Tuesday, March 31, 2009

The big idea

So where’s the big idea, the one that will clinch the deal? You could’ve been surfing all night, scouring the streets, for inspiration. You could’ve been hunting for it at the bottom of a glass that was once filled with bitter sweet ale. You could’ve been staring, without batting the eyes, at the television where item girls in hot pink dresses sing to a so-called foot tapping number. Or you could be leaning out of your balcony, staring at a lonely kite trying to find a branch, for a moment of peace.
Or perhaps a shutter bug will cross your path; with an interesting tale to tell. Or a woman whose life calls for a retake. Or maybe a child who still wonders why her parents can’t look her in the eye.
But where does this big idea hide?
Is it in some dust-ridden corner where no light trickles in? Is it inside the head that refuses to cooperate most of the time?
I haven’t stepped out to breathe in the summer sun – to see smiling faces go about their way – or drench in an accidental shower.
I haven’t seen life beyond a certain measurement. And as I draw into a close, closing up like a clam without the cheese, I realise that my ideas have died a natural death, mostly because of being ignored for far too long.
But even so, those ideas that managed to stay afloat, purely out of vengeance, don’t have enough steam in their blood.
You could be speaking and no one will hear you. Because let’s face it, you aren’t really saying anything that makes sense.
Who really cares to know if John Coltrane’s music could remind one of a shadowy afternoon in the rains? Or that Michael Buble is for the broken-hearted. Does anyone really care to know why it was important for a film like Juno to be made? Or perhaps how Clint Eastwood deserves a standing ovation for Gran Torino, and how accurate someone was when he told us that it was Dirty Harry walking into the sunset.
Or maybe when on a tired evening, a bunch of soft shell crabs filled my heart with so much warmth that I was finding it difficult to write about it later, without going overboard.
I don’t know so much. Sometimes I feel I forgot to evolve. Living in a world with Franz Kafka, Edith Piaf, Cole Porter and Leonard Cohen, I find myself often retarded. Ironic, I say. No one nods in agreement.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Baby steps

Your blue umbrella
Circles in the rain
Creating splashes of water
And trickles down the drain

Your wet feet
Make little footprints
And disappear into puddles
Of myriad tints

I watch
I yearn
I cry
I ache

He stands and smokes
Wet rings in the air
There’s no smile on his face
Just an irreverent stare

The white lace at your hem
Plays at your knee
As the rain continues to rage
Till it is all that I can see

Friday, March 20, 2009

words and colour

i wanted to leave a letter behind
a letter that would speak louder than i did
of how my mother wiped her tears
or my sister smoked in the silence

i wanted to paint a picture
not pretty by far, not in the least
i just wanted to paint what i saw
of the truth that you can't see

Saturday, March 14, 2009

nothing much

she held him to her heart one last time. and then, as the fingers gave way, she let him fall to the side. abandoning him and his memories. it was the last time. he would never call for her again. and she would find her redemption in the death that only she could have caused. to her, he became nonexistent. like she was to someone else. like she would be to another.

Sunday, March 01, 2009

the love story

let me tell you a story she said. of a time long ago.
and there she ended. because she had nothing further to add.
he was being patient, partly out of disinterest. the car was running on ignition and he was waiting for her to get off. she did.
she walked into the apartment building without looking back. fishing for her keys at the bottom of the bag was a good escape plan, she thought. he stared at her walk away and his heart felt a bit heavy. she was a good kid but it had to end. it's been far too long.
she reached her flat and switched on the light. then, she switched it off, walked into the bathroom, found the razor and slashed her wrists. deep enough to kill her over the next few hours. but she did not wince. and as the blood trailed from the bathroom door and formed a misshapen pool near the bedside, she lay on her pillow, looking up at the fan that moved at very slow speed.
the last decade or more was the best, she recalled. she remembered the colour of his shirt when they'd first met, she remembered even the last.
she remembered her nostrils taking in his smell. his smile. his eyes. his kiss.
their first kiss.
it had never ended.
it was always the first kiss.

he drove back, slowly. tomorrow he would leave town. that should simplify things. he knew she would never call him. the closest she'd get was to stare at his online status on her gtalk chat window. that, he could deal with.
it would never work, he rationalised. she was not his type. he did care. but not in the way he'd want to, if he were to make a commitment. she had to understand that.
she probably did.
she'd try to work things out in her life. he trusted her. he had to disappear.
there was way too much history between the two of them. he'd erase it all. it's not as tough as people said. she would be history.

so he lied, she told herself. big deal, she counter-argued. i can live without him. if i could live without him all these years, him telling her was going to make no difference. she could love no one else and that was something she'd come to terms with even before she'd realised. and now, there would be no time to love another.
the pool was getting bigger. she could feel her breath turn cold. it was a lovely sensation. it was like walking on ice - only there was none. the sky had turned purple in her head. this is how she always wanted it to be, she recollected and no one would believe her. now, she wouldn't have to convince anyone. that's a relief, she confirmed. a little wave of cloud formed near her mouth as she reassured herself. it was always him. and she was sort of relieved that there would be no one else.

she has a good smile, he remembered. and when she'd smoke in a dark room, the lit end would form a halo around her; she looked almost ethereal. her pursed lips would be blowing out smoke. she never really inhaled. he could watch her forever. or when she'd lip sync to his favourite song. it was as if she was singing it. she did have a good voice, he said.
when did he meet her first, he wondered. he couldn't remember. it didn't matter. once the night was over, he wouldn't have to think of such things anymore. she would be gone. life is twisted. he had hurt her but he didn't really care enough to turn things around. that would be too much to ask for, he said. it wouldn't work. he was sure.