Wednesday, December 30

Report Card

(Written on 31st Dec’2009)

Another year slips into nothingness
The disco lights festoon the shops
The retail reward points entice
gullible shoppers, shopping for
strawberries, plum cakes, frozen food.
The New Year plans are clogged
in Saki Naka traffic.
The sultry seductress on the billboard
invites the teenager in the auto rickshaw
to her year end cleavage show.

I am sublime. Last night’s caprioska
Drunk in gulps at the suburban Zenzi
is still playing with my mind.
I look at my legs, they need waxing
And a little exercise.
I want to bring my thirty third year
with clean toenails.

Besides, I have nothing else to show.
A defunct mother, a forbidden love
My father in heaven or hell (I don’t know)
and two deviant siblings.

My senile mother is calling;
she has got a wind of my holidays
I am torn between talking to her or
resuming my silent walk
I consider the scars of my
childhood and disconnect her call.

Save these eccentric walks
I keep the pretences rather well
I go to work everyday
I meet people I neither love nor hate
I pay my taxes on time
Once or twice I say my prayers too.

I walk past a magazine stall.
The TOI carries an article “Noose tightens
around Rathode”.
The former DGP, is a child molester.
He is media’s favorite
whipping boy.
I say a silent prayer, despite
my scars, I have survived.

On the other end of the road,
Little girls in pink pinafores
Get off their school bus smiling
Each with a school bag
And the weight of their childhood
On the road opposite to this
There is a cinema hall where
3 idiots” runs to packed audiences
It’s a film about following your hearts
I wonder if the girls in pinafore would
Follow their hearts.
I wonder if they would slither into their
Thirty third year, like me
With little or no faith, and a cell phone
that cannot stop ringing.

I walk back to my apartment. I
Turn my lonely key into the automatic lock.
On my dining table, I see a bottle of red wine
And a copy of Allen Ginsberg’s “Collected Poems”
I switch off my cell.
“Happy new Year mom and everyone”

Saturday, December 26

7 haikus on paragliding

I want to fly.
The autumn sky,
Blue sheet of peace.

I feel fear
Like the eaglet
Feet stuck to the ground

Secured with harness
On the brown cliff’s edge
I stand.

Voices fade
I walk without ground
Beneath my feet

I am clumsy
I run in the light breeze
Scared of vacuum

With open arms
I take the wind
My orange wings flap

I stop my trudge
Wading in the sky
A majestic eagle

Soar high
Above the sahyadri
The queen of sky.

Friday, December 25

Paa ( No Papa) - Top of mind thoughts

Why is Paa not what it seems? C'mon guys, I mean what are we celebrating in Paa? Balki the ad guy turned filmmaker or the greatest ever Big B ?

I love Big B, ever since I have known (OF) him, I have loved him even when movies were forbidden, i fell in love with him in the posters, never had to go to a theatre too.

too bad.

But he is not my idea of a progeria ridden "Auro". The role should have gone to Darsheel.

I think Balki is smart, of course he has to be, one has to be real smart to produce ads. Which is why Paa gnaws at you for a split second,like a jingle, makes you laugh, has the right people, the young upright politician who spells hope, Auro with his oversized head who spells doom and Vidya Balan, the single mom who spells ???

And thats why I wonder, where do these people come from ? I think and I thought the same about Cheeni Kum , Balki's weakest link is his characters are often , always in vaccum, and it takes 30 seconds for a movie to get killed for me, if it lacks context and characterisation.

1. Where is Lucknow, did he find a woman , who wanted her daughter to be an illegitimate mother ?

2. Wheere in Lucknow, did he find Vidya, who walked out on her heir- apparant, too good to be true, boyfriend, and gave birth to Auro, if that was the case, we wouldnt have the Surya clinics mushrooming in small towns where abortion happens under a dim yellow light with primitive methods.

ok, so you think I am deviating from the topic. This movie was about Auro.

1. So Auro has too adult a pair of eyes for a 13 year old, Does proegria do this ? Do your eyes enamate "been there done that"? Please. Amitabh, the greatest ever actor was a wrong cast. Perform , he did, for who, he is, but he didnt look convincing atleast to me. Every time I saw his back, I knew it was Big B ill fitted into Auro costumes.

2. Auro was cracking far too many jokes with sexual inneuendos directed at his mom, another trademark Balki. Yes, children talk sex these days.... but incestuous comments .....err, excuse me.

