Dec 26, 2012

This is my dawn.

"I am reborn. This is my dawn. Real life has just begun.
Deliberate Living: Conscious attention to the basics of life, and a constant attention to your immediate enviornment and its concerns, example-A job, a task, a book; anything that requires efficient concentration (Circumstances has no value. It is how one relates to a situation that has value. All true meaning resides in the personal relationship to a phenomenon, what it means to you.)
The Great Holiness of FOOD, the Vital Heat.
Positivism, the Insurpassable Joy of the Life Aesthetic.
Absolute Truth and Honesty.
Reality.
Independence.
Finality--Stability--Consistency."

Christopher Johnson McCandless (Alex Supertramp) scribbled during one of the days of living it out in the wild.

Dec 21, 2012

2012

I write this just two hours before I am ready to board the Mumbai Delhi Rajdhani to go home. I hate the duration it takes for me to reach there but flight tickets are way too expensive. Going to Delhi exactly after a year this time. Its been the longest time that I haven't been in Delhi. This is almost the end of the year. I am not exactly in a very introspective mood but still can't stop thinking about this year. It indeed is one of the most important years for me personally. 

I did my first real backpack trip, solo in Paris for five days and then met a school friend, who now stays in the US, after almost eight years in Spain and we both had the time of our lives. Met a lot of interesting people and travelers. Fell in love with Madrid. Found Eiffel Tower extremely ugly. Day dreamt while strolling through the Seine river. Went to the Shakespeare & Co bookshop.

Met a few interesting men this year who re-instilled my faith that intelligent, chivalrous and good looking men really do exist. They might be difficult. But they do exist. Also met some of the biggest psycho jerks this year (actually thats nothing new and special).

Quit my job after two years. Got a new job almost completely out of the blue with a super cool design magazine, right before I was leaving for my great vacation. Moved in a studio apartment in Bandra. Staying completely alone for the first time in my life and absolutely loving it.

My bestest friend in the world got married to a guy that I totally approve of! :p I fell in love with my mother more than I ever thought I possibly could. Another bestest friend got her lifelong dream project to work on. Another special friend made a beautiful baby. Someone really close to me apologised to me this year and I found a lost friend. Another one got into the Harvard freaking University!

This year was about closures. And about new journals. This year made me realise that just loving people is not enough, expression is equally important. Being honest about my feelings is the most integral part of who I am. I will never ever change that. For anything. For anyone.

For the first time ever, I have seen such a continued outrage over a rape in Delhi. This makes me so happy.

The cynic in me has taken a backseat for now. I just feel that this year was all it could have been.

Here is to romance. Here is to love and friends. Here is to wine from Paris and Sangria in Madrid. Here is to fresh. Here is to new. Here is to interesting strangers. Here is to honesty. Here is to Old Monk and Classic Milds.

Cheers.

Dec 17, 2012

ये सड़क और कहा जाती है

घर तक तो आती है
ये सड़क और कहा जाती है

कुछ उधार के नुक्कड़ो तक
कुछ सिगरेट बीड़ी के धुए तक
कुछ सिमटे बेघरो की तरफ़
थोड़ी दिलचस्प कहानियों तक
घर तक तो आती है
ये सड़क और कहा जाती है

टूटे पत्तो से भरी हुई
बारिशों में उल्झी हुई
मुरझाये दिलों से गली हुई
घर तक तो आती है
ये सड़क और कहा जाती है

तुम भी तो इस सड़क से आये होंगे
वोह कुछ तो बौखलाई होगी
शायद थोडा शरमाई भी होगी
कुछ तो  तुम्हारे कानो में कहा होगा
क्या तुमने भी सोचा कभी
घर तक तो आती है
ये सड़क और कहा जाती है




Dec 3, 2012

Inspired by Paris

These cobblestone walls scream in agony,
Of pleasure, of love.
The river gathers in a corner,
Like your feet in the early mornings,
Lying lazily, moving laboriously.
Every building in this city is like a tombstone,
Ironic that it has tourist graveyards too.
You never hold my hand,
While we sit in the warm cathedrals,
To save us from cold,
To save us from fear.
We meet like this city meets its people,
Fresh strangers and fresh lilies.
In the evening, we devour the structures.
Walk together on different roads,
Going towards home and far away from it.
The city sleeps early,
And we keep pace with the night. 

Sep 22, 2012

Comeback. And recommendation of the week.

"I'm always making a comeback but nobody ever tells me where I've been." Billie Holiday.

I can't even begin to tell you how I stumbled upon this beautiful line from Billie Holiday today. But probably this was all I needed. She is one of my most favourite singers ever.

This time, I will make notes while I am away, instead of going through references. They might be incoherent. Incomprehensible. I might be dazed. But this time, I probably will remember something about the place I am going to. I would, for example, definitely know its exact distance from predictability.

So I guess, I will see you around when I am back.

BTW, Recommendation of the week: Yann Martel's Life of Pi, the book.  Been my best friend since the last fifteen-twenty days. Martel and Pi Patel are great storytellers and great survivors. Really looking forward to Ang Lee's movie now.   

“If you stumble about believability, what are you living for? Love is hard to believe, ask any lover. Life is hard to believe, ask any scientist. God is hard to believe, ask any believer. What is your problem with hard to believe?” 

Sep 18, 2012

Love is a dog from hell- Charles Bukowski


AS CRAZY AS I EVER WAS

drunk and writing poems
at 3 a.m.

what counts now
is one more
tight pussy
before the light
tilts out
drunk and writing poems
at 3:15 a.m.

some people tell me that I'm
famous.
what am I doing alone
drunk and writing poems at
3:18 a.m.?

I'm as crazy as I ever was
they don't understand
that I haven't stopped hanging out of 4th floor
windows by my heels-
I still do
right now
sitting here

writing this down
I am hanging by my heels
floors up:
68, 72, 101,
the feeling is the
same:
relentless
unheroic and
necessary

sitting here
drunk and writing poems
at 3:24 a.m.

Sep 16, 2012

Love story of Frida and Diego

 
(Source: Guardian.co.uk)

(Source: Timeisart.org)

(Source: proa.org)
“There have been two great accidents in my life. One was the trolley, and the other was Diego. Diego was by far the worst.” Frida Kahlo

Sep 15, 2012

वोह तो बस फ़िज़ूल बातें करते हैं

वोह तो बस फ़िज़ूल बातें करते हैं
इधर उधर के किस्से सुना कर
तालियों की गूँज पीते रहते है

होठों पर बैठीं रहती है शराब हमेशा
उधार की नज्मों में चस्का लेते है
कुछ पुराने कुछ नए शायरों की
कुछ ग़मगीन कुछ शौक़ीन

रोज़ युही इश्क में पड़ते रहते है
लड़ते है झगड़ते है
बस यूँ ही ज़रा मुस्कुरा कर
पेशानी पे कुछ हलके से बल लाकर 
दिल को बाजू पर अटका कर
वोह रोज़ घर से निकलते है

बस पूछों मत
वोह तो बस फ़िज़ूल बातें करते है
इधर उधर के किस्से सुना कर
तालियों की गूँज पीते रहते है

Sep 13, 2012

Coco Before Chanel and Coco Chanel

“I don't understand how a woman can leave the house without fixing herself up a little - if only out of politeness. And then, you never know, maybe that's the day she has a date with destiny. And it's best to be as pretty as possible for destiny.”  Coco Chanel





Last night, I watched a very subtle and nuanced Audrey Tatau walk into the character of Coco Before Chanel effortlessly. Since I did not know much about Gabrielle Chanel much, I was devoid of any expectations. The movie is not mind-blowing or one of the best biographical pieces that I have seen, but it has a beautiful pace and its heart is definitely in the right place. Some of the scenes are really beautifully shot (Like how the dull grey suit clad Tatau stands out at the beach amongst a riot of various colors).

