Friday, December 30, 2005

Tuesday, December 27, 2005


Its funny, we hate more often than we love, fight more often than we laugh, disagree more often than we agree. Yet, we find ourself in the same precints time and again.

What is it that ties us? Why does this bond look like a bondage but the liberation look like a shackle? Why is it impossible to go and disturbing to stay?

These paradoxes of life - we stay when it is time to go away and go away when it is time to stay! Tears and laughter intermingle like a string of pearls. These moments, so precious, so demanding, so impossible, yet so true. This life, so long, yet so not enough, so painful yet so enticing.

This eternal dance.. so exciting, so exhausting, so much yours, yet it is so much mine.

Tuesday, December 20, 2005


You ask of me
Just a piece
A sliver
That you can call
Your own

I smile and joke
And look away
As if to ignore
The plea in your eyes

You get angry
You snub me, shun me
Curse me, Leave me

And I stay behind
Counting our footprints
In the sand

How could I
Ever tell you
That what you ask of me
Is not mine
To give

I have nothing left
Just an empty husk
And now with you
Even that husk
Has gone

Thursday, December 15, 2005

A Weekday Evening

I park my car in the driveway and gingerly get out. My legs are aching from the gruelling workout that I put myself through, minutes ago. In fact, my whole body is numb. I open all the doors of the car, from one side I take my purse, from another I take my lunch box. I pick up my laptop from the back seat, my exercise backpack, my shoes and God knows what all I carry to the office, precariously balance all of it in my hands, shutting the doors of the car behind me with my foot. Thank God, the car key is still in my hands. I give it a beep or two, and without turning around I just walk towards the house.

Suddenly, I become aware of the silence around me and a nameless yearning fills my heart. I remember the song by Lonestar that had filled my car only moments ago:

I'm already there
Take a look around
I'm the sunshine in your hair
I'm the shadow on the ground
I'm the whisper in the wind
And I'll be there until the end

Now, there is nothing and I am alone. All I can hear is a haunting, incessant sound of crickets who hide somewhere in the garden.

It is a full moon night and the mountains across my house glow softly. The old Magnolia tree in the front yard stands serenely, bathing in the moonlight. The house looks like a wise elder, standing stoically, watching life go on. The flowers in the frontyard have created around themselves in a medley of heady fragrance. As I walk through the walkway, the fragrance engulfs me and the flowers make me their own.

Suddenly, the motion sensor light turns on and startles me. I remember, that I have to take the home key out of my purse to get inside. This is a difficult task as I have to balance all the things in my hand, free a couple of fingers to put in my purse, find and pull out the key and open the door. I don't like to keep things on the floor, hence the exercise. Finally, after much effort, I succeed and open the door.

The house is cold and dark but the moonlight streams in resolutely from one of the living room windows. I close the door behind me, put my things on the carpet and just stand there and try to merge in the darkness. Again, the nameless yearning pierces my heart.

Darkness, like death, is forgiving. It accepts, without question, whatever is offered to it. There are no frayed corners, no jagged edges, just a serene uniformity which exists beyond all doubts and analyses. However, I realize, I am not ready for darkness yet, just as I am not ready for death and I turn on the lights and embrace life.

I get in to take a shower but finish it quickly as I feel a pang of hunger in the pit of my stomach. Suddenly, I remember, I have to cook! I open the doors of the fridge reluctantly and I am stumped. I am so tired and hungry that I neither have the time nor energy to cook up an elaborate meal. I ignore the fruits, the vegetables and the meat and pick up a frozen entree and pop it in the microwave.

The board on the fridge screams back at me: 'Tuesday: Chicken curry, Chapatti, Rice, Raita' It is my own handwriting that says it. In the beginning of this week I had made a menu plan and wrote it on the board. The plan was to cook nutritionally balanced meals every day. But it is only second day of the week and I have already deviated. However, I am too tired to notice this and I pick up the now-cooked-then-frozen meal from the microwave, go to the living room, turn on the TV and get engrossed in the 'Sex and the City'.

Hubby arrives, and we share a few pleasantries. He, too, is tired and preoccupied. For him, I pop in the microwave another one of those frozen meals. Its ready by the time he takes a shower. He comes out, takes the food without question and plops besides me on the sofa.

The moment 'Sex and the City' is over, he changes channels. I stay for a few minutes, and get up, bored with the mindless action movie he is watching. He does not notice that I have left as, by this time, he is in his own world with the TV.

Again, the nameless yearning grips my heart. I turn on the computer and a sad, longing poem begins to well up in my heart. I close my eyes and savor it, then slowly, laboriously, type it down, tasting it along the way.

In a while, I shut down the machine and prepare to go to sleep. As I lay in the bed, hubby comes in and says,

"I love you, dear! I am so sorry I ignored you."

"It's okay, I am just so tired." I mumble, sleepily.

"Oh, my poor darling! You sleep, I will come in just a few minutes." He says, tucks me in bed, and runs his fingers through my hair, lovingly.

He goes out to say his bedtime prayer, check the doors and turn off the lights. By the time he is back, I would be asleep. As sleep slowly takes me over, I realize that the nameless longing is gone and in my mind there is a warm feeling of belonging.