3. I may be blamed for nit picking but Auro boy didnt feel half as real as Darsheel in Taare Jameen Par. And while we are it, Tabu in Cheeni kum also didnt feel real.

4. Was Paa a love story, no ? Was it a woman's fight against destiny , no ? Was it about progeria ? ofcourse not, that would be too depressing.Was it about father - son relationship, no ? It was a little of all this just like a coca cola, feel good, fuzzy but not something you carry back, like you did in many other father - son movie ( give me masoom any day over Paa).

To me it was one of the greatest Big B ad ever made. Full of marketing gimmick, but no product.

Monday, December 21

Ode to a Postbox by Aidan Andrew Dun

I just think this is unstoppably brilliant. I have been shameless to upoload this here withoit regards to copyright rules. But for good or bad, the links were not working and what the heck, I mean at the end of the day the world knows that this has been written by Aidan Andrew Dun.

Ode to a Postbox by Aidan Andrew Dun


Of you, humble postbox, positioned between people, halfway house
in the affairs of human beings, the poet sings, his business also the
transmission of letters.
Like you he is a go-between who doesn't move about, who sends his
thought to faraway places, stamped and postmarked with the deep
furrows of his brow.
Like you, the poet stays in one place a long time, keeping guard, as it
were, over his meditations. Letterbox, do you meditate? Are you a
Buddhist?
It's a revolutionary act to remain in one place in the metropolis.
Letterbox, you project the colours of an activist and a militant.
Yet your dissidence is Gandhian, nonviolent. In the modern anthill of
hyperactivity you're a smallish postbox with steel rimmed spectacles
and a loincloth.
The world's motion sick. Who stands still in the city, a receptacle for
messages? Out in the rain, a lonely man and a letterbox could be
mistaken for one another.
Mailbox, geometrically, you have neither front nor back. But distinct
aspects of your existence fascinate the contemporary passerby, make
him ponder.

Mailbox, geometrically, you have neither front nor back. But distinct
aspects of your existence fascinate the contemporary passerby, make
him ponder.
Take the act of posting. A metaphysical exchange which mysteriously
resembles the transaction of a priest as he or she offers a white host to
the communicant.
Holy medicine is placed between red lips. The world becomes
warmer, lighter, less substantial. A journey begins outside three
dimensions.
Postbox, offering, as you do, a short cut between people, you could be
said to represent a time machine invented several hundred years ago.
Let's take stock of perspectives of you in a roughly bicentenary
existence. Now you're an impressionistic smudge. Here, in cubism, a
pillar of the abstract sky.
Suddenly overflowing under turquoise winter heavens you wear a
superb white mantle, carrier of warmest salutations at the sun's
rebirth.
But you're not all blessed. There's more to you than stageprop for.

Father Christmas making his beneficent peregrinations through the
general public.
You've a dark side in spite of avuncular rotundity, high colour,
somewhat exaggerated corpulence. (You evoke a country gentleman
in gumboots on odd occasions.)
In shadows of the towerblocks at night, near the park, a sinister bulky
silhouette is a jumper-in-waiting. But relax, citizen, it's only our
familiar friend.
Whose nevertheless potent combination of wide black base in striking
contrast with the colour scheme of the whole upper structure gives a
warning.
Postbox, you resemble the overheated barrel of a shotgun pointed at
the poor. Those who can't pay see punishment as stated in writing.
Sometimes we discover the phenomenon of a double letterbox,
corresponding without doubt to a double-barrelled shotgun.
Devastating!
Heroic mailbox, in some secret future life you might act as bunker in
the great siege of class war. Extremely small riflemen could use you as
barbican or redoubt.
Through a loophole, where envelopes fly and slide, through a military
embrasure, hails of lead! One more revolution not looked for. And no
surprise.
But such activism would go against your Pasternakian non-
involvement. You'd be deeply compromised as the purest observer.


