Tuesday, 7 February 2017

Muffin

You taught me simple things.. for instance, to run fearlessly.
To charge at those bigger and stronger - always making the first move.
To always be playful, to always be free.

You showed me that love is truly unconditional.
That being in love means protecting fiercely, bravely.
That sometimes a little tummy rub and lick is all it takes.

As you waited, sometimes endlessly, for me,
you showed me how to make someone the centre of your universe,
it was in loving me, that you showed us how love was to be done.

In your loyalty, you become an inspiration, often told,
by being ours, you made us more, you made us whole.
You healed, our tiny hearts, as we grew up, together.

You were the missing piece, the little radiance,
the little sunshine, amongst all our gloom.
You made the house our home.

My strength, my friend,
my hope, my joy,
my roots, my journey,
my childhood, my adventure,
my listener, my licker,
my furry friend.

Friday, 23 December 2016

Everyday Romance

There is calm
in dependability
There is comfort
in intensity
There is home
in intimacy

It's the in between
in what is never said between us.
It's in knowing that silence
is understanding.

Do you think about the same things?
Do you wonder with the same immensity?

When I am listening,
While I giggle,
While I chatter endlessly,
Do you hear the slight pause?

Do you notice the catch in my breath?
Do you sense the moment when I am me?

Are you simple, like your words,
like your curious stories?
Are you at ease, like the sea,
like the chirping trees?

Are you aware, of what it means,
of what it conveys?
Are you deliberate, in the impact,
in the way you move me?

There is closure
in belonging
There is security
in co-existing
There is peace
in being.


Saturday, 27 February 2016

That's how it is

I can tell you what it means, to have misery and joy all combined into one. Knowing that you will be robbed of everything. That every identifiable shred of your tumultuous identity will be stolen, and you will be left, formless. That you will own and tarnish the past and re-create every inch of it. You will lose everything, but what you will retain is the dull sense of ownership; of knowing that you painstakingly created this, from scratch, against opposition. And you will be left with an empty slate, to re-write.

I remember it all. Like it was happening now, in front of me. Knowing what would make this perfect, and yet knowing it was impossible. Fighting everything, including myself to make it possible. And then giving it up. Knowing when it would self-destruct. Knowing when I was not right. Knowing when I was. But, also knowing that my brightness needed illumination. That an atmosphere that damned would not only be brutal on me, it would also be brutal on you. Knowing that our separation was our only salvation. That through distance we would reach closure. That in moments of self doubt, your sight would cure the dull ache; or intensify the lack of it. That your irresistible purpose was me, and mine was you. That we were intertwined. And yet, we were parasitic. We, not I.

Would liberation destroy me? Would freedom render me numb?

Goodbye to you. Not because I can’t live with you, but because I should try to live without you. Because we are too in sync to see the painful consequence of our partial co-betrayal. I can hear you. I can hear you call out in agony. I can see the arms stretched out in desirous platitudes. I can feel those shards of deceit stab you, like they were stabbing me. Your identity is now enmeshed in mine, we are unbreakable. But, to those that barely know us (everybody), we are separate. And they perhaps will find a way to revive you. To re-instate life into that which you have always identified as mine. In the lack of me, you will morph and become you.

Me? You ask, softly. I will be okay, darling. The power to create rests decisively within the recesses of that which you call yours, but is irrevocably mine.

Wednesday, 2 September 2015

Quiet

Language. Cross out.
Words. Cross out.
Thoughts. Cross out.

But how do I forget

That silent
intense
surreal
way I feel
around you?

Sunday, 12 April 2015

Somethings always stay

I wrote this for you when you were leaving last year but never shared it with you. Given that today is Siblings Day, I felt like it was an appropriate time to share it.

_____________________________________________________________________

Letting you go was extremely hard. Not because I will never see you again, but because I will never see you again like this. We have lived a certain life of dependency for the last two and a half decades now. Just our little, three people unit. Right from the time when protecting you against pain and bitterness was my only priority, to the time when you became the reason mom and I felt safe at night, it has been a tumultuous journey. We have had moments of disagreement, anger, disappointment. But there has always been the knowledge that no matter what, we have each other. 

The next time I meet you, it will be different. It will be your home, your friends, your context, and I will be a visitor. Perhaps we may live together again. But things will change. 

I long for the moments of insecurity and loneliness that made us so dependent upon each other. I long for the few dinners that we took with just each other. Even if we had nothing to talk about, the silence was always enough. I long for all the movies we went for, all the last minute rushing and fighting. I long for the consistent change that was our life. Moving homes, moving friends, moving lives. But always having us. I long for all of that. 

Can I ever explain to you how deeply I feel for you? So intense is the feeling that everything else pales in comparison. I don’t always express myself and most often I get perceived as cold and detached for it. But I wish I could explain to you exactly what I feel. How I long to always protect you from the world. How I wish that our few car rides with rockstar on full blast would never end. How I feel like hurting someone back that even brings the smallest of pain to you. How you are, and will always be my little brother - the one that didn’t understand anything because I shielded him from the harshness of life. 

Life has brought us full circle. Now it is you who shields me from all that life holds - from my inabilities to be social, from my feelings of loneliness, from my own self. 

I miss you, and a part of me will always pine for a moment of just you and me - playing chess in Europe, driving from hundreds of places to back home, goa, at home in our various rooms, in school buses, racing our cars on our way to college….our memories are endless, just like our love.

Monday, 30 March 2015

Breaking her silence

Sometimes I see her and pain and wonder where it comes from. She refuses to shine, she rejects any sense of warmth that comes her way, she has a tower erected all around her.

My gut tells me to look in his direction. To see the invisible scars he left on her and dig deeper to unearth the visible ones. I want to ask her the right questions, and give her enough courage to tell me their answers.

I want to release her from the suffocation that she's suffering in alone. I want to take on all that he's ruined her with, and I want to send it lashing right back at him.

I know what he did to her, I know it better than any truth she could accurately remember. I can sense it in such a real way, that her anguish is now mine. I am afraid she'll never break the silence, that she will be misunderstood for far too long a time, that once again, his demons will have their way.

Each time, I helplessly look in her direction, almost asking, almost telling. And then I shamefully look away, not knowing, not admitting.

Old school

I often wonder about the times before communication methods were so abundantly available. Reading Kafka's Letters to Milena makes me almost long that I was born during that time.

There is a certain romanticism in waiting. In knowing that your time together is extremely precious, limited, fleeting. In sending your emotions to someone with no confirmation of receipt.

I can only try and imagine what the lack of certainty created - a constant need, a permanently unfulfilled desire, release only in small doses.

There is something poetic about reading what someone wrote many days ago, imagining where they were sitting, what they were wearing, how they smelt, as they wrote those words to you. A sense of nostalgia and realism, wrapped together carefully. There is also so much deliberation and intense emotion that goes into the act that it restricts the number of people one can share that emotion with, ensuring that when you do, the understanding is as deep as it gets. It takes the frivolity away from communication as we see it today.

While there is a definite comfort in knowing that you can reach out to your loved ones, no matter where they are, unfortunately, comfort doesn't breed art.

Given a choice, I would trade comfort for poetry, in a heartbeat, each time.