The Coco Chanel spirit is subtly weaved into young Gabrielle's life when she is working on clothes, hats mainly and ostensibly dreaming about becoming a stage performing star in Paris. The movie focuses on her two most important relationships with two most important men in her life- Balson (extremely good performance by Benoît Poelvoorde) and 'Boy'. Her stubbornness, her pride, her lack of pride, her abhorrence for frilly dresses, her core elegance,  her impulses, her mask of emotional detachment, her vulnerability when she actually succumbs into the arms of love is very exquisitely captured. And like I said, Audrey Tatau is a sheer delight on the screen. Chanel's determination, often shaken up by her financial dependence and eventual falling into love with 'Boy', something that she avoided for the major part of her young life is amazingly portrayed by Tatau in the movie.



My most favourite scene in the movie is when Tatau changes her mind before leaving Balson's house the first time, dresses up as a boy and barges into his party mounted on a badly ridden horse.




I lapped up quite a lot of reading material last night on Ms Coco Chanel- The Innovator; (at the cost of using an extremely cliched term) The woman in a man's world (especially at her time); a woman who eventually knew what she wanted and always knew how to get what she wanted and most importantly, a woman in love. She confessed, as I read somewhere, of being deeply affected till the end by Boy's death which happened due to a car accident. She managed to keep her decision intact- of being nobody's wife, till the end.

“Arrogance is in everything I do. It is in my gestures, the harshness of my voice, in the glow of my gaze, in my sinewy, tormented face.”
Coco Chanel

I would probably add pearls, black, bow-ties and cherry lipstick to my wardrobe. Drink champagne may be, for a few days. And, well, be very particular about my perfume ;)
  
“Where should one use perfume?" a young woman asked. "Wherever one wants to be kissed.”  Coco Chanel

Sep 8, 2012

Part Two

Good Will Hunting, love, 9.8 million and my friend Anu

Saturday evening was a lovely haze. Cooked, ate, drank and watched Good Will Hunting with two of my friends. We laughed quite a bit.

When I came back home, thoughts were somersaulting. Most of them well-behaved, thankfully. Something reminded me of this post that I had written, almost a year back.

I love this scene in Good Will Hunting between Robin Williams and Matt Damon about soulmates.

Sean: Do you have a soul mate?
Will: Define that.
Sean: Someone you can relate to, someone who opens things up for you.
Will: Sure, I got plenty.
Sean: Well, name them.
Will: Shakespeare, Nietzsche, Frost, O'Conner...
Sean: Well that's great. They're all dead.
Will: Not to me, they're not.
Sean: You can't have a lot of dialogue with them.
Will: Not without a heater and some serious smelling salts.

Lately, most of my daily chores, routines have a life of their own. It makes it slightly easier to cut through the chaos.

I was talking to my friend Anu last night who is a quintessential nomad traveller, in the absolute sense of the word. She personifies it. Last night, we had our 9.8 millionth chat about the complicated and interesting things of our lives in general, love, being at the centre of it all. 

Anu was born and brought up in the US, moved to India for two years, back in the States now but in Bombay currently to say goodbyes. Temporary goodbyes. She says that she has a bitter-sweet relationship with Bombay. She says, “I feel like saying ‘Love you Bombay. Fuck you Bombay’ in the same breath.” It is very similar to her and my ideas of finding “someone”. It is something we care about so much and something we don't care about at all, in the same breath!


    
You probably should give it a shot, someone gently whispers. Courage, however, takes smaller and fewer steps. Vulnerability hides under the bed. Patience goes for a short term paid vacation. The heart snuggles inside a warm blanket, alone. But probably someone will inspire all of them to go out there again. To go out on a limb. Or someone will sweep them off their feet and take them out for dinner. Candle light. It is absolutely fine for life to demand a few cliches here and there.

Aug 28, 2012

In search of the perfect night

The table was set.
The food was ready.
The wine was served.
The candles were lit.
And then we went out,
In search of the perfect night.

Aug 19, 2012

Of Sunday and of soldiers who never want to war

What an absolutely beautiful and magnificent Sunday afternoon. I am sitting by the window of my house while Sinatra sings 'Come fly with me'. Accompanied by one of my most favourite things in the world-rains. Incessant rains. I love the sound of it. It makes me so romantic, towards life.

I kind of find it fascinating to look outside the window of this house. I can see dilapidated slums with make-shift roofs, green leafy gorgeous trees and capitalistic huge buildings which look like soldiers who have never gone to war, all at the same time.

Now Dinah Washington's 'Everytime we say goodbye' is playing in the background.

Have a great Sunday. =) 

Aug 10, 2012

'Cutesy Neurosis'

'Its heroine, Margot (Williams), is a lost soul, an aspirant author, stuck in a hacky job and kiddie clothes and cutesy neuroses.' 

Hmmm...
 

Anyhow, read Sarah Polley's (Director of Take This Waltz) interview in Guardian.co.uk here

Recommendation of the week- 'Kitchen' by Alice Winocour

I managed to watch a few interesting French shorts a few weeks back at Sakshi Gallery (Colaba) and this is the one that stayed with me. It was difficult to hold my thoughts on this for so long but I was desperately trying to get the link for the 15 minute movie for you lovely people.

This movie softly tickles your funny bone, is full of pathos and is deeply gripping, all at the same time. The protagonists including the leading lady and the two lobsters with their tragicomic deaths (Okay, sorry, now I am delving into the plot) are the soul of this film. So before I ramble on, here it is. Kitchen. Have fun. =)



Aug 8, 2012

I just don't want to be a tragic clown

Today, I thought of a poem about a tragic clown,
How he mocks his own life,
And, the world doesn't even laugh.

But towards the end of the night,
I changed my mind.
Almost had a cup of coffee with a friend.

And I realised
I want to meet him the next time,
And neither stutter,
Nor ramble,
Not sip water like its whiskey,
Or sip whiskey like its water.
I just don't want to be a tragic clown.

Tom Waits' 'I hope I don't fall in love with you',
Might ironically still play in the background,
I just don't want to be a tragic clown.

The next time around,
I will show him the words I found!
Tom Waits might still sing in the background.
A less ironical 'Drunk on the moon', perhaps.
I just don't want to be a tragic clown.






Don't try and change my tune, Cause I thought I heard a saxophone. I'm drunk on the moon

"Why don't we advertise Viagra like this?"

