Friday, December 22, 2006

Goodbye Ammi

After living a long and colorful life of 81 years, you passed away on December 21st - my birthday.

Is this just a coincidence that the day of my birth should be the day of your death?

Maybe it is, or maybe it was a tribute to the strong attachment we share - a bond which has lasted across decades, miles, generations, and now, lifetimes.

Ammi you will be missed forever...

Friday, December 8, 2006


Its been so long since I have written that, once again, I find myself stranger to words. Last time I wrote, I was angry with God. In a four line poem, I denounced Him, challenged Him, questioned Him and at the same time, begged Him to be kind.

He listened, kindly. Even though he had better things to do than to pay attention to the mindless ranting of a nameless, faceless woman, who probably has no better role in the scheme of things than a mote of dust has in a sandstorm. The mote plays its part in the destruction of the old landscape and re-creation of the dunes, but by itself, it has no identity. Perhaps, it shouldn't have any. For if every spec of dust had a mind of its own, the sandstorm as a whole would have no meaning.

But a mind of my own I have. Although, I don't understand he scheme of things. Yet, I find myself being dragged in the whirlwind of this life, thrown this way and that, all the while demanding to understand, demanding to change the direction in which I would be hurled next time.

Funny thing is, occasionally, God listens and I find myself thrown in the direction I asked to go. But once I get there, I never know what to do. Then I am as lost as I was before. The worst thing, perhaps, is that either I have to grapple with the fear of losing the place where I have arrived or that place is not what I had imagined it to be. I try to control my destiny, but only to find that destiny controls me. And she is a veteran at the game.

Does every blade of grass, every leaf on the tree, every spec of dust have a destiny of its own? And how do they deal with something as "bad" as annihilation of their being? If one leaf falls earlier than the others, if one blade is trampled upon, if one spec is smothered, do they just accept it as it is or do they complain in their own language to the God who created them? Isn't it the nature of the universe to accept what is, as is? Then why should we human beings be any different? Why do we challenge, question and judge everything, all the time?

I wonder if, with all our talks of freedom, human beings are the most fettered creatures of all. We are, and since time memorial have been, in the clutches of our own desires and fears.

So what is it that would set us free? Acceptance or judgment? Surrender or fight? An ability to die when asked to die or an ability to struggle to live?

Many questions these are. But then, am I really free to question?

Tuesday, November 21, 2006


I just need a single success
You need to thwart a million attempts

Won't there be just one time
When you'd fail to be watching?

Wednesday, November 1, 2006


The leaves fall off
With the call of the fall
The blood runs out
With last dregs of hope

The womb lay still
Empty, yearning
The cold settles proud
On the raw, naked branches

Another winter, another episode
Of long, frigid waiting

And then it just ended
Just like it began
Even the waiting
Had to just stop

Life was to be lived
Once, once more
Little fists had to curl
In the once empty womb
Little leaves had to sprout
With a statement of hope

A cycle it was, and always has been
The winter comes, so does the spring

Tuesday, October 3, 2006


"So you quit blogging, right?" He said
"No! Why would you think so?" Me, bewildered
"Well, you don't write anymore"
"Of course I do!"
"Yeah Right!"

Interesting, I have this conversation when this is the 101st post on this blog. A cause for celebration? Maybe! But I have never counted how many posts I wrote. I just found out that this was the 101st post by looking at the dashboard. And now, if one were to measure how many of my posts made any sense, 101 would seem quite a tall number. Right?

Writing for me has always been an unconscious activity. Many times I have written and reread my own work only to ask myself, what the hell did I just write? It has never come by force and, like all other aspects of my life, I utterly lack the discipline in writing.

Many times I have written in the middle of fixing a tough bug, or even during meetings. Just like that, out of nowhere, words float into my mind and form patterns, these patterns then whirl around and acquire meanings and all I do is just jot them down. How many times has this been an act of volition? I can never tell.

I have tried in vain to be a disciplined writer and ended up being a self conscious one. During such writing "sessions" I sit in front of the computer and stare at it for the prescribed duration and then doze off. Not a single word comes at my beckoning but when I least suspect, words come in torrents and continue to come until I pour them out.

Some people in this world actually like my writing and many times I have been told by them that I should take my writing further. They tell me I should try to be a published writer. But honestly, I don't know what this "further" means and I have no clue how and why would anyone publish any of this.

This is who I am. This is the best I can be. Now if someone decides to publish it, be my guest! You call this lack of ambition? I call this freedom, for words will sprout and take root to form a beautiful landscape only when they are allowed to waft free.

So, who should I dedicate this 101st post to?

I dedicate it to you, the patient reader and to her - that silly Arundhati, who lives inside me, and who still chooses to dream...

