2006-12, in poetry

bare
may just be
brutal

honesty though

ain't the only thing

dysfunctional




forget not the importance of closure

or the reality of self-worth

for you need both, hand in hand,

to take you across

this river,

tribulations and ecstasy

even in the highs,

a hand to keep you steady

inspiration is music

solitude

in this state of being,

I am one with myself

and as disconnected as I feel

from the reality that is now,
there is a certain joy

bittersweet


in this moment,

of just me

I smile again,

I know I'll be okay

I can do this,

I smile again



that state of daze

an in between when life
comes to a standstill

you were looking forward

for so long
and now

there is nothing but the present

smirking

mute




we write better when we are sad

I was told, once upon a time
when there is no hope
no one to turn to
we turn within

unlock

that little box
of poetry

and we get so good at it

that even where there is none
sadness, that is

we find it somewhere

brew it somehow

self-destructive, really

this penchant for art
the written word

oh, how important it is

excuses upon excuses
'nobody understands'
'I am all alone'

'in this dark, dark place'


and

sometimes
along come by
a few like-minded souls
craving abyss
encouraging

sordid


that is not the way to life

the way to life
is to live

and living means all

that is not numb
that is full
of life

people

interaction
relationships
getting back up
being found
fragments
shards

facing all of that

which we hide
far away

in between the lines


I live to write

the written word
is the very essence
of my soul

but I want to be happy

and if that means

substance

that is amiss

writing

that has gone bad


then so be it



you

will always

be all


that is left of you

shun

all hope

of another
in sync


and on call



it is that place in time

where sure, home is where the heart is

but home is also where home is

which, when you remember

aches the heart




the crows,

they sweep so low

pearly whites

clap in glee
running away
far, far away
nothing scares them

the bird,

just another playmate
savage?
laughter ensues

camera hogs

the one on the right
her name is Sumaiyya

I know

because the sister
just wouldn't shut
yelling

dancing about

their father's truck
back and forth
a nearby corner

his little shop


(incomplete)




what then

call it quits, sure
but solace

a mere word

nothing of substance
empty

nowhere to be found

and then what
answer yourself

checks and balances

an ad hoc system
of nothingness

but truth is

the only place
that search
will lead you
is within

and then,

there was no need

if all

it always
will come down to
is within
then with him
with her,
or whoever else

what does it matter


mundane, yes

abyss, no

happy is right there

just


get there



this poem feels devoid

of any inspiration
or wonder

there is no pain

suffering or negativity
passion and pleasure
both at a loss
for words

it is not numb

or hysterical
moving
or still

there is no meaning

neither time or place
a constituent of life
in fragments
and shards


really



there is a kingdom

behind an ocean
far far away

trembling waves

the curve of her ankle
no escape

she stands

in peace
solemn

of vow

and covenant
simple and astute

for truth

a distinct fondness
this and that
never far
within
deep

wondering

if the waves will part
her eyes, hungry

savage




a speech to give

it never took off

could I stand there

a blank piece of paper
knowing all that I know

I cannot tell them

my soul is mine
bare, naked


scared



everything is real

and everyone is broken

even in the man 

with despicable grammar

you can find strength




you've been smiling again

a wonder that somehow got lost
slowly starting to fill
the abyss

like

falling back in
whatever they call it these days

again


just

in the know
this time

has yet to simmer

but you know it will

a fire lit

of understanding
and wide, open spaces

I always did like The Dixie Chicks




I know now

pretty boys like pretty girls



never let go

of all that moves you

for


first,

it moves you

then,

it becomes you
and you don't even know

it leaves you confused

just out of grasp
so close

and 

then,
it is you
and you are happy

as can be


don't stop there

for there is much more to come

a long road, a long haul

so much baggage
empty-handed?

