Aside

Mr Watermelon Head:

What a peculiar name is Mr Watermelon head? Why would anybody name their child that? But Mr Watermelon head was what he was christened and what he chose to live with. In fact if truth were to be told he wouldn’t have liked another name at all. He knew he wasn’t called Mr Watermelon head because of the way he looked or the size of his head or the way he spoke. It just was there like everything around him always would be.

Mr Watermelon head was not an eccentric man, except for the bizarre things that kept happening around him. He had only one very weird habit, he liked to keep a black fountains pen with ink as dark as death always in his hand and wherever he went. Even his own mother remembers the black pen like he was born with it.

Just like every other day Mr.Watermelon Head sat fiddling with his black ink pen on a snowy day in a café called “unknown”. He liked looking at the snow from the café’s window for hours. He often thought that the snow, like him had nowhere else to go but just drift in the space making everything around it beautiful yet untouchably cold. But the snow eventually stopped drifting and this made watermelon head look inside.

And look he did, because the sight in front of him made him drop his beloved black ink pen .He lost track of time and tide and as dramatic as it may be ,his entire being came into the focus at the exact moment when the shiny black ink pen hit the worn out linoleum floor with a faint thud.

The pink neon bulb flickered; illuminating the dirt marks on his  pants and the pupils of his eyes, which until now were unfocused. The tears that he had been shedding out of boredom restrained as suddenly as they came, for he had met her and that was the truth.

Oh! Real she was as real as anybody could be ,with her curly hair and drooping sad face. She was benevolently ugly to see, but she was as lost as he could be. She spoke garbled sentences as the walls around the ancient café began to crumble around both of them. She waddled and sighed and then waddled somewhere. And when she finally perched her dainty hands on the table as  the whole floor shook. She offered one hand looked beyond him and said “hello Mr Watermelon Head! It’s a pleasure to see you as you would be to see me”

Mr Watermelon head was fumbling for coherent words and for the lack of better words, he just smiled.

In another place at the exact same moment, Sophie opened her eyes, to tell another lie in the blink of an eye. She hastily said to the anxious man with a happy face “my boyfriend is waiting at the café, I must leave now.”

Mr Watermelon head was hence conjured, he just looked at Sophie and smiled, for they had a forged a bond, as imaginary as he may be.

Noodles , don’t Noodles !

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For all possibilities in life,

What have we choose to become.

Following different standards of time,

We have moved to be undone.

We ponder over others and their lingering memories,

To glorify the beauty of despair.

We understand neither ,

Just to remain in an ambivalent lair.

These ideas of mundane and vapid,

That hold a race in our memories.

Oh! where should we begin with trivialities ,

To try words that make it interesting

For  the stories of our wanderings.

 Between these shadows of incomprehensible doubt,

We fail  to translate our choices into oblivion.

When all is done,

we sigh , to wonder ,

If it is the brain that’s hurting,

Or is it the world around “we”?

Art ache !

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I take little sips of known  ,

I sink it all in ,

I taste a bittersweet happiness,

Along with the coffee that feels like a memory,

 

I sit , I sip.

I switch sides ,

Trying to be anything otherwise,

Trying to remember that last coffee,

Of another day ,of a lost memory.IMG-20130214-WA0000

 

I seek to see ,

To try and ignore ,

Wanting to unknow.

 

I wait to forget , only to remember another regret .

I take a sip of this bittersweet memory ,

Watching with content another sun set,

Accompanied by sighing silence and a cup of coffee .

Lemon tree

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Adolf loved his big mango tree. He loved it more than his dog and definitely more than his wife he called Bree .the tree under which his stoned cottage rested and where in the sunsets he would always read the last page of an old newspaper.

On a cold rainy day, while his soup was overflowing with excess of raindrops, Adolf took the chainsaw he hid below his pillow that was always beside him. He started hacking away his beloved mango tree.

As the tree fell, at an exact moment possibly at an angle of 45 degrees the birds tumbled out of their nests, the insect buzzed out loud and the trees secrets bellied out. Adolf then just stood there looking at the curious owls peeking out of the tilted tree. His soup abandoned, his chainsaw worn out.

