Dear Sir, A lot of us look forward to a new year to make resolutions, convey good wishes and express our joy at the miracle we call daily living. I thought I would use the last day of 2010 to do the same. Thank you for making a wonderful difference in my life by just being yourself. When Lehman Brother’s lost it, I had you to keep me propped up; when the world was falling apart all around us and the only news was generally bad news, your presence was a great anchor to me. Thank you for being kind and listening, wish I has these attributes too :) Thank you for being candid and yet retaining your composure, wish I could get some of those skills too :) Thank you for being my favorite crib buddy and going through yards of rants almost every day. Thank you for suffering me, I assure you, this will continue, (after all, life is full of suffering)! You are a lot of things I wanted to be, but then there is this wonderful you… so I continue (happily) being myself! Love, Prayers and a Happy New Y…
It is the longer path I used to tread, one with nothing new in it, no new stories, no fairies no gnomes. I had been lucky to have you walk some miles with me, through these otherwise deserted roads. Now that you walk no more, I have found myself stuck in the same stretch that we walked together for ever more. A new journey begins where the old one ends. I rediscover everyday the same old crossroads.
When the wind blows hard, I fear that the gale will blow your thoughts away, and I hold on tight. When the tides run ashore, I fear that the surge would wash your memories away, and hold you close. These days I have stopped seeing dreams, lest you don't turn up there and I stop to believe. As we put distances in time; I fiercely hold on to your memories in me. I have learnt from the years gone by that what they call as forever, is actually a little longer that what I had imagined. I have lost loads of friends to the forever demon. I don't want to lose you. Now that the seasons are changing, I am afraid of the Spring, lest it blooms new flowers where yours I have for so long tended.
Its my 36th birthday today. Like the dish that they never served, the movie scene they censored and the interview call that never came, I missed you in my life today.
I have taken an inventory of those who blessed me today, and I have realized that for a generally unsociable moron like me, I have had too many loving souls wishing me. While I thank my maker for this day and the blessings, in this milieu... I miss you. If life were a journey through a tunnel in time, I am barely scraping through this part of my travels. I know that I will wake up with your thought throbbing in my head, like a migraine that wont fade; and I know that I will sleep with your thoughts running in my mind, like some virus that wont be deleted, cant be quarantined. Knowing that somewhere far away from me, your thoughts might too rest on thoughts of me gives me no solace. I know that you miss me too.
Knowing you I have known that it is those whom we love most that we hurt most and are most hurt upon by. I wish …
I came across something interesting on TV early in the morning. The swami who was preaching from the verses of the Bhagwat Gita closed his sermon wishing all viewers merry Christmas. He did not stop at that, he went on to compare the lives of Krishna and Jesus and drew some interesting parallels. Here are some of them that were particularly thought provoking: Popular figures of their times: Both Jesus and Krishna were loved by the common man on the street. One was the hero of the fisher folks the other the lord of hearts of the ordinary residents of Mathura, a town in ancient Gujarat. Immaculate Conception: Though separated by atleast 7000 years by birth, both of them are known to have had an extra ordinary birth. While Baby Krishna escaped the wrath of Kamsa to live another day, infant Jesus escaped the king's soldiers just the same.Men of Miracles: Both were capable of miracles. While Krishna was widely accepted as incarnation of Vishnu and worshiped even when alive, the followe…
When you stress the line that holds you down, pull on the Chakri so that you can fly some more, I guess it is time to set you free.
When you fly high, you see more of the universe of which I am but a part. Down on land, closer to me, I fill your world, take too much space. Up high in the sky, far away from me, you have a better perspective of where I stand, vis-à-vis the whole wide world. It is exhilarating to set you in flight. The struggle to lend wings to your flight, fight notoriously shy winds of desire and set you high, makes me feel young and alive again. You bring to life the child in me.
Now that you are but a distant speck, a tension on the line, the force that pulls the Chakri that I struggle to hold on to, I do not feel all that young anymore. The power of your bright beautiful wonderful flight strains my hands, twangs the twines of life connecting us. You are now too far up in the sky for me to see, I think It is time to set you free.