Yes, red organ of the true life, the human heart shall be transformed.
Love will inspire the uprising which will teach this cold world a much
needed lesson.
It shall never be said, O cache of happy postcards, you were
indifferent. Pillarbox, you have a social conscience. You stand out in a
crowd. A dramatic individual.
Is it going too far to describe you as a free spirit? Is it over-optimistic
to imagine a beacon on dark nights issuing from you as from a sort of
lighthouse?
If this were the case it would be a comfort! No hyperventilating lover
need ever say again: 'O hell! I've missed it. The last post has gone.'
Future postmen and watchers of the skies would make their rounds
under the all-seeing zodiac. Not a letter would fall into the mails without their knowing.
True placement of letterboxes is a science. They don't just plonk
down at random. It's more a question of exact location on the double
ordinance survey map of Middlesex.
O pylon of codex and papyrus. You stand as waysign, reminder,
example. But of what? We struggle to encompass your all-embracing
significance.
Perhaps you're an omen of global warming. Perhaps other street
furniture, large objects of daily life, will also turn red in due course,
additional prognostications.
Letterbox, thanks to hyperbole, you are sometimes a blood covered
whale expiring on the pavement. Your slitlike venthole spurts
lungfroth on unwary pedestrians.
The message of such life-affirming street theatre is simple. All acts and
intentions are visited backward in the apocalypse.

To return to a more interior symbology. (No adroit philosopher likes
to be dragged into the fascinating turmoil of exterior illusion.)
Letterbox. For a sad man you mark the last outpost of a friendship
transcending finite conditionality. He passes you and murmurs the old
valediction always.
Yet at the other end of the spectrum you are merely a small red
mausoleum which commemorates the predecessor of email. How
reductionist and unromantic!
Yes, there is something romantic about a letterbox. Admit it,
diamond-hard alpha males who have never moistened a postage stamp
with your tears.
Wasn't there a trivial Beatles song which went: 'Wait a minute, wait a
minute, please, please, Mr Postman.'? (A cover of the Marvellettes on
Motown.) More evidence.
The letterbox is the glowing lantern of those mariners who sail the
wreck-strewn oceans of romance. Never forget this: One more letter
might help.
Yet as one man's sunset is another man's dawn the world is a duality
where contradiction raises its ugly head to spoil everything.
How charming. In some cliched green lane of middle class
imagination, a lovesick English gentleman reaches out to a postbox.

Decisive gesture!
No going back once that declaration's through the red aperture.
No return to level-headedness of stockbrokerdom possible.
O joys of commitment. Marriage! Mailbox as rubicund finger with
extra large diamond ring. But what is that fragrance, musky and pagan,
rising?

Feline stink assaults the nostril, miasma of the cat who rubs her
hindquarters on the circumference. Round and round the black base
on tiptoes. How suggestive!
Look at the animal! Far from any dream of shy maidens,
unapproachable sylphs, what about the presence of the scarlet woman
in the cosmos?
O letterbox. Why do you paint yourself so luridly and stand on the
corner of Keat's Grove where certainly the sick poet often
encountered you in twilight?
'I should have lived had I not seen her again.' Last words of an
immortal. Singer of the fever hospitals. Shipwrecked genius,
you are your own mythology.
Heartbroken, oppressed pure one. May a mad dog bite the postman
with the postbag containing Lord Byron's barb, blot on literature.
(What happens to hopelessly lost love letters, by the way? Does
anyone burn them? They can't be returned. The sender has usually
expired.)
'I should have had her while I was well'. Words from the deathbed of
a poet. What fires of spontaneous combustion flare in each mortal
temple! Rest easy, John.
She was faithful in black many years, unmarried a decade after your
terrible departure. God bless, Fanny Brawne. All flesh knows the
valley of suffering.
A smile on the side of an red obelisk which stands in wind and rain at
the corner of a leafy London street means forgiveness.
The lover tastes death in disappointment. But an after-sensation of
sweetness is left on the tongue. Things go from bad to worse to
brilliant.

If any see smoke spiralling from the open mouth of a postbox and
wonder, here's the answer. Something ignites in us, in the deepest heart.
The letterbox is the unassuming emblem of a transformation taking
place every day. You can read about it in any local newspaper.
'Twice we have seen smoke issuing from a letterbox and are writing to
complain that such things are not possible. Disenchanted.
Hampstead.'
Letterbox, finally! Would it be true to say you are both erotic and
mystical simultaneously? Are you double like Mercury? Alchemically equal?
Mercury was the postman of the ancient world. Today the messenger
god wears airsoles, presents himself as expert breakdancer on the
weekend.
Winged sandals are making a comeback among the planet's
sunchildren. Eventually, the same spirit will lift all who tread the earth.
If the postman is the bee, then you, pillarbox, are a red hibsicus flower
full of the nectar of communication. One day we will stick our stamps
with honey.
The world shall write a love letter to itself and entrust it to the poet
who will place it in the postal system at the earliest visitation of his
first class muse.
Sacred and profane. Sayonara. Farewell. We take leave of you,
mailbox of contradictory manifestation, not to say schizophrenic
tendencies.
Little round wayside shrine of communion, realistically we know our
giving and receiving sometimes shake a house of assignation in the
small hours of the morning.
But the definingly human encounter with the world is the balanced
reaction to the content of our experience, not the experience itself.
Amen!

