Monday, November 28, 2005


Born to my hours of solitude,
And to my moments of upset calm,
Was a bonny boy, in the pink of health,
Adding a dash of red to my dying charm.

He grew fast and he grew strong,
Carried me over despair's peak,
Yet something in there alarmed me so,
I dared not protest in a voice meek.

Soon he channeled all my thought,
Away in crevices of joyous rage,
As my last hope of survival,
I decided to let the battle wage.

Days on end I fought with him,
Brutal, unceasing, blow by blow,
Bludgeoned him to his bloody grave,
Till a whimper of life he ceased to show.

Free at last of his sinuous spell,
I lay down, calm in my victory's fold,
Slowly as it dawned on me,
My beating heart froze, ice-cold.

Merriment and anguish found a place,
Shame and worry crept back inside,
A part which never came back to life,
The missing due, was what had died.

Armed with a sword of treacherous trust,
Shielded by my gullible peace,
I had killed my anger with my own two hands,
Now, the mocking laughter refuses to cease.

Saturday, November 19, 2005

Nobody in vicinity

I felt you close, oh so close,
That I cannot still believe you chose,
To walk away from it all,
Leaving me to break apart and fall.

In the moment that you were,
Within the fringes of my heart's desire,
I can still feel it linger inside,
Ashes of burnt dreams I cannot hide.

When your voice stood next to mine,
In still nights, in days benign,
Your scent fills the air around,
Whenever I remember that enchanted sound.

Then you walked a few paces away,
Answered my plea with a sonorous nay,
I had hoped you would hold your stand,
Till I could follow your steps on sand.

Ascribing me of a frigid stance,
Indifferent to every clumsy advance,
You went away, melting all my dismal nice,
Me inept to find what seemed like ice.

Beyond and away, and further more,
If you ever return to the times of yore,
You will find a ghost remained,
Frozen, mad, yet forever restrained.

I feel so idiotic. It's as if I am lying on a busy pavement letting the whole world walk over me, and I am not getting up. Why? Do not ask me that, for I cannot answer. I've been tense the past few days. Big deadline approaching sometime next month. I hope I can meet it.

It is not the deadline, however, which is driving me nuts. I am quite angry with myself for not letting my writing stay honest to what I've been feeling. The moment I start thinking about how whatever I write will affect others (well I hope it does affect somebody at least), there goes honesty out of the window! I almost shelved the above poem. But then I realized I would've buried some part of my heart if I had done that... so I let it be.

Life's being quite kind at present. Listening to Doob Jaana Re from Main, Meri Patni Aur Woh, eating an egg roll, and pondering the Ozu Yasujiro film I just saw, with a friend I met after a few months. I had my Spanish exam today. It went off quite well, though I had a tough time on Sunday trying to study for it. I am amazed at the discipline I could muster to sit at a table and actually study. I haven't done it in ages. I guess the fear of flunking an exam can still make me do a few good things!

Aaj maine dil se, badalon se mil ke,
Sapno ki baarish se kaliyan sajake,
Mehki umango se khusboo churake,
Halki si boondon main,
Lehron ki goonjon main,
Gum ho jaana re.

Inspite of all this there is something wrong at Pooh corner. It's something that an animal of very small brain like Pooh calls "Crustimoney Proseedcake." It's like I have a whole world's talk to talk about but only there is nobody to talk to. But then I met Eeyore and he said, "One can't complain. I have my friends. Someone spoke to me only yesterday." So there. I am not quite alone here. And yet...

Doob jaana re, Mujh ko doob jaana re,
Tere paas aana re, Mujh ko doob jaana re.

Thursday, November 17, 2005

Modulated Fusion















Sunday, November 13, 2005

La tortilla espaƱola and a whole lot of fun

Thursday morning started like any other Thursday morning. Moreover, it ended like any other Thursday morning as well. However, Thursday evening... now that's the story I want to tell. U had cramps in her leg and had limped in to work. She was about to limp back home in the evening, when Y suggested we go over to her house and help her with dinner. U's leg must've been really hurting bad because she's didn't bat an eyelid and said, "Yes!"