Sunday, 29 March 2015

What’s Left of Us

If you could hear the last need as it echoes endlessly from me to you,
Would you hear the stifled childhood scream as it penetrates you?
Would my words have the honest intensity of my feelings?
Would the emotion come tearing through, unbridled, undeterred, unfettered?

If there was no fear of fall-outs, of hurt, of betrayal, of vacuum,
Would my expression lash out angrily as you string the sentences together?
Would the insane promise of comprehension last across ages and irrationality?
Would the words quietly reach you, and land on earnest understanding?

If ink could carry all the guilt, the nonchalance, the nothingness of us,
Would it tell you, how the empty hollow left inside of you has crushed me?
Would it show you my crevices, and their jagged, insistent, desperate stories?
Would it smudge the distance between rotten you and rotten me?

A question, and the hope for its answer, is all that’s left of you and me.





Thursday, 5 March 2015

Unsaid

It's the in between
In what is never said between us.
What does it take to put it out there?
To have it said, loudly.

Do you think about the same things?
Do you wonder with the same intensity?

When I am listening,
While I giggle,
While I chatter endlessly,
Do you perceive the subtle pause?

Do you hear the sudden catch in my breath?
Do you catch the sudden sparkle?

Are you simple, like your words,
Like your straightforward stories,
Like your child like reluctance,
Are you more? 

Friday, 6 February 2015

Goodbye to you my trusted friend

I still remember the day so vividly. It was nearly 15 years ago. You came to me in a cane basket, carefully wrapped with a red and white polka dot cloth. There were balloons on one side, and you, sitting there looking at me. You came with an instruction manual and I remember you liked curd rice.

I have never felt any emotion purer than my need to protect you. I was barely 10 but I felt like I had to shield you from the world. I remember standing on the balcony of my fathers home and crying by myself because you wouldn't eat the curd rice that mom said you so loved. I remember begging you to eat. I remember feeling so relieved when you did.

Your first few days with us were very heartbreaking. Having to leave you home alone for the first time, watching you cry like a baby and sense your calm when I came near you. Within a few days, you had given me memories for a lifetime. Your peeing on the bed and Angad and my turning the Dunlop around so our father wouldn't find out. How could you have known the impact your tiny presence was going to have on our life.

My little fighter, I would like to believe that you fought on, despite all the times that life almost took you out, only for me. As a puppy, you almost died a few times, but each time you would surprise us by springing back to life. Your body may have been tiny, but your spirit was so large. You took on every dog on the street, and even turned timid Xavier into a fighter. You never gave up.

So today when I saw you give up, I almost hoped that this was one more of your cruel jokes. That you would soon get up, bark like crazy, jump off the doctors table, because jumping was always your thing, and bow in front of me, begging me to play with you. I saw you like you were for many years, fierce and loyal, and oh so loving.

There is no way to fill the hole that you have left in my heart.

There is no one else that could be my silent companion, never judging, only sitting, watching, egging me to get up, kick the dust and play instead.

There is no one else who knew my secrets the way you did, who almost licked my tears, who almost felt my pain while silently curling up in my lap, a thousand times over.

I don't know what's next for you, but you make me hope in a life after. That someday, I will be able to run behind you as you run free, that someday my heart will skip one more beat as I watch you jump off the roof and land squarely on your paws. That someday, I will be able to feel your fast heartbeat with my palm. That someday you will look at me, stop in in your tracks and madly wag your tail, as I call out Muffin.

Saturday, 17 January 2015

Do you turn?

There was a jungle full of roots and thorns and swamps and danger. A forest of destruction and emotional deforestation. I slowly navigated it. Sometimes going in circles. Sometimes moving forward. I marveled each time a root caught my foot. What was it that kept it growing over years and years buried deep inside a dark, quiet place? I caught my breath when fear gnawed its way inside and pushed me to turn and run. But I never turned and I never stopped.

The urge to cross over, to transcend, to transform, always pulled me like the earth's gravity.

And then I saw the sunlight catch the dew and I knew it was over.

What do you do when all the questions are answered, when you walk through all the ugly underbelly and face all the angriest demons?

Does self awareness become the cover up? Do you finally turn in any direction? Does realization make you different?

Everyday Romance

That moment. The little indecision, the fearless declaration, the long wait, the crashing, the rising.

I have read poetry that makes me wish it was written for me. Heard words that woo and swish me off my feet. I have felt eyes as they quickly duck another way. Heard endless gushed stories that seem like I belong in them.

When you know and deny, when you perceive and pretend, when you understand and ignore.

It is the catastrophe of almost touching, the devastation of roughly feeling, the trauma of nearly believing.

There is that.

And then, sometimes, unexpectedly, there may be intensity, and comfort, and calm, and dependability, and assurance, and passion. Sometimes, tragedies give way to an everyday romance.

Friday, 16 January 2015

Many years later

The damages are all still fresh. Not like fresh flowers and fragrance, or freshly brewed coffee. The cracks are blunted. Like the scent of a pressed flower, the aroma of a receipt from a coffee date many decades ago.

The wounds have healed but the salt still burns. Not like a lost limb or deafened ears. The burns are scars. Like an itch on a phantom limb, a scream in a vacuum.

The rage has calmed but the soul still simmers. Not like the death of a loved one or being cheated on. The memories are faded. Like the ache of watching love get Alzheimers, their eyes catching light because of someone else.

The desperation has dissipated but the urge still tingles. Not like the gasp for more oxygen or reading every last word for a favorable interpretation. The emotions are stunted. Like learning to breathe under water, comprehending the words never meant to be yours.

The sound is still hollow, the darkness is still dull.

Wednesday, 24 September 2014

This is how I long for You

I look at you and wonder who you are. Who are you when you are alone at night? When there is no one beside you. When emptiness fills the room and the only sound is the whirring fan. I wonder what crosses your mind as you close your eyes and drift into sleep. I yearn to uncover your last thought, to discover its essence - to discriminate between that which signifies fear and loneliness or that which beams of achievement and pride. Do you hold onto something when you sleep or let it all go? Are you a dreamer or do you find dreams wasteful? 

When you partition yourself from all your appearances and devices and pretenses and identifications, are you still beautiful? Are you still recognizable? Or do you become a little bit of everyone? If I could exist around you then, without altering you, would you still seem daunting and mystical? Would you be your first self - the child? Or would you be covered up in years of heartbreak and deceit and restrain? 

Most people in your world are content with knowing who you are, as you portray yourself. To me, thats only a minuscule fragment of your being. I want to dissect and intersect and question and understand you in every flutter, eyebrow raise, sigh, moan, gasp, shriek.. 

I wish to transcend and intrude the spaces in your identity - the gaps that define you. I crave to fully articulate your differences. I long to perceive you so intensely that your reactions become obvious, your intentions become predictable and your needs surmountable. 


Tuesday, 23 September 2014

Metro Lights

I like sitting by my window and staring at the metro. Most people find it an inane architecture, almost a spoiler on the skyline. I find the ferry-like lights of the train cabins extremely beautiful. You know that "happy place", where everything seems alright, this is mine.

Sometimes I like standing in my balcony late at night and watching trains pass by. Or the lights of the city. Or the silence. Hearing the silence is always the most fun part. It doesn't last very long. Eventually the solitude makes me uncomfortable and I go back inside.