His being here and his loving touch had made me feel like I was finally home.

Monday, December 12, 2005


A little word
To be said
To anyone
Any time

Thrown casually
Like sprinkles
On icecream of
The Night

A dream tossed
And munched like
The peanuts
With Beer

How small is
The time just
To say that
I Love

How few are
The pixels
Needed for
The Vow

How many are
The lifetimes
To know what
Is Love

Friday, December 9, 2005


I came to you
As a beggar
And you
Turned me

I came to you
As a fighter
And you

I came to you
As a looser
And you
Laughed away
My pain

I came to you
As a lover
And you
Called me

I came to you
As a Master
And you
Took me
In your arms

Now I come
No more
As I have
Become you
And you have
Become the Master

Without You

Without you
I am

Isn't it
That You

How many
Would it

Wednesday, December 7, 2005


"I could never imagine u were so sadistic," said the Stranger.

"I don't know who you are..but I guess now you know," said I.

"It doesn't matter who I am, know thyself!"


That’s it. Then, it was sealed. Thirty years of development as an individual. The learning, the experiences, the vices, the virtues, the formation and deformation of spirit that has been happening ,perhaps, for numerous births, was suddenly categorized, packed neatly in an adjective "sadistic" and dispatched.

Now, I have pigeonhole of my own in this world! Sadistic, I am called. Some people are sensitive, some are funny, some are fearsome, but me? I am sadistic! Suddenly, my vices are magnified, my virtues, carefully wrapped and I am presented as a member of this category to which none other than Marques De Sade belonged!

You might ask me, what does it matter, what a stranger calls you? I would say, it doesn't! I am what I am, regardless of what anyone calls me. I do not need to explain myself or apologize for who I am, to anyone. But isn't it intriguing how fast we are ready to draw conclusions about people, based only on one facet that we see and which appeals, perhaps, only to us?

Is that how we think about individuals around us? Do we always think in terms of categories that they belong to, just so that we can device a strategy to behave with them? Rap the sadists, love the sensitive, don't take the funny seriously, bow before the fearsome - are these rules of life? Are these the rules of engagement? Is this a defense mechanism or is this a fundamental human flaw?

As individuals, we are all gray. Everyone has different qualities and different flaws. In fact, through our life, we go through so many phases - we make mistakes, we behave irrationally, we learn, we unlearn, we metamorphose into purer, and more complete human beings. By packaging people in adjectives, are we not stunting their growth, just as we are stunting our own? Why do we choose to harbor such myopic views about people, so quickly? Why don't we give them a benefit of doubt?

Point to ponder, Stranger?

Saturday, December 3, 2005

The Snag

The wetlands beckon the hawk with a silent cry from the wild and she glides above them gracefully, effortlessly, alert, watching. The sky above her is bright, blue, beautiful and big. Below her stretches the silence - vast, resolute, infinite. Patches of water, interspersed with the patches of grass lay basking in the sun, soaking in the gentle warmth. The wind ripples the water creating a sparkling carpet of silver. It then takes the message to the grass, tickling it on the way.

A group of geese waddle on the grass and jump into the water, their timid little youngsters in tow. There are some ducks in the water already, and also a swan or two, living, loving, floating, eating. They all make way for the geese and the lake suddenly turns into a symphony.

A pair of squirrels chase each other in a jolly game of hide and seek as they take their food deep into the grass to bury. A Coyote watches them intently and then reconsiders her concentration as she has already had her meal. She then forgets about them and stretches in the sun, gently closes her eyes to snooze away in the warmth.

The hawk glides on. Her ears now begin to catch a distant, but incessant buzz. Far away she can see a wired mesh, stretched for miles, on the edge of the wetlands. Beyond that, is the world of the Man.

Wreathed in a miasma of smoke and dust, a freeway runs by the mesh, incessantly pouring in cars, more cars, bigger cars and noise, more noise, louder noise. The cars compete with each other ferociously, unforgivingly as they try to get ahead faster. The ground shakes with the force of eternal hunger and the ruthless chase of man.

The wired mesh is the only thing that separates the world of God from the world of Man, but that too is as fragile as the will of the Man. The hawk watches the two worlds, still trusting and loving, the world of the God.

Suddenly, an ugly, angry noise tears through the silence of the wetlands and the noise of the men. An enormous truck on the freeway has lost control and it comes hurtling towards the wired mesh. The sound of screeching tires and the stench of burning rubber fills up the atmosphere as the cars on the freeway scatter to avoid the juggernaut. The truck hurtles towards the mesh and creates a snag in it. It then enters the wetlands.

Two pairs of tire marks create a black, ugly gash in the grass. Splinters of glass and plastic lay strewn over the land and in the water. The mesh lies twisted, like a breach of trust.

The Coyote gets up, startled, and runs for her life. The squirrels, terrified, drop their food and hide deep into the grass, trembling. The geese round up their young ones and waddle away, cackling. The ducks and the swans fly away, in disgust.

The hawk, waits, watches and turns away, hungry and alone.


If you come closer
I shall sharpen my nails
Sink them in your flesh
To draw blood

If you don't
I shall draw blood
But it will be mine

Now, can you satisfy
At least one
Of my demands?