Wednesday, September 6, 2006

How can I ever show you my dear
Where is it that my eyes wander
What is it that makes my feet dance
What is it that makes my lips quiver

The silhouettes of dreams that shimmer afar
The rapture of the songs that sing in my heart
The vistas, the visions of places surreal
The road, the journey I am about to embark

Can I take you there? Maybe I can
Can you hold my hand? Maybe you can
But as I get lighter and as you get older
In your embrace you will see I will wither

But maybe when I go, I will just transfer
From the depth of my bosom to the depth of your heart
The silhouettes of dreams, the visions of lands
The map of the road for a journey afar

Friday, August 25, 2006

Silent Surrender

A hunger to deep
A thirst so raw
My lips so parched
My soul so empty
Not a thing, not a person
Not a place, not a being
What is it that I seek
To sate this yearning
I rise up the crests
I plunge in the troughs
Then come back to land
Emptier than before

They say its so close
Just look in your heart
It shimmers they say
In your silent surrender

I am yet to know
What this silence is
I am yet to learn
To surrender this being
But one thing I know
The old shore is lost
The only way now
Is to swim to thy feet
I only just hope
One day you will accept
All that I have
In a silent surrender

Monday, August 14, 2006

Virtual Rituals

A few days ago, a colleague who sits in the next isle of cubes wrote me an email,

“Arundhati, I am observing Laxmi vratam, would you come to my house for the pooja on Friday evening?”

“Sure, I’d love to!” I wrote back.

“Sweet! But hey, make sure you don’t have your period then…”

“Make sure!? How can I make sure?” I wrote, bewildered.

“Now, that’s your problem right? Hehehe!!”

“Hmph!! I will let you know on Friday.” I wrote, frowning.

“Hey, seems like you got mad! Don’t be mad, please. I don’t believe in this too you know, but what if the Gods get angry? So, I don’t think its appropriate! You understand, right?” She got slightly defensive.

No, I could not understand this. First, I was annoyed she had written me an email instead of walking over to my cube which is about ten steps from hers. And, second, this period business always throws me off the handle! I could not believe well educated, careerist women like my friend were still hung up on these beliefs. I have always believed that periods are, perhaps, the holiest of secretions of our body!

I could not go to her pooja after all. I did not make sure I did not have my period. In fact, it was as if I made sure I that I had it on that day! No regrets, I thought, I’d rather have my period than go to a pooja I did not believe in. But this episode made me wonder, are we following traditions just for the sake of following them or do we really believe in them?

In the traditional Indian society, innumerable rituals were celebrated throughout the year. Tradition mandated observing of many fasts and penances, poojas and festivals. If one thinks about these closely, one notices that these festivals and rituals were sequined in the lifestyle of the old Indian society, which was mostly agrarian. In fact, what you eat, what you wear, what rituals you perform, what rules you follow was all based on the current season and the agricultural produce available at that time.

The forefathers of the society made these rituals a part of the religion, probably in an effort to make religion part of life. Every festival, every ritual was to have a spiritual basis to it. The feelings with which these were to be celebrated were those of devotion, universal love and reverence towards life. The penances and sacrifices done while following the vratams were to purify the mind and control greed, lust and other disturbing tendencies. The main aim of these activities was to establish harmony and brotherhood in the society.

However, in the recent years, the Indian society has undergone a rapid change from a predominantly agrarian society to a predominantly modern one. In time, these rituals have morphed into dogmas. Blind beliefs, caste system and gender segregations have crept into what was once a pure and joyous way of life. The true spirit of religion has been lost and rituals are often followed without truly believing in them. More often than not, these occasions are used to show financial muscle or social clout. Instead of creating a harmony in the society they have ended up creating disharmony.

With the rapidly changing social landscape, one wonders, is it appropriate to follow the traditions for the sake of it? How can we tell that what we are following in the name of culture is what it was really meant to be? Do we ever wonder if the original thought has been tarnished by blind beliefs?

Although I was annoyed at my friend, she did make an interesting point – what if the Gods get angry, she had said, indicating that God was someone whom we should be afraid of. Isn’t it interesting that instead of love of God, what we have in our minds is fear of God?

These days, religion has been commercialized in many places. The other day I had gone to a temple near my house. This is a big temple which houses many deities worshipped at different places in India. In a sense, the idea behind this place is wonderful as it brings us expatriate Indians from various parts of India together and reminds us the we are one people. Many devotees come and worship the Gods to feel peaceful. However, one day I noticed that outside the temple, a priest sat at the counter, collecting money for Abhishekas – a special type of pooja. Above him, a hoarding read, “Pay for Abhisheka of two deities and get the third one free!” They were even offering a discount if one booked the Abhisheka through internet!

Really, what is important? This ritual of Abhisheka or the feeling with which it is done? If the feeling is pure, does it matter how we worship the God who loves one and all? And if we do choose to follow the ritual, do we make sure we do it with utmost purity and humility or does greed and commercialism creep in unknowingly? If you are going to pay for the pooja, would you not inevitably think what would give you the greatest bang for the buck? You would want more attention, if you gave a greater donation. You would want a special darshan, a more royal treatment before God. In all this commercialism, the real meaning of the religion is all but lost!

During the Ganesha festivals, the idols of Ganesha are stacked in the grocery stores just like the vegetables and spices. Sometimes, there is dust on the idols and even cobwebs around the place where they are kept. People who go to buy them first check the price, then turn the idols this way and that to see if there is a snag. They select the best idol they can get for their money and put it in the grocery cart with the rest of the grocery. The idol is placed in a plastic bag irreverently with dal and rice. It is then taken home and set up for pooja.

Seeing this sight in one of the grocery stores made me miss the little ceremony we used to have when we brought the Ganesha idol home. In the small town that I grew up, Ganesha festival would be celebrated in every house just like it was done in ours. Our father or uncles would go to the shop to get Ganesha’s idol and we children would follow them enthusiastically, forming a little procession. Before going to the shop, we would all make sure that we were properly bathed and wearing our best clothes. The feeling we had was as if we were bringing home someone who is very important.