There was enough hoopla and funny-serious debate and criticism about the last "great" invention of capitalism, the cream that makes vaginas fairer. Most of us were pretty agitated with the product itself. Most of us did not know anyone (men (who expect women's vaginas to be fairer) and women) in our circles who wanted a fairer vagina. However, probably the manufacturers researched the market and found potential TG. A good-looking and intelligent friend of mine from the advertising business just told me that Capitalism is good. "You know I am all for capitalism and everything should be available and advertised but if something is making anyone feel inferior then its wrong." And I completely agree with him (And not just because he is good-looking).

But yeah moving on, so I stumbled upon this weird ad this morning for 18 Again cream for tighter and rejuvenated vaginas. http://www.campaignindia.in/Video/311302,18-again-croons-proposition-feel-like-a-virgin-announces-arrival.aspx

I am not going to talk about the product because I don't know if there are women who use creams for making their vaginas "fairer", "tighter", "empowered", "rejuvenated" etc. And just because I don't know these women does not really mean that there might not be a target audience for these products and if there is a market, then the manufacturers are probably completely justified in creating these products.

What I am so fucking amazed and pissed at is that women would use 18 Again (WTF is this name) to "feel like a virgin (What.the.fuck)." I am not going to write a whole rant about how this is just sooo absolutely fucking insulting to women (I am trying to achieve a zen-like existence these days and thus all the cribbing has to be kept to its minimum requirement). Even if you are tightening your vagina or "rejuvenating" it (I still haven't understood what that means, someone explain it to me?!?), why would you want to feel like a virgin, if you are not a virgin.

Needless to say, I am completely disgusted with this immensely moronic and ridiculous proposition. I don't even know who to blame for such a huge heap of bull-crap we are creating around ourselves- the manufacturer, the ad agency, the target audience, men, women, this country etc etc.

So to conclude for now, this is my good-looking (and intelligent!) advertising friend's point of view on the advertisements of such products. He says, "I am all for freedom of thought, expression and opportunities, but it should be done in an appropriate manner for a particular instance and requirement. There is a hair line difference between irreverence and stupidity but the impact can be of opposite extremes."  (Told you he is quite intelligent!)

Oh. He also demanded an answer to this- "Why don't we advertise Viagra like this?"

I agree.



Aug 6, 2012

Portrait- A boy with a bunch of stale roses

This current happy state of being translated into a huge tangible smile when I spotted my third portrait on this wonderful Monday morning. He was about 7-8-9 years old, I think. I first spotted him peeping into the autorickshaw which was right in front of my auto at a signal in Bandra. He had a huge smile on his face which could well have been a grin. He wore this red-t-shirt, black shorts, had his ear pierced, had a huge number of (atleast 6-7) "friendship bands" tied on his left wrist. I am presuming they were friendship bands since it was the much maligned Friendship's Day yesterday. And he held a bunch of stale red roses in his hand. It was easy to miss the roses because of his truly eclectic personality. He was a stud! A rockstar.

He soon came towards my auto. And instead of hard-selling the roses to me, he pointed towards my hand which has a bit of an injury and said, "Aapke haath ko kya hua didi?" It just took me a second to get over the fact that thats the first thing he noticed and actually asked an almost personal question. I thought he peeped a bit inside my life or atleast the last few days of my life. And then he looked at me and said with a vague hand gesture, "Aapka eyes bahut achacha hai". I am sure I must have blushed since I am not very good and sophisticated about excepting compliments. I just had a sheepish huge smile on my face.

Well, sorry. Back to his portrait. He was just like a perfect morning. Bright, sparkling, happy, with a measured amount of sunlight. He definitely was not a good salesman because he seemed to want to see so much more in life and in people. In our one or two minutes conversation, he just said once, "didi roses lelo. Daal chawal khana hai." That was the only thing about him that sounded so automated. Even without waiting for a concrete no, he moved onto the other auto.

Or may be was a good salesman. Because as soon as he left, I felt terribly sad about not picking up those roses from him even though I don't like roses and even though the roses were dying.

To read other portraits, click here



Aug 5, 2012

Freedom

"Almost twenty years had passed, and in the end he had exactly what he had when he first arrived: his stories, his freedom and the open road before him."
Omair Ahmad’s The Storyteller’s Tale

I had fallen in love with this line a few years back when I had first read it in a magazine which had a write-up on Omair Ahmad. I think it was in the First City magazine.

There is some weird significance to these lines. Just a few days back I was cleaning up my drafts folder and found this again. And then a couple of days after that, I met someone who epitomized this line. He told me a bit about the open road before him. He told me a bit about freedom. He told me a bit about the stories. 

PS: I hope to finally pick up Ahmad's book soon.

Jul 29, 2012

When a man walks into a room, he brings his whole life with him

"When a man walks into a room, he brings his whole life with him. He has a million reasons for being anywhere, just ask him. If you listen, he'll tell you how he got there. How he forgot where he was going, and that he woke up. If you listen, he'll tell you about the time he thought he was an angel or dreamt of being perfect. And then he'll smile with wisdom, content that he realized the world isn't perfect. We're flawed, because we want so much more. We're ruined, because we get these things, and wish for what we had."

Don Draper, Mad Men

Jul 26, 2012

Old drafts

Lost the old drafts,
That marked the beginning of love.

We all died a little inside,
And donned a new life.
We gasped,
Look terribly amazed,
Re-lived what never happened.

Words spun over by centuries.
A short story,
That never ever ended.
An epitaph poem,
Where the poet stayed alive,
The poem was buried.

Kept writing,
On loose white sheets,
Crisp and benign.
A start to the end,
Of our new found lives.

Jul 17, 2012

Story

Ranthambore Notes


Before I went to Ranthambore, I don’t think I had ever heard so much silence before. The ride from Jaipur to Ranthambore was blissful. While my driver Dinesh played B-grade Hindi film songs in the background, I was immersed in F Scott Fitzgerald’s creation of rise and fall of passion between Rosemary and Dick Diver for about an hour of the three hour journey. The drive took me through some interesting places. Green fields, mud huts, cattle, dung, cycles, women sitting on the side of the road as if they were born to do that, colors, yellow, orange, dark pink, turbans. I had been to Rajasthan so many times before but there was some new vibe to all this, as if someone had just increased the contrast of all the imagery.



The silence on the terrace of my hotel ‘Castle Jhoomar Baori’ introduced me to a version of silence that I never knew before. This silence was really overwhelming. It screamed. It spoke to me. It even said sweet nothings to me. It took us about five minutes to become friends. Wind accompanied the silence. At the cost of sounding like a narcissist, if I have ever secretly felt like a royal queen, it was the moment I stepped onto this terrace. This was created for me, I thought. The wild animals made music. The jungle, which surrounded me as my hotel was almost in the middle of it, gave me the privilege to see it in all its abundance, in all its glory.
The hotel itself was full of all kinds of crawlies. You name it. Lizards, spiders, leeches, snails, ants, big ants et al. They all crawl so proudly like they belong there. And somehow I did not feel scared of them. You know how it is. You always admire things which have this sense of belonging, which we encounter so rarely. If at all, I felt like an intruder in their cosy lives.



The hotel was this sort of an old haveli turned into a commercial place. It had a very rustic feel to it. Sometimes, an eerie feel too. The nights can be tough if you are all alone in a suite called ‘Tiger Suite’ and they put a bedsheet in your room which looks like this!!!! Yes, I removed it within two minutes after I clicked this picture.



