Archive for the ‘Love, Life, and Literature’ Category

Turning and turning in the widening gyre

August 25, 2014

I was awake till late last night. It was about 2 o’clock. I was not feeling sleepy. I had already had a good sleep in the afternoon – it was a Sunday. Not feeling sleepy, I was playing with phone, checking statuses here and there. Suddenly, for no apparent reason, I started feeling my own heartbeats. It was not pounding, but a flutter, thready rhythm. Everything started seeming hollow. It felt like I am going to crumble within myself. It was a feeling like – when you take terbutaline syrup and your heart goes shallow. The feeling was not much pronounced. It was not impossible to ignore, only if I could fall asleep.

Sleep was elusive. I used my time-tested somniferous techniques; they help for sure. I had good sleep, until morning, when nightmarish dreams started. I was trying to catch a train, caught the door bar, my hand slipped and I fell on the platform. The guard noted and slowed down the train, then I caught it. Some other incident. I was at some local station. Suddenly, there was smoke coming from everywhere. People started running haywire fearing a terrorist attack. I too ran away and caught some local, which swiftly moved out of the station. Later I noted the train was going to Karjat, not where I wanted to go.

Phone rang out of nowhere. Relieved, I woke up.

In the name of life

August 7, 2014

Like I’ve already lost the race, I stand still on the road, going nowhere. Like life is already over and the days are just a debt I owe to the unknown, I pass my days, in installments, day by day. How much it’s left still?

Like I am not living this life at all. This is life of someone else that I’m being forced to live. These are the days of someone else that I am passing – without any interst of my own in them.

Like I won’t mind much if the life remains no more some day. Like it’s not the life of someone who loved it so much once. Like we need to keep going with it because we have no right over it – no right to live it, no right not to live it either.

Like I don’t know where life is heading and why. But I still know it’s heading to every other direction than the one it should have headed. Like I have already stopped bothering where it would end up, because I already know it won’t end up where I had wished it would.

Like it’s heading to a hell in the name of life…

Four days of nothing

July 21, 2014

Three days I didn’t go to office. Then a Sunday. I spent my days in bed. First day, I went out – Gateway of India. People were taking photos. I got a portrait done, a pencil sketch – still the first one I ever got. The other two days were bleak. I tried opening all windows. I tried to clean up the room a little. It seemed to help for a while.

Not going to office also means breach of routine. I skip meals, sometimes both, and eat whatever I can find nearby. Also, I did not shave. It’s more than a week now. I have not washed clothes (from time immemorable).

I picked reading “Journey to the Center of Earth” and reached up to Rejkiavik – Capital city of Iceland – and we have started our journey forth on horses and with a local guide.

Meanwhile, Baba fell ill. Sodium went low. It was a big concern with his CKD. He visited his nephrologist on Saturday, improving now. Also, there were little fights, here, there.. Somehow, the four-day holidays ended.

Have we already stopped writing emails?

July 14, 2014

It has been long since I got a mail in my inbox – a personal email. Spams, notifications, promotional emails is all what I get these days. Have people already stopped the practise of sending mails?

Letters are a thing of bygone days. There was a charm to it. I’ve written letters sometimes as long as 40 pages. Even a 4-line letter is a rarity now. I won’t complain about that. Lifestyles have changed over years.

But mails? Is it because of social media and instant messaging that we are ignoring this classy and more elaborate form of communication? Can a whatsapp message ever take place of a mail? An email is an email – a virtual letter. A Whatsapp/Facebook message is nothing.

It’s my birthday today. I’ve got a couple of phone calls. I made some mandatory phone calls. I am getting loads of birthday wishes on Facebook – a formal ritual that it is. I am missing a mail.

A meh day

July 3, 2014

Such a “meh” day. It’s only start of the day and my eyes are already aching. I had a good sleep last night; slept early and woke up late. It must not be because of sleep.

Work is going slow. The weather is damp with rains. The traffic is irritatingly slow. Yesterday, it took more than an hour for six kilometers – and all way standing in the bus. Same story repeated this morning. Too much time.. difficult more so if you’ve motion sickness.

Mumbai is a different place – not very much of my liking. Different people, different weather, different work culture. I sit all the day doing nothing. I hide myself from others. I take care no one notices me. It’s not the same old me who likes his work, who takes initiatives, who goes out of his way to help others.

Life is providing no respite, and I am doing nothing to make it simpler.

Of an infidel morning..

July 2, 2014

Such infidel thoughts in this circumspect world – and you’re being watched from everywhere. I’m missing a girl whom I shall not! But is there really something that “one shall not even miss someone”?

I was reading Slow Man by Coetzee this morning. Paul – my protagonist, a man of 70 with his leg amputated – pondering over his feelings for his caretaker Marijana – while she is dusting his books. Paul tries to find an exact word for his feelings. If he has to choose one word, he thinks, it would be admiration. “Can desire grow out of admiration, or are the two quite distinct species?” Paul thinks.

I, suddenly like a twinge, thought of a girl whom I had fallen in – principally an admiration. Whatever it was, it kept floating between admiration and desire – more towards admiration. What was it that I admired, I know not. Not really intelligent – someone whom I would put in “average” range – someone who makes mistakes in spellings and words and gets confused between convince and convenience. A beauty she was – no doubt absolutely gorgeous (so much that I once in my thoughts had named her Georgiana), but that must not be the reason. Was it her innocence? Perhaps it was, at least for the first few days, but later it was more of her reluctance to fall. I knew she admired me – a lot – and hence perhaps more cautious to let it not move up to desire. Sheer reluctance! Perhaps, it was no more an innocence.