Why do we reject that which brings us peace and go back to the clutter that traps us? Why do we let the shackle of reality stop us from projecting, dreaming, becoming? Why does the "as-is" fetter us? Why does the sound and light and confusion allure us, and the awareness and calm and isolation elude us?

Sometimes I close my eyes and lie on the grass, even float above it. I watch the chirping birds and hear the light breeze hum slowly. I touch the droplets and feel the tranquility take over.

Then I am shaken awake by the day, by chores, by demands, by excuses. I am alive, I wither.

Sunday, 21 September 2014

"Heartbreak Warfare"

I can't explain to you in words what is unarticulated even in my head. You ask me questions, plainly, innocently. You demand answers, animatedly, angrily. I cry, because thats all I can do.

You wonder why I seem so numb, so impossible to break into, so hard to comprehend. I try to talk to you, through my eyes. I send you words, without using my voice. I almost touch you and slowly pull back. I scream in pitch-less silence. I hope you will connect the erratic dots and make sense of the imperfection. I plead with fate to let you into my mind, for one moment.

I can see that I am speaking in languages that are almost unintelligible to you. I sense that my imploring is having close-to-no impact on you. I know that we are trying much harder than we should be.

I hear our laughter, and tear it down to its naked essence. I hold our memories and turn them upside down, one at a time, gawking at points that turned into today.

Were we in parallel universes, unaware of our own misgivings? Was the truth so down repressed that it could never pelt stony-reality in our face? Is this all we were meant to be?


Saturday, 20 September 2014

"Here Without You"

The first time I learnt to let go of someone took many, many years and hurt a truckload. I remember trying every way to reach out but I was only a child and this was my first heartbreak and he was immune to pain and hatred and blame. He had been through too much to let a child's desperate need for definition, explanation, pull him back. He shut me out, almost mercilessly. He said, "you are always in my heart". I never understood how that could be true.

Now I look back and realize how much that taught me. All my protective covering comes from the pain you left me with. Over time letting go has become easier. I now know that nothing is permanent and I appreciate the fleeting pleasure of companionship and the momentary sense of security and the fleeting hope that maybe loneliness has a cure.

I have come a long way. I have moved far away from where you left me. And I have grown to understand that even when wounds don't heal, the pain numbs and reality becomes a shade different from reality.

I want to believe that I still live in your heart. I want to imagine that despite all the distance, you would still recognize my emotions as I try to disguise them. I want to hold onto the last fragment that you left me with and want it to become bigger than everything else.

Because if you don't, then I can't. Without your truth, the harsher truth confronts me - that anyone can let anyone go.

Tuesday, 16 September 2014

Do you see what you see?

Usually I don't like to explain my posts but there are too many people that questioned this one in the first few moments of posting it. So here's a disclaimer. This isn't a post about understanding "me" as in, the author. This is a post about understanding "me" as it could be, anyone, in any relationship. I would like to believe the "me" and "you" can be used interchangeably. 

______________________________________________

And then it all slowly adds up. All the seemingly meaningless symbols come together and make a pattern that is comprehensible. 

Am I the selfish person you sometimes see? Am I the anger that comes across as ruthless? Am I the manipulator who always gets their way? Am I the liar you confront occasionally? Am I the version of me that is easy to stereotype?

Or is my complex mind and its non-linear decision making comprehensible to you? Do you understand how I can be so enraged by something and be able to laugh about it only a few moments later? Do you see my nonchalance and assume that I don’t care? Do you hear the anguish in my silence? Do you believe that the vacuum actually signifies peace?  

Do you look at me and worship what you see? Do you rub your eyes in disbelief, cross out your thoughts in a daze? Do you wonder how innocence and wisdom co-exist? Do you imagine that you would be able to draw out every last drop of definition and make me yours? Do you imagine what it would mean to understand? 

Or do you stop staring the moment you hit the bright light? Do you close the door and hope you never have to answer the soul searching? Do you pretend I was a lesser being and write me off as inconsequential? Do you tell yourself that regret is passé? 

Do you see what you see? 

Can you take all the jagged shards and hold them, even if they hurt? Can you look beyond the dismal pretense and acknowledge what you nearly feel? 

Sunday, 27 July 2014

Dreamer

The biggest trouble with having an active imagination is that reality often disappoints in comparison. 

You don't cry when the worst happens, because you have already cried imaging it so many times that by the time it happens, it doesn't feel real - it feels like reading a novel - a sort of distant, nostalgic pain. 

You don't go to new places and feel exhilarated, because in your head the mountains were greener, the water bluer, the sky clearer. 

You never meet someone who exhausts, confuses, compounds, scars, twists, controls, connects, wounds - because you can always give them the benefit of doubt, for anything. 

You never get in conflict, because you can always be the victim and evictor, within a split second. 

You never move beyond, because in your mind you can always go back and replay, deconstruct, reconstruct, and relive. 

Nothing novel, nothing surprising, nothing intense. Life is boring when you are a dreamer. 

Sunday, 5 January 2014

2013

(This is post number 4 in my series of year end posts. 20 year old me would have never imagined that I could actually carry on a tradition for four years in a row.. Turns out I can.)

There was an earthquake, I was sure of it, the table shook, I was the first to get up and leave the building.

2013 taught me that self preservation was my strongest instinct in more ways than one. You were a year of final decisions, of finally biting the bullet and moving on.

2013, you pushed me in ways that I have never been pushed before. You helped me look within and make decisions I didn't know I was capable of making. In the past, standing up for what I believed in always seemed to come easy to me. Those who know me well have heard a story about standing up in a new school in the very first week and insisting that the school timings are inappropriate or the story of how I stood up to my dad. That always used to be my way of doing things - of taking a stand and speaking up, no matter what everyone else thought. But over time the consequences started piling up. At school, I was suddenly not popular anymore, at college I was suddenly losing an election, so on and so forth. Self preservation kicked in, and again I modified myself. I stopped being that blunt, I stopped being that upright. I began to listen to those around me.

2012 was a year that was a great exemplar of how not to stand up for yourself. 2013 in contrast was a great exemplar of finding yourself and doing what you do best.

I finally found the courage to be me, to not listen to pessimism or critique and to do what appeared like the most rational thing to my own self. It didn't happen overnight and it wasn't all me.

I had external help. But here is the other thing, I have always been a very personal person when it came to my troubles. I told the facts to whoever bothered to asked but I never opened up to anyone when I really needed help. Never called a friend in despair asking for help. I always figured out a plan in my head that seemed like the most appropriate and simply implemented without consultation. Primarily it was just the incidents in my life were sometimes too embarrassing, sometimes too difficult, sometimes too complicated. So I would take a call and move on, my way.

But this time, at the beginning of 2013, I finally decided to give someone else the reigns. Once I accepted that I had ceased being the best version of me, I stopped and asked for help. The first time you ask for help can be exhilarating. It can teach you that all your walls are for nothing, that people who love you will love you even if you make them weaker, even if you tell them things that will break them.

2013 you were a year of such bravery, of simple things that seemed so daunting in 2012, of amazingly intense hard work, of beautiful victory.

Many years ago a friend said to me, "Zoya you will reach the top but you will be alone". 2013 you prove to the contrary that no matter where you are, you can be lonely, and even the pinnacle can be engaging and extremely social.