So, Y, N and me descended on her house discussing plans for the night's dinner. U's kids were rightly horrified when they came to know that the night's dinner was dependent on our culinary skills. We quickly settled on a menu of French toast(N), Spanish Omelette(me and Y) and Maggi(everybody). U, I think, got a glimpse of the things about to take place, and she hastily added Tomato rice to the list, and volunteered for dinner duty as well!

U's son was made to run about for the eggs, cheese, bread and Maggi, while Y chopped tomatoes and I got the easiest task of chopping up onions. Now, I love making omelettes. There's something about the smell of eggs frying on a well-oiled frying pan, which feels erotic to my taste buds. So, obviously, I did a good job of chopping up the onions! The eggs arrived and N got busy with the French toast. "Add some milk," "beat the eggs faster, more vigorously," "the frothier, the better is the batter," "add some salt," "dip the whole bread," "no! chop it up in four pieces and then dip it." Finally, my rumbling stomach got to taste the exotic creation. What do you know! It tasted good. So, obviously, now expectations from my culinary skills went up.

Well, once I got the eggs, and tomatoes, grated cheese, onions, and chopped up green chilies, I bravely went and walked up the aisle. It was like being asked to walk off the plank of a pirate ship! U was standing behind me like Captain Hook, waiting to see when I would blow up her kitchen. The beaten eggs slid out of the bowl and into the pan, sputtering as they hardened to the warm caress of the oil. The tomatoes and onions rolled into the bed of soft eggs, in flirtatious foreplay. The grated cheese melted around the green chilies, drowning them in lusty juices of milky white. The omelettes definitely looked orgasmic. If Y had not interrupted me, I would have finished it right off the frying pan. The moment I got it out of the pan, N stole half of it, put it between two bread slices, and walked around the house saying, "not bad for an amateur!" Amateur! Me? What nerve!

Anyway, then Y had her go at the omelette, which looked more like Spanish scrambled eggs by the time it was off the pan. She said she was making scrambled eggs from the start, but I told her what I believed, and as a result was not allowed to touch a teeny-weeny morsel of the very delicious looking dish. After, this entire hullabaloo, Maggi was child's play. We added all the remaining vegetables and cheese too, and it turned out to be the best instant noodles I have eaten in a long time.

U's tomato rice was out of the world. V and P turned up too. P kept U's daughter busy, playing chess with her, while the U's son just couldn't take it any more and ran out of the house to play with friends. V made some heavenly coffee afterwards. We chatted until 1 a.m. afterwards, mostly about Y'’s impending marriage and my non-existent one. And everybody had oodles of noodles to eat. I had to walk Y home after that, but even that was a small price to pay for such a perfect evening. I said out loud, "We must do this again sometime," before we left. But I doubt U shares my enthusiasm! Miraculously, the cramps in her leg cured themselves overnight and she was a-ok the next day. I think it was my omelette that did the trick!

Sunday, November 06, 2005


Ratiyaan, kaari, kaari raatiyan.
Ratiyaan, kaari, kaari raatiyan.

I could have named this post more dramatically. In fact, I usually think of the title after having written the post. However, whatever I think of, can never out think the master storyteller himself.

Raat hamari to chand ki saheli hai,
Kitne dino ke baad, aayi wo akeli hai,
Chuppi ki birah hai, Jhingur ka baaje saaz.

The past week was exhausting. I went back to work on Wednesday. After three 20-hour workdays, I had to turn down S's offer of a Saturday morning movie. I just wanted to get back home and sleep. Sunday morning plans were also cancelled at the last moment and I was all set towards having another lousy weekend. I even wandered into the nearby mall to catch the matinee show alone and guess what - it was house full! I was doing aimless rounds of the mall, when I decided to buy myself a VCD. When my eyes fell on the lovely Vidya Balan, looking towards me with those intensely questioning eyes, I couldn't help but buy Parineeta. I remembered having decided that I would not watch the movie before I had read the original story. I had finished reading it long back. But I had not managed to see the movie. So I came back home, popped the VCD into the player and...