“Ganapati Bappa Moraya!” we used to sing, in the praise of the lord, as we brought him home, covered under a silk cloth. The idol was then set it up in a specially decorated spot ceremoniously and pooja was performed.

For the next ten days, Ganesha would be the most celebrated guest in the house. The whole household would gather in the mornings and the evenings to sing the praise of the God. The sounds of mantras would resonate through every household in the town, along with the fragrance of incense and camphor. Lord Ganesha’s favorite foods were cooked and offered to him during the pooja. And this food was later consumed by the family in his name.

Then, after ten days, the idol would be taken to be immersed in water. As we took out another procession to see off the lord, we would sing

“Ganapati Bappa Moraya, pudhchya varshi lavkar ya!” Hey, lord Ganesha, please come sooner next year!

After the ceremony, we would come back with a heavy heart. It was as if a dear friend had gone away from us.

These days, celebrating the Ganesha festival has become a group activity. Various groups compete with each other to show off their decoration for their Ganesha. Who bought the biggest idol? Who spent the most money? These questions seem to be more important that the festival itself.

When I see on TV the lewd dancing, loud music and the fistfights that happen these days in the name of celebration, my mind fills with sadness. Really, where have we lost all that? Where is the love, the simplicity, the humility, the reverence? Where is our real religion?

Today we live in the virtual world – a world which is fast losing touch with reality. We email our friends, not talk to them. We send our brothers Rakhi greetings. We use evite to invite people to our parties. We decline these invitations through the same site. We can download pooja programs and follow the rituals. We even visit websites of various temples to pray to the Gods.

However, despite this, we have not lost our blind beliefs. Still, somewhere, we believe, I am a Bramhin, I am a Hindu, I am a Muslim, I am a Catholic. All we want to prove is that I am different from the other, that I am better. Just like everything else in our life, our religion, which is, first and foremost, being human, has lost it’s reality. It has become virtual!

Here’s hoping that we get out of the clutches of the virtual rituals and wake up to the real beauty of humanity.

Wednesday, August 9, 2006

Dream Away

You step into the garden with hesitant feet. Your eyes blink in the bright light. You have spent your life in darkness for so long that you are a stranger to it's luminosity. On your face is a joyous incredulity. "Is this happening to me?" you wonder again and again as you take his hand and walk a few more steps on the soft green grass. The fragrance of spring assaults your senses and you breathe in the sunshine warmth.

He smiles at you and you smile back. He caresses your soft hair and you put your head on his shoulder. The warmth around you engulfs you both into the realms of many possibilities.

Your heart is beating fast with anticipation. "Is this for real?" You wonder. "Why does he like me?"

"Why didn't this happen to me before? Why did I not walk these shores in an age that I should have? Did these rainbows have to appear so late?" Many questions pulse in your mind with every beat of your heart.

My dear, who knows when one would get a certain joy in life? Who are we to decide what is the appropriate time? Just as when we go through suffering we should not ask Why me? Why now?, while accepting the joys, we should be reverent and humble. Some of us get something early in life, the rest of us have to wait for it. The joy we were seeking was always precious, but when you get it after a long wait, it becomes priceless!

Life is a dynamic flow, it makes us sink and rise, gush towards joy and fall into the abyss of sorrow. The only way to live it is to embrace whatever comes your way with open arms and make the most of it.

There is not much I can say to you now. I see your joy and I feel happy. I just want to tell you, dream away dear friend, get drunk on this joy! Let the cadence of this happiness take you both to the heights of rapture you have never seen before.

Then looking at you, some of us would realize, life is not as unfair as it seems, after all. Yeah, it is worth the wait!

Monday, July 17, 2006


One can hardly predict, when in life one experiences an epiphanic moment. Nuggets of wisdom are littered around all of us, yet to pick the right one at the right time and letting it touch your heart is another matter.

I was rummaging through our old suitcases - the ones that we brought when we came to US many years ago - and found a gem, an old, worn out cassette (yeah cassette!) of a collection of gazals by Ahmed Hussain and Muhammad Hussain! Fortunately for me, the cassette was not all destroyed. I could actually play it and listen to some of my all time favorite gazals, one of which I quote here.

Aainese kab talak tum apna dil behelaoge
Chayenge jab jab andhere khudko tanha paoge

How long will you indulge in reflections? After all, when the darkness falls, you would find yourself all alone.

Really, isn't that what we do? Build a home of mirrors, much like the sheesh mehal (palace of mirrors) of Mughal-E-Azam and call that our life? We interpret people, places and events not for what they are, but for what they look like to us. Our feelings and emotions are colored with our experiences and pre-dispositions. We even prefer to live in self image rather than in acknowledging our true self. As we grow older, all we do is raise guards around our true self and call that maturity. Not only do we close ourselves down, we also begin to view with suspicion those who choose to be free.

Many times in life have I dug myself a hole, only to eventually crawl my way out of it. Every time, after much soul searching when I eventually came out, a new vista has presented itself, a new lesson has been learned and a new clarity has emerged. I have learned that one cannot sustain a world of pretensions for long. No matter how long you think you can keep up the bubbles of reflections, the time of reckoning with truth comes sooner or later. The hardest part, perhaps, is to have the courage to face the truth when it presents itself.

