest condolences, sir. Your wife was a wonderful woman."

Courtesy Kaushik

Among Other Things

As he asked her questions, he looked her over. Beautiful hair. Set just so. Curls falling gracefully down her back. Perfectly creased black suit. Little tote, black. Pearls at her neck and ears. Face highlighted flawlessly. She’d brought her CV, requisite black brief and a blinding smile.

Too bad she’d left her brains at home.

Nomad XIV

Starting a new category: Commentspace. So if anyone doesnt really wanna join but leaves a 55 in the comments space we can just lump it in here.:D

Sometimes, I think I should give up. I’ve run scared, lived in the pages of second hand romances, cried quietly in the dark. It’s now time to settle down, grow roots. 
But then the wind whispers to me, telling stories of the places it’s seen. And I’m a nomad again, restless and a little crazy.

This one courtesy N.

More truth

Did he kiss you here? What, lady? Did he hold you like this? How many times did you make love?
I don’t want anybody to touch you ever, do you get that?

He held her tightly against his body till she couldn’t breathe any longer.
She deserved that for a truth gone awry years ago.

Sunday, March 11, 2007

Everyday VI

He sat down at her table. Uninvited! He talked. She politely didn’t listen. She looked over his shoulder at the dollar exchangers. Were they disappointed too? She wanted to interrupt. Give me back the hope of everyday, she wanted to say. Be like I imagined you. I have my standards.

I can’t help a soprano.

One night...

‘Shhh. They’ll wake up.’
‘No, we’re professionals. Hehe.’

‘Pass the tools. Wonder why there’s a high-safety lock on the back door.’
Clang went the tools as they hit the floor.

One minute.

No movement.
He carefully picked the lock and crept in.

Someone’s up!
He bolted.

Sleepy voice: ‘Honey, forgot to close the front door?’

the date

She noticed him from afar, standing by the counter buying tickets.

She smiled to herself at the way he looked over the crowd, a little frustrated – he was looking for her.

A surge of love filled her every pore, she couldn’t imagine life without him.


She walked up to him, “Hi daddy, sorry I’m late…”

the meeting

I saw him again last night. He looked thinner than I remembered – happier too, maybe.

He didn’t notice me at first, but then I caught his eye.

I wanted him to come over and talk to me –I wished it. He didn’t.

I wanted to go over too. I didn’t.

I hate dreaming about him.

Saturday, March 10, 2007

Sometimes

Sometimes, her thoughts turned violent. Sometimes, she wanted to dig her nails into her discolored skin and drag her hands until the fat flesh underneath was revealed and the crimson tide ebbed from her body. Sometimes, she wanted to bend her stubby fingers backwards until it met her wrists and dangled limply.

Only sometimes, though.

retribution

“The pressure of doing something on a Friday night always got to me…” she said with a gleam in her eye, “so, now, I am…”

She watched her sitting in the chair – bound, gagged and shaking with fear, and continued to sharpen her butcher knife.

“How’s this for a Friday night plan?” she smiled madly.

realization

6pm - The proverbial ‘Friday-night-party plans’ begin to formulate all around her.
She makes several calls-

What you doing? Oh, you busy, no just wondering – ya, for sure some other time.

Click.

Hey, we should meet up… No, no, I didn’t mean tonight...

Click.

Click.

Click.

Click.

It dawns on her. She has no friends.

Friday, March 9, 2007

Everyday V

Faintly amused, she looked at him stride towards her.

She knew the routine.
Last minute loss of confidence, an unnecessary trip to the bar, the dollar being exchanged. Everyday.

So she was startled at “You are Jesse’s friend?”
“Yes”.
“Can you help me find her?”
She slumped back..

They didn’t exchange the dollar that day.

Fear

I can’t bear it any longer. I can’t skulk in the darkness forever.
I have to sneak a quick look. I just have to!

Gingerly, I lift the curtain…

--------------------
---------------

I creep back to the corner, shaking.

Footsteps.
I sink deeper into the shadows.
An impatient tap.
“It’s time.”

I walk numbly.