My days were counted. As such, I was kind of taking a liberty to indulge, knowing it is to end on a fixed date. I weaved my days around her. I knew it was cruel of me trying to break her reluctance and I was still doing it. I knew it was best of it to leave it unsolved, and I was still trying to untangle it – only such that it does not get solved indeed. I lived my days between a yes and no – between admire and desire.

With an abrupt end, it started to fade away day by day. It was never to the stage where I could text her and say “I miss you” – in fact, never even where I could text her anytime I want. So when I was reading Coetzee this morning and was thinking of my Marijana, there was no question of me letting her know about it.

Then it started raining today – first real rain of this monsoon – making the weather kind of romantic when you see it out of the windows – and I set myself afloat, let myself flow…

Ghalib – My Friend, Philosopher, Poet

June 13, 2014

Ghalib is “the” poet of the subcontinent. His ash’aar (couplets) have provided solace to millions. Thousands have interpreted him in their own way. Indeed, Ghalib’s shair (couplet) present themselves differently in different situations.

Ghalib has been a dear companion to me over years. His deewan has been a bible to me. There hasn’t been a day, and I mean it literally, when I’ve not thought of some of his shair. Ghalib accompanies me in my happiness and more so in my sadness.

I’m thinking of writing on Ghalib’s poetry – if my time permits and gives enough leisure to me. Nothing is fixed yet. Perhaps, I will, or I will not. I’ve been constantly prodded by one senior poet friend of mine to write about Ghalib. Though I’ve shown my interest, I haven’t committed anything yet.

I shall finish this post with one of Ghalib’s shair:

taaliif e nuskha haaye wafaa kar rahaa tha main
majmoo.n e khayaal abhi fard fard tha

Compiling the recipe of love I was; the ingredients of my thoughts were still in fragments and pieces.

Song without a voice

May 31, 2014

He was struggling. Don’t know for how long, but for the past week – when he had been ill and lying in bed all the day and night – he had been struggling – not only with the fever and the vertigo it brought – but also for the something that was still elusive, still out of his reach. What was it that he took birth for? The thumping in his skull – which lingered even after the fever was gone – was somehow from his own pain.

“mera dard naghma e be_sadaa..”, he murmured. Faiz’s poem. My pain is a song without a voice. Why? Song? Without a voice? He again fell back into his headache – feeling awful like Gregor Samska.

Headache – or this feeling like pressure – like a lot is stuffed pack into the hollow skull – what? A song? Where’s the voice? He felt miserable, utterly miserable.

Many thought he was sad. Many others thought he should not be. But this song stuck in head finding no voice to come out, and not be sad? Not having a song is okay – you have a whole skull empty to fill with happiness, but now this something is not finding a way out – where to keep the happiness?

“What’s the default state of human mind?”, he again fell into a philosophy. Happiness? If it is, then I’m certainly not at equilibrium. Equilibrium.. the ability to see a coffee pot like a coffee pot..

“mere dard ko jo zubaa.n mile, mujhe mera naam o nisha mile..”, he was still not out of Faiz. If my pain gets a voice; I’ll get my own identity. His headache.. “mujhe daulat e dono.n jahaa.n mile..”, fever, falling asleep. I’ll get the worth of whole world.

The song, voiceless, kept thumping on the inner skull.

ASDFG QWERT

May 26, 2014

I need to do something. There has been a constant tickling going in my brain. I can actually feel some not-so-funny movement inside my skull. I must do something to make myself feel at peace. The problem is I don’t know what.

I am given some task. Now, I am not at all interested in doing it. I have a whole day to complete it. I know it will take much less time.

Perhaps, I am out of my mind. I think of something – then someone comes to disturb – then I look at the computer screen thinking what I was actually thinking. Yeah – remembered – must note it down before I forget it again.

Is this the same thing I am going to do all my life? – to wake up each day with a burden to somehow push it till the evening? This is not the way – certainly not..

Again, these disturbances, and this something pushing my brain out from within. This is not the way to live. But let it be as myself have chosen it..

The full moon of Buddha Pournima

May 15, 2014

Then he went out, walking on roads. This is one thing he enjoys. He walks with his own thoughts, with ear-plugs in, often playing no music.

“Will it ever be the same?” He thought for a fraction of moment, and felt a half tear behind his lashes. But he was calm again soon. “It is for good that it happened” he said to himself.

He started the music – something classical – he was listening it for the first time. It was beautiful – Raga Tilak Kamod – he googled. “Beautiful.. isn’t it?” he said to himself – again felt something like a tear under the eyelid.
He stopped for a panipuri, and kulfi perhaps. He likes the feel of sweet, cool, milky kulfi after the hot panipuris. panipuri and Kulfi is a routine.

“Isn’t she beautiful?” He looked at the veiled girl having panipuri there. “These girls with hijab look good eating panipuri”, he thought. Was he staring at her? The girl – who seemed standing alone there – walked past him to her boyfriend standing a little away. “Hmm”, he thought – “these girls with hijab don’t seem married.” He always thought hijab means married.

The panipuri-waali lady knows him by face, so does the kulfi-waala. He paid for the panipuri/kulfi, and again went on walking.

He was a little calmer now. He knew it will be difficult – the consequences will be long-term rather than immediate – over a relationship in one evening – she knows it’s not that simple. There will be many such evenings and he will still have those half-tears. But does that matter?

It was getting dark – he started walking back towards home. Ustad Bismillah Khan playing Tilak Kamod in his head. He looked at the sky. The moon was bright. “It’s Buddha Pournima” he thought.

He had seen many such moons – different phases of it. On the ninth day of Chaitra – when she was sitting right in front of him and the moon was exactly above her head. The crescent on the dawn of Dhan-trayodashi – while he was talking to her on phone. “Different moons, different girls..” he thought.

But this moon was different. He somehow never noticed it earlier – the full moon of Buddha Pournima! He didn’t give it much thought, and started walking back to home again.


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