You would not see the light years I have waited for a call from you. You would not hear the overpowering noise of those hours and days and weeks of silences, that passes by before you connect. I dread your next call, for once it is done, and you have said your bye ji, the cycle of waiting would begin all over again. Overtime, I have fallen in love with my silences. They are predictable and provide a sense of soothing continuum. Each day runs into other and nothing untoward happens. I am learning to love the shades of black, I love innovating the notes of my silences. They don’t sing as well as you do... as yet, they are not as engaging as you are. Increasingly, you are the distraction that is ruining my routine. You are the strangeness in an otherwise peaceful life. One of these days, I might decide to exorcise thee!
Some images are disconcerting. The image of a train running out of a tunnel into the waiting night is one such image. Some of my oldest memories are memories from Train journeys. The incessant clatter of iron wheels on iron tracks used to drum up sad thoughts in me. I have often wondered how loco pilots would feel inside goods trains on moonless nights. The only things that they would see are railway tracks, everything else will be pale blue, black and gloomy.
My life these days are quite similar. I peer into the darkness lit by little lights that my loved ones have left behind. All I see is an endless row of fishplates and railway tracks. The stations on the way are mere distractions, some day I need to unload, unwind. Someday I need to stop this speed. Someday will be my last day, some journey, my last errand to run. Some day I will pull into a station... never to leave.
In my journey tearing through the darkness of my life, I am guided by the Spirits and also by the memories of wonde…
I knew that someday you would not be around all the time. I knew that someday the winds will stop blowing your fragrance my way. I knew this and still I dreaded the silences that were to follow the storm you whipped up in my life. A knock on the door changed everything. Now I need not be worried that I will remember you too often... I will never forget you :) Most relationships are accommodating in nature. I am included in your scheme of things, but I am seldom the universe around which you plan your things. Such relationships are what I call accommodating. "I will be in that part of the town tomorrow...shall we meet up?" is an example. Very few relationships are inclusive in nature. When you felt like meeting me, you planned your universe around me, you made me feel very important. You made me believe that for a moment, I was the centre of your universe. I have seldom been made to feel this way. Thank you.
A year of silences were dispelled over a couple of words on Chat. I have no clue what I have missed out, I do not know of how much trouble, or how much love I missed out in these 365 days. All I know is that I suddenly have an open line again. Memories of the din and buzzle of Hyderabad haunt me again. All the places, all those movies, and the nights our dining together, all these little things, I miss them again. Thank you for some Springtime bloom amidst Autumn gloom. Rajesh
All is well until I hold you in my hands. Even as time stands still with baited breaths waiting for those postcard moment of life to be delivered, my own thoughts are far from you. The fear of what a hug would do to you keeps me from hugging you. The fear of how you would react to a touch, a feel a kiss keeps me from touching you feeling you kissing you.
The times that I have lived have been longer than those of others, the thoughts that shape me are as old as myself, the fears that haunt me today; have walked with through all my lonely trecks.
It suddenly seems that we two, we are at two disparate ends of an otherwise not so interesting life, I roll back my longings, pack my bags of desire... and walk on. With me walks an alluring sense of disconnect.
My life is a brilliant orchestra. I do not know the players, I will never see the composer nor the conductor; I do not know when the drums will sound, or the violins play or when the trumpet would shout loud. All I know is that there is magic in the wild cacophony of my life. I like some compositions, I hate some. It might not be a Bethoven or a Bach...it still sounds like a good symphony to me. And amidst these myriad tunes, you are my favorite sound. Rajesh
As I fight rational to make sense of my today and stumble forth into a future I do not know of, I look behind and hear the holler of a million innocent lives. When you carved my nation's soul as if it were caviar on your cedar and rosewood dining tables, the wounds from that night bleeds still. You doctored my lessons, taught me an alternate history, made yourself heros and saviors of a race that could care less for you.