It had some interesting paintings too. This is my favourite. Check out the woman sitting by the window. What a beautiful image of melancholy and longing. An ignored queen. It even prompted me to ask an important question to a friend. “Is mutual love really important in life?”  He told me that it is not, but I will forever feel it is and this space in between is where all the literature will come from.I still am not sure if I believe him, which ironically proves what he said!



Anyhow, Ranthambore Fort was another lovely place. It is a spectacular collage of ruins. Each and every part more mesmerizing than the other. It was a stairway to a lot of lovely pictures, portraits and also a lot of friendly apes.


   


Jul 11, 2012

The bottom of the sea

Deep deep down
About to reach the bottom
Of the sea

A river holding my hand
We talk about somersaults
Sea is our father
Sea is our child

The world discusses catastrophes
Here we just jump and turn around
We are never reborn
This is the circle

Deep deep down
About to reach the bottom
Of the sea



Jul 5, 2012

Je T'aime Tant



Someone recently said to me that French, the sound of it, is like love-making. A magical song. Heart-breaking words. And Julie Delpy!


Jul 4, 2012

Portrait- Yellow dress

Like a lily she stood in the drizzle
Under that glistening green leafy tree
With one hand on her waist
What a sight of absolute authority
In a sunshine yellow tattered dress
Talking to a stray dog
I saw her from across the second compartment
Of a moderately crowded train
Across the vacant and filthy railway tracks
A little girl she was
In a small dumpster colony
Ready to lead the world
Her innocence and grace rescued by the huge tree
She was probably giving instructions to the dog
Who seemed to be paying a lot of attention
I just had to put a frame around them
For this was my second portrait
Never to be clicked
Always to be carried around

First Portrait: Here


Jul 3, 2012

The Curious Case of the Unwanted Lizard

I am not particularly scared of lizards. Dogs. Well, that is another story. When it comes to dogs, I think Chandler's theory of my-neck-is-exposed-and-he-can-sense-my-fear is the closest theory I have come across to explain my rational fear of being around dogs. Anyhow, lizards! So most of the houses I have stayed at in my life so far- four in Delhi and four in Mumbai have had lizards. Small. Big. Medium. Light brown. Dark brown. While my mother has been the most daring in our family to "shoo" away those crawlies, I have distinct memories of my dad screaming for my mother's help at any sighting of a lizard.

I don't get scared because they are usually crawling at a remote corner of some wall in the house and generally, I don't have much stuff to do on the walls except for stare at them for some philosophical pondering. So often me and many lizards have had eye contacts and a smile or two has been exchanged too but beyond that there has been an understanding of a peaceful co-existence. And come to think of it, they are not even ugly and full of germs like cockroaches or catty and annoying like rats etc so they have almost always been welcome in my various houses, much to the dismay of many of my guests.

However, things have changed now. Now I live in a Really tiny studio apartment, on my own. Each and every corner and inch of the space in this house is accounted for. Only the things, people and creatures who I want to be around are invited to this place. After about a month of moving to this abode, something happened, which finally changed what I have often felt or not felt about lizards.

She is bigger than any other lizard I have encountered so far. And to be fair to her, she might appear larger than life because of the super tiny size of my apartment. Some rules of proportionality need to be applied here. From nowhere, she pops out like a lightening bolt , scares the fucking daylights out of me and eventually put me on the risk of my impending heart attack. As you would probably know, sudden fear and shock is the reason of about 65% of the heart attacks in this world.

Since she moves almost at the speed of light (If I can just exaggerate a bit), it is impossible to get any photographic evidence for the professional exterminator if I choose to call one. At one point, I even considered shooting a documentary on her life but because of her rapid movements it is very difficult to zoom in, zoom out and also follow her around. She avoids all eye contact now and obviously we have moved beyond the stage where we can even think about smiling at each other. So finally I have changed my views about having a lizard in the house. You are not welcome in my house anymore lizzy-missy. I am all set to take some drastic steps about this one in particular and in the process if other lizards get upset with me too, inspite of my good behaviour with them over the years, then I am ready to bear the consequences.

PS: Wanted a professional lizard thrower, hunter or exterminator!   

     




Jul 2, 2012

Recommendation of the week


Found this lovely letter on www.brainpickings.org by John Steinbeck who had written this to his teenage son who had fallen in love. It is absolutely beautiful and worth many many reads.

New York
November 10, 1958
Dear Thom:
We had your letter this morning. I will answer it from my point of view and of course Elaine will from hers.
First — if you are in love — that’s a good thing — that’s about the best thing that can happen to anyone. Don’t let anyone make it small or light to you.
Second — There are several kinds of love. One is a selfish, mean, grasping, egotistical thing which uses love for self-importance. This is the ugly and crippling kind. The other is an outpouring of everything good in you — of kindness and consideration and respect — not only the social respect of manners but the greater respect which is recognition of another person as unique and valuable. The first kind can make you sick and small and weak but the second can release in you strength, and courage and goodness and even wisdom you didn’t know you had.
You say this is not puppy love. If you feel so deeply — of course it isn’t puppy love.
But I don’t think you were asking me what you feel. You know better than anyone. What you wanted me to help you with is what to do about it — and that I can tell you.
Glory in it for one thing and be very glad and grateful for it.
The object of love is the best and most beautiful. Try to live up to it.
If you love someone — there is no possible harm in saying so — only you must remember that some people are very shy and sometimes the saying must take that shyness into consideration.
Girls have a way of knowing or feeling what you feel, but they usually like to hear it also.
It sometimes happens that what you feel is not returned for one reason or another — but that does not make your feeling less valuable and good.
Lastly, I know your feeling because I have it and I’m glad you have it.
We will be glad to meet Susan. She will be very welcome. But Elaine will make all such arrangements because that is her province and she will be very glad to. She knows about love too and maybe she can give you more help than I can.
And don’t worry about losing. If it is right, it happens — The main thing is not to hurry. Nothing good gets away.
Love,
Fa

SOURCE: http://www.brainpickings.org/index.php/2012/01/12/john-steinbeck-on-love-1958/



 

Jun 29, 2012

“I love sleep. My life has the tendency to fall apart when I’m awake, you know?"

I couldn't have found a better headline than this. Completely agree with Mr Ernest Hemingway.

Actually, this is not even a headline. This is the gist of what you are about to read.

We all love to sleep. At least most people I know. Most people consider sleeping as a part of their symmetrical routinely lives.

For me, sleep is one of the most important things I live for.

Recently, I have taken a conscious decision to do some things that I have never done before (Yes, my quarter life crisis has lasted for much longer than I would have imagined). So one of those things was to get up in the morning and go to the sea face for a "morning walk". Man, people talk about it with so much gusto, so much passion, so much normalcy that I thought I really must be missing out on some sort of experience since I have never ever gotten up early in the morning to walk/jog or do any form of exercise. The only reason I would ever get up between 5 to 8 am in the morning is when I have a god-forsaken flight to catch or other such extreme form of torture.