Stage fright is normal.

distant love

They pass each other in the office corridor and occasionally she has the nerve to look him in the eye and nod a ‘hello’.

From a distance she watches him on the phone, almost devotedly.

She tries to suppress it, but the thought pops up yet again.

“Maybe he’d like me if I wasn’t fat”

Truth

I

“I have to tell you something” He says slowly.
He leaves the door open and lets her step inside.
“Oh good! Me too!” She beams.
“Tell me…”
“We are going to have a baby!” She hugs him tight.
He sits down on the sofa with a thud.
She hasn’t seen his packed suitcase upstairs yet.

II

“I have to tell you something” He says as she opens the door.
She smiles.
“Shall I get you tea?”
“No..”
“ I don’t know how to begin…” he trails off.
Don’t. I have packed your suitcase”
What?”
“You can leave before Vicky comes back from school”
“Dia…”
Yes, I saw her message last night”

Love of another kind

She tries to breathe through the smoke. Another chicken burnt to the bones.
Damn! But she knows, he wont mind.

She opens the door for him to walk in.
He comes in and lays his head in her lap. Looks at her adoringly as she lays out the chicken.


Sniffing it, he wags his tail

Everyday IV

Disappointment flickered on her face for an instant, as she lost momentary control.

You cannot...

She relaxed. She couldn't expect more.

She nodded at the men exchanging the dollar. She saw them too. Everyday.

She liked the tranquility here. The silence of glances. Let it be. She wondered how he thought.

Sigh...Let it be.

Search

It's been years, I know. But often the most inane things, like a whiff of the cologne you wore that night, get me thinking about you. And I wonder... are you still wandering, restless? Elevated in flight, haunted by your own insecurities?
It is indeed a strange bird that cannot find a place to land.

The First Girl

Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No...Yes...No...Yes...No...Yes...No...!

Yes...Noooo...I'm going mad!

No...Yes...No...Yes...No...Yes...No...Yes...No...Yes...No...Yes...No...

No...Yes...No...Yes...No...Yes...No...Yes...Yes!

He looked up. Another guy was leading her away. She vanished into the dancing throng. Damn!

One morning at work

He picks up and flips through her desk calendar. Reed thin, long legged models stare back seductively at him.
“So you like models?”
Her sarcasm is evident.
He smiles. The calendar still in his hands.
“But they stay here
He quickly returns the calendar. Walks away embarrassed.
Idiot” she thinks.
“I like her” he thinks.

Lies XII – non fiction.

Just out of a meeting, she rushes back to check the next 55 fun story that must have been posted.

On her desk she stares at the long to-do list in her planner. Thinks of the post-lunch deadline.

Smirking, closes the planner, opens the word document and starts her response to lies XI – non fiction.

lies XI - non-fiction

He passes by her desk. She shuts the document she was typing in.

“You working on those lines, I hope.”

“Yea, I have options, I will share them with you post-lunch?”

“Yea, Lets finish it…” he mutters as he walks away.

She surreptitiously opens the word document, and continues to type another 55 fiction story.

anti-love

She makes another one of her mother’s speciality recipes.

It smells good – so what if it’s taken over two hours of her time?

Table laid, she waits for him to walk in– any minute now.

He slams the door shut.
Walks into the bedroom saying, “I’m too tired to eat, im just gonna watch TV.”

love

She tries to breathe through the smoke. Another chicken burnt to the bones.

Damn, she should’ve learnt to cook from her mother.

She opens the window to let out the smoke - he’s going to be home any minute.

He smells the smoke, and smiles, “I’m too tired to eat, let’s just watch TV, ok?”

truth vs lies

“How long has it been?”

“How long has what been?”

“Since you got laid…”

“Three years…”

“What? We gotta find you some chicks, dude!”

“Err, yea, here’s the thing… I’m gay …”

“Gay? Really…”

“This won’t affect our friendship, right?”

“Huh? Dude… of course not…” he says, as he scratches the back of his neck.

Further Truth

“Stiffness? This is it.
You have no right to question my authenticity if you don’t stand up for love.”