And then the earthquake happened again, this time milder, making it a lot harder to convince those around me, so I left the building again. The news said later it was a small earthquake. But it was - there, I wasn't just a paranoid person. I remember going home and not being able to move for a bit. I remember being glad I lived on the ground floor. I remember waking up on many nights after with a feeling of the ground below me shaking. Then I found myself a stationary object that wouldn't move unless there was a real earthquake and made that my constant. That helped calm me down. Soon I moved to a different house, this time on the 6th floor. And I remember feeling extremely scared initially, but then finally feeling safe. Then it happened again, three times in one single night. This time I slept through all but the last, and even then I just went back to sleep.

A simple series of events, but it taught me something even more interesting about myself. I can be very adaptable. I can take my circumstances, create a new set of defense mechanisms, and restart. I have done this all my life, subconsciously, but 2013, you brought this stark in my face and showed me how my circumstances have shaped me in small but significant ways all my life.

This year I also heard from one person that my first impression was one of an arrogant person. So I asked other people, those that mattered to me, those I could trust. Turns out, everyone seemed to agree. 2013 showed me that my version of myself can sometimes be so diametrically opposite to what others think of me.

2013 also saw me deliver my first real bad news to someone, and what made it worse was that I could make the nightmare go away but I was bound to keep pushing and not back down. When you look someone in the eye and tell them their world just crashed, you learn so much about yourself. You learn whether you are a empathetic person, whether you can cross the line between fairness and unfairness while wearing multiple filters and assessing from many angles - yours, theirs and others. In my personal life I always take the easier path of being unfair to myself but professionally, I represent the interests of a company not just myself and there the balance usually tips in the other direction. This taught me that sometimes uncomfortable situations are important to execute, even if it means that it is contrary to your natural personality.

A year of travel, sometimes alone, sometimes for pleasure, sometimes to towns small, smaller, sometimes scary, sometimes intense. But each time I got on a flight and left for those two or three days, I became a stronger person. I learnt how to deal a little better with the world around me. I learnt how to get my way with airport staff, how to get upgraded at hotels, how to convince people from different backgrounds to listen to me, how to sit and wait endlessly, how to walk out with a win in hand, how to waste an entire day.

I learnt that I could box myself into categories that I thought were me, but an year like 2013 could break everything and show me that I was nothing I thought I had become. 2013 you showed me that I can be a sales person, that I can be a managing director, that I can be a friend, that I can be a great competitor, that I can stick to ground rules and break everything else.

Sometimes it only takes one small step in any direction to send you shooting where you need. All I had to do was break the habit and try something I thought was impossible and suddenly I was doing something insanely well that I would have never imagined.

2013, you were a year of me, after many years, I finally shone the way I have wanted to shine. You were an year of humility, of simplicity, of feeling nothing when someone sent praises my way, of feeling extremely moved when someone that I knew only slightly many years ago took the time to send me a note of acknowledgement. 2013 you were so many contradictions wrapped into one.

And finally, you brought me face to face with intensity like I have never felt before. I remember the first time I stood there, in your shoes, watching the stars - that was the most emotion I have felt in a really long time. This year taught me what real love looks like - when it can be simple, intense, secure, exciting, fun, intriguing, compelling, comforting - all at once. Or those moments in which I disappoint you, taught me that sometimes it's okay to make mistakes, that real people forgive and forget and move on. That foundations of compatibility are more important than anything else.

2013 you taught me how to really give myself to another without losing myself. You taught me that it was possible to have a relationship between equals - that being the saviour wasn't the only way to be - that being saved was fun too.

2013 - to being me, to changing me, to standing up, to moving, to intense coincidences, to accepting what felt right, to holding on.

Sunday, 22 December 2013

Just so you know

You know the real me? The one underneath all those layers? The real me that feels safe, secure and happy? The real me that doesn't care or wonder about your intentions? The real me that has an unconditional need to give? The real me that smiles at simple things and needs basic memories? The real me that cherishes old letters and torn photographs, that never throws away a thing? The real me who could sit by an ocean forever? The real me that loves to laugh till my stomach hurts? The real me that enjoys the sun on a cold winter morning and would be happy to laze on a bed in the lawn all day? The real me that loves to dance but only when no one is watching? The real me that can stare endlessly at the night sky? The real me that can sense and feel everything?

That real me is the me I love you from.

Wednesday, 27 November 2013

Introspect

Something you said struck me. 'We don't usually talk about these things to each other so reading all this intrigues me, like you are a different person.'

So I am wondering. Is it that I am a different person in writing than I am in reality? Or is it that there are so many versions of me that if two friends were to describe me independently, they wouldn't be able to tell that its the same person they are talking about?

Lately I have been thinking about this a lot. About what's my first impression on someone. Whether I come across as arrogant, as friendly, as warm, as cold. Sometimes what you think of yourself and what others think of you can be so diametrically opposite that it seems almost like someone is lying.

And then you dig deeper and you ask the basic question. Are you coming across a certain way out of defense? Are you trying too hard, thereby defeating the purpose?

Life has a strange way of bringing us to our demons and making us stare long enough that they become us. Sometimes I wonder if mine have become me.

Thursday, 7 November 2013

You are my sunshine

You know how you and I laughed until sunrise, through all the disaster? That's how I want to spend the rest of my life.

That moment with ants crawling on you, with the coffee in my hands and the vast expanse everywhere we looked. That's how I want to talk every evening.

Or that story you told her about us while I looked on baffled. I want that to be our real story.

The secret superman moment or the crazy star gaze. I want those to be forever moments.

The way you pulled me, firmly, far, but close, or the way you held me. That's how I want to feel everyday.

Your intense intensity, your gentle gentleness, your sincere sincerity. You, in all your you-ness, just the way I like it.

What's the fun in that?

Sitting in a moving car, reading, listening watching.

Thinking. There, that's the tough part.

Talking in a random conversation, analysing, dissecting, questioning, completing.

Listening. There, that's the tough part.

Walking into a room full of strangers, smiling, staring, pretending, shuffling, hiding.

Security. There, that's the tough part.

Starting something new, passionately, aggressively, relentlessly.

Completing. There, that's the tough part.

Waking up, fully energised, ready to go, to conquer everything.

Early mornings, there that's the tough part.

Loving for the first time, consuming, filling up, falling.

Staying, there that's the tough part.

Tuesday, 1 October 2013

Could I have imagined you?

Every year, I think about you. Not too many times, but consistently, a few times. And each time I am not sure how I should feel. There is a vague sense of loss, a subtle tinge of abandonment, a painful realisation of independence. But mostly, there is just a numb nothingness.  

Who were you? I am not even sure I remember your face. Your smile, yes. Your eyes, too. But in pieces, in context. I can't imagine your reaction in a new situation. I can't see you as you may have become. I can only see the frozen moments that I have embalmed in my head.  

I wonder if you feel the need to see me. If you imagine what it may feel like to talk to me now. If you wish you had known me all this time. If I am even a real person to you. If you have convinced yourself that I don't exist.  

Perhaps it isn't as simple as moving on, as erasing, as avoiding. Maybe it's an intense removal, a complete denial.