There is much in life that I have lost or I never had. But there is much in life that I do. For everything I have, I have struggled. But struggling and winning is much better than struggling and failing.

Each morning, when I wake up besides my husband, I feel, God, I love this man, what would I be without him? And I feel immensely grateful! There are many things I could list that make my life full, and there are many other things which have left a gaping hole in it. But whatever it is I have and lost is all a part of my truth.

In life as events come and go they leave behind golden nuggets of memories - some good, some bad - but all together they sparkle in the sun and in the end, when we look at them dazzled, we know, this is what they called the Truth!

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

For P

Each day I raise my hand
To knock on your door
Then I take it back
And turn around, alone

Beyond the door you live
Perhaps sad, perhaps happy
A burden of many questions
Chafes at your shoulders

I want to touch that burden
I want to release that pain
I want to be free of them
I want to set you free

What more do I want ?
I don't know and never have
Your anger perhaps I want
Then your sorrow, some more

Fragile something we hold
A golden crown of thorns
It could prick or it could sparkle
But we cannot take it off

I said I'd go away
But could I really leave?
You said you'd stay away
But can you really be?

With you so far beyond
My sorrow is not complete
With me away from you
Can your joy be free?

Tell me what to do
So I can come near
To look you in the eyes
To tell you I am here

To see you soar with joy
To hold you in your pain
To show you all my dreams
To see yours sustain

Don't crush this precious bond
Don't feed it to your fears
Life is long and dark
Full of lonely years

I say I am a sinner
Worthy of your disdain
Punish me thus my dear
Give me all your pain

Sunday, June 25, 2006

Now when I wear my saintly mask
You see in me the evil

When I had worn my evil
You said I was a saint

Who is right and who went wrong
What is held and what is lost

Ho do you in your world
Measure friends and foes

How do you in your saneness
Make sense of us insanes

I never claimed I was good
I have always been one lost

But you who has found your way
Why should you grope in the dark?

Sunday, June 11, 2006


Going away for a while... But will come back, I promise!
Come back as a changed woman? Maybe...

Stay tuned!!

Tuesday, June 6, 2006

Queen of Solitude

The plug has been pulled. The last of the vapid murmur has ceased. I recline in the chair, exhausted, alone. Me - the queen of solitude. The darkness engulfs me like an old, trusted friend. I welcome it with a smile. It has served me well - this darkness. It is one thing that has never betrayed me in my life.

Blessed be this stupor that hangs like a thick fog on my mind. It is intoxicating! I feel like I am back in the womb, curling snugly in the faceless warmth. The questions, the answers, the mindless struggles, all seem to be so far away.

Some day, the rays of light will burn holes in my skin. Some day, the questions will drive a nail through my heart.

But not now. Nothing can touch me now. All that ever touched my heart, I have successfully dispatched far away. Nothing is mine anymore - neither the happiness, nor the sorrow, nor the ones whom I loved and who, perhaps, loved me back. I have turned them away. I ran away from them or made them run. All those things I fought for, I blew them in the air. The masks I wore have been thrown away. Even that old skin has been shed!

Will I ever be missed?

I don't care anymore and, in time, they won't either! That's okay I guess. Or maybe, that is what I want - to vanish from memories, to be obliterated from lives, to be as if I have never existed. I hope all that I went through earned me the death of anonymity.

Who has won this stupid game? If not me, then who cries in triumph?

The silence of total surrender, resonates in my solitude.

Tuesday, May 30, 2006


Hearing Lekin for the thousandth time!! Why did Lata Mangeshkar continue to sing commercially after this!!??

Can anyone in this world, including her, ever beat Lekin???

Tuesday, May 23, 2006


If you fail to see me
The way I want to be seen
Should I not just go
Away from you?

Its not in shame that I hide
Neither is it in regret
It is just that I choose not to
Accept the winds of change

The change was not your doing
Neither was it mine
It came just as was planned
It destroyed what it should

Now what's the point in holding
The carcass of illusions
The things that were never there
The invisible words I read?

I know no middle ground
Not between you and me
I prefer the world of chasms
With you or alone, across

Thursday, May 11, 2006

I retrace my footsteps
And find the same corners
Where the same questions
Stare at me agape
Then there are some new ones
Which I now bring back
And the quest haunts me
Some more
Where did I go and why?
How long have I been away?
Nothing has changed
Yet nothing is the same
The girl that went away
Is so much different
Than the woman who came back

Wednesday, May 3, 2006


He lauded her
For dousing the flames
Once again

She asked him what
She should do with those
That remain

He let go of her hands
And walked away

She stayed behind
And saw their shadows

Sunday, April 30, 2006

Same road, same precincts, same turns, same aspirations, same heartbreaks..
A different me?

Thursday, April 20, 2006

The Door Is Shut

The door is shut
The bars are raised
The lips clamped tight
The eyes are dry

A lightning scoured the desert sky
A splash of water sizzled in the sand
It happened, its over
Let it just be a silent saga
A chronicle of things unsaid

Ask me not any questions
For answers are of no use
Don't even hold my memories
Just let them wither away

Let my foolish footprints wander
Then get lost on your shore
Don't worry, soon enough
The tide will take them far

Wednesday, April 19, 2006


Ever so often you come face to face with the monster in you.