“If that is the expectation then am sorry. Am a weak man. Please forgive me.”

For a while she was crestfallen.

In a jiffy she ran, held him from behind and said “I love you anyway.”

Thursday, March 8, 2007

Lies X

"Hello. its me. I wont be able to make it to work today. Feeling a little feverish, and will be sleeping all day. My phone might be switched off." Click. That was easy.

Then he straightens his tie, picks up the folder, checks his CV for the last time and steps out of his door.

Truth

The moonbeam touched her face through the glass. She woke up with a startle.
And then cuddled back in the sheet with a faint smile.
Wish you were here.
------------------------------------------------
And I love you so.
But why?

You dream with me, you talk to me, you love without a burden.
You are just outside my world.

Lies IX

“Have you had jalebis on the morning walk?”
No. In fact, I completed 5 laps as the doctor said.

The grey shawl tore along the dried sugar syrup.
--------------------------------------------------------------
And I love you so.
Really?
I seek you with all my being and soul.
Wow!
Of course, I can’t violate you. Only if you wish…

Lies VIII

You said that am quite a woman and that you wish to see me eternally happy.
“What? Don’t you delete old messages?”
“No but don’t worry your wife’ll never see them.”
“It’s not about that.”
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------
“I can’t get home for dinner tonight. I have a meeting.”

And then he held her hand and said “Honey!”

Lies VII

“Have you had the medicines?”
“Yes Maa.”

“Hope you are not smoking!”
“No way. I threw them last week.”

A ring of smoke touched her nose and vanished gradually in the air above. And a crumpled piece of smelly hospital paper topped the heap in the basket at her feet.

The night gradually gave way.

another love turns cold

"She is amazing!"
"Oh.."
"What?"
"I am happy for you, you know…"
"Hey you have to help me with the ring…"
"Ring?"
"Yeah….I wanna surprise her on her birthday!"
"Oh.."
"What?"
"Sure…"
"Thanks pal!"
He gives her a tight hug and walks to his car.
She sits at the café hoping it wouldn't hurt forever.

Nomad XIII

I remember it well.
"I hope you can jump."
"I have a trampoline, love."
Eventually my trampoline tore, but your wall stayed standing, mocking. Funny thing about homes, the way they stay the same, no matter how much you change. And how much you regret that careless cigarette stub. The one that burnt yours down.

Lies VI

“He watches over us all? Really?”

“Yeah. From up there. To see to it that nothing bad happens to good people.”

“But, how does he know who’s good?”

“He knows everything, honey.”

“So dad died cos he was bad?”

“Course not. There’s some great big plan, sweets. Somewhere. You won't understand it. Only He does.”

lies V

“So, how long has it been, man?”

“How long has what been?”

“Oh, come on, since you got laid, dude”

“Oh that... hah, like, three days ago, dude…”

“Really? Sweet! Who was she?”

“She...yea...she was this damn hot chick from this club...Great legs. Was all over me – couldn’t fight it man. Couldn’t fight it.”

Lies IV

“So, see, the thing is, I don’t really need anyone. Because I’m strong. My mother, she like totally needed men. It was her generation, y’know. I totally empathize. But for me. Nah! I don’t need anyone. Really. I’m independent. And poor things, most of my friends, they have someone. I’m single. The lucky one.”

Sigh!

Knit, X-rays, Brylcreem (RSC Series)

“ How do you pass time?”
“ I knit.”
She handed me the X-rays ruefully smiling.
**
He has been laid up for a while now.(Near fatal accident)
He had slipped.
**
Lately he just angered me. To the point of maddening rage.
**
He was gone now._But the Brylcreem stained pillowcases stayed on as an annoying remainder.

Cigarrette, Kamal Hasan, Baby (From RSC Series)

His breath had the smell of a forgotten ashtray and putrid monsoon. Lighting another cigarette, he continued to talk of becoming the next president of the Kamal Hassan fan club.
Only the promised thousand rupees at the end of the hour that kept the bile down.
“Come baby. Come. Come.” He said picking his teeth.