Month: October 2016

The uncracked egg

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“To the egg only one thing mattered – what it told the big, black, dilly dally sky. The sky was the most magnificent thing it had ever seen. And though the egg knew it was going to crack soon, it somehow comforted itself that the cold blanket of this dark paradise was enough. The egg knew that its death would always come as a foul stench, with it breaking into deep ridges. It had been informed that there was something growing inside it. Something big, something translucent. Something that was magic yet cancer. This thing grew on its own and was *alive*. For the egg who was just a crisp white layer, this thing growing inside it felt like a voluptuous ball of life and inferno. Somedays, when it was frustrated, it asked the sky whether dying for this yellow ball was worth it. The sky never replied. It only flirted through light drizzle and cockeyed winks – the clouds always so brilliantly conveying its rapturous decisions. The egg always waiting for an answer grew jealous of the sun’s flamboyance and the moon’s mysticism. The egg was paranoid and was beginning to assume that the sky was not only in love with these two aerial objects, but also, cheating on one with the other.  The abrupt echoes of his mind wouldn’t shut up until one day when he felt a split in him. It was delicate at first, and then like an earthquake. It tore him apart to set him free. Yet, he didn’t feel any of it. In the evening, when the farmer’s daughter required these pieces for a ‘best out of waste’ contest, the leftover pieces of his shell were cleaned up. She dug her hands through his remains and dipped his skin in glue, sticking him to the crumpled cardboard.

In the silence of the night, though the egg dead – began to acquire the most soothing solace of all time. Its cracked parts began to wonder why.Little did he know that, she had made clouds from his remains and stuck them to her model of the big, black, dark sky.

Everything is always so close, yet so far, eh?”

 

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Board Games

photomirror_20161023232655433_20161027141610771.jpgOld toyshops always smell like dust. I am so doubtful of myself most days, that I even question my ability to smell this dust. Can dust actually smell like something? These toyshops have more dust than hardware stores. Almost like a time lapse of a thousand memories, these dust particles behaved like small, coiled purrs of lost calls and last chances. That day, when I entered, I felt strange. Not the hesitant – being judged – kind of strange I feel when I walk into someplace new, but a very nostalgic strange. This was not my place to be in anymore. A large pile of notebooks sat near the entrance. They’re new, untouched and smell of fresh ink and dry dye. I’ve always dreaded the 7 am ringing of the alarm on the first day of school. But that’s perhaps the only thing I’ve dreaded. From stepping into the fresh, tepid school smell everything was so delicate again. Words and numbers filled up these notebooks, the heaviness of the bag reduced as the days numbered by. An ease of familiarity always revolved like a cocoon around me. I looked towards my right. The toyshop has a huge image of a deity. A garland hangs from the portrait. I had forgotten how our God’s looked. I tilt my head, reflecting upon how now I pray with my eyes shut with only a singular voice singing itself out of my heart. I now, always am praying to all-knowing big man up there. Yet doubt sometimes fleets through me whether not adorning Him with garlands will angry him. After all, now, I don’t have any image, it’s just a voice, it’s is just a feeling. How do I even honor those?
I wait till my mother decides which gift to choose. A family friend has delivered a baby girl. I watch in anticipation as we decided between orange, pink and blue baby sets. I measure the size of her t-shirt. It just fell an inch short of my palm; the size of her body equivalent to the lifelines on my palm. I watch as he gift wraps with sticky tape and shiny paper. Everything is ordinary, everything so mundane. Yet I feel myself hypnotized by those thin boxes tightly wrapped in transparent plastic towards my far right. I shuffle and pick one board game. It promises 50 fun games of delusional fun. I had something like this once. 25 boards filled with two-sided fun found in the attic of my old rustic home lying unscathed deep within those huge drums we used as storage. The drums hoisted high on pedestals, almost like they didn’t wish to be found. Games, I remember my father telling me had travelled all the way from America. He always remarked how the games were like the backgammon. Just like dominoes they passed from one house to the next. When the gift wrapper opened itself in Mumbai, the game tugged itself between its suburb and city and finally making way to town, our home. Town where the townies live, town where the townies find 15 boards instead of 25, and one dice instead of two. Town – a safekeeping remote junction of used property and endorsed history. ‘Town’ where luck shines only once; where heavier the rent the higher is the gamble. Where legacies withdraw like lose foils and where all houses eventually became homes. Yet that toyshop reminded me of something indescribable. Something which I realized while staring at that open box of board games: it is a love that has remained.
Slowly, I shut the box. I pay. I walk out of that dust and into the open odorless prism. The dice, the pieces, the rules, everything is still so strong in my mind. I try to walk on the white line at the side of the board. I am a triangular disdain. I walk straight, missing the turn for my street. I come back, more vigilant now, making sure that I don’t miss it again. And then, I see it. I see something which had been there all my life, something which is full and complete in all its totality. I see ‘Saudade.’ I scribble over the dust with my bare fingers. The bi-lingual persona in me thanks for those extra lessons as the Portuguese somehow translates itself to English. A bike passes by and honks at me to move. I begin walking home and look back as I whisper those words out loud, “Rua Des Saudades.”
The road of the love that remains . . .

The Different Shades Of Stardom. Day 1: Shade 1: Glitter

“I’ll always stand against the iron brass gate, the same gate which is laden with tiny rusty starks and thin lines of forgotten memories. I don’t wake up for dawn. I just don’t sleep the whole night for my nights are always spent pondering and over-thinking. Sometimes, while I stare at the singular white threads of light and mist I wonder if there’s something more.

And, I see that extra when a bus with loud music drives by. It’s the glitter of that moment. It’s the slight glaze of a more sporadic and a more spontaneous joy.