...I was there. I do not know how the City of Joy looked like in times of the novel, but in the movie, it seemed enough 1962'ish to me. But then appeared Shekhar, and then Lolita. And I might as well have been a character penned by Sarat Chandra himself, for I was right there, beside those two.

Raat hamari to chand ki saheli hai,
Kitne dino ke baad, aayi wo akeli hai,
Sanjha ki baati bhi koi bujhade aaj,
Andhere se ji bharke karni hai baaten aaj.

What had struck me when I had read the novel was, that how subtle and yet how powerful it was. My prowess in Bangla leaves a lot to be desired but even I could feel the story in my heart. Yet I had to re-read portions of it to figure out what did Shekhar actually do to her - the briefest of the intimate - that sealed the strongest of bonds. It was then that I realized what the writer intended to say. What he meant by Parineeta. How overwhelmingly strong he had painted his protagonist.

Andhera rootha hai,
Andhera aentha hai,
Gumsum sa, kone main baitha hai.

The movie is not so subtle. It could not have been. It would not have worked. But as I saw the movie, I realized something. I realized the genius of Sarat Chandra. His acute understanding of human nature - of men and women. Man hasn't changed much since his times. He is still given to his flights of fancy, his fits of jealous rage, his overwhelming desire to possess his loved one - I don't know about others, I know I am. In other words, he still acts like an idiot mostly and gets away with it mostly (though not as often as before). The woman, however, I wonder. I wonder if what Lolita portrays as a female protagonist makes sense to a modern day feminist crusader.

Andhera pagal hai, kinta ghanera hai,
Chubhta hai, dasta hai, phir bhi woh mera hai,
Uski hi godi main sar rakh ke sona hai,
Uski hi bahon me chupke se rona hai.

Before my blog is summarily torched by all my female readers, I beg that my question be considered without bias. I am curious to know. I am not talking about the later part of the story/movie when Lolita would have surely walked away, and not uttered a word, if Shekhar would not have owned up to their union. I know that idea may not (and perhaps should not?) make sense to a woman of today. What I am asking is that, in times when even the idea of marriage has mutated into something totally new, whether that one act in the movie - a garland thrown around a beloved's neck (or the golden chain in the movie), that too in innocent play - is enough to evoke even an idea of life long trust. I know that the love story is about so much more - it is about what has transpires between the two protagonists over years and years of knowing each other very closely. I submit that they both loved each other, but I also suspect their story would have treaded a different path had it not been for that one night of intimate confession - all sparked by that garland. I want to know if a woman can, in times like these, gift her trust so totally, so unconditionally, so innocently to... merely a man.

Aankhon se kajal ban, behta andhera.

Or would she rather trust the pre-nup?

Friday, November 04, 2005

Beyond reach

Hands going cold in my sweating palm,
In this fickle world, you are my steadfast mooring.

Heaving breaths drawing life from a plastic tube,
The air touching you, still blooms of spring.

Weak, blanched lips, quivering with every word,
Your passion to live still scorches.

Lying amidst white sheets in a sterilized bed,
You still shine like a thousand torches.

Eyes brimming with drops of pain,
Every ounce of your strength flows anew,

Stay, please, do not let go yet,
Where will I find another you?

She did not stay a second more,
Raced infinitely far ahead,

The world stopped living then,
Everything was dead.

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Where are you tonight?

Tonight I am lost,
In dark, circuitous lanes of my wayward mind,
Where are you, O light of innocent dawn,
Saviour of my cursed kind.

Tonight I am afraid,
With uncertain tremors of a failing heart,
Where are you, O calm of virgin morn,
Manifest whole in my every part.

Tonight I am restless,
With blind lust of a passionate kiss,
Where are you, O rage of fiery noon,
Drops of joy in my distilled bliss.

Tonight I am alone,
In the echoing facades of my solitary prison,
Where are you, O twilight's muse,
Reason beyond my most logical reason.

Tonight I am tired,
Of endless toil to fulfill my destiny's share,
Where are you, O tryst of lovelorn eve,
Kindness incarnate in my trivial care.

Tonight I am dying,
Of a wasted life and murdered faith,
Where are you, O cohort of velvet night,
Spark divine in my mortal wraith.