Monday, September 12, 2005

Under the Lilacs........

Under the lilacs….

There was a Turkish pavilion, just like the valley of love .
Aah ! that was a perfect dream! The valley dotted with flowers; all pinks and reds and yellows and lilacs and the buttercups everywhere, the butterflies hovering over them, kissing them tenderly, filling themselves with the sweet nectar from the flowers. The flowers nodding their heads in approval, eyeing each other with pride, envy, love, blushing at the attention and drooping under the weight of its own vanity.
The bower with the seat, shaded with jasmine trees and overgrown with honeysuckles led me to that perfect setting where nothing seemed to go wrong, where everything seemed just right, where the line between dreams and reality blurred. The only thing that existed was perfection, the ecstasy of love and the divinity of experiencing that.
One of the most beautiful sights I’d ever seen !
From then onwards, whenever my thoughts wandered, they always returned there – the paradise of love, free of all care, free of all worries – more beautiful than anywhere I’d ever been, ‘cos it held the idea of perfection, of love that I had been looking for, that I had been yearning for, craving for desperately.
And the red velvet curtains with tassels drawn across the windows blocked the beauty out!
There was a surge within me, the overwhelming desire to rush out in the open, free air, into that paradise, the Nature waiting for me with its arms wide open, waiting to gather my shattered pieces within its folds. Break free ! I heard my soul.
I made a bed of oats, under the cedar bush, near that love bower…..
With flowers strewn all over and in my arms and fell asleep….asleep after a long long time. Even the sleep had deluded me all this while. The oats – so smooth, so soft to touch, just like the human skin, caressed my entire being, my battered tormented soul and put me to rest. My first brush with tranquility in a long time. Could I forget the moment?
I had the beauty all around me, all within me. the fragrance all over and within me. The ultimate joy and the splendour of living my dream…..the perfect bliss!
And then my eyes were wide open, I was wide awake. You disillusioned me and so did sleep and my perfect dream. It never existed, it never was, it was never meant to be. The soft smooth oats were gone, & so were the lilacs, the fragrance, the love bower, everything. Bereaved of the perfection in reality- perfection that could be mine just in dreams. I woke up and found myself very sick. Ill, but not dead you see. Death forsake me too. Did it want to give me another chance…..another chance of living that dream….. I wonder! Perhaps it wasn’t as hopeless as I thought it to be.
Time to think……will it be possible for me to rise again?

About Love......

About Love..
and the question continues…..the whole pain pleasure dichotomy associated with love still intrigues me. What is it actually?
The happiness at having found “love” in real sense,or the pain everytime you think that all of it could be temporary,
The pleasure when you are living those moments of bliss, or the pain when they are over,or when you feel it was too short a moment,
The satisfaction and pleasure at having found a purpose to your life, or the pain that comes with the fear of having to live without it.
The supreme joy of being loved and accepted,or the pain that comes with the insecurities linked with all of it just being a phase.
The pleasure and feeling of perfection that comes with finding oneself after losing oneself in love, or the fear of losing one’s own identity in the whole process,
The pleasure that comes with the feeling of contentment and stability out of a loving relationship, or the pain associated with insecurities which haunt one in trivial situations,
The pleasure that comes with the moments of togetherness, or the pain associated with waiting for more of such moments,
The pleasure that comes with the entrusted trust and faith reposed in each other,or the pain that comes with jealousy over trivial matters.
The pleasure at finding oneself at peace with one’s whole existence,or the pain that even a small moment of separation brings,
The ultimate pleasure and inner joy that comes with the union of the souls or the pain that the physical distance brings.
All of it comes simultaneously!
Have been through it all….the pleasures of togetherness and the agonies of long painful waiting, that seemed to go on for ever and ever….
The fault lies with me perhaps. While it should have brought peace within me, while it should have comforted my tormented lonely soul, while it should have helped me move on with a lot more confidence,while it should have helped me have more faith in myself and trust others around me, it left me just as insecure, just as restless, just as weak and just as emotionally dependent as I wouldn’t want to be. Perhaps I never was truly in love. Perhaps I never was meant to be loved. Perhaps I never deserved it!
Perhaps ,not only I failed my love, but failed myself too in the process.