I don't hate you. I don't love you. It's an absence of anything tangible. It's a murmur that never reverberates, never leaves the lips, never resounds. It's not even a feeling.  

You were, you were not. The difference between loving and forgetting isn't that much.

Wednesday, 10 July 2013

Forever

I remember that time. You and I both woke up so early in the morning. Maybe it was 4 am. Who knows. We spoke like it was the last time we would get to talk. And I remember crying. Not because I was leaving, but because I was leaving you behind.

Who knew, 15 years later, nothing would change. Yes, we grew up. Yes, our lives became more difficult, more complex. Yes we made new friends. Yes, we went in different directions.

But today, as we sat together, I knew nothing had really changed. You were still looking out for me. I was still my slightly forgetful, slighty spaced out, very excited self. You were still your very eager, very caring self.

With some people, life changes things. With others, the foundation is so strong that it's impossible to shake. You fall in the latter category. No matter where we go, the ease with which we can simply coexist and talk about nearly anything, is one of a kind.

To me, that's real friendship.

Monday, 8 July 2013

Mumbai.

I don't know what it's about the sea. But when I stand on the sea shore, there is a strange, never ending calm that begins to wash over me. It's not like the sound of water by itself is soothing, or the salty wind in my air is exhilarating.

But there is something simple in that moment that makes me feel at ease. A feeling that is usually hard to come by.

Sunday, 7 July 2013

I (don't) love you

I can tell you in many ways that I love you. I can tell you about how your smile makes me smile. About how your sheer presence makes me cheerful. I can relish in the many simple feelings that envelope me in your presence. I can write endlessly about the character and meaning you add to my life. I can see and sense and feel, every way in which you fulfill me.

But how do I tell you that all that is not enough? How do I tell you that when the time is wrong, even love isn't enough? How do I break your heart, knowing fully well that I will regret it the very next second? How do I stop leading you on, when leading you on is the only thing that's keeping me from going insane? How do I tell you I love you, without it breaking you? How do I tell you I love you, and not love you?

Death

When you feel death come towards you, fast, really really fast, what do you do? Do you shut down? Do you give up and wait hopelessly?

Or do you start living with a new found urgency, packing everything you can into the last few days, hours minutes? And if you do, what do you fill them with? With last minute wishes? With apologies, last words, goodbyes? With travel, with books, with movies? With new things, with old things?

If someone told you, you were going to die, would you change how you lived your life? Would you have loved more, lived more? Would you have taken more vacations, danced more? Would you write that book, with all its truth? Would you have called the people that disappeared? Would you have done something different?

What was

I opened your empty house and saw everything. That main door, that name plate, the easy couches, the glass, the water, the boxes, the cupboard above the door, the balcony, the orange border, the oversized furnishing, the lace, the hung shirts, the towel rod, the tiles, the paint, the gas, the plates, the curtains, the rug, the glass shelf, the tap, the plants, the bowl, the heater, the speakers.

It felt like my home.

And then, just like that, it was your home, and I was only a stranger trespassing.

Sunday, 23 June 2013

I know

I have partly accepted your silence. Your choice to ignore, to pretend, to forget.

I have mostly embodied your distance. Your sudden change of mind, your near indifference.

I have nearly understood your intention. Your unbecoming smile, your blank eyes.

I have barely felt your unending discomfort. Your unrelenting confusion, your one-more goodbye.

Thursday, 6 June 2013

Here, for you.

There is a moment. That small chance to retract and change your mind. There is always that almost-hesitation. Because humans are like that. We mostly can't be strong willed enough to just stick with the decision. In that split second, before we jump, we always stop and question.

But with you, there was none of that. It was simple, straightforward. Maybe because you never left any room for doubt. Maybe because your strength and conviction were so strong, my hesitation didn't stand a chance.

I have had too many experiences of involuntary action to know that this wasn't even that. This was merely knowing that at some deep level, I could simply depend upon you. That somewhere, there was no need to watch my back. That you had your arm securely behind me, in the off chance I would trip.

There's too many reasons to not believe, to never believe. Too many experiences that convince you otherwise.

But then there's you. And there's every reason to let go off fear, to stop questioning, to start believing.

Monday, 6 May 2013

An ordinary question

That heady mix of what I would like to do versus what I should do. That rhetorical question of yes or no. How do you go backwards when your foot is stuck on the accelerator?

You turn my world into a ball of questions. You take ordinary everyday and make it look incomplete. You start at the end and smile as I try to catch on. You casually slip into my world and don't even look for permission.

Simple. Yes. Magical. Yes.

And that's where the record gets stuck.

Friday, 3 May 2013

For, I forget

You remember that phone call? The simple question, the complicated answer? You remember that email? The honest confession, the complete denial? You remember that fight? The insane aggression, the innocent surprise? You remember that threat? The blatant force, the meager push-back.You remember that list? The itemized oppression, the stupid assent? You remember the pieces? The gruesome look, the fearful eyes? You remember that blackmail? The suicidal tendency, the gullible night? You remember the desertion? The empty street, the lonely find? You remember the music? The polar confusion, the naive cessation? You remember the silence? The deafening vacuum, the tragic sigh? You remember those tears? The careless laughter, the unassuming plight? You remember the blaming? The careless pin-pointing, the quiet lies? You remember the escape? The casual manipulation, the honest fright? You remember the speed? The near stop, the begging twice?

I hope you remember.

For, I forget. 

Friday, 26 April 2013

Who I know you are

'Everyone has at least one secret that will break your heart.'

Each time I meet someone new, it is almost a quest to dig deep enough to see that which makes them who they are. Whenever I have spent the time, I have never been surprised by shallowness or disappointed by predictability.

It is because we settle at the surface, because we don't begin to probe, that we aren't awed by just how beautiful ordinary people are. 

A Simple Hi

Perchance, I caught your eye.
It was a fleeting moment,
A simple Hi.

You were mostly speaking
About nothing at all
I was mostly listening
to nothing at all.

There was no game,
no players, no bets,
no rules, nothing set.

All lines fairly blurry.
All boundaries slowly melt.
Friends? Strangers?
No conditions, no reason to fret.

What about awkwardness?
I asked. What about it?
You said.  

Wednesday, 24 April 2013

What if?

Wait, stop, consider.
Question, wonder.

How could life lead you so gracefully to perfection? I have never known things to 'just' work themselves out.

There has to be a catch right? There has to be story, a trilogy, an epilogue?

Or does there?

What about the real possibility of near completion. A chance of almost fitting all the pieces, of finally seeing my masterpiece, crafted and painted in every single hue - out for the world to watch.

I have always believed in grey, in confusion, in what could-have-been, what should-have-been.

But this is here and now. This deserves action. This deserves to be acknowledged, experienced, fully comprehended and accepted. This deserves more than a mere cynicism.

Because if this isn't it, then what is?

Sunday, 14 April 2013

Knowing, Un-doing

We were so close to perfect, so near completion, so well pieced together. Until we we were just not.

Sometimes it takes you many months - many cycles, before you figure out that what you see is only a shadow, only a mirage, only an illusion. Reality is 'un-perfect'. It doesn't care for emotion, for sensitivity, or even for compassion. Reality is brutal, honest, straightforward. Reality says it like it is -black & white. Grey shades only exist in the blank spaces between denial and acceptance. The moment you crossover, its fairly simple. Either its good, or its bad. Either its right, or its wrong. The only questions then are those that live in the hope of white, of good, of righteousness. Everything else stares you blankly in the face.

