Thursday, July 31, 2008

Yeesh! Humour

Me: I've had a problem FOREVER!
Dad: Now that's no way to talk about your face!

Dad: I'm a poet
Though I didn't know it!


Saturday, July 26, 2008

Shades of blue

The house has gone a little cuckoo with preparations for E's birthday picnic tomorrow. Tis the same spot where the Liquifier puts flowers in her hair, drinks vodka and nariyel pani straight out of the bottle and floats around in the river. However, I shall be very well-behaved on the morrow as I have kiddies to look after.

I feel less blue today. An old schoolmate saw my status on gtalk - a few lines inspired by The Professor - and asked if I could come up with something on deception and heartbreak.
Here's what came through:

Dust is what I have left
Particles of little lies
and your eyes
smudges of your fingers
mingling in my skin

what is real?

the body and the light
flowing through
as you become grey
an outline remembered,


'That's how I feel,' she said after reading it.
I love her for saying that!

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

For E

On the day that you were born
The angels got together
And decided to create a dream come true...

Happy 8th birthday!

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Chrysallis and Erica Hopper

I haven't been where those dancers are for days. Too many changes, enormous ones, taking place around and within me. The last four days have been bruising, filled with action, some acts which seem fruitless and utterly stupid, some news that I have tucked away, all of them sharp-edged and bouncing of my apparently stoic backbone.
And it has left me deeply tired. Sleep has been very, very disturbed. I have been walking a lot, and my body is asking for peace. Peace that depends only on my habit of keeping it together. There is too much coiled inside me for peace to be any deeper than my carefully trained brain.
But I am growing larger in my capacity to endure. Bigger in determination and more independent in taking decisions.
It has been difficult being around people. I am not good at facing the world, even my world, without my strongest face forward. When I am fragile, indecisive, when I have taken a step that goes awry, I must first look within for questions. I look for a brighter side, what I could possibly learn and what I might lose. And I always give the learning more importance.
This is chrysallis time for me. I am trying to wrap myself in quiet.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Fuck em and finish em off

Because I've always had myself, my tears and my own bloody backbone! So what does any of it matter!

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Question Mark

If I told you
my eyes seek
the colours bleeding under your skin
would you believe me?

would you smile
slowly, disbelievingly

if I took the raw edges of your hands
your heart
in mine

I wouldn't try to smooth them
I would let them cut into my palms
to see the shapes they make

if i tilted my head
just that little bit

my mouth brushing
the back of your collar

so close
I could see the tenderness
where your hair joined your neck

would you take a few steps back?
these are indigo waters after all

if my body deepens,

if it speaks

when you look at it
do you listen?

I look for you
your roughness and
the symmetry of your rounded fingertips
the clean light in your eyes and
the murkiness within you that drags you back

I seek the answers
there at the corner of your mouth

and the thousands of question-marks
I painted on you.....

To yall

This is for my friends. For N and S in Calcutta, who love me even when I'm horrible. For Dee who would wallop the world for me. For Rosh, who accepts my cold-shouldering, for Frobscottled who tells me to fly. For Vidushi who will never read this, but I hope will on some level feel my gratitude.
For Weed, for being ok with the dozens of obsessive SMS's and chats and talks. For Trips who always has a high opinion of me. For M, who openly tells the world she's in love with me. For P who listens to me unconditionally. For Dr. N, who let me cry.
The Noir Gypsy who looks to me for help and gives me so much affection in return. The Mad Bawi who matches my craziness at every step. For Caveman who is endlessly patient when I lose my way.
For Didi, just.
There are some I haven't mentioned, but they're all incredibly important. People who have given me a reason to be social, to be a little more sensitive.
I hear horror stories about friends who end up wilfully hurting you. I heard one today and it has horrified me. I've only just realized how protective I am of the person who ended up getting hurt. I'd calmly and severely bruise anyone who made her unhappy. And I will!
What kind of sick, twisted people deliberately cause pain to a friend!

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Full of it :)

My personality type: the dreamy idealist

I have come to the rueful conclusion that I am a melodramatic person. I love fizzing and spitting in passionate indignation and the smallest thing can lead to a long, teary, furious piece of writing.

After all the angst poured into my previous post, I called the GP's this morning......and the result was an anti-climactically nice conversation! Oh, there was the usual 'why must you do a plain M.A. in Literature?' and 'have you looked at Librarianship as an option?' but I wasn't phased, I actually managed to not get agitated and say 'yes, yes of course' to everything. Am very proud of myself. They're all pre-occupied with their trip to the US. They're leaving on the 19th, so of course preparations began from the 1st of the month., if not before.

So the lectures were kept at a minimum, and there were no sharp pokes. Very un-dramatic indeed, but I didn't really mind.