Anyhow, getting back on the walking track. Yesterday, I went for the first ever "morning walk" of my life at 7.02 am at the beautiful, picturesque and rainy Carter Road. Geared up in my shorts, shoes, music and a red umbrella, it definitely was a unique experience. And now I at least I can talk to my grandchildren with some sort of authority when I tell them that getting up so early in the morning for a walk/jog/exercise is so Highly Overrated. Clearly, I can have that experience any fucking time of the day, and it would thankfully be devoid of the misery, torture, nausea and dizziness of early mornings.  

Early mornings are meant for sweet sleep. They are meant to make you believe that everything is fabulous. You are fabulous. Early mornings are meant for amazing dreams, dreams of wilderness, zany dreams, incomprehensible dreams and forgettable dreams. The best sleep of the whole night is often lovingly gifted to you by glorious early mornings. The early morning sleep (actually sleep in general) comforts me the way nothing and no-one can. I love sleep from the bottom of my bottomless heart.

Here is to sleep. Here is to early morning sleep. Here is to never ever getting up early in the morning for "morning-walks/jogs/exercise".

Post 8.30-9 a.m, I am up for anything. Now let us talk about breakkie, wine, work, coffee, eggs, sugar, love and other such things.

Jun 4, 2012

The Missing People

This poem has been completely inspired by these images of "missing people" by Graham McIndoe 
via www.flavorwire.com


They are holed up in life,
Or freed in death?
Nobody knows.
They are the missing people.

The shadow of their identity,
Translated into paper,
With a pleading hope,
With a hopeful plead.
They are the missing people.

They are crushed, they are wrinkled,
They are creased,
They are in throes of winter,
They are the missing people.
Years go by, their skin doesn't age
Centuries multiply, they lie wide awake,
The posters wither, the skin dries up.
They are the missing people. 

They are the answers,
They are the rhetorical questions.
They rise like a duststorm,
And settle down into a pile of nothing.
They are the missing people.  


May 28, 2012

Recommendation of the week: A Seperation


So finally over the weekend, I managed to watch Asghar Farhidi's A Separation which is the first Iranian movie to have won the Oscar in the best foreign language movie category. I would like to begin talking about the movie with its end. It is one of the most beautiful endings I have ever seen. It is simple, yet mind-blowing. It lingers on, till the last credit and then smoothly flows through the screen to be with you for quite sometime. 

The script of the movie is pretty interesting. There is no mystery as such but the film keeps taking these interesting turns that make you feel you are watching some sort of strongly interlinked stories, but stories which can just strongly exist on their own too. The film is full of interesting women characters including the two wives and the two daughters and still its not really a feminist story. The filmmaker also pays a lot of attention to details. I like the scene where the accused husband (you will know who I am talking about once you watch the movie), comes to the kitchen and his estranged wife is shown just stubbing the cigarette in the balcony. The wife is almost in the background , out of focus, but is smoking. May be it is just completely my interpretation, but its a very subtle smartly executed scene to sort of show the modernity of a a bourgeois Iranian woman. (I do not mean that smoking a cigarette depicts modernity but it kind of does in this particular context) And because of all the brouhaha in Iran, its done so subtly, in a blink and miss fashion.

There is no massive high or low points in the film, which probably has not worked in my favour. It is very very difficult to sympathize or stay with any character in the movie, the accused, the accuser, the liar, anyone. And this is completely my problem and a pretty much wrong thing to do, but I kept thinking about Jafar Panahi, one of my most favourite directors, while watching the movie. Yes, yes, I know that comparing two filmmakers is not a very intelligent thing to do but like I said, I missed Panahi. His films, even the apparently most simplistic ones, always manage to make me sit up, draw a huge breath and say 'wow'. They have a very Iranian appeal to them if you know what I mean. And except for a few intrinsic minute details, 'A Separation' could have been based anywhere, even in India.

However, 'A Separation' is a must watch, for a simple yet complicated slice of life of normal everyday people and everyday issues in Iran. And for the subtle hints to the whole conflict for a lot of people who want to stay in their homeland and want to get out of it, at the same time. That is the beginning of the film.



May 21, 2012

'Mayakovsky' by Frank O'Hara






My heart's aflutter!
I am standing in the bath tub
crying. Mother, mother
who am I? If he
will just come back once
and kiss me on the face
his coarse hair brush
my temple, it's throbbing!

then I can put on my clothes
I guess, and walk the streets.

I love you. I love you,
but I'm turning to my verses
and my heart is closing
like a fist.

Words! be
sick as I am sick, swoon,
roll back your eyes, a pool,

and I'll stare down
at my wounded beauty
which at best is only a talent
for poetry.

Cannot please, cannot charm or win
what a poet!
and the clear water is thick

with bloody blows on its head.
I embrace a cloud,
but when I soared
it rained.

That's funny! there's blood on my chest
oh yes, I've been carrying bricks
what a funny place to rupture!
and now it is raining on the ailanthus
as I step out onto the window ledge
the tracks below me are smoky and
glistening with a passion for running
I leap into the leaves, green like the sea

Now I am quietly waiting for
the catastrophe of my personality
to seem beautiful again,
and interesting, and modern.


The country is grey and
brown and white in trees,
snows and skies of laughter
always diminishing, less funny
not just darker, not just grey.

It may be the coldest day of
the year, what does he think of
that? I mean, what do I? And if I do,
perhaps I am myself again.


Frank O'Hara

May 17, 2012

How George Clooney has made a difference to my life

How George Clooney has helped me is definitely not through schadenfreude but something pretty close to it. I know that it is humanly possible to feel some kind of delight in other people's misfortune. Fortunately or Unfortunately, I have not reached that stage yet. It is a truth universally acknowledged that loneliness is not partial towards anyone. It is pretty generous as a matter of fact. You can have as much of it as you want, in abundance. Sometimes you will feel guilty by partaking too much of it. It is charming, interesting, creative and everything but it also makes you miserable, desperate and sometimes a weird version of yourself.

So anyhow, the point is that we all know that there is no dearth of broken souls marred by loneliness. You don't really feel special when you are lonely. However, when you read that the Most handsome, one of the most amazing actors, an icon, a Roman god (Greek is too cliche for Clooney), this man who defines cool feels lonely, then you feel a bit special. Atleast I do. Like I said, it is not schadenfreude, I don't feel happy about Clooney being lonely, an alcoholic, an insomniac, but if the universe can make George Clooney suffer from all this then....

May 4, 2012

Unobvious similarities between things

"Writers can sound rather mystical when they talk about these things. Words like inspiration and creativity I’m really rather suspicious of, though I can’t talk about my work for more than thirty seconds without deploying them myself. Sometimes I think that creativity is a matter of seeing, or stumbling over, unobvious similarities between things—like composing a fresh metaphor, but on a more complex scale."

"One night in Hiroshima it occurred to me that the moon behind a certain cloud formation looked very like a painkiller dissolving in a glass of water. I didn’t work toward that simile, it was simply there: I was mugged, as it were, by the similarity between these two very different things. Literary composition can be a similar process. The writer’s real world and the writer’s fictional world are compared, and these comparisons turned into text. But other times literary composition can be a plain old slog, and nothing to do with zones or inspiration. It’s world making and the peopling of those worlds, complete with time lines and heartache."

