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That Pinch of Blue with Grey

Long flights dredges up lost memories from an otherwise sunshiny life. They come from all the corners, steadily, like coyotes, biting away small bits, from my otherwise well preserved sanity.

From my childhood, comes echoes of laughter, and playing in the sand, and jumping off trees and beautiful looking Didi's and school teachers and sir Raj, smoking charms, endlessly. The laughter bounces off my brusque facade of professional chicanery, and chips away some paint on the go. Right from under the starched white shirt front, I bleed blue, as I remember myself and my sis, playing, alone, under the guava tree. We were young once, and our life was full of each other, forever.

From my youth, my grand uncle calls out, in a voice unheard for a decade. I see myself grinding arecanut for him to chew, in return of cardamom treated raw tobacco. I see us painting the front lawn red, together, three generations apart, chewing home grown betel. Some bit of that red betel haunts me again, sparkling red splatters in my otherwise clinical, lab life.

And then there is that wide expanse of tranquil greens, amidst which my grandma sleeps in peace.

It's a long flight. I wish for this journey to end. I look forward to being home again. It's a journey well begun. Some day, I got to be home again.

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Clarity

I have looked at myself
From the edges of reason
And discovered
That both my sanity and insanity
Springs forth like seasons
Out of my distances from you. Realizing thus
I have allowed the outer rims
Of my diffused sanity
To fritter away into crumbs
Of misplaced memories
From my time with you. I have often found myself being unreasonable
When I am away from you.
And generally insane
When otherwise.

Objects in the rear-view mirror are…

When it was time for her to go, it was also time for me to let go. Once an irritant is washed out, they say you can start seeing better immediately. All that stupid tears and all that rubbing of the soul, until your eyelids would cry out, no more, no more. 
And then, just like that, one fine day, I wake up, and she was gone.
As the train chugged out
The tracks cried out in senseless
creaks of half despair

The Dark of the Night

You would not have walked with me
Had the nights been not so scary
And your nightmares
All so real for you.

I would not have held your hands
Had the hands that I wished to hold
Not left me out in the cold.
Let us together, you and I

Celebrate our togetherness
Even as in our silences
We cherish our separateness.

Mar 7, 2015
First published in Indian Sahitya, Feb 2017 Issue on Contemporary Indian Poetry