O pillarbox of pronouncedly phallic appearance, though you blush
for your visibility on the main street of existence, never feel low.
You are the red lingam of the chaste dancer Shiva, erect but controlled
and cooled by superconsciousness. Jai Shiva Shankar.
In a midland city of this island someone was arrested for worshipping a
letterbox, for scattering over it fresh milk and sunflower petals.
The latter extraordinary fragment of information was invented as a
tribute to the power of imagination locked up in the unimportant postbox.
It's all under lock and key in the Royal Mails so that what is intended
to be shared may be delivered at the appropriate time and to the right
person.
Her Majesty the Faerie Queen and no one else transmitted these
truths in a letter addressed to an obscure poet known as Voice of Kings
Cross.
It was postmarked from the highest point in the galaxy and arrived just
after midnight in a marvelous explosion of sunrays.

Friday, December 11

Elegy for an Uncle

The cops inform her promptly whenever
there is new body at the morgue
She rushes all alone to see if it is him
Her heart filled with fear and hope

Every new year, she makes roasted meat
His favorite, and waits for him to return
She wonders what would give her closure.
Will his dead body answer all her questions?

Daughters, two of them held her hands
Time, though, heals sore wounds, sharp pains
Anger replaced pain, and life distracted them
What they feel for their father is only disdain!

Her memories refuse to fade, the little things
The night before he left he was unusually gay
His spectacles still conjure a wink, but what
haunts her now is his planning for a rainy day

She thinks of the reasons, was he kidnapped?
Or another woman? She shakes off the thought
The phone rings, it’s the cops again, she goes
Slow but stoic, to face her life, a new corpse

Thursday, December 10

Free Verse : Storm

Dark clouds curl at the mouth of sky
Dust rises, invades and blinds the eyes
The wind howls in rage, throws itself at
window panes and doors like bad intent
Thrown empty plastic bottles scuttle away
Pieces of paper sway in the fury of nature
A silver streak of anger darts across the sky
The rains come abruptly, without warning
Matching the storm’s fury, step by step
And then changes to a drizzle, like a balm
Inside the living room, we sit beside the fire
And nurse our storm fantasies with ghost tales

The distant drum of globalisation : Villanelle

Hear the distant drum of globalization
Take heart, children of hungry nights
The new dawn will change the nation

Wipe off the face of consternation
Jobs will pour, they wax lyrical, who
hear the distant drum of globalization

Your life will change beyond recognition
Fields would be ploughed in cyber space
The new dawn will change the nation

Enthusiasts laud the end of long hibernation
Cornucopia will be celebrated, when they
Hear the distant drum of globalization

Old people have become a botheration
Worried about their sake, can’t they see,
The new dawn will change the nation

The marginalized man and his frustration
The cry of left outs deafens, all those who
Hear the distant drum of globalization,
The new dawn will change the nation

Saturday, December 5

Sonnet : Vote for me

( abba, abba, cdecde)

They stood in a neat row, seven brides to be,
Nice eyes, chiseled nose, full lips, black hair
A sherwani clad groom surveyed with an air,
The seven brides, done up like Christmas tree.
The first one spoke, dressed in a sapphire blue
A hush descended over, and many hearts tore,
Vote for me, prince, I am nice, pretty and pure
I will cook and clean, marry me without any rue
The prince nodded, his ego, an oversized balloon
I wondered, what’s with all the women these days
The “perfect brides” on telly in red, pink and rust
Why for this dandy, would they pout and swoon,
On national network? Is it a fad, a new young raze?
“Brazen”, I said and changed the channel in disgust.

Friday, December 4

Sonnet : Pangs of love

Pangs of Love