Thursday, February 2, 2012


"It" waddles across the room,
stumbles and fumbles for words
ordering, insulting, abusing Its authority
while the Shadow stands still
listens, does what It says,
muttering curses under its breath,
half hurt, half angry, ravenous for revenge
sun calms It down,
The Shadow is grateful in the day, counting its blessings,
Respect is respect not fear or submission
only moon awakens It, with spirits It rises,
stumbling, fumbling and waddling
foolishly blind to what It really is
Pitiful, Shadow thinks, Pitiful indeed!
Foolishly blind to what I am too.

Thursday, June 16, 2011


What a strange reunion this is,
Seasons tumble over each other as she waits
Spells of wait is all it takes.

Sure, steady feet lead the way
Questioningly, into the mirror, she gazes
Scanning a tangle of nerves, tears and fears
In the mesh there’s happiness too, somewhere…

Which knot can she untie, to make lucid
Her thoughts, her feelings, her beliefs and values?
The door is half open, she explores
For once, she rushes to the door
Shuts it tied. Locked inside
She gathers pieces from around.
Some are missing, some she found.
Is she a one, a whole again.
Or did that stranger take some away?
The friends she had, her parents too
Some foes she collected walking through.

What has she to offer now.
Only present, not the past.
Tucking her dreams far away, carefully, that they don’t dispel
Covers the confused tangle, veiled beneath the unmarked
Now there’s a knock on that door,
Theres another, impatient this time. She implores for some more time
Silently, she prays, forgives, forgets and regrets.
Lightly she steps on the old floor, making her way to unlock the door
Hundred questions buzzing, a hundred dreams astar
A hundred No’s and a hundred Yeses
A hundred years more to live.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

A Splinter on the Edge

To others it seemed outrageously inane for a grown man to keep something so “positively girly” as Jem put it; a little heart shaped box made of china clay with a picture of a couple holding hands in pink ink.

Though not expensive now, that box carried some pretty expensive jewels. More expensive than the jewels themselves, were Sharad’s memories of them. He remembered a particular a pair of ruby earrings- red cubes, he called them. She had laughed her silver laugh when he announced that she was wearing “ruby cubes” one day when he returned from school. They had just learnt about cubes in geometry and he was showing off, because Aaji hadn’t been to an English school and he figured nobody in Marathi schools knew what cubes were.

It had been a keepsake that Maushi had got from her first job at The Afternoon, to Aaji too, that box seemed to be precious. “Be careful, Sharad, if you break it I will break your head”, she had warned him when he was trying to carry it only on his index finger. Sharad knew that Aaji could never hit him, she never had, though Ma and Maushi kept saying that she was quite capable of giving a good thrashing. She used to be quite strict, they complained, but Sharad had never seen that side of her.

It amazed him how a little thing like that could bring so many memories back, rich and vivid. Like that day when he and Baba were playing cricket with a broom and a rubber ball; Baba was bowling and Sharad deftly struck it right on the bedside table where Aaji kept her knickknacks, including the heart box. Some things tumbled into disarray and a pointy little thing pierced the box. A whole week, Aaji was cross with him, she didn’t even give him the usual peppermints, which would years later be permanently linked to his Aaji memories. The cover of the box was marred forever with a little splinter on the left edge.

There were smells too, distinct Aaji smells… like lemon sachets and peppermints. When he entered Aaji-Baba’s house, he stepped into the hall and breathed in; lemon sachets, his summer smells. Holidays for Sharad meant long stays at Aaji-Baba’s- long walks with Baba in the morning to the nearest National Dairy, another walk, later, with Aaji this time, to the fish market where he first learnt to bargain. There was never a dull moment at Aaji-Baba’s; they did everything they could to keep him content. He could live for days there without even talking to Ma and Papa on the phone. In the kitchen he helped Aaji with cleaning the fish. Afternoon naps were compulsory and at nights they watched video tapes that Maushi had bought like Blue Diamond or Glo Friends while eating Malai and Pista kulfi.