This can't be me! You say incredulously as you see in the mirror of your soul and a leering, hungry, jealous, ruthless, obsessive demon grins back at you.

You are shocked! Your first reaction? You want to deny it exists. You want to run away and be that nice person you thought you were. You just want to be warm and loving to the persons you care so much about. But when that monster takes over, you are not you anymore! It makes you trample everything you held dear - the tenderness, the principles and also the fragile, beautiful corners of life where you raised the spring garden.

What is worst, as much as you try to hide it, what you are is way more obvious to those around you. Those who love you enough and know you well, hang around patiently, faithfully. They know this is not who you are, and that one day you will be back to your real self. The others reject you. Leave you. Call you a bitch. Suddenly, everything around you takes on the edge of a sword. Everything shines bright but scathes you all the same.

Then begin the beatings. First, as the demon, you beat yourself for not getting what you wanted. The demon urges you to fall to the depths, to grab, to steal, to manipulate, to force your way into getting it at any cost. Suddenly, you find yourself dancing a murderous dance of greed. The ruins around you increase in number as everything crushes under your terrible feet.

Then comes the next stage as you awaken to the truth. As you begin to balance the books of your life, what you lost in the process starts becoming more and more obvious. The ruined castles of dreams cry out loud, gaping into the empty sky. Exhausted from your dance, you suddenly see that all that you wanted you have got, but it is coated in the miasma of avarice. You realize, this is not how you wanted it at all! The misery of those you hurt begins to bite you. The noose of failures tightens to chafe and you begin beating yourself for letting the demon take you over one more time.

But what you lost is gone, and you realize with a sinking feeling it will never come back. What you held tight in your fist has withered away. It was never yours anyway. All you are left with are the abandoned dreams of what could have been and the chronicles of the demon who made them fall through the cracks.

But there is something else. Something fragile, but beautiful. There is a little hope, a lesson learned, an opening of the heart. A little more growing up has happened even as you wallowed in self pity. A part of you has surrendered, softened and learned to love unconditionally. The mighty iceberg has melted just a little bit and a tremendous strength has developed somewhere deep within.

In the end, you know that some day, the monster will come back again. But, now, you also know that nine times in ten, you will be able to fight it back!

Sunday, April 2, 2006

Its not too frequently that one comes across some people and is completely awed by their indefatigable spirit. I am blessed to have made such a friend recently.

Here's to your courage, Pankaj
Congratulations on completing 10 years of your new life! Hope the Sweetness and Light lasts forever :-)..

Saturday, April 1, 2006

Maiden of Ash

I know you will come
When the stars in my eyes
Would have been snuffed
Asking me for some light

I will ask you then
Why did you not come
When I used to light lamps
Along your way

Then I will turn away
Unfeeling, heartless
Leaving you alone
In your darkness

You will cry then
You will tug at my hand
You will beg for some mercy
You will hold me tight

But in your embrace
I will wither away
Like a Maiden of Ash
Lifeless and wistful

Then at your feet
Would be the embers
Of my burning desires
Now turned cold

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

The Grownup Child

I haven't written in a while. Its been so long since I felt something so strongly that made words just gush out of me, just as they do whenever I write.

No, I don't give myself any credit for my writing. I have never been able to write just for the sake of writing. It has never been a conscious decision or a well thought-out strategy. Every word that has sprung to life in my poems or stories has originated somewhere deep down and resonated through the layers of my being before being put down and structured as a verse or a paragraph. If it did not happen like this, I have not been able to write at all!

Past few days have been manic. It is as if this body and mind was taken over by another Arundhati - an overly ambitions professional who is constantly on the tenterhooks of the desire for achieving something, longing to cry out in triumph, yearning to prove herself to someone. That Arundhati has been busy devising strategies and calculating her next moves. She has been weighing her future and visiting and revisiting her paycheck. She has been busy convincing, impersonating, demanding what she thought she deserved. Yes she won. She got what she wanted. She proved she was smart and she basked in the glory of jealousy and admiration from those around her.

However, even during these moments of triumph, I was there, unaffected, watching myself detachedly. This part of me - the quintessential witness - knew that desire begets happiness for a moment, but a yearning forever. There is no end to wants, no leash on expectations.

Its been so long I have been trying to live two lives - one for the world, one for myself. Many a times, these two parts of me have stood against each other. But so far, the world has won. The triumph of that other part lies in the fact that it has not given up. It still continues to exist within me in all its splendor and all its innocence.

Someday I hope to reconcile myself. I wonder how I will look. Ugly or beautiful? Stupid or soulful? Does the idea of a grownup child appeal to you? :-)

Wednesday, March 8, 2006

Lead Me

If you lead me I just might
Fling this aching heart
And come with you forever
Just tell me where to go
Guide me on this way
My feet are oh so tired
As I wander in these lanes
A blind wayfarer I am
With a shadow on my heart
My dreams are all insane
My maps are all but lost
Help me trickle through ravines
Help me gush over the rocks
Until its time to meet
With you, just you at last

Thursday, February 23, 2006

One of those days

It is one of those days when the Pain does not hurt as much.

It is one of those days when you realize that life is not about stacking up problems to solve them. It is about living, in spite of them!