When I grew up, I searched the google and learnt about the murder on your souls. You taught me about Hitler but kept your own names away from me, you taught me about the freedom struggle but kept secret your absolute craving and hunger for the power over a billion poor away from me. When I grew up, I googled and learnt about the dead the buried the displaced and the lost.
When I have children, I will not sing songs of gods to them, I will sing songs of your murder and your lust, when I have grand children, I will burn MP6s and Blue Ray Discs with stories of your ahim…
Every time we were together, holding hands firing hearts; I have felt the moments light up, electrify. As my fingers criss crossed and drew wild patterns on your waxed skin, as our bodies intertwined in serpentine loops, as your perfume mingled with my cologne, I had felt the bush fires burn, rage, consume.
The fires from my yesteryears fuel the memories of my tomorrows. I never really had enough of you, I am yet to turn cinders. Burn me for all time, the phoenix awaits its ashes.
As I added years on to my living, my idea of myself grew less hazy. I still do not know more than maybe 5% about I, but then, the 5% that I know is quite interesting. I wait for my story about myself to unfold... as I grow older. One thing I have realized about myself is the way I sometime allow a stray sentence to get hooked on to my foundations and how I allow some thoughts to govern my actions strongly... for a very long time, probably forever. One such line is : This too shall pass Whenever I have been too sad or too distressed, I fall back on to this line and feel better instantly. Some days are major disasters, they begin with a strange feeling of loneliness and I finally end up thinking about you. Some time, when I feel too much in love with you, I would end up writing on a piece of paper... this too shall pass, and I survive another day. When ever I have found myself yearning and longing and waiting for someone to be by my side, or to catch a glimpse of someone I lost on the way…
The new does not replace the old. It just finds a little space of its own and cuddles in. Your thoughts are like frozen concrete of snow. It will take a million years to melt, another million to vaporize. Punctuating between random thoughts, my thoughts comes back to you. It is as if a flock of a million birds fly out into the sky each day, but come evening, they all come back to the same tree to roost. The randomness of my thoughts always fall back to the simple constant of your memories. I always end up thinking about you. The silken hair and the lip gloss that you ended up eating all the time, the whiff of perfume and that not just another women style :) I have sometimes wished my script to have had a different line, but when I think of the time we spend together, I fall in love with all those times... all over again. You are my favorite story, you make me love the movie of my life. Rajesh
There are moments when moments slow down, times when seconds stretch into long years of silences, only the hearts beat out loud. Beyond the definitions of our everyday existence, we reach out to hold hands, be close, and spend time. Togetherness brings solace, peace of the kind that runs scared of being spoken aloud. Love is like a frail crystal bowl, in our silences it sustains and finds life. Should you ever speak aloud, seek answers when questions are not allowed... the little spark of life that sustains will peter out. All that remain ... will be white noise.
Once in a while life in its rush leads you to new faces, faces with new voices, new stories to tell, new smiles, and new glances. My life just took one such turn, and I saw you seeing me. Two strangers, divided in time, standing before each other.
I will listen to your stories, share those that I think are mine and maybe walk some miles down the road following your smile. Someday, I hope I will have stories to tell about this part of my troubled journey. I hope we grow into each other like old moss and retain the warmth of this meeting in spite of our different lives. Rajesh
Some days the day just don't end. The post noon drags on as if the entire universe plots and stretches each second into a mile. The day long yawns into a short little night. Before I can could catch a breath, slow a while, and spend some time thinking about you, It is day again, and I am working again.
I have remembered you in my yesterdays, you are in my thoughts today and I know that I will miss you in my tomorrows.
Amidst the sorrows of yesterdays and the solace of my tomorrows is one meandering life.
I do not remember much of my childhood. Much of my memories are reconstructed from old photographs. They are GM memories genetically modified. There are some memories that are as real, unadulterated. I remember the deafening silence after the loud bang of the cracker which burst too close to my sisters ears. God has been kind, he spared our toddler ears and we can hear clearly today. I also remember the anger on my moms face when she realised that the 20 rupees she had kept safely for dipawali was missing! We had flicked it and burst the crackers two days in advance! God was kind, dad came early from tour and brought with him a bagful of crackers home. I do not remember any year when we did not have a huge cache of crackers to burst.