David Mitchell
(Source: http://www.theparisreview.org/interviews/6034/the-art-of-fiction-no-204-david-mitchell)

Apr 27, 2012

I am learning

I am learning.
I am learning.

He is teaching me the art of nothing
She is telling me about a night
Stupendous lies
Sparkling desire
Gushing forth the lava of dreams
I am learning

The old woman is talking about death
Her beauty, her age
Her withered secret garden
The little kid talks about his love
Laughter, with a streak of nervousness
Laughter, rich and frothy
I am learning
Everyday
From everyone.

It is alright, she tells me.
Talk, say what scares you the most.
Then snuggle up with those dark truths
Like they were your lovers
I am listening
I am learning

He tells me about pain
Its glorification, its hypothesis
Its scientific nature
Its potency
I am listening
Intently.

This other one tells me about colors
Of blood. Of passion.
Red. Purple.
Black.
I am looking.

He takes me around
From corner to corner
Hoping to give love
Inheriting love
While we drink whiskey
Talks about pleasures
Simple. Complicated.
Complicated. Easy.
I am experiencing.

I am in this.
Deep.
With you, with everyone.
I am learning.
I am learning.
Everyday.
From everyone.


Apr 25, 2012

Patience is not a virtue.

The beautiful, powerful and uplifting poem ‘Aurat’ by Kaifi Azmi met me this morning through this wonderful website. We weren’t strangers. I had met this poem while watching this movie called Tamanna. They have used about three paragraphs of the poem to form this song. The poem is one of the most powerful piece of poetry I have ever read. In a strange and not so strange way, it reminds me of Maya Angelou’s ‘Still I Rise’. Another masterpiece. Both of these creations have the power of completely pulling you out of the apparent comfortable rut and put you right in the centre of the whirlpool where you know exactly what needs to be done, even before you realise what has happened to you.


This line from Aurut ‘zindagii jehad mein hai sabr ke qaabuu mein nahiin’ (Life is in the fight, not in the patience) particularly fascinates me. There is something in this line. I don’t know, just something. I am not going to wait, I am going to run to, run away from. Patience has never been my virtue. And something and Kaifi Azmi tell me it might not even be a virtue at all! And I am not a big fan of stuffing patience and love in the same jar too. They create way too much ruckus.

Enjoy both the poems. 







Apr 18, 2012

Nostalgia - It's delicate, but potent...

"Nostalgia - it's delicate, but potent. Teddy told me that in Greek, "nostalgia" literally means "the pain from an old wound." It's a twinge in your heart far more powerful than memory alone. This device isn't a spaceship, it's a time machine. It goes backwards, and forwards... it takes us to a place where we ache to go again. It's not called the wheel, it's called the carousel. It let's us travel the way a child travels - around and around, and back home again, to a place where we know are loved."

Don Draper, Mad Men

Apr 16, 2012

A fictional story of a guy selling his life on e-Bay

(Inspired by the true story of a guy who sold his life on e-Bay: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/australiaandthepacific/1581952/Australian-auctions-entire-life-on-eBay.html)

Do you ever wonder what do dogs actually dream about when they are sleeping. A friend's guess is that they dream about chasing other dogs, cats, rats probably (if we ignore the actual food chain, who follows that anyways). Could be about what they see during the day. Anyways, the thought of what a dog dreams about wasn't exactly the one that was going to make this day better for him. Incase you are wondering who is 'him'. I would have to apologize about not concocting a fictional name for this protagonist. It is to give the story an "Everyman" kind of effect. The one they used to use in morality plays, ages and ages back.

Either his life was a complete waste or the world around him was a complete waste. There definitely was one of these who was a waste. He had moved beyond the question of existentialism. The recession was long over but there was no inclination of finding a job. A sense of lethargy had crept inside and had made a weird concoction with his blood. It had become a part of his everyday routine. Today was not a different day. But yet a very very different day. After days, he felt like doing something.

He had often thought about selling his life so that somebody could put it to some good use. Today he decided to give it a try. eBay is one of the most popular e-commerce website of our day and age and thus he decided to make on online bid on that website. This was different from selling someone's body. Anyways, you cant do that on e-Bay. It is illegal, right? Anyhow, what he wanted to sell is his life. He was not really sure what all that would comprise. Body and soul, or just his soul, his energy, the blood in his veins, his belongings, his friends (he wasn't sure if they would agree to get sold), his writings, his house (which was anyway a rented place so technically he doesn't have the right to sell it).

Anyways, he logged on to the site and put his life on sale. He was really ecstatic at this moment. After a long time, he thought that he was doing something constructive with his life. What better use could he actually put his life to? Selling it was the most innovative idea he had come up with it. "Life on sale". He thought that would be too vague so he decided to add a little more description. "Life, with probably a lot of potential, on sale". "Life, with a lot of potential, on sale". "My life
on sale: not used that much, Ideally I would have used it myself. But I just feel a bit lazy so I would rather put it in someone else's hands." Ahh, that was too long a copy for an ad. "Life for sale". Final. That was going to be final.

A lot of responses came asking for more details and admiring the offer. It sounded brave, some responses said. The problem was that most people were only interested in his belongings. Some in his writing too. He was able to dispose off a lot of stuff which he anyways did not want. But nobody had yet asked for his life. His body, his body and soul, his blood, his energy etc. All that was still pretty much available. After five days, he got a response. It was from a girl from a different country. She said that she is actually interested in buying his life, without the belongings and stuff (which were all gone anyways). He was pretty flattered. He just did not know how much to quote. After a bit of haggling, they agreed on a price. Then there was the question of exporting the life. That would cost too. The girl agreed to pay. He convinced her for shipping the "life" the next day. He was too tired too with all the haggling, he said. The girl was fine with it.

Satisfied with his expedition, he lay down on the white floor. He realised that even the cigarettes were gone so he couldn't entertain himself with a smoke. He just lay there, and stared and smiled at the ceiling. He then thought about what do dogs and even other animals actually dream about. Their dreams could be pretty interesting. He went on to think about it, till the morning.

The end


(PS: Wrote this sometime back. Just posting it now)

Apr 13, 2012

Doodling

Doodling.

Thinking about things that were a big part of my life. But have been highly neglected in the process of mundane routines.

Poetry that actually came to me in the sleep, in flesh and blood. Walking blocks. Counting blocks. Counting and walking.

Writing. For myself. In secrecy. Writing letters. Unsent. Unsealed.

Going to Prerna. The NGO. Talking to Pinki and Nazma. Teaching Shaan who thinks 'd' is 'p'. Scolding them. Laughing. Chattering. Learning.

Working on the "Incomplete story". A story about a failed writer. The idea that I have been obsessed with over the years.

Sea. Sitting. By myself. Always equally mesmerised with the waves. Always amazed by the fact that I hadn't seen a sea for some 20 years of my life. Confessing my love to Bombay. The city. I love. My biggest love story.

Making plans. Achievable. Unachievable. Realistic. Fatalistic. Fantastic. Plans.

Being comfortable with silence. With loneliness. With myself. Keeping a distance. To keep floating. Being a quasi-existentialist.

Empathising. With people. On trains. On roads. In pain. In throes.

Dreaming.

Buying gifts. Buying cards.