He sat back into the crispy grass crusted with snow tired of waiting for the sunset ,pulled out a crumpled piece of today’s newspaper and then read aloud. This act shocked the neighbors so much that they turned off their cycles to stare.one gutsy child even had the nerve to approach him and ask “mister, didn’t Stalin ban today’s paper to be read aloud?”

At this Adolf smiled, his first smile in 17 years and said “Stalin is dead and so are we”

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“It’s easier to walk on water than to swim against the crowd” he says to no one, standing there at the rocky beach, where the waves crash with the mountains such that thunder claps and tears fall.

He looks around to no one. The people around him, they all seem oblivious to this thunderous roar and the rain of salt water. They move in hurdles and groups, talking in silence, with their feet gliding. They stare at him wide eyed, if he ever singled out one person to ask a question. Time ticks with every drop of salty rain, almost in sync with time.

The tears never stop falling from the sky and yet the people hunch themselves in their overcoats and glide even more. His failed attempts at walking and gliding are mocked by none .He just stands there, waiting, waiting to be shuffled or pushed .

Waiting with his feet glued to the sticky ground.

9th Retrospection

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“How does it feel like to choke up on something and never get cured of it, Alice?” , Jason asked her one drunk weekend night  .The jack Daniels bottle between them was running on empty. It was way past into the night bordering into the first lines of dawn. The room was brightly lit but everything seemed foggy, in her mind and also partly in reality. Everything seemed to be running low but their conversation. A decade worth of being together still wouldn’t lessen their conversation. On another tangent of thought, she thought that this sort of companionship was as strange as it could get. “I wouldn’t know”, she lied answering back to the question . Of course she did!  Her mind took her back to that one fateful day. She knew she would still choke up on that particular goodbye. It’s something she could never say to that one person whole heartedly, and if she ever did, she probably did so to threaten herself. She laughed a boisterous laugh. The dense sound echoed in the dead silence of the night buzzing in that tiny room, touching the pale green walls, with the paint chipping away and forming patterns that one would like to contemplate. She laughed at  the  humour of words, how some words just make you time travel, without worm holes or time machines. Just  those  annoying memories that wouldn’t fade away and forcefully  row you down that stench of some wrongs .She sat they and recalled that one day in the big bad city, the adventure that turned sour with helplessness of the heart..

The air that day was laden thick with humidity, heat, pollution and a sense of disappointment. Disappointment so thick that breathing through it seemed like taking in huge gulps of air underwater that would only choke you up even further. She just stood there trying to process everything going in her mind, to articulate it into words. Words that would for once convey what she was feeling and not what she was thinking. So she just stood there, gulping air like a gold fish out of water not saying anything, swallowing disappointment in small swigs.

“So when will I see you again?” he asked, “after today, never !” she shouted in her head ,what she wished she had said aloud . Instead she ended up saying “someday soon I hope” .she smiled a hopeful smile, pretending that these conflicts of her thoughts were not evident on her face. She was at war with herself and heaven knows she had no hopeful victory that day. He smiled and walked out of the gate after giving her a brief hug .She told herself she would never let herself barter her ego another time like today. The entire institution, the place, the burning blue skies closed down upon her, while she was just standing there on the pavement. She just saw what she wanted to see and never forget. The minute took longer than expected .Finally,she  forced  herself  to turn back but she had so much anger in her head that she literally burned with it. She wasn’t angry with him, no, he didn’t actually deserve any of it .The gates closed as she turned and walked away promising never to look back. Her cell phone beeped with messages from him. She ignored them knowing that if she let herself reply she would fall apart.