All my unadulterated memories are about the time I spent playing, fighting shouting kicking and loving my sister. Some of them are also about the times I spent with you.
Sifting through the fine grain of memories, I come across nuggets of yore. I look into your eyes and I see they twinkle still, I see you smile and feel glad that you retain the magic still.
I pose for a snap and see me with you frozen still. I look at myself, my balding mane my deceptive laugh lines my tired life, I close my eyes and thank God. Thank God that you knew me as a kid. Now I know why you are so special still. You have known the best of me, You have known me as a kid. Rajesh
There is a picture of yours in a silk saree. Hairs straightened; face partly covered with your hands, hiding a laugh. Whenever I feel that my life is fast turning rudderless, whenever I start losing my connect with what is beautiful about life, I see that smile on your face, I do a zoom and look into your twinkling eyes, I catch the glean of flash bulbs on your silken hair, and I am back to loving life again.
Frozen in time is your smile, you are the reason I tread another mile.
I was in Belgaum a couple of months ago, waiting to catch the train home. As usual we had swarm of beggars all around us, coming in some strange randomness. The young and abled would come first, this will be closely followed by the variety that limps followed by very old women. The increasing degrees of pathos that the line up generates taxes human emotions.
To a very large degree, I am immune to beggars who are able bodied. I am partly immune to the limping variety. I generally succumb to the old and the aged. I fail to comprehend why someone as old as my grandmother, barely able to move, hardly see, has to go out every day into the world and beg for food. I feel cheated being a part of a nation that is all fart and no action, especially when it comes to the aged. The grains that we allow to rot every year is sufficient for two times of food for all the poor and needy elders in this country. I wish I was working with the government, I would have at least given it a try!
I sometimes wonder about the tenacity with which life finds reasons to hang on. My maternal grandmother is 87 and in the terminal stages of cancer, she can barely breathe, but life holds on.
My life have been in absolute chaos for sometime now, there are very limited things and people in life that bring me joy, life however finds constant source of engagement, a blog that makes me laugh a movie that makes me cry some good lookin woman who makes me drool, a child that makes me want to have one of my own.
I never knew when it all became so complicated. When I started rewriting definitions, drafting terms of engagement. I do not remember when I stopped having time for those who love me and started finding time chasing those who dont. I dont remember when I grew up, when I became just another face in the dumb fucking crowd, when I stopped tipping the poor beggar woman on the corner or the young kid of the tea stall owner. I have no clue when I forgot . . . Remembering you.
The nights give way to stupid days. Life to more life, white noise.
Working on the keyboard answering stupid mails, scripting project plans, wasting time, I find myself suddenly thinking about you. I suddenly rediscover things that make my moments special. I feel my love for life increasing.
The moments I spend thinking of you are the moments I love to live in. These are the moments when birds and rainbows sunlight and clouds kites and balloons mom and dad all feel so wonderful and special. These are the moments when I hear your laughter echo through the corridors of my otherwise desolate life. These are the moments when I surrender, when I dont fight the urge to dispute how incorrigibly I love you.
Wishful thoughts cross my mind... I Wish you had loved me, a quarter as much as I love you. And if you do, wish I knew.
It was one of those absolutely ordinary days. The Hyderabad sun was at its best and the Telangana guys were at rest. These was nothing out of ordinary that day, nothing that would remind me of it again. And then I looked over your bay and saw you busy at work.
Some strands of your silken hair would keep falling forward and you would keep pushing them back again. Streaks of Loreal played burgundy colors and your yesterdays waxing caught the sun. Amidst the brown pathos of our workplace, I saw a mirage in green. I do not remember which day that was but I remember the color of your chunni.
I do not remember what I had been thinking for ages before this time, but I will never forget what I felt at that freeze frame moment in time. Out of Don Corleone's world came two thunderbolts, the first took Michael, the other caught me unawares. Since that sordid afternoon years ago, I have been so unsuccessfuly in love with you.