It is one of those days when you walk on the sidewalk and shoes bite your feet, but all you notice is the warmth of the sun streaming down your face and the lazy chirping of a little bird perched atop the tree.

It is one of those days when the ones closest to you are about to find their wings. But all you know is you would live with that ache just to see them fly, high!

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Is this me ;)?

Your Personality Profile

You are dependable, popular, and observant.
Deep and thoughtful, you are prone to moodiness.
In fact, your emotions tend to influence everything you do.

You are unique, creative, and expressive.
You don't mind waving your freak flag every once and a while.
And lucky for you, most people find your weird ways charming!

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

A Silly Post

A silly dream of silly wings and silly flights in the sky
A silly pair with a silly laughter and silly lives awry

That's you and I - free, unabridged, together. A few moments that our eyes met, a sudden rush of joy filled my being. I was still me and the pain was still there but, I could laugh, boy, I could laugh in spite of it!

Your life, so much different than mine. Your horizons, so much different too. What connects us? We would never know.

As life meanders through unknown turns, as hopes sink and rise, as horizons appear and fade away, I wonder if you'd still be there, somewhere, laughing at my befuddlement and then plunging headlong in your own conundrum of joys and sufferings. A few moments of sunshine I basked in, will that be enough to sustain a life?

Now, that was a silly post!! What have you done to me?

Friday, February 17, 2006

My life is cluttered with things unsaid.. My words, where are you when I need you the most??

Sunday, February 5, 2006


How she yearns
For a single glimpse
Her soul in her eyes
Her heart in her ears

It has been so long
She stands alone
On a forbidden bank
A forbidden wait
For a forbidden dream

Life leaps forward
At her feet
In gurgles and laughters
In sanguine turns
In movements, in change
In sudden, angry falls

Time engulfs her face
Sprinkles silver
In her long silken hair
Crumples her skin
In soft little creases

Yet she waits,
She waits, she waits,
She waits, she waits
For thy glimpse

Monday, January 30, 2006


Let us soar on this cadence dearest
Whilst my sweet nothings
Send you to a rapture

Let us weave gossamer dreams dearest
Whilst silk of my hair
Tickles your face

Let your rough stubble prick me dearest
Whilst my soft skin
Gifts you this world

Let this sweet embrace melt me dearest
Whilst cry of my soul
Is heard by your heart

Let promise of life fulfill dearest
Whilst you throb within me
My eyes close at last

Tuesday, January 24, 2006


I slowly wipe away your footprints
From the empty board of my life
Hope they don’t run deep
For I have no remedy for the scars
These wounds may leave behind

How can I erase all that?
I ask myself again and again
Those kisses, those smiles
Those words of love and hope
Those moments of bliss
When we lay in each other’s arms
And lived for a moment at least
As one body and soul

Can I request you something
In the name of the moments we lived?
Could you not forget all that please
When you finally redeem your honor?
Could you not beat my lover with guilt
And insult my love for him?

Those moments we shared were beautiful
As true as truth can be
Could you not tarnish those memories
With weaknesses of this world?

At some point of time in the future
When you are alone and lost
Could you be brave and face them
And live them again without fear?

And while you decide to give in
And bind yourselves to the shackles
Could you reserve a corner in your life
And let my moments be free?

This is for her, now that she is finally dead!

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Been Tagged ..and Capitulated

Atul tagged me, and for once I capitulated. I have ditched tags too many times before (shame!). But, this one got me interested as I have been thinking about this for some time, though in a different context.

To give you a background, before I go to do the tag: The other day, in a women's group that I am a member of, someone posted a link to a study which stated that every woman - even the most dedicated ones - have at least one man besides her partner who turns her on! Soon, there was a heavy discussion on this, with everybody declaring their heartthrobs ranging from Amitabh to Sachin Tendulkar to some guy who sits in the next cubicle. This got me thinking about my ideal man.

But, I for one, found that it was not a particular person I was interested in. For me, it was the qualities that mattered. In fact, I don't even hope to find a person who has all these qualities rolled into one (I actually hope that I don't find him!). But, I am lucky that I do see the qualities fleetingly in many wonderful men I know and love - friends, brothers, husband, mentors, co-workers.

That said, now on to the tag:

The rules:

The tagged victim has to come up with 8 different points of their perfect lover.
Need to mention the sex of the target.
Tag 8 victims to join this game and leave a comment on their comments saying they’ve been tagged.
If tagged the 2nd time, there’s no need to post again.

The Perfect Lover: Target - Male

  • Older and wiser. ( This is hard because I aint telling my age! But anyone who was in existence for anything between 0-10 years before me, can send me their Resume!)

  • Great sense of humor (Absolutely essential! Wonder why God stopped putting that into men of my generation. Well almost!)

  • Balanced - especially, emotionally. (This because I am decidedly imbalanced!)

  • Understands me more than I understand myself (I am the kind who is stubborn but lovable ;)! So, need someone who can bring out the best in me.)

  • Creative (Oh yeah!)

  • Purposeful and focused. (I definately need that -- sense of purpose!)

  • Truthful (To himself, and more so to me. It takes great courage to stand by the truth.)

  • Knows how to deal with PMS (Or willing to learn!)

Hey, there are many more, but since I was asked only 8, you get only 8.

