Friday, November 22, 2013

Poor Things

They made promises,
They refused to obey
The calls of life, the rules of love.
They were proud and they would say –

“I will remain yours forever”, said she,
“And I only for you,” said he.
“We won’t bind our love,
We won’t close it to life,
We won’t play by the rules.”
They said, in unison.

And so I watched them.
And then I laughed.
So, I thought,
Let’s just play along!

But they did try –
To hold strong in the face of rules,
Follow their own heart
Their one heart.
I watched as they broke down
And stood up, and smiled
At each other.

Would you think I would let them win?

They fell prey to their own words.
Now he loves her for he had promised to.
Now she kisses him for she had vowed to.


They are bound by promises now.

Monday, November 11, 2013

So, Why do I Write?

We disintegrate, in the smoke of your cigar.
We fall apart with my cold shoulder.
You embrace me, and I shrug.
You kneel before me,
I try to smile.

Inside me I feel the stone lifted,
With my independence,
But a greater hollow,
As you leave my side
After a kiss at night.

My body aches and it’s not a drowsy numbness,
The nightingale’s dead.
We cling to rhythm, to poetry, to pseudo-aesthetics
In our hearts we break into pieces as we breathe.

Is it me, or do you feel it too?
Layers of masks and faces,
Layers within me, layers I keep with you too.
I assured you transparency,
And I feel failing miserably.

My dreams I can’t find anymore.
I live in the moment, to you as I swore.
I block the past, the future,
I look at the present, for your sake.

The bleak tomorrow, the blotched last night –
I ignore them; and so I write.

Saturday, November 9, 2013

What a Wonderful Life

                                                 How to make it a GOOD day

I am a teacher. And just like in any other job, every day is not really a good day. There are sudden spurts of work pressure, unannounced troubles to handle, duties which must be done even if one is tired. So, by the time Friday arrives, it's obvious that the body and the mind is tired. It's been a few months, but I have always known that I love this one thing - to be around young spirits and be able to interact with them and be a part of their never-ending energy.

And yet, by the time Friday arrives, I am tired.

So, while going through videos this evening, I found this one. It talks about all the beautiful things in the world for which we should be thankful. For a moment, my cynical brain said, "Of course it looks so better in the videos! The photographer is not showing all the bad days that he had with his producer and the bad weather and the financial blocks and so much more! Of course he just edited the bad parts and is showing how good the world is!"

But then I wondered, that even if the person had had his troubles, did that stop him from actually enjoying what he did? Even if he had to hassle with the producer to go to the various places and the finances and all of it, while he was actually there at the places - all the places and capturing the smiles - didn't he enjoy every moment of it?

Then how is my life any different? I remembered how happy I feel every time I enter a class. Every time I am explaining a story or a poem, and asking the students about them with which they can relate to the text, and the way they raise their hands and share their stories with me. Every time they bid me goodbye with a smile and a wave at the end of the day. Every time they wish me in the morning and I see their faces light up when I return their wish personally. How different are these gifts from the great beauties that this person has captured in his video?

And suddenly, I feel happy.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Espresso and Stilettos

Your coffee is half and strong,
And you take full cup tea;
Your shirts are careless,
But your mind - you keep it free.

I find your bookshelf stacked
With fiction and poetry and travel,
You fix the radio and my watch,
You fail to fix my smile.

You are happy in the rain
And the clouds and the fog,
You smile at the street urchin
And happily find what he loves!

I run the day out,
Busy as a bee.
The days turn to nights.
I fail to smile at thee.

Our days pass by
And we forget each other.
We go on living as we were
The time when you were only "you",
I was only "I",
Before you and I became "us".

We meet after a decade.
Our eyes sparkle as we smile
That old smile
And we see the blank of the time faded.

We meet when we are grown
And have faces waiting at home;
I let you pass and you turn back,
And you see me turn back too.

And we walk on, heels and boots.
(Oh! How you loved your boots!)
I keep my smile intact,
And we keep up with the ruse.