Sunday, October 28, 2012

The verandah

They don’t touch
But stand

They share silence
Because they

They smoke together
They burn

An occasional word
At times

A forgotten memory
Comes through

They turn around
And gently

They smile within
It’s love

Friday, September 28, 2012

Red. White.

It was about five inches wide
A bold blood red line
Trailing in the wind, against the shadow
Hiding from the sunbeams

Softened by yards of white
The red line carried wrinkles
Familiar ones; the ones you own
And a smell perfectly overpowering

It ended in a tear unplanned
Caused by a rebellious nail
No one told you. No one cares
 About a nonchalant birthmark

You wore that red for decades
And carried the white like burden
Your face became unknown and unfamiliar
In the multitude of reds and whites

No ceremony or announcement
Your departure was as silent
As your inconsequential arrival
All they did was leave you with your red

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Note #1

Hold my hand
Take me home
Gimme a life
A light in the dark

Sing a song
That calms me down
Speak the words
That speak the truth

Walk with me
Banish the fear
Stay with me
When the end is near

Give me a life
That is far from here
And I will give you mine
When it’s curtain call

Wednesday, August 08, 2012

Death of a dream

A mad wild dream of running down the stream
Collecting rogue pebbles that gather no moss
Kicking an odd twig or two right across the edge
The birds singing happy songs in words I don’t get

Where the houses and buildings melt away
The earth swallows the tar whole, black and set
The smoke retreats back into those lowly tubes
And freedom breathes gold, blue and red

The sky paints the stars in limited edition pixie dust
As they glimmer shyly from behind their veils
The moon, drunk from a night or wanton revelry
Laughs like a delirious old fool – loud and resonant

It’s in this dream you appear from behind the shadows
Your blade sharpened, dripping of red from the last battle
Creases of sorrow and death folded above your brows
And you crush the soft glades beneath your muddy boots

You come to find sleep you say, as your hands smell of pain
Men have hunted you, chased you and pierced your faith
And women have forsook their intuition and screamed
In fear that you have been sent by the unknown evil

“I ask for nothing,” you claim, “only some quiet moment.”
And settled under the non-judgemental tree to close your lids
I watch you, in deference, as only I can see the truth in you.
“Rest here,” I say, “for the morning will be a better promise.”

Somewhere, miles away, in a world that has lost its dreams
He watches my body shiver to a myriad happenings
And questions the whole morality of our existence
“If even by mistake, she dreams,” he decides, “she must die.”

Monday, July 16, 2012


I looked behind the curtain
Under the bed, inside the wallet
I ran up the stairs, left nearly breathless
And looked under the potted plants

In the kitchen, behind the sink
Under the sofa, over the closet
And between the ruffled sheets
I even turned the drawers upside down

But all was in vain; I found love hiding nowhere.

Sunday, May 06, 2012

star struck

I am shy. My English is not that good you see.
Sometimes, I see you in the photograph of that magazine
I get houseflies in my belly

I stand on the balcony, playing with the end of my braid
It avoids the ends from cutting, ma says
And the coconut oil turns into ghee in them

The rowdy boys from the next dirty building
Once or twice, wave their hands at me or sing
But my eyes are stuck on you only

You never come to this city, they say
Because we are far from the train stop
But I have no river here for you to take the boat

The flowers are blooming big and orange
The curtains are smelling of orange flowers
And my eyes are dark from all the kohl

Then the burning smell; I left the rice on
Now it is sticking to the bottom of the pan
No food tonight even, but you are there no!