 

Apr 9, 2012

No Direction Home


While we are all vaguely familiar with concepts like night blindness and colour blindness, (road) direction blindness syndrome hasn't got much attention. After having closely experienced this for years, I would like to offer this piece as a cathartic reading experience for those who suffer from this syndrome.

All my near and dear ones and some observant acquaintances know that it is an understatement if I say that 'I suck at giving and receiving directions to places'. Giving directions to a particular place has proven to be much less challenging than receiving. My friends almost consider it a miraculous and stupendous occasion if I manage to reach their place without getting misplaced or without a few frantic and harried calls.

This problem became acute recently when I moved to my new house in Bandra last week Sunday. So initially when I repeatedly roamed around the entire complex and asked three to four good souls for directions to my own house, I comforted myself with the idea that my new house was indeed in the loving arms of a pan's labyrinth. However, the friend who has been staying with me took exactly one day to figure out how to easily get home after a hard day's work.

I have been exploiting with my limited directions skills (due to my syndrome) for almost a week now. I have memorized, noted, marked various landmarks when the auto guy is taking me to the station from home and everyday I pleasantly smile to myself thinking that finally I would be able to have a peaceful and smooth ride back home. Every time, every fucking time, I get confused about the "right turn" and even if I somehow managed to take the "correct right turn" and cross everything that looks familiar including my landmarks (which are various boards for 'Coloron',three-four boards which all point towards 'Rizvi Complex', a cigarette shop which looks 'familiar', a few neighborhood buildings whose names are highly confusing).

But then just when I think that the battle is won and I can proudly hoist an imaginary little victory flag on the roof of my auto, I am lost. Fucking hell. Lost again. Fuck. Then I have to either ask people around, or sometimes, when I feel extra clever, I make the auto guy roam around in circles two-three times (and pay him a bomb!) till I can finally manage to crack a way to be back home.

Tonight is going to be my ninth night in the new house, and I am going to constantly work on tackling my direction blindness syndrome. Amen. So for those who suffer from this syndrome, we will see the "light of the day" my friends. One day, we will.

Title courtesy: Scorsese's docu on Bob Dylan

Apr 3, 2012

It has been a beautiful fight

"Lighting new cigarettes,
Pouring more
drinks,
It has been a beautiful
fight
Still is"
Charles Bukowski

Mar 26, 2012

दिल है, बहता है

सिमटता है
सिकुड़ता है
एक खाली रास्ते सा मुड़ता है
सुनता है
कहता है
दिल है
बहता है
सन्नाटो से गले लगता है
शोर में गुम हो जाता है
तुम्हारे आते ही
नई दुल्हन सा बन जाता है
करहाता है कभी
कभी मरहम बन जाता है
दिल है
बहता है
कभी नुस्खे आज़माता है
कभी बेवजह शाम सा लहराता है
मचलता है
बेहेलता है
दिल है
बहता है
तुम चले जाते हो
तब कही जाकर
झूटमूठ चैन से सोता है

Mar 22, 2012

Portrait- Lady with the orange flower

Have you ever noticed that there are some faces, some people who silently scream to be a portrait. They have all the things in the world which would make them a photographer's dream come true (Picture Perfect, as they say). Well, I am no photographer. And I have possibly the worst camera in the world. And thankfully, I don't lug it around except to capture cliches, most of the time.

Today's Portrait: This tiny Maharashtrian woman (It is my assumption that she is Maharashtrian). In a silk saree, orange in color, with a dark green border. The most distinct feature-An orange flower in her hair, neatly tied into an imperfect bun. Thick rimmed spectacles, a Hindi newspaper in hand. She was short, not stout at all and clearly must have seen more than 60 years of this life. A face that you can never forget and a face that you can never ever remember, try as hard as you might.

Muttering in between her heavy session of newspaper devouring. Her skin was wrinkly like a drained up sky. Hand heavily tattooed with undecipherable stuff, made all the more undecipherable by her untidy wrinkles. When her station came, (it was Charni Road I think), I couldn't help wondering about her portrait. How perfect she would be as a lifeless picture in a professional digital camera. Thank god, I did not have a camera with me.

She got off, pulled her saree up a little bit. One of her legs must have been injured during one of her great adventures, or hardships. Actually she struck me more as an adventurous spunky bossy woman rather than one who would just be happy doing daily mundane chores. She had tied her leg with a brown make-shift bandage and covered it with a cheap blue plastic bag on top, as if giving a warning to the rains.

She walked towards the bridge, and before I could see more of that magnificent old lady, who was a perfect portrait, she disappeared. Thank god, I did not have a camera with me.

Mar 18, 2012

Beautiful and empty

Finally, after years,
They had exchanged places.
She was now chasing her shadow,
He, love and longing.

Here is hoping though,
The years after separation,
The separation after years,
Remain equally beautiful and empty.

Mar 15, 2012

In between

I am good at love.
I am good at hate.
Its in between that I freeze.
Been working on it,
But its too late,
Its been too late for years.
LEONARD COHEN

Mar 12, 2012

Recommendation of the Week

SMUSHABLES-God knows that I needed that word . So ‘Smushables’ are squashed groceries you find at the bottom of the bag. "Confuzzled" is being confused and puzzled at the same time and "Snirt", which is a cross between snow and dirt. (Okay the last one is not that imaginative. Its the first cousin of Smog). Oh also, according to Mary’s grandfather, babies are found by dads at the bottom of their beer mugs!
Even though one of its characters is a lonely 44 year old obese man with asperger syndrome and another, a lonely 8 year old girl with a birthmark that looks like poo, and who has an alcoholic mother and a father who enjoys the company of dead birds, this movie managed to shake off a lot of my cynicism about life in general, atleast temporarily.
Mary and Max packs in a lot in itself including a huge range of emotions overarched with dark humour. At the centre of it all is a lovely tale of two pen friends, across two continents. The claymation in the movie is absolutely fantastic and detailed. It is narrated beautifully. It is funny, it is thoughtful, it is a bit dark at times and it is definitely a must watch!

Mar 10, 2012

अलविदा

वोह तो दरिया था
दफ़न करते भी तो कैसे
एक पल ही तो था
उसे पास रखते भी तो कैसे

सड़क जैसा बहता दरवाज़े तक आया
चाँद सा पिघल कर उड़ गया
उसे याद रखते भी तो कैसे

किसी दिन फुर्सत में मिलोगे तो बतायंगे
की चन्द सिक्के खोते भी तो कैसे

Mar 4, 2012

Murakami

“As if to build a fence around the fatal emptiness inside her, she had to create a sunny person that she became. But if you peeled away the ornamental egos that she had built, there was only an abbys of nothingness and the intense thirst that came with it. Though she tried to forget it, the nothingness would visit her periodically - on a lonely rainy afternoon, or at dawn when she woke up from a nightmare. What she needed at such times was to be held by someone, anyone.”
― Haruki Murakami, 1Q84

Mar 1, 2012

My First Ingmar Bergman



I had first heard of Ingmar Bergman in a Woody Allen movie. Woody Allen is apparently obsessed with Bergman. Somehow, I had never had a chance to see a Bergman movie so far. However, when I was reading about some interesting movies during my last trip back home, Bergman’s Persona struck me as a highly fascinating subject and I downloaded it. Last Sunday, I finally got to see the much talked about masterpiece. My first Ingmar Bergman.