 Intellectually, I know this better then most other people. I can slice the problem, dissect it into all its views, state it clearly and present the most rational prognosis. But does that really count? When the question confronts you head-on, does intellectual capacity really mean anything? Does it matter who can deduct, interpret and analyse better? Or is the only relevant question, "what do you do once you have understood?"

And what if, the only thing you are capable of, is to have a great grasp on reality. What if you are only equipped with a complete emptiness of purpose, a defeat of reason - an inaction?

Wednesday, 9 January 2013

"I think I'll be brave"

Nothing goes as planned.
You were an accident.
A chance, a mistake.

If I could, I would redo
I would erase the mischance,
I would rewind to our day.

Everything will change.
Nothing will stay the same.
You & I will move on.

Maybe I will hold your hand.
Maybe I will kiss you goodbye.
Maybe you will stay. 

Sunday, 6 January 2013

What it really means..

What does it really mean? All of this shiny-sparkly-attractive mess?

What does it mean to have to wake up without an alarm clock? To get up, because you simply couldn't sleep any longer? To lie down only when your eyes can't take it anymore? To talk like a strange person who has a million simultaneous thoughts? To listen, but mostly pretend. To have a million thoughts cross your mind, a million lists on every page of every notebook you ever owned, a million things, and very very little time?

What does it really mean? All this powerful-driven-crazy mess?

What does it mean to know that you are the last word on something? To have people look at you for answers? To not have a back-up, a safety-net, any option? To have all eyes glued, all attention received, all ears in your direction? To hear the applause, but not feel it? To reach a point of so much crazy that even dinner seems like an indulgence? To listen to your own story and not relate to it?

What does it really mean? All this?

To wake up busy, to sleep busy, to eat busy, to think busy, to feel busy?

To wake up happy, to sleep happy. That's what it really means. All this.

Wednesday, 2 January 2013

2012

[For the last two years I have been putting up an end of year post: 2010, 2011. This year, I turned this blog off sometime in July. Now this post needs context, so here I am posting again.... something's are so hard to let go off.]

You were a year of turmoil. A year of change. A year of growing up. 2012, I never should have let you have your way with me.

You were uncertainty  You were pain. You were the incomplete lyrics of the poem that never became. You were the start of the end. You were the road's last bend. You were achievement. You were insane.

2012 started off as a year on drugs - quitting my job, setting up my start-up,  and somewhere in between finding, losing and finding myself again. I learnt that real friends stay with you, even when you give up on them. I learnt that people change, that some places do too, that some always stay the same. I learnt to depend, I learnt to trust, I learnt to let people in. I learnt to halt. I learnt that things that hurt are best let go off. I learnt that lying to yourself is criminal. I learnt that being honest to yourself is sometimes impossible.

As I lost the rhythm from last year - all that kept me busy at college, at Google - all suddenly tossed away, I learnt to be patient, to take each day as it comes, to hope and trust, to be optimistic, to be realistic. I learnt to lead, I learnt to follow, I learnt to be fair, I learnt to stand up, I learnt to bow down.

I saw things without rose colored glasses. I saw success just a decimeter away, and quickly slip away. I realized the difference between reality and a simple mirage. I saw the fighting urge crawling and gnawing at every last hope. I saw the cliff and confronted the most important question: would we fly or would we fall?

I shook hands with real thrill, with insane power, with daunting responsibility. I slept with dreams, I flirted with possibilities, I committed to a crazy plan. I held on, I stumbled on. I felt tiny joy as each milestone was met. I learnt to hit stop, to sigh, and to never regret. I learnt to move, to do a jig, to carry on.

I learnt, I re-learnt, I re-tried.

Friday, 6 July 2012

Stupid vicious cycle

That moment, when you have tried every trick in the book, including the very trick that the book advises you never try: being completely honest - and nothing comes of it.

That sensation of inching doom, when you have done all you could, other than giving up - and got nothing in return.

That uneasy frustration, when you have written, screamed, silently begged - and the only person who heard you is yourself. 

That awkward brush of reality, when you admit that every effort has been in vain - and only go back into self denial.

Tuesday, 29 May 2012

Clean Chit

Now dont worry about how made me feel.

We all move, just flow in whatever direction we are supposed to. Sometimes our paths cross. Sometimes encounters end in uneven consequences. Sometimes hearts break.

I have come a long way downstream and I know that most times we don't intend to be malicious. And I know you certainly didn't. So go ahead and walk away. I am not holding tight or trying to make you stay. I am not wishing on eyelashes or praying till I go insane.

There is no pain in the world if you can't feel it. There is no deception if you can't see it. There is no looking back at empty spaces. There is no regret where there was never any hope. There is no yesterday where there was never a tomorrow.

Saturday, 26 May 2012

"I thought about you a long time"

When I sit in silence, often times I find my thoughts crawl in your direction. Its not a conscious, purposeful process. Its involuntary and mostly happens in the background of whatever else is happening around me.

What really makes things interesting is that no matter where we stand, my thoughts are usually positive. The silence makes me want to extend my immediate circumstance in a way that it includes you. The inward contemplation usually gets punctuated by a desire to share my thoughts with you and to predict how you would interpret them.

But on most days and at most times, you are a different person than the one existing in my head. So I neutralise the apparent conflict by thinking of you as the same person, but in parallel universes, one where you are the perfected version of yourself, and the other that your ordinary self inhabits. This is not to say that I am only connected to who I imagine you to be. All it means is that I understand you are human, but to protect myself from the pain that accompanies change, I keep a static version of you, a reference point.

In my head, you are devoid of anger, pain, hatred, jealousy. In my head, you are above need and desire. In my head, you are your first self, your childlike uninhibited person. In my head, you are always smiling. In my head, I could never get over you.

Friday, 25 May 2012

"Its you when I look in the mirror"

No, its not okay.

Not your love. Not your hatred. Not your passion. Not your distance. Not your warmth. Not your numbness. Not your screams. Not your silence.

How do you go from forever to never so quickly? How do you despise and need all in the same breath? How do you decide to respect and disrespect the same thing on two different days? How do you turn from someones safe into their loneliness? How do you take the deepest concern and make it the cruelest indifference?

One day, I too shall learn.

Wednesday, 23 May 2012

While I laugh

Laughter can be such a great distraction. While you are in the midst of that momentary lapse of self-control, it is almost impossible to focus on pain. Its easy to drown yourself in the noise and color and forget, if only for a moment, the harshest reality.

I am often tempted to deal with my problems by drowning them in happiness. Simply by shifting focus, I effectively deal with anything.

This is true.

But you know what's also true? There are moments of solitude amongst the clamor that force you to think, to reconsider that smile. Is ignoring a problem going to take it away? Sometimes it does. Most cases, you open those shut eyes, and the problem continues to stare at you.

So does that mean that confronting a problem, feeling the pain, experiencing the emotion and dealing with conflict is the only real solution?

I wish it was.

Unfortunately, some problems have no solution and the faster you drown them in laughter, the better.