Somewhere along the way I made some mistakes. Playing multitude of roles, I missed the prompt, improvized and messed it up. There were no encores, I know I could have played those scenes differently, I know I should have done a better job.
I want to start all over again. I want to give it one more chance. Can I have the stranger back?
I have lost more than I have found, I have not been searching hard enough. I have been heard more often than I have had the patience to hear. I have not been listening enough. I have been loved more than I could return, I have not been caring enough. I have lost more relationships than I could hold on to. I have not been living enough.
And you thought I am done? I have only just begun. For every hour you spent with me there are atleast two more songs to be sung. The day we went to buy a Lehanga and I managed a storeful of distressed salesgirls while you tried 18 dresses before you bought one, and then fought with them too. The time we spent at the park where you forced me to remove my shoes to play in the sand, and then shared with me what makes you you. The time when we went to the movies and I blushed blue, even as you whistled on! The night when crackers lit the night sky, and I could see starlight in your eyes! And the time we went on a camel ride, even as we held on to our lives, that lazy camel had all the fun.
I have enough of you to feed a million lines, there are many more songs to be sung.
There are times in our lives, mostly desolate, when we exercise our right to say goodbye. Goodbye is such a wishful word! We use it to induce guilt, sustain longing, flame desires. We also use it to sever ties. When we use it we believe that there will be a probable change in the status quo. We believe that at that moment in time, our lives take different paths. Goodbyes are Frost like, goodbyes are where the two roads diverge. Goodbyes are the points of divergence in our lives.
I have had my share of goodbyes too. Some have been pleasant and our paths still cross. These are the manageable goodbyes, these are like second life, one of us has decided to change our avatar or teleport ourselves to a different world, the other adjusts. There is another kind of goodbye. The titanic goodbyes. They were here until yesterday. There were with me when the sun went down, they never came back with the morning sun. Two roads diverged in the woods... forever and there was no time for just onelast good…
I know that I would not live forever. I also know that I will not remain young forever. All my lessons are from my past, my future is as unreal as the present that unfolds.
Amidst all these uncertainties, I do not grieve. I do not feel that I have missed out the best in my life, I do not believe that I need to come back again and again. I have lived eternity in a kiss... I know now that it is just another moment in time. And what a moment it is!
And having lived eternity with you, I do not need a future...without you?
What would this life be without music? I remember when as a teen I first fell in love; I remember that I had Rehman’s Roza Janeman to keep me company. Later, when I moved to Kerala for my higher education, the years that I spent longing for mom and dad were filled with “Country Roads” by John Denver and “Seasons in the Sun” by Terry Jacks. Songs help fill the silences in my life. When my mind gets bogged down by unfulfilled aspirations, when what is seems a poor cousin to what was and what could have been, songs help retain my sanity. Some of my all time favorite songs are songs that feed the fire of some precious memory or the other. Songs have helped me connect; songs have helped me make amends. Songs have helped me tide over losses, celebrate togetherness. Some time ago I had this somebody in my life who loved ghazals. She loved Jagjit Singh and she would come out with the most beautiful lines from those songs to celebrate some wayward thought. We are no longer together, but Songs re…
Time is a silent killer. It keeps eating away into almost everything I know... all the time. There are days that pass without thoughts of you, days when I am so busy with work that I forget to live life. Life suspends itself on such days. There are no memories of such days. If you ask me what I did, I would say I do not remember.
These are the days when I do not think of you. These are the days that I do not remember.
Normal days are daunting. They start with thoughts of you. I remember the glares you wore and felt all hep. I could see you having fun with all the glares you get when you are out in the crowd. I would remember the excuses you would make when your jeans would tighten a tad, or when you have one of those "Bad hair days."
There is enough of you that I have retained with me, in photos, in lines, in thoughts and in life... to last a lifetime. All days that I remember to have lived are days when you danced in my thoughts. Time is a killer, it keeps eating away into eve…
Some evenings when I drive back home, I look at the empty seat besides me, and then I think of you.