The movie explores a "weird" and complicated relationship between and merging and the eventual de-merging of the personalities of two people-an actress who has lost her will to speak and a young nurse who has been deputed to take care of her.

The film begins with an extremely intriguing montage, the most haunting one being the killing of the sheep. Throughout the film, the imagery is quite stark most of the times. There is a constant eerie feel to everything. What calms the screen is the nurse’s character. It is like the spark of life in the broader landscape of death. The movie takes extremely interesting turns at various steps before it completely falls into the surrealist zone towards the end. There are a number of highly compelling scenes. My favourite scene is when the nurse narrates her ménage a trois experience to the actress and also when she reads the letter by the actress which describes the nurse’s confessions as an “experiment”.

Open-ended, well layered and beautifully crafted. Just the way I like them, most of the times! :)

Feb 29, 2012

The blank mirror

There is a poem,
Trying to peek into the mirror.
However, it shall not be reflected.
The muse's soul is tattered,
With a cover of steel.
There is a light at the deep end,
Harsh and dim.
The words are turning around,
Some of them are just melting,
Some of them playing a trick.
They trickle down the lovely face,
Not mine,
Not yours, for sure.
This shall be a prayer,
A curse,
A lover's plea.
This poem shall not be written.
Lets celebrate the blank mirror for once,
You and I know how blissful it is.

Feb 17, 2012

My Dreams by Deepti Naval

"My dreams
Look for the real thing
And my reality
Chases a dream!"

Read more poems by Deepti Naval here: http://www.deeptinaval.com/poet-BW-index.htm

Feb 12, 2012

The Hours



" Dear Leonard. To look life in the face, always, to look life in the face and to know it for what it is. At last to know it, to love it for what it is, and then, to put it away. Leonard, always the years between us, always the years. Always the love. Always the hours."

Feb 10, 2012

Moon

Is it just me,
Or does each lamppost on the road,
Looks extremely lonely to you as well?

Do you think that the long train passing by,
Looks like a glimmering snake,
Entering into the night,
To be eaten alive by it.
Have you ever wondered,
That your lover might be on it?
I have.

Have you ever walked across a chaotic road,
And just a few blocks after,
Walked into the most perfect moment of your life?
A full moon,
Amidst skyscrapers, next to a tall coconut tree,
In the blue sky.

Have you ever gotten completely dissolved,
Inside a strange alcohol bottle,
Waiting for no one and nothing?

Feb 6, 2012

"You suck!", said the basketball teacher and the music teacher

Recently, while talking to a few friends on the topic of mysteries behind my weirdness, I found myself reminiscing about two important incidents that happened in my school life. Actually make that three please. The first early incident happened when I was in a school called 'Little Flowers Public School' (!!?!??). Usually, most Indian parents share this common obsession of making their kids perform some stupid dance or song in front of the relatives and neighbours and sometimes in front of strangers too. But my parents took this completely ridiculous exercise to a whole another level when they agreed to my stupid school's selection of the song for an annual function or some shit like that. So ladies and gentlemen, brace yourselves. I was made to dance on the song 'Nagin'. Yes 'Nagin', from the movie Nagin (Yes, there was a movie called Nagin) in which Sridevi plays an Ichadhari Nagin (where a female snake and a woman co-exists in one body!!!!!)). So I was put inside a black jumpsuit with a plastic black snake stuck on my head and to my utter dismay I was made to copy Sridevi's out-of-this-world weirdest dance moves ever on the school stage. I was in third or fourth standard and lived with this humiliation till about eighth standard after which I moved to another school.

My next school was called Harvard Academy. (There is absolutely no connection with Harvard University. Oh actually there is. So the connection is that the director of my school had studied at Harvard University for a brief period of time and decided to name this school Harvard Academy! Yes, I know. WTF. Believe it or not, a few years back, Harvard University actually filed a case against the school and now the school is called Hillwoods Academy. Ofcourse, this also provided fodder for me to write a deep philosophical story called 'The missing school') Anyhow, moving on. So when I was in ninth standard, I decided to try my hand or rather my throat at singing. I joined the optional music classes with two other kids of my class (out of the class of about 50 kids). So the first few classes went okay, from my perspective ofcourse. I thought may be I have found my calling, atleast in my school life and soon Harvard Academy would know what a talented shy singer they have had all this while) But after a few classes, one day my teacher called me to a corner, not at all far away from where the other two students couldn't hear us. So she goes on like this, "Even if you sing amongst 20 other people , I would be able to figure out your voice" For exactly 10 seconds after that, those were the greatest words of praise I thought I had ever heard. I thought I was gifted with a really unique voice. But then she shattered that vision and told me that I was probably the most out-of-tune singer she has ever come across. It took me a long time to recover from this and now I can only hum within the confines of my four bathroom walls or when I am really drunk.

Another blow came in the form of my basketball teacher. So for about two years, with my limited gift of height, I tried my level best to play basketball. It seemed so much fun and glamorous. I was constantly aware of my sports teacher's disappointed look every time I sucked at the game which was practically 90% but I continued trying. Then one day, she finally when she was left with no choice, she asked me to leave the team! Thankfully she wasn't as heartless as the music teacher. She just told me that I simply sucked and I should try other sports may be, Table tennis. To give her credit, I can play decent TT. And badminton too. And I am good at darts too. Bowling too. But never attempted playing basketball again.

So don't know how do these incidents and these few weird ass teachers have actually contributed to making the weird version of me, that you have had the pleasure of knowing now. But I have a feeling that they have. :p

Jan 24, 2012

Finally, he had left the room

There was a fresh coat of paint,
Bright and subtle.
Words on the wall,
Were now a spunky graffiti.
The spaces in between
Were not struggling to breathe.
Finally,
Finally, he had left the room.

Jan 9, 2012

We need to talk about this movie



After a lot of average, bad and good movies, I ended up watching 'We Need To Talk About Kevin'. I have been wanting to watch this movie since quite sometime and somehow was sure that it would be worth it but I did not know it would just blow my mind away. It is most defnitely one of the most interesting and dark films I have ever seen. It is based on Lionel Shriver's novel of the same name and is Lynne Ramsay's debut film. What a film to debut with man!

Right from the moment it pops on the screen, the movie weaves an intricate web between the past flashbacks and the present situation of the two protagonists of the film, Eva (Tilda Swinton) and her son Kevin (the teenage Kevin, played by Ezra Miller). Both of whom have done a brilliant job in the film. Actually, even brilliant might be an understatement. Tilda Swinton now comes second close to my most favourite actress Cate Blanchett. This role was most definitely invented for Swinton. And Ezra Miller scared the hell out of me, which basically means that he did a wonderful job! The screenplay is extremely good.

I haven't read the novel so don't know the form in which it is written but the interesting part about the movie is that it is not narrated from anyone's perspective and that makes it all the more fantastic. You can keep swinging your sympathy and blame between Eva and Kevin. Philip French from Guardian.co.uk has done an interesting review of the movie and has discussed some really interesting points. Read his article here

An absolute must watch. Not recommended for women who are expecting. Can be a rather scary experience. Really.