Thursday, 17 May 2012

Monster

"Damaged people are dangerous because they know they can survive."

Your silence over the years never came as a surprise to me. I always assumed that it was your way of coping with your mistake. I also assumed that your defense mechanisms had made you forget and pretend that you were right all-along. What I never considered was the possibility that it was deliberate lack-of-action. That you knew all along what you were doing. That your sinister smile was a real reflection of the twisted brain inside your head.

Perhaps, my excuses for you were a shield for my own feelings. After all, it is much easier to deal with someone who unintentionally messed up versus someone who connived to bring you down.

Today, I am not her. I am not that person who let go because there was no choice. I am not even that person who silently ignored your cruelty. And I am definitely not that person who innocently gave you the benefit of doubt.

Sometimes, I still feel the sudden pang of pain. Sometimes I still hate you with every last emotion left in me. Sometimes I still want to hurt you in the same never-ending way. Then, I let go - not to forgive you, but to transcend you.

Year after year, I always envisaged a moment of regret, of forgiveness, of closure.

Now I know better than to ask for it. I know that I don't have any forgiveness left to give. I know that there is nothing that can make your mistake okay. I know now that there is no magical way to make you more of a person. 

A really old one...found this in my drafts

It's hard to believe in yourself. I realized just how unsure I am of myself as I met him recently. It's strange how some people can play mind games so effectively that before you know that you are being played, you already show all your cards and take up the losing position.

I can never know with him. I am never sure of what he's thinking or what he means when he looks at me. I am always left wondering about his intentions, wanting to understand a little more each time.

Perhaps it's curiosity, perhaps there is really something there and we are too scared to embrace it. The problem is that each time I am with him, I feel like a little girl being led without her will. I feel protected, yet completely exposed.

On most days, with most people, I don't let my guard down. With him, keeping my defenses up is always such a struggle.

It's always that point one percent chance that screws you over.

I am convinced enough to wrap the idea and discard it in the heap of 'could have been'. Maybe that's how it's supposed to be - just a series of unfathomable memories. Maybe its only anxiety mixed with loneliness. Maybe its as real as it will ever get.

Unfortunately, I don't think I'll ever know. 

Wednesday, 18 April 2012

This is what insanity feels like

I heard you talk. I read what you wrote. I believed every line. I felt every syllable.

And then I was convinced otherwise.

Now sometimes I go back and read what you said. And I ask myself if you were right. I have internalized your writing to such an extent that part of me thinks its my pain, my anguish, my regret, my mistake. I don't know if you were right or completely insane. But I know that I can never be sure.

I almost want to write to you, reach out to you, ask you. But then I let that thought go too.

I hope you are happy. I hope you were wrong. 

Thursday, 8 March 2012

Who I am not

Who are you when the light's all go out and vacuum takes away the last sound? Who are you when there are no people or mirrors around? Who are you in that last moment before sleep takes over? Who are you the first thing in the morning? Who are you when there is no awareness, not even your own?

There are a very few things that have troubled me as much as this. Ever since I learnt the beauty of putting words to my thoughts, I have grappled with the one question: Who am I?

I know that this is a vast, bordering-on-boring, question. And I know that I have no real answer.

But sometimes I reach the edge of understanding. That little flickering hope of clarity that almost descends before disintegrating.

I know that I may never know who it is that I am or what it is that really brings me into this chaotic, senseless, almost-insane, world. But I know with utmost certainty what it is that I am not. My moments of understanding usually happen when I am accused of being someone who is anything but me. I feel that rush of anger, desperation and dejection each time someone pushes me to miserably prove what I know with such surety.

There is a deep trench. On one side there are those that have touched the core of my existence and felt the denseness of who I really am. And on the other, are most other people: those that judge me at the edges of what makes me less than myself, those that make up their minds and write me off at the word go. I have learnt to not take either too seriously.

After all, where is the sense in feeling joy or pain in half-understanding or unintelligent misunderstanding?

Over the years, the question has remained, but I have learnt to be less engrossed and distracted by it. I have loosened my grip and let understanding slip, without feeling miserable. I have learnt that questions don't always have to be answered. 

Monday, 6 February 2012

The Many Shades of Revenge

Revenge can be such a horrible place to be in. To feel that clinching desire to payback, to watch as you become the very person you despise, to reach hatred again - and see it directed towards yourself.

I have watched too many people succumb to this need. To prove and disprove till such a point, that the premise gets lost. I have seen satisfaction and extreme self-doubt, experienced all at the same time. I have felt pain as it passes from one betrayal to another. I have heard each screaming epiphany over mistakes repeated over and over. 

Just as agony apparently dwindles, I have seen regret take over. From one counter-play to another, I have held the tired mind and felt the bated-breath. And as the end draws near, I have seen regret refuel and restart.

I have poked holes and filled cement into all these delusions. I have been on every side of this argument.

I wish I could say I have learnt my my lesson. 

Saturday, 31 December 2011

2011

[Last year, I put up a post called 2010 and this year I am going to do another one called 2011. I am tempted to make this a tradition.]

You were exhilaration. You were disappointment. You were the tip of the mountain. You were the bottom of the sea. You taught me that coffee is bad for me, that being fat can happen more than once, that friendships and love can grow stronger with time, that no axiom applies to everyone, that risks need courage, that when you can't muster that courage - life makes you, that repetition is boring, that security is only as important as you make it, that change is liberating, that one genuine sentence can change hearts, that friends will be friends, that puppies make people both happy and sad, that hysteria* is possible, that revenge really scars everyone, that time does heal, that scrabble is fun at any age, that memory has a way of selectively keeping things that matter most, that lakes are serene, that sunlight streaming from your bedroom window is more important than the size of the room, that safety is state of mind, that paranoia can be cured, that money only matters if you don't have it, that shopping isn't so much fun after all, that it can be satisfying to selflessly do something, that its possible to reach the top very quickly - even from the bottom, that things always look shinier from the outside, that propaganda* comes in many forms, that there is always another way, that the worst sometimes brings out the best, that saag never changes, that some people will always care, that its easy to let go.

2011, you were a year of self awareness and insight. You taught me that I hate being by myself, that I need ownership, change and stimulation, that I am easily bored, that once I stop - there is no going back, that I can be my shiniest self only when I feel challenged and secure (and yes, its possible to be both at the same time), that details don't make me happy, that I focus on the bigger picture, that my motivation comes from people, that I am the choices I make, that love makes me strong.

As you go by, you will always be remembered as a year of self discovery, of learning, of change. Time will tell if the choices you helped me make were for the better or worse, but you will never be slotted in my years of regret. You will always be the exemplar of risk taking, fortitude and hope.

*Hysteria -- As I walked up to the stage to meet SRK, I lost every sense of "who was watching" or "what I was doing". I am not even a big fan, but as I ran up, I lost myself in all the madness and cheer. I felt for the first time just how powerful charisma can be. 


*propaganda

Wednesday, 28 December 2011

Hatred, like it should be.

What does it mean to be truly over something?

Once in a while you go through an experience so intense that it never leaves the realms of your memory. It could be a person who traumatizes and leaves you scarred. It could be a breathtaking moment, one of those unreal, touching the line of impossible things. It could be a nightmare. It could be a taste that reminds you of something your grandmother makes. It could be a song on the radio at the exact moment that you thought of it. It could be a noise that scares you even in broad day light.