There were evenings when you would run into the car, (as always in a hurry) and switch the blowers to full and take deep breaths. You would talk to yourself, curse the traffic and your sirkari boss, make fun of me and then listen to some songs. You were always so full of life! Every moment shared with you seemed so full of you.
Some evenings as I drive back home... I am reminded of you. I take a deep breath to catch some faint fragrance that you might have left behind, and finding none, I close my eyes and catch you in my thoughts.
It takes a long time to make sense of relationships. Sometimes I feel that it is well nigh impossible to make sense at all. I list some of the greatest mysteries that exist between human relationships:
It is difficult to read other people’s minds.It is difficult to comprehend me as other people see me.What I think I know of others is an older version; the file keeps getting updated quite frequently.Most assumptions that I make in relationships are conditional. Sometimes I believe that I am important in the other person’s life, most times, I believe that I am not.Either of the beliefs does not really matter, since I know neither for sure.My assumptions are based on my life’s transactions with the other person. The higher the sharing of thoughts, laughter and worries, the closer I believe I am to the other. The absence of affection, care, and physical touch makes me believe that I am not important. I need to be touched to b…
I saw crackers burst over the night sky a short while ago. The little mount church nearby is celebrating some festival.
There was another night sometime ago; a night steeped in folk songs, crackers and loads of laughter. When the last embers of each cracker burns out, and the night sky awaits another burst, there is a short period of silence between showers of lights. Thoughts of you fill these silences.
You ignite my memories with each burst of crackers. I see your eyes catch the gleam of sparkles, I hear your laughter in the cheering crowds. Today, as always, you are with me in all my celebrations, and the silences that follow.
I hate to travel by road. It has something to do with my absolute dread of accidents. But then, 12 hours and 750 kilometers later, I reached Chennai safely on my basanti (Sam calls my car Basanti).
In the past two months the word Autumn has crept into my lines more frequently than ever before. It pops up in my poems, in my blogs and in my every day conversations. Traveling through the ghat roads, autumn followed me all the way to Chennai. There were some trees, especially the neem trees that had finally decided to grow some leaves and blushed green all over the roadsides, but the others, they were still in mourning. I now begin to realize the connection between human emotions and nature. Even as I felt the need to shed some leaves and leave them behind, I could see the trees doing the same.
Someday soon, when the longing for what was is no longer as strong as it is today, like the neem trees, I will grow green leaves and bloom again. Until then, let the songs of Autumn play on.
A colleague of mine told me today that she noticed perceptible changes in me since Feb'2010, and that the same opinion is shared by a few others too. The most noticeable changes being: I am not as frequently loud as I was before.A semblance of an emotional being is now visibleI seem now to feel need for people to be around me (sociability)I said yes to all the three and thanked her. If these are the first few steps, there are miles to go until I am perceived like any other normal human being. I am on the way. When asked on the reason for change, I shared something very simple. I told her that I somehow started believing that its ok to share what I feel and let some of the normal emotions become visible to others. I have always been interested in people around me, especially colleagues who work with me, its just that I did not want them to know. Now I feel it is ok to let them know. I am not very sure whether this is going to be easy. There is less to lose and much to gain. Happy ch…
I have been increasingly thinking wishfully about this remote control. A remote control that would allow me to fast forward my life to two or maybe three months ahead of today. I am still in love with my life, I want to live it until the last day, however, there is something about this season in my life which wants me to earnestly “not live in these times.” Thinking aloud about this, I asked my cubicle colleague, Sharon, what option she would choose if I were to give her one such remote; a remote that had stop, pause, forward and play on options. Surprisingly, she opted for the fast forward option too.
I wish this could happen. But then something happened today that made me feel very good about living this day. Today was Priyanka’s birthday. Priyanka works with me and I consider her as a friend, not sure whether it is the same the other way round:) So we had two sessions of cake cuttings, lunch at the pizza hut and the complimentary song from those lovely folks who make the Pizza Hut exp…