It’s like the gleam of a sparkling diamond. A diamond, which is a secret to me. An oasis or a mirage, what can I say? ”

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For not letting go

PicsArt_10-16-09.07.57.jpgIf you listen to the way they talk to you,
All rants will seem like seamless joys,
For they wait  – wait to see how easily you qualify as a bemoaned subject
You are touched,

They never have and they never will,
They’ll never teach you how to let go,

They’re like scoundrels picking fat on rich oil cans,
They’re going to pull you down to drains of steel
You’ll never pick mirth off the grease
You’ll never learn how to let go;

They’ll never teach you how to let go,
Because they never learned how that yarn spun,
Sometimes, the wheel will move sporadically,                                             Every tick like clocks on a reindeer
Making you feel like it won’t and it shouldn’t work,

That’s when you should realize,
That, it’s time to let go.                              Let go in small crystals and crusts of pain,                                              Comforingly and wistfully,

Just like shadows.

Young-ed II A 207 year old Fashion sense

For the first 107 years, I’d been stagnant.

I’ve been void. I’ve been layered in corsets and petticoats. I could only nibble of my cream off cakes – eating the whole cake, so out of question. The vanilla icing so tempting, but I always desperate to not break bones. A bite gone out of place – any bite gone out of place, the  tummy flesh would churn more. A generation and the millennium all forgotten, they’re mouths shut while their eyes gleamed.  I knew that Barbie copied grandma because they both dressed the same! Damsels in distress: I would also wear the crown that fit around my waist – “corset.”

For 107 years, I’ve learned how to keep myself away from the ‘evils’ of freedom and fainting remedies. I smelled salts, right before I knew I’m off to hell. I worked, in large, large, large pleats of silk and frill and satin. The household work done right all the time. I deserved a trophy. There was so much metal underneath that thousand Swarovski diamonds couldn’t measure the weight. I smile though distraught. The red blood so pinkish on my cheeks, the rose’s juice so silvery on my lips – the paleness masked underneath the powder and blush, my grief never singled out; “I so accomplished.” The ‘curtsy’ definitely the most hilarious social propriety, my waist always so tightly caught between threads and ribbons on fire. And then you bend and tilt and move. He speaks through his handshake.  Him so gallant and courageous, there’s France in the air. He smells like Russian Vodka mother warned me about. But what do I do? My docility always threatened me to break free. All threats come true one day, this one too challenged to, on a day which was so against feminine heights.  How could I even talk? My best friend nausea, always so tightly bound to me. He thinks I blushing, I’m shy. Not there’s no awkwardness about me, I’m friendly and lively – but the corset understands nothing – it only increases  blood pressure. Cheeks turn red, my cheeks – always so flamboyant, but trust me, you’ll see how detached my eyes are. He thinks he can climb up the balcony, but I’m no Rapunzel. My hair is always in a tight, tight bun and in it I sleep with drained consciousness. But once in a while, I let my silvery ends lose; those nights when I shy more profusely – he knows he can come up now.  I prefer those serenades and ballads; the orchestra always, always evokes Shakespearean tragedy and heroine like fantasies in me. But most importantly, the white, lose nightgown lets me breathe. *Oxygen in, Oxygen out*. I feel so free, I feel so brave. Oh dear Grandma, how did you even tolerate these tight strings?

Just get me out of this dress! All that’s skinny isn’t so pretty.

My fashion sense was a 107 year old aesthetic rebuke. Now, I don’t do fancy dress. I don’t dress up in gloves and serenity. I don’t play Elizabeth Benet; Austen has been put to bed. I am more like my mother I realized. I’m experimental, I’m different. I can’t be still; I’m not serene. The age of my ancestors sometimes reminds me of brightness and fluency. But their delicacy doesn’t thrill. I am instead hundred. My wardrobe and I are an intricate collection of slight patterns and lace layers. I like gowns and diamonds – until chokers don’t suffocate. Nevertheless, I believe that I am a 100 year old Lily which wants to believe that it’s a dandelion. I want brilliant, but I’m stuck in arrogance. I’m cutting off floor sweeping layers the length is to my ankle now. I prefer khaki, the wars beginning. The skirt will be shoved in and I will wear pants. Trust me, there’s nothing more comfortable than denim. I walk around in bloomers sometimes and sometimes, I’m all in for long beach skirts. I haven’t forgotten fragrance, so I add perfume to my florals sometimes. I jam in leather jackets and chill in comfy loafers. I survive assignment nights with pajamas and bridal showers with crisp wedges. I already know what shade of red my graduating gown will be – but I’m still thinking whether black will stand more in solidarity with my ancestors protests and slogans. I’m no hippie, but there’s something irreplaceable bohemian in me. I can’t do browns and grey’s, but you’ll always find me in corporate pants and warm blazers. I still believe in full length blouses and body hugging dupattas which wrap around my head as I sit in prayer.

Trust me: I’m 18. Yet I live with a fashion stagnancy of a 107 corset bending attitude and a top-off of another 100 year old crippling demand of fashion experimentation and denim comforts. I am a visual story which foregrounds the future and highlights your past. I’m skin and I’m young. And I’ll always choose to be this figurative blend of avant-garde and antiquate 207 year young teenager.

Young-ed I

I am bejeweled by the idea of the pastry having a fluffy top a crisp base. I am enchanted but I am not good. I am dwelling yet I am disappointed. I am ordained, I am excited. I want to get moving – I want to keep looking. I don’t want clique, yet I am a whole shell of mainstream. I am crab, I am turtle. I am a window and I am also the pane.