So, now to my victims:

Gautam - Newest of my readers hence the best possible victim!

Sherriff - Let's see what you got sherriff!

KaunQuest - Here's for you Mr Gazaller (gazal writer)!

Ardra - Step up girl!

Kay - Only because I don't see you too often.

Radhika - Let's hear some dil ki baaten.

Poonam - What made you think you would escape ;)?

Premjit - I can almost see the mustache twitch!

Pheww!! Done!

Monday, January 16, 2006


So this is how it is
Pure, raw, primal pain
Absolute darkness
Bottom of the abyss

Pretension of pain
The mindless fear
Was so much better
Than the pain itself
For there is much
Comfort in lies

Where to from here?
Where from am I?
Many questions
Ancient bones
Littered around
Gaping white
Still hopeful
For silly answers

I tread carefully
In the dark truth
My feet bleed
As it's pointed nails
Scrape against
The last hope

Now there's nothing
No shame, no dream
No shackle, no respite
No tears, no fears
But, how I wish
There was no life

Friday, January 13, 2006

A Beautiful Mind

I entered the gym yesterday and suddenly found myself surrounded by a screeching, screaming, grunting, sweating mass of humanity. On the first few days in the new year, the gym is usually full, thanks to the freshly-minted resolutions. However, it gets emptier with passing months as the resolves ebb, a relief for us serious gym-goers. But in these early days of the year, we have up put up with jiggly, clumsy amateurs monopolizing and, often, misusing our favorite machines.

Yesterday, however, I was lucky. I found the step climber I was looking for unused, and promptly climbed on it. This machine is higher than the others, and once you are on it, you get a chance to watch the entire gym from a vantage point. This is a perfect opportunity to observe people quietly, without seeming insane or meddlesome.

So, from my gallery of sorts, I watched curiously as a bunch of teenagers huddled around the chest press machine, each trying to attract the attention of a group of girls by grunting loudly and lifting a measly weight with great effort. The girls, on the other hand, were acting pricey and pretended to ignore the boys and at the same time kept watching them from the corner of their kohl lined eyes.

In the exercise studio, the kickboxing class was full. In fact, it had taken on the look of a pademonium, as a mass of some fifty people gyrated to the blaring music with total disregard to both the beats and to the screaming instructor. They were kicking and punching in the air, furiously, almost hitting each other along the way.

A couple of girls walked into the gym, wearing tiniest of exercise bras, their slacks hanging dangerously low at their hip bones, their faces painted with layers of makeup. They walked self consciously, swinging their hips from side to side, their eyes roving and scanning the gym, their tummies pulled in and their breasts thrusted forward. A few of the guys watched them with interest as the lions watch their prey and prepared to make the move.

In one corner, on the beginners machines, a multitude of baby boomers battled the bulges on their hips and their thighs, their stomach and their arms and inside the weight room, enormous, muscular, tattooed men ruthlessly attacked the dumbells and bars, lifting weight more than the combined weight of me and the machine I was on.

As I scanned the room, I noticed that if there was one place for universal integration, it was this - Chinese, Japanese, Mexican, American, Indian, Middle Eastern, European, African, black, white, yellow, brown, big, small, old, young, beautiful, ugly, graceful, clumsy - they were all right there, moving, throbbing at my feet. Isn't it interesting to see contradictions co-exist so seamlessly?

I continued moving my eyes slowly, curiously, watching, observing people who were absorbed in their own worlds - each an island in himself.

That's when I spotted him, running at the treadmill and I held my breath. He was the most beautiful man I have ever seen - an ebony God, a poetry in motion, the archetypal Adam, the essence of raw, primal masculinity. His high forehead glistened with sweat, his head was thrown back and his back was taut and upright. His eyes were half closed and his soft mouth was pursed in a firm resolve. He looked like the lord of his own world with every single muscle of his body at his command.

The muscles on his body were etched out perfectly, but with a sleek, smooth compactness. Unlike the body builders, his muscles were long and supple. There was nothing bulky, clumsy or out of shape about him. The body hugging suit he was wearing enhanced the narrowness of his waist, the tautness of his hips. His well built arms and shoulders made a statement through his half sleeves. His strong legs negotiated with the machine as he took long, sturdy strides. His smooth, dark skin shone with the blood pounding through his veins and the sweat streaming through his pores. His body looked like it was in complete symphony with the motion.

I watched him unabashedly with kind of a lustless appreciation with which one watches a Van Gogh, with which one listens to Bach, with a sense of awe about the artist and humility about oneself. The sight of my ebony God had left me breathless.

Then, too soon, he was done. I kept watching him as he slowed down and come to a halt. Still engrossed in his thoughts, he took a towel and strode wiping his sweat to the mens room. Shamelessly, I watched him walk and once more, appreciated his graceful gait as he disappeared in the changing room.

Even after he was gone, he lingered in my mind. I imagined him to be a warrior, a knight, a king, a corporate leader, a kind, compassionate, matured lover.

Yes, he definitely must be a leader, I thought , not an aggressive one though.

He must be leading by pure mert, by assurance, by purpose.

He must be intelligent, warm. He must be having a great sense of humor and yet he must be humble. He must be the ideal man nature could have created.

I wondered how his woman was.

Was she an essence of femininity, herself? Was he and his woman the new age Adam and Eve, ready to reinvent this world?