Tuesday, July 08, 2008


The Gestapo have been complaining that I don't keep in touch with them. Even if I do happen to call, I keep it short, say 'yes' a lot and hang up for the next 2-3 weeks.

They're good people, my grandparents. Strong, self-reliant individuals who live principled lives. I've lived with them off and on for the first twenty years of my life, and amidst all the angst, the blame, the comparision, I stand firm in my recognition of their virtues.

They're just not good for me.
My relationship with them is volatile and precariously love-hate. My grandfather is a marvellous photographer. Their home is littered with photographs of me as a kiddie. He is a keen traveller, an upright man who once kicked a chair in the CM's face and quit his position as Commissioner of Police to maintain his integrity.
On the other hand, he is pompous and material-minded and refuses to accept that his granddaughter has taken up English Literature, and intends to study it forever.
My grandmum is the world's best cook. She is practical, makes her home beautiful and is wonderful at remembering things about people. Ask her the date of the wedding anniversary of her third cousin's wife's brother's daughter, she'll know it. She's also one of the most well-dressed women I know.
She is however insensitive, petty and a terrible nag.

What do I remember? That he has preserved the tapes that he made of me reading aloud and singing as a three year old, or that he will always make me feel like a disappointment because I won't be an M.B.A.
Will I dwell on how she always remembers that I like the leg of the chicken and lots of aloo in my gravy, or that she made me cry every day for four years?
They want a granddaughter they can brag about. All grandparents do, I suppose. And like all grandparents, there was a time when I was a bright star for them. I did things they never expected. I'm sure they were shocked, disappointed and hyper-worried. They decided to practise tough-love. By making sure that they reminded me every minute that I had failed their ideal of a granddaughter. We spent four years in the same flat...they, certain they were doing the best they could, I baffled, miserable. We were all trapped. They, forced to look after a 16 year old granddaughter they could not understand, who was no longer their bright little star. I, having nowhere else to go, being made to feel smaller all the time, not understanding how people who professed to love me were kicking me the hardest when I was down.
So we spent four years unable to reach each other in any way. Four years of red, screaming pain for me, which they never saw. Nor anyone else. And for them, it was very difficult. They were old, had just gotten back a flat they had been fighting for in court for 16 years. They really weren't equipped to handle the person I was then. I had just flunked a year of school, Mum had just moved to Spain and my maternal grandparents hadn't really wanted to keep me. I was raw, needy and determined not to let anything get me down.
And this determination irked them the most. How could I still smile and want to go out with friends! Why was I not ashamed! They were.
Maybe I should have told them that it wasn't bravado or carelessness. That I have a backbone that is used to blows and isn't used to bending. Had we tried to switch roles, maybe it wouldn't have been so bad. But we didn't. And now, they try to reach out in their way, and where I once would have humoured them and heard them out of sincere affection...I find my flesh shrinking at the thought of it. I am ruthless and I do not forgive. Rather than hold grudges, I simply cut people off.
I know I will be there for them if they every need to be looked after. They let me stay when others wouldn't. They've done a lot more besides.
But to give them a place in my life, or to make one for myself in theirs is not something I choose to do.
Blood is a weak link in my relationships. My family are those who are important to me, and a lot of them have no blood-tie with me. Therefore I will not have automatic affection for people 'because, after all they're family.' I rarely humour people, I either love them or I don't.
My grandparents will have my duty-bound self, I'll remember the DVD my grandfather wants and pick it up for him if I see it, I'll never, ever talk them down to other short I'll do unto them all the duty they did unto me....and no more.

You and I

I explain quietly. You
hear me shouting. You
try a new tack. I
feel old wounds reopen.

You see both sides. I
see your blinkers. I
am placatory. You
sense a new selfishness.

I am a dove. You
recognize the hawk. You
offer an olive branch. I
feel the thorns.

You bleed. I
see crocodile tears. I
withdraw. You
reel from the impact.

~Roger McGough

Friday, July 04, 2008


your body was faintly sour
the skin between your shoulders.... irritable and tasting of salt
wrapped in cold, cold sweat





your hand reaching for the thermometer
impatience throbbing in your throat
where the hell is it!
The light reflecting off the foil-wrapped tablets
white, bitter
head thrown back, your eyes closing as you swallow
my hand resting on the motion of your throat

sleep now
I think I sat and smoothed the blotchiness
Out of your dreams...

Tuesday, July 01, 2008


Rain, loneliness and a queer dissatisfaction. Am going to soak my feet, then make my nails less claw-like.
Inexplicably tired. Needing movement, serenity and touch. A little more purpose and firmness of mind.
and your smile...