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
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

This other one tells me about colors
Of blood. Of passion.
Red. Purple.
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.
With you, with everyone.
I am learning.
I am learning.
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



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.


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
It has been a beautiful
Still is"
Charles Bukowski