I was done with my workout and went into the ladies room but kept thinking about him . After I showered and changed, I came outside and waited in the lobby. I saw him come out of the mens room. He was looking dapper in his crisp white shirt and black trousers. He was freshly shaven and his tousled hair were now neatly groomed. I watched him again as he paced up and down the lobby, waiting for someone.

Is he waiting for her? I wondered and my curiosity was piqued.

In a while she came out - his woman - and she was just as I had imagined her to be. She was slim, strong, yet delicate with luscious brown hair and smooth, walnut-brown, glowing skin.

There's my eve, I thought as I watched her glide by gracefully in a sleek, flowing black dress, to where he was standing.

What a perfect couple, I mused as I watched them come closer to each other.

She went to him as his back was towards her and gently touched his shoulder. Suddenly, he whirled around and glowered at her.

"You bitch!" he screamed, "f@#$, you made me wait here for f@#$ing ten minutes"

"I am sorry, Adam" She said.

"Shuttap you!" He screamed "I am getting f@#$4ng late."

"There was a.." She tried to explain.

"SHUDDAP YOU SHUDDAP YOU MOTHER#@$@..YOU BITCH YOU..." He screamed like madman and she began screaming back at him, in protest, using the choicest of expletives.

The entire gym watched the drama with fascination.

I was disgusted. I got up, and walked out, unable to watch the perfect picture of my ebony God and walnut-brown Goddess shatter, wishing fervently, that if this were to ever happen again, I would rather see a beautiful mind than a beautiful body!

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

And Then...

Today, I saw you like I have seen you never before. I lay with my head on your lap, just as I have done so many times before. But you were torn by a heart wrenching agony. Standing on the side was me - stoic, knowing, watching with awe and a certain detachment, the drama that was unfolding. Suddenly, inexplicably, in a matter of a few minutes, hours, days, for you I had split in two, but, for me, I was as whole as I had never been before.

Your pain was palpable, so touching, but I just could not understand the cause.

This is a natural progression, I thought, this is what was meant to be! Sometimes it's just time to go, like sometimes it is time to be.

But I could not turn away. I could not leave you like this. The bond that was between us - that sacred, fragile, unspoken vow - could not be negated just like that. So, I hovered around, concerned, hoping that soon I will see the sunshine through the thick fog that surrounded you.

I did not mean to measure who loved me and how much. But still found myself watching as the world around me crumbled.

There were those spectators. For whom this drama was an interesting event. They clucked a little, slapped your back with a little sympathy and went home to their warm homes and nagging wives.

There were those others who craved for my body. They were the next to go. For the world is full of bodies, and there are always more to crave.

Then, there were some who loved my words. They did not care. For I had left a legacy for them to caress. To them I existed as a set of black letters and a bouquet of feelings that I chose to tie for them. They were happy, mostly, maybe just a little sad, that no new bouquets would be thrown their way. But then, there are many craftsmen of words in the world and no one needs to stop for a corner shop girl.

Then, there were those who loved me for they must - relations of blood, relations of relations. Some of them regretted and even cried a little. Then they held themselves up resolutely and, thankfully, got engrossed in the life that throbbed in their homes. Some pensive evening they shared amongst themselves my toddler memories, my craving for spice, my dreams, my growing up and my going away - one time too many.

Also in the crowd, standing at the back, there were those who owned a piece of me - a hand of friendship, a look of love, a little affection, some benediction, a favor or two and also a sweet, coffee flavored memory. For them the world would always be emptier. But they treasured the little part of me they owned, like an ageless bud that could be caressed and smelled, any time and as they wished.

Then there were you - the one who loved me the most. You were like a leaf caught in windstorm - mad, angry, agonized, drifting. And, I drifted along with you like the mist in your eyes, like the air that you breathed. I watched you as you sat sifting through time, for that one right thing that you could have done. I watched you sitting alone in the dark house waiting for a little glimmer of sunshine that you could hold. I also touched your cheek with my empty fingers as you looked far away with ghastly, vacant eyes.

Who knows for how long we just drifted like this - one a little forward, one a little behind. Then one day, the day did dawn for you, for even the pain could not last longer than I did. Someone came along struggling in the flow, just like you, and held your trembling hand with gentle firmness. Together you found the strength and were ready somehow to swim to the land that belonged to you two.

I saw you ensconced in a new chapter in your life and smiled with relief and even a little emptiness. For a moment I looked fondly at that wise, contented look on your face - the one that comes from knowing too much. The next moment, I turned around and let go. And then I was flying, with a set of sparkling wings, to where I now belonged.

Friday, January 6, 2006

Did not know I still had it in me: The fire, the passion, the resilience, the wildness. Guess, it's there and guess, it will never die.

I hereby declare that I AM... and I WILL DREAM!

Beat that, If you can! Or, just join me...

Sunday, January 1, 2006


My dreams snap like twigs
Under your terrible, tender foot
My nest lies in shambles
As you poke through it's remains
My world changes it's face
As you stir it around me

I have never complained
And I never will
For we are both entwined
In this strange eternal game
You my savior, you perpetrator
Me your millstone, me your muse

This eternal dance
Of love and of hate
Our faces painted differently
Every time the show begins
But the eyes remain the same
A pair amused, a pair haunted