The film strip of memories suddenly stopped playing in her head. She had  to return back to the smoke filled room, to the almost empty jack Daniels bottle   , to the question that still is hovering above her for an answer, to a lie that needs to be untold. Suddenly the memory didn’t seem to be worth repeating in her head another time .She  needed  to free herself from this terrible weight   of a secret that even she  didn’t know why she  wouldn’t  tell ,even to herself. Until a few moments back she believed that being shackled by your own stories would  not so terrible after all, because you eventually never move away from them. Although today these stories seemed to be playing   beyond her control. For Alice this moment, this chance of freedom from herself would never present itself another day for. She  blurted out before her stable rational  mind took back its reins again, “of course I would know Jason , remember that day in Bombay ?, I still choke up with that one goodbye I never managed to say” and just like that , in the most cliched way , she  tried to put an end a decade of pretense ,and tried to set herself free . She  has been forever shackled by her own want of freedom .From a  self-imposed slavery of questions unanswered. The more she tries, the more miserable she becomes.Its a pity that she never found any answers in Jason or Daniels.

 

 

 

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You do not know how you got here,

You do not even know where to go,

 This life seems on a distant horizon

And you wonder how this distance seems so.

 

 You wave and perhaps smile to the whole world passing by on a boat,

But only to know that you are all but a castaway on the shore.

There is nothing that you need here, and yet there you are

Yearning for nothing other than this hollowness to go.

 

 It’s amusing to realise that you are always alone,

Weather fate favours you and you drift shore

Or the strike of storm takes it all away from you and

You remain in a whirlpool, never to let go.

A saint was now hearing a voice. He never in all his life of sainthood ever expected to hear this .A voice whispering along with the traffic buzzing around him. It would have been queer if revelations like this happened to him on dramatic setting of the world with thunder storms and lighting accompanying such revelations .He wondered why such grand settings evaded him. It amused him to think of himself  as a saint .No saint worth his stereotypical money would be caught dead in  Gucci loafers and Armani suit, sipping filter coffee ,while he ordered a plate of dosa in a crowded Malabar restaurant .The  singular voice chanting a strange poem still whispered, now a little above the restaurant’s noises, a little above the whirring of the giant fan (which he often fondly called “the air bender”) .He ignored this voice  for a while, just like one would be  ignoring the buzzing of a fly before you would get irritated with it, enough to swat it away. But then this voice just whispered, in an insistent little monotone. Whispered the same words what he had felt all along in his life but never dared to put it down into permanent etchings of words. The voice has a life of its own he thought. It had loneliness and desperation pouring life into the voice, like a faint whiff of salt that clung to the sea.

He had never heard a voice such as before, but then again every saint had his moments. Maybe this was his magnum opus moment. He waited for the voice to fill his ears again; all the while he finished his last meal of the day. When ignoring it worked no more , He mulled over the voice, while trying to converse with it. The voice never answered back, but he never expected it to answer his questions in the first place. He walked over to the sea, with his shoes in his hand and said to himself “how lonely must god be”.  “He created it to banish this lonliness ,then He travelled across the world to unearth the secrets of beyond. His knowledge of the word is known across the world. And yet even He saw everything with a tint of grey.and yet he closed his eyes to be lonlely once again” .He wished he  could tell god about  a lovely place called solitude that he used to know. He wanted to invite him over there, but he didn’t want to sound like a madman. Instead  he chose to  write  in the sand, hoping that when he walked away , the air would perhaps  deliver his message  to the voice or perhaps the sea wash its hands off this responsibility with the sweep of the tide.

He walked away from his little invitation, shoes and jacket in hand .An utter unknown  peace engulfed him  and moved within him, as he left knowing that sometimes god was as lonely as he was.the words finally were etched in the grains of time, as he turned and moved away.

There is no ego here,

There is no sense of time,

Perceptions are muddled,

Visions are defined.

 

When you move away from there, where would you go?

To the high shallows or the gallows below?

 

Nobody wants anybody here,

To breathe the same air,

Since there is a need to blend,

Without the need for another lair.

The dusk settled over the sand, as did the dawn. The mundane routine of the world, with its seasons and deaths changed nothing .The Sea did not gobble up these words, nor did the air, the remained there for another eternity, almost like waiting for somebody else to read it and find solace.