Now, sitting in his office, holding the box, all those things came back to him with some smiles and a solitary tear. Aaji, Baba, the house, had all ceased to exist years ago. He caressed the only remainder; a piece, seemingly meaningless… to Sharad, a proof of a part of his life, some people, a house that once existed with a splinter on its left edge…

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Ladies' Night

I walk in and about twenty faces beam at me… they’re busy doing their own thing, but they appreciate that I came. I smile back to each of them. Like one person we all stare back at ourselves, trying to locate spots to work on, with whatever weapons we have. If we need to share, we just have to ask, this is probably the only state in which we could share hairbrushes or glosses. Still, I try to make up with whatever I have in my little Gucci.
“Lovely bag! Gucci?!” someone asks.
“Yep! The perfect birthday present” I respond not really taking in the blond with a fun bob. What a friendly place!
The sound of the flush going makes me turn around. The scene I behold numbs me for a second. I am speechless. A child-woman- I say so because she looks like a child, say about fourteen-fifeen, but dressed like a very-how do I say- painted (?) woman; is standing on the commode and peeping into the other cubicle. Half a smile pasted on her face. Another of the same species is looking on from outside of the open cubicle, with curiosity. Like sizing the one standing on the commode, thought she was thinking what I was- of calling- umm i dunno- the asylum?? So I ask- “What’s happening here? What is she doing?”
Girl 2 turns around to face me- “My brother thinks, she is hot, do you?” The poor dear seriously seemed confused. So, I answer – “Umm… the one standing on the commode?! Yeah, sure… I mean, she is dressed to kill, right?”
“That’s what I thought, just her stupid, skimpy outfit...”
Hmm… friendly place, I wonder.
She tries to explain some more but the girl on the commode starts screaming, I rush into the cubicle, since no one was undressed I didn’t feel as awkward.
“What happened?” She must have understood what I ask but somehow only keeps pointing to the cubicle she was peeking into and then the floor. I trace the pointer- and there they are- a hand and a leg lying limp show up into the cubicle I stood in.
Maybe they belong to someone, I pence. As the girl confused by her brother’s choice of attraction yells “Oh my God, she passed out!!” major water works emerge as the girl on the commode, now climbs down and rushes to pacify her.
Maybe I should call someone… but I have to do what I came here for. I begin fishing in my loyal Gucci again- tada, my gloss finally decides to show up. I do the needful and pout. The girls with the passed-out friend clap, I look around and wave and kiss the air, and the girls cheer. I go out find the security guard- “Someone passed out inside a locked cubicle”
He is looks unperturbed and maybe a little bored- “Your friend?”
“No, her friends are in the washroom trying to coax her to get up”
Now he looks interested “Locked in the same cubicle?!”
“No!! They’re outside! Jeez!” and I walk away from where the muffled sound of Shakin’ Stevens was coming... and there it was my favorite place on a Thursday night! Thank you God, for Ladies' Nights!!!

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Closed Doors

How many times does it happen?
While walking through the corridors,
Our own winding lanes, or the trodden ways
A room rests somewhere,
Obvious, yet obscure.
No signs on the knobs to declare,
Yet the closed doors make it obvious,
Obvious, yet obscure.
They want to remain shut.
But do we want to go in?
Do we wait for them to decide,
To light up the within?
Or does the within light outside?
Which side do we stand on?
Outside the door?
Or the inside of the other side?
Nervously we reach out,
Then pull away with a shudder,
We don’t want to know.
We don’t want to know the obvious,
Obvious, yet obscure.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009


A lone hour, a sole hour
Looking into the emptiness of the Creation,
Is it there, is it really there
Or is it just an illusion, all this?
Waking thoughts and silent dreams
Ambitions and destinations,
Like fork in the road,
Run parallel, never meeting;
Do they every converge?
When The Calling calls, the clock opposes
-biological, logical, all explanations.
Do we ever answer?
Is it an illusion, all this?
Some fascinated ideals established,
Always elusive?
Questions and more questions,
Time answers some, others pile on.
Yet we live, we move on,
Or do we really?
Is it an illusion, all this?

Tuesday, December 23, 2008


If life is a journey,
I want you to be my companion.
If life is a game,
I want you to be my team.
If it is a lesson,
I want you to be my ink, my partner, my teacher.
If life goes on,
I want you to stand by.
If there's another life,
I want you to return with me...