and finally,

it is from you
only then is it complete

a full circle

for there is no true end

so,

meri jaan

let your heart sing



snow is falling

this way and that

make up your mind

my soft friend



up and down

round and round

swirling and twirling

in a delayed frenzy



an entire horizon
of matte white
loveless
distant

the picture, replaced
a frame that is the same
glistening laughter
shining faces

every now and then
a different song finds room
in my beating heart
unspoken

hold me
arms aligned
so I can close my eyes
and sigh

no deep sea
overwhelming
big, beautiful eyes
but the shore

place a hand
where your heart is
like a lone walk
on the tide



when I get scared

I tell Amma
that I am

in Korean


to avoid explanation

of many a thing

and then



there is no point
when truth is devoid of the truth
big eyes only take you so far
and when it gets farther
what then?


we are all lonely
except that

we are not

take my heart
no, you take mine

hopscotch and solemn vows

shards of stained glass
crockery on sale

stop to think

pain and love
who gives a blah

too many stories

bugs and ballgowns
a conundrum of this and that

I digress




bitter

but with a sweet after-taste

not much of a craving



still

five mugs a day



have you ever?



beggars, ragged and torn

not angry at God
happy neither
grace the worn platforms
of the Indian railway

as I wave heartily

at everyone from Nana's home
baring teeth and darling smiles
tears that bite
a solemn goodbye

even when I am with them

my heart aches in remembrance
an embodying sense of doom
at the mere thought

of separation




my gaze, piercing

simple reed curtains
that come undone

at the mere jolt of a thin rope

much like Nana's house

an estranged sadness surrounds me

every time I think of him

I dont remember

but there should be an album
around here, somwhere

baby pictures

and the joy on his face

I know there is heaven

and he looks down
often



my heart breaks

conjoins
every sight and sound
touch and smell

I must capture

this moment
of silent unrest
serene thunder

a lonely cart

wrecked beyond repair
glistens of morning dew
fate in tow

an empty street

remains of an everyday evening
kids in torn frocks
gap-toothed glee

Delhi

pollution and madness
unabashed welcome
profound sweat

and as I embrace

my favourite place
a promise is made
your story will be told

meanwhile



make mine



the fundamentals of life

emphasize on the bigger picture
in the scheme of things
when even in dysfunction
there is function

what should be

and what should not
fit in even when standing out
a conundrum of order

this leaves me

outside my element
as I succumb inadvertently
to errors of spontaneity

questioning

all that was left behind
without room for what is to come
I roam the streets in a haze
without ever realizing
the preciousness
that is silence

the pressure is great

when I smile for the world
my grin is wider than comfort allows
but when it stems from within
full of meaning, it is softer



you take your time

sometimes lies
are those of silence

this time begs patience

my Lord
has put me to a test

your actions are meaningless

they bring
no pain or negativity

your indifference is of no use

if anything
it humbles me

your deliberation is hilarious

however
my sincerity no joke

always will I pray for you

judgement

because there is none




close your eyes


and take a deep breathe


the world is yours


hands in your pockets


hitch your wagon to a star


and just breathe


tomorrow is shady


toh kya


so was yesterday


this friend awaits your smile


forever


within reach


one of those moments


like this song


seedhha dil se



Godspeed.



bombay


somehow, the name

mumbai
doesn't fall into place
I always thought
if you can go to bombay
you can dream
a dream

bombay fascinates me

not its shining page 3
but the dullness that dwells
on the huge rocks
ashore

seeking

sustenance from nothing
but the sky

and


(incomplete)




Every day now, I smile

That smile of mine

Not one that takes your breath away

Or even one that makes you stumble

It creeps upon you

Unnoticed and treacherous

Webbing you into enchantments

Meddling with your brain

You cock your head to the side

Pretending to figure me out

But I know you know

All smug and nowhere to go

I know you wonder

How does she glow so?

My sunshine displeases you

Your discomfort is amusing

Not something you can create

It is a state of being

You pretend some more

Then shove those hands in your chinos

Over and over again

You play this game

Today is not your day

Tomorrow never was

And me?


I just smile


That smile of mine

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