The big question,,,,,

“That was a moment.....a moment that i wanted to keep with me forever,locked in my mind,my memory,unscathed by the harsh realities of the life,locked away.
No other way to do so except in dream and then sleep, and die in sleep - for eternity.Wouldnt all this be mine for eternity then? And to experience the full joy of reliving that splendour, again and again, if not in reality than in dream.
And then, I wanted to die – beautifully and pleasantly without pain, among the flowers and the beauty and with you in my dreams…..”
I wonder at times, what is love? Is it a lifelong treasure “worth trying and dying for”,worth the pain that comes with it, worth the anxiety that it entails, worth the tears in return for a few moments of bliss! Have been thinking hard, how many have been lucky enough to prolong these moments of bliss to an entire lifetime.It sure needs a lot of trust, faith, patience, perseverance and of course lots and lots of real love. I always thought that more often than not, people were more in love with the idea of being in love, something that the world claims as a truly joyous state when you lose the sense of your self & try & claim your identity in the company of your other half, or better still, your better half. A perfect conglomeration of eternal blessing, perfect compatibility and carnal pleasures: the delving with passions and yet the purity of soul emphasized through the union of bodies expressing their love.
That brings me back to the same old question haunting me….what about the people who could not be lucky enough to have their love culminating in marriage? Who could not have the “eternal blessing” and the societal approval? Was their love a farce? Who decides the truth of a relationship, the authenticity and the genuineness of feelings involved? Its really strange how something like love that just happens without an effort, without trying to do so, which involves something as intangible as feelings and emotions is eventually judged by the norms of society and the social customs like caste, social status, religion, race, nationality and innumerable other factors. The one who overlooks and overrides these hurdles faces the threat of being branded as selfish,insensitive and a social outcaste. The one who doesn’t, has no option but to live a life of hypocrisy claiming that “my love was pure and true but I’m a responsible person, have my responsibilities to the society, my parents” and so on. The real me cant forget my love but the “responsible” me will live loving my wife and family ‘cos that’s what I must do and that’s what is expected of me.
Ahhh! The debate goes on forever and ever. Has been on since the time of Romeo-Juliet, Heer- Ranjha, Laila-Majnu and a lot more like them.If society couldn’t find an answer to these, who am I?Why did I even attempt to dabble with the topic? They died, leaving behind the stories of their eternal love, sacrificed at the altar of larger causes and larger issues under operation. The trend will go on. A consolation for such people in love,who think their love will live on forever is this song from “Kisna” …
‘Hum hain iss pal yahan, jaane ho kal kahan…….’
- Claiming that neither does love die nor can it be destroyed, but it lives forever and ever…
So people out there, just love each other, without any more expectations or hopes; cos if nothing ,then at least your story will be a part of the “museum of love” till eternity!

Gender Bias contd...

Coming back to the gender bias,it is so evident in the composite portrait of adult womanhood in the novels of male writers.The female characters are portrayed in such a way as, there seems to be no way of knowing about oneself except through men.

The message that these tend to send across – that it is through men that women become “fulfilled” and attain true womanliness.& all this not only because they have children together, but also through the mysterious agency of the physical intimacy that they share( which is supposedly something wonderful as Lawrence writes, but at the same time too shameful to be mentioned in everyday conversation, specially by women).
Sounds quite familiar – haven’t we all heard this from the others in our homes as well ? Along with statements like – marriage and motherhood makes a woman “complete”.
Sure it does! But then the way it is made out to be – kind of binding, restriction that it is supposed to be makes it all repressive.Women are definitely seen as more responsible to their children.But isn’t the father an equal sharer of responsibility? Just because the mother has a far greater role biologically, that doesn’t mean that the father can shirk all the responsibility onto the mother.The questions may seem frivolous,but if mothers can take maternity leave, why don’t fathers go ahead with paternity leaves with just as much ease?I don’t think I have started feeling differently about motherhood and about everything that involves the traditional role of a woman.Inspite of all my prattle,I’m just another traditional Indian woman at the core.But yes, I sure have been thinking about all these and a lot more since ’03,and I’m glad about it.It gives me the comfort of being able to empathise with a lot of women leading a repressed life,and at least I’m reacting in my own small way.
I remember reading sometime in my college that the full life of the creative intellect was, and to some extent still is assumed to be a “ masculine preserve “, and since women are inferior, they shouldn’t write. As Woolf also said – it has to do with the pen being the phallic symbol, of the male organ and how the male dominated society cannot let this phallic symbol get in “female control” ‘cos it would be self defeating for men.
But then, writing does give one a lot of power, and I feel this power when I write. Isn’t it strange how men have, over the centuries built up their so called superiority on not exactly their own superiority, but on the transfixed inferiority of the female sex.So much for the anxiety with the “masculity”!

I remember our class with Ira ma’m where we were discussing Lawrence & the related feminist issues.The discussion went on to include the topic about the “Shivlingam” and how we all worship the male phallus ! I had not realized this for a long time, at least not thought about it till I was in college. Another feather in the male cap!
I wonder if there’s some logic behind that too. Could be a sign of the “creator” ,but then isn’t Shiva the destroyer too. Besides, the act of procreation is more closely related to the female and so the female system deserves more homage and worship. But then, would the male dominated masculine society accept such a thing? Never!

Tuesday, September 06, 2005

something to share.....

A lone day, a forlorn me,
in this season of love,this spring
i'm all alone.
gazing from my window,to the streets below
on a freshly fallen silent shower of snow.....
silent as a tomb,i'm all alone.

Dont talk of love,though i've heard the word before,
its sleeping in my memory
i wont disturb the slumber
of feelings that have died.
if i 'd never loved,i never would have cried.

i have a lot,and my poetry to protect me,
i'm shielded within my armour...
and yet there's something more
for which i clamour
i need love no more,
but lost friendship to the bargain...
lost it all forever,nothing to my gain,
its my fate and its nothing i can shed,
i'm a rock now.....
and a rock feels no pain .