A Positive

She smiles a broken one
It’s a bit lopsided, with hints of saliva
Dribbling down the side
That she can’t quite wipe off

With a tender hand, she reaches out
To touch a smaller one
That trembled in fear and wonder
She comforts, without any comforting

A missing toe, a mangled nose
Distorted lips minus the colour
A damp white sheet, washed once
Transformed into her saving grace

The tiny little face stares at her
Her dishevelled hair lay flat
As she twisted her little thumb
Around one cooperating curl

Ten years, seven months and eight days
Not quite enough to kill her soul
As he broke her body little by little
She just smiled. And kept on smiling

Sunday, February 05, 2012

Measuring distances

Someday when the lights are so dim that the shadow you cast from the room to the verandah won’t appear so frightening anymore - and in that little second that it takes you to cross the room and into the depth of the tree outside - I’d have written my song.
That little song I promise you many afternoons ago; when the summer heat had little consideration for our intentions.
The verses would be open and so would the tunes; we'd change them as we like and sing with our hearts clear of guilt. 

The ruffled sheets have been changed a million times and more and yet they bore the fragrance of stories we shared; something funny that we could never let go of or even fingers that were entwined, as if war was on our doorstep.
The telephone could be swiped a million times and it would not run out of my DNA and perhaps if one tried harder, some conversations too could be secured.

I changed rooms, curtains, lanes, streets, cities, jobs, men, lovers, clothes, shoes. I even tried to change the way I think. Funny, none of it was in vain.

All of it seems so far away now.

Friday, January 27, 2012

C’est La Vie – or not

Do restaurants that aim to bring new cuisines into a city bear the responsibility of making sure that the diner’s experience is anything but disappointing? Afraid so; but very few live up to those expectations…

I have never been to France. It’s on my bucket list, but I am not working on my bucket list at the moment. However, I was willing to travel to Seven Hotel to their restaurant called C’est La Vie. Well honestly, I was surprised that the place is still open, considering no one had been talking about it for a while. But instead of relying on my instincts, which is what I should have done, a bunch of us drove out to Outer Ring Road to eat ‘French Food’. It was an exciting moment for all of us. And as we brushed up on the five French words we knew to identify names of food, the restaurant and cafĂ© brought a smile onto our faces. It was cute.
And that was the end of our fabulous journey.
The menu at C’est La Vie was anything but French; except for the Duck Parmentier and a few dishes here and there. They had chicken nuggets on the menu and stuff that we only cook frozen when unexpected guests drop in.
But willing to forgive slighter misgivings, we ordered a bottle of wine which came with a free cheese platter - cheese being slices of processed cheese and a few slices of brie that didn’t look or taste too fresh.
And then there was the Chicken Pappiti – neither of us knew what that was. A few pieces of chicken were rolled and stuck with toothpicks and looked a little like bacon wrapped chicken and served with fries. They weren’t bacon wrapped chicken. It was more like chicken tossed in a kind of vinegar and pan-fried. The fries were good, especially with a bowl of ketchup, and I don’t even eat ketchup.
The Warm Goat Cheese on Bread looked rather rustic, in a nice kind of way. However, that goat cheese could be warmer and I can’t quite imagine the fussy French biting into large chunks of toasted bread and having crumb all over their plates and expensive clothing. Some greens were on the side to resemble a salad and hidden underneath were cubes of cucumber and tomatoes.
I also believe that the goat cheese was kind of older than I expected.
I don’t know how the main course tasted because whatever we wanted to order was either not there or ‘not good’ according to a chef we never saw appear from the kitchen door. The Duck Parmentier was on the top of our mind but not made available to us.
However, the Bisque Soup was sort of edible. Bits of prawn in a nice wholesome tomato based soup – I ate that to control my growing rage because the Chicken Brie Soup was heartbreaking. It smelt of flour of coconut milk and was so pale than I could have seen a ghost. There was zero texture and where on earth was the spinach that is supposed to go into that soup?
The table next to us was taken and the diners there too were having difficulty with the food. I realised their problem when one said, “As far as I know, pesto sauce is supposed to be red in colour.”
Sadly, much to their disadvantage, they didn’t know that they were in a restaurant that completely fit their dining profile – clueless.
Nope. Looks like I have to start working on that real bucket list soon.