You were one such experience for me. I wish I could cut you out, erase you, burn you and bury you. I wish you could feel every little inch of hatred that extends towards you. I hope you could feel pain, in ways that you inflicted upon me. I wish you could end.

Wednesday, 21 December 2011

Letting go

Leaving is never easy. But it becomes almost impossible when there is systematic propaganda designed to make you belong and feel connected.
There are very few places that give you the feeling of security and comfort, of knowing, to a great extent, that which lies ahead of you. And when time draws near to part from a place like that, it certainly isn't easy.

So what is it that keeps me motivated to move on?

I have learnt that I can't work for someone and be dictated to. I have learnt that freedom of expression and ownership are most important to me. And finally, I need to let those creative juices flow, else I feel suffocated and demotivated.

When everything is designed to make me stay, self awareness makes me let go.

Wednesday, 7 September 2011

Hope

Feel the mud
The dirt
The grime
The glass pieces
Scrape your naked feet

Feel the sky
A hundred miles away
Entirely out of reach
Laughing
Almost mocking you

Feel the walls
Closing in on you
Every inch suffocating
Cloistering
Leaving you with no choice

Give up.

Feel your feet
Rise
Reaching out for the sky
Scraping and climbing
Clutching and running
Fiercely believing.

Yes,
There will always be another day.

Friday, 5 August 2011

The end of an era

Bubble wrap your memories
And seal them in boxes.

Then on each lonely, sad day,
Unpack one box at a time.

Watch those mistakes set against all the happiness
Those regrets against those wins.

Laugh, cry, belive and heal
Slowly losing one day to nostalgia. 

And then close the box
and store it for another gloomy day.

Tuesday, 2 August 2011

What can be worse?

Take a needle and run it through your every vein.
Hold a pointed nail against a blackboard and hear the sound it makes.
Fill your room with no water and feel every breath slip outside.
Run the fastest you have and then watch the snake still in sight.
Remove the broken pieces of glass and sense your legs paralyzed.
Fall from that building and hit the hardest ground as you collide.
Stand still in the darkest room and feel a hand touch your back.
Imagine the worst smell, the shrekiest sound, the harshest light, the worst death.

Let go. Move on.

Tuesday, 19 July 2011

Google, I love thee.

As I sat with a bunch of the most random people at 5 am, it hit me just how my world has completely turned around in the last one year.

I don't think I'll ever forget the fear of entering a room full of people, all eyes on me, with a bag, two hours late. As scared as I was back then, I suddenly feel more grown up, less scared and much more self assured. So what is my "google moment"? (thanks for the idea s Kapur).

Its a close fight between you actually convincing me you were a terrorist, a bunch of strangers feeling like friends at the word go, never ending nights at 10d, sitting on the engineering guest house roof, cleaning houses obsessively, taboo sessions, two heartbreaks, finding out that 25 year olds can be even more fun than 21 year olds, being drunk dialed by a girl, Goa ghost story at 3 am, finding an older brother, non Googlers who knew more about google than I did, Rishikesh, Sri sailem, pondicherry, walks in office, walks to the fountain, walks for baskins, for subway, never being able to hustle or play Tt, finally winning at chess, elbow tricks, the endless walk to the cafe with my fractured foot, urban cafe, hauz khas, tc's, learning that hitler too could be idealized, marriages that were hardly marriages, being thrown up on, getting up at 11 am, getting up at 5:45, bunker beds, 202, famous icecream, marakesh, isoc, camp wild, delhi belly, three, Mla colony, falling for April fools, false proposals, real ones, yo yos ...

I expected this to be my first job, this turned out to be a life changing year filled with more fun than I have had all my life. I learnt to let go off fear, to trust people, to believe in myself. I learnt that preserverance and dedication always end in reward. I have been humbled by spirit, beauty and sheer genious. I have been inspired and enthused. Google, you have made me more than I was a year back. To you, I owe so many sweet memories, so many incredulous and touching moments, so much happiness.

One year, flown past like the blink of an eye. One year, sealed and buried in my vault of never-to-be-forgottens.

Monday, 18 July 2011

Here is why

What happens when you are disappointed so many times that you become resentful? How many let downs does it take before you become untouchable? When do heartbreaks cement your walls so high that no one can even see you? At what point does love seem more like a sport, a chase than a honest and real desire?

Are we born into categories? Those that laugh when it hurts and those that break down? Those that care so deeply, they forget who they are and those that barely feel anything?

Or does life lead us into the choices we make?

What do you do when you know the space between human feelings and you is like a chasm? How do you cross the emptiness of selfishness and reach a point where you actually get attached? More importantly, do you?

Monday, 20 June 2011

If You Let Me

I want to crack through your crevices. I want to understand your every little decision, put a finger on you every reaction. I want to be the reason you get up with a smile, the reason you can never sleep at night. I want to know each secret, laugh at private jokes and predict all your disappointments. I want to make you laugh so hard that you cry. I want to be the listener as you gush about your life. I want to be the talker who helps you feel better on a bad day. I want to be the last piece in your jigsaw, the last stroke in your masterpiece. I want to be your home, your safe place. I want to be the sudden sting that makes you drop everything. I want to be the butterflies in your stomach, the constant inexplicable desire, the most basic need. I want to be your favourite song under a moonlight night.
I want to be the book that you wish never ends, the movie you have watched hundreds of times. I want to be that journey you 'll never forget, that picture which always make you smile. I want to be the way you feel when you see a hurt puppy. I want to be your first love letter, your first real lie. I want to be your childhood fear, your hiding place. I want to be the your first step, your memories as you grow old. I want to be your best piece of writing, the story that will never be told.

Wednesday, 15 June 2011

Learning to Quit

There is something to be said about a vicious circle. Always starting differently, but ending the same way.

When I reached the dead end, one more time, I knew I had a choice to make. I could choose to shut all doors, cut all lines of communication, raise those walls and run with all the air in my lungs. Or I could turn back and carefully retread that messy, painful and destructive path, one more time.

I know I ran. I know I was an escapist and I know it was the right decision.

Its almost amusing how all my life, my insane need to protect myself has made me the type of person who always runs, very very fast. Does that make me a coward? Maybe it does. Does that pain less? It most certainly does.

So, I know there might be regret. I know there might be doubt. But I know that I'll be safe. And I know that safety will be enough.

What goes around...

Ice struck
cold glance
half hearted
bold chance.

Lead me on
leave me back
play your game
defend and attack

Enough said
enough done
make your move
surprise and stun.

One more story
writ in stone
another man down
plenty, still to go.






Friday, 20 May 2011

Would You?


"If we went any slower, we would be going backwards."

I have heard this a couple of times but the latest was last night during a play. I am not sure what to make of this. Statements like this usually make me a little uncomfortable because there is so much anger, longing and stupidity all rolled into one.

It makes me realise the insane human ability to settle. We all want that perfect, crazy fairy-tale. We want to be loved, in a I-can't-live-without-you way. We enjoy the attention, we crave for recognition. Then how do we get from all that to a point of mere compromise?

I have decided. Despite all my moments of falling into almost-love, I ain't settling. Not until I find my fairy-tale.