(Dedicated to dear Sohini.......)

caught in a limbo
between a murky past
and a quick sand of unfathomable dreams
enmeshed in a whirlpool of gyrating hopes
i stagger
crippled by the maze of unbridled whims
i fall into the pitfalls of delusion
did i uncork the champaigne too soon?
i stumble.
daunted by the calm before the tempest
intimidated by the still waters that run deep
i falter,
plunged in a quagmire of dwindly hopes
life goes berserk
when things fall apart
when reality hits hard --
blinded by the fallacies of vision
i grope for a promising morn
life is but a delusion
a mirage of scintillating hopes
a blind alley of thwarted dreams
yes, a glimmer of sun is all i seek
beyond the horizon
where the earth and the sky meet
isn't it darkest before dawn?
isn't every wall a door?
i believed it so.
but can i still do?

Hollow Men

hollow men.....all around
voices everywhere,
yet no sound.
the eerie noise,
the shriek of silence
gracing my life
with icy fire and firy cold
this bundle of contradictions is what remains,
and nothing to hold.

i see them floating ,as i drag along
trying to escape from the blinding light.....
all day long,
and throughout the night.
invisible colours,the visible dark
no escape,no possible rescue,
we need another Noah's ark !

the cruel world....
no one'll let you alone
but disturb the still waters.....
with a stone.
each hand contributing its share,
till yu are out of breath
even in fresh air !

helpless in the lone strife
as firefly with honey,
try as much,but
one cannot escape destiny.
the blood within may boil or curdle
there still wont be any hand
to steer through the hurdle !

the sweet delirium that it was
amidst the cloud of haze,enveloped in love
now sees me in an empty space -
all clear - just me hanging...
amidst a nowhere !
the calm waters......they surely run deep,
and the rocky terrain,over which i creep....

the bloody body
all battered and bruised,
but the soul still hopeful
for the years unused.....
do i mind the extruciating pain....
even when i've lost all that i ever wanted to gain!

Monday, September 05, 2005

All That Crap..

I have Meira and Abhasji to thank for getting me "rejoin"orkut.But the revealation immediately has forced me to rethink:perhaps i'm gonna regret the whole exercise.Did i want to see all this?True,this is what i wanted for a very long time,but the sight of it all accentuated the poignancy of the loss.Yes,that was all crap,and unreal,a dream....
and it does hurt when things fall apart,when reality hits hard.
And specially,when i think about the moment itself,it appears so inauspicious.While i was busy with the new bonds,"he" was trying to cope with the loss of all the old ties...all except one.Must have quite painful to see one of your child lying dead,motionless,eyes wide open,lying in a pool of blood!within a few months, losing all of 11 out of 12 of your loved ones.none of my losses could be as great as that one.
God give us the strength to move on,to see things with more clarity and find a new meaning in everything thats a part of HIS plan.Afterall,the only thing thats permanent is "change",and like a few things,this is something that i'll never forget.
Amen to that!

Friday, September 02, 2005


“How I love the rains ! Everytime it rains, I feel drawn to it by some “need”. Its as if the water washes off and sets sailing thoughts which had grown stagnant on dry land, and gives some kind of relief – physical, mental, emotional....
It’s the same with the seas, the pulse of the colour flooding the shores ;the heart expands with it and the body all ready to swim, to be one with the waves.
Nothing exists outside us, except a state of mind; a desire for solace, for relief, something that we conjure up. That’s how I feel with the sea,
………a feeling of escape, of utter freedom – when the mind like an unguarded flame bows and bends and seems about to blow from its holding,
………a feeling of extraordinary relief, wanting nothing as much to be left alone.
So here I am,Waiting for the rains....

Thursday, September 01, 2005


Just a name amidst countless others….
Just a face among the crowd…..
Just one insignificant existence among the teeming millions..
Just a role in the social web…..
Just a dot in the entire universe.
Where is the “self” that one wants?
DREAMS,sacrificed at the alter of bitter truths of life.
WISHES,curbed under the pressure of harsh realities.
ASPIRATIONS, thwarted under the expectations & responsibilities that one has.
Only if I can make a difference to someone's life,bring a smile to people around and die without any regrets......only IF.

Everything I do......

Everything I do, I do it for ‘myself’ !
Sorry Mr Adams. Everything that you do,you do it for “the you”. & u claim that “its” worth trying for,& worth dying for too. Applause, Mr Adams! But sadly, the four letter word has seldom provided enough incentive to people to die for,thankfully. Afterall, how stupid can one be,dying over unrequited love? How na├»ve!
These are mere romantic fantasies propagated by the ultraromantic movies,unnecessarily inflating the “hopes” & “faith” of the new love birds. Inspite of all such huge claims of giving up life for one another,people live,& live happily,& good that they do so,for there isn’t actually much otherwise for one to do. Human mind has great capacity to adapt to changes & heart does eventually yield to the logical mind.
Hmmm ! the influence of Ayn Rand,Fountainhead & Howard Roark is a bit too evident in the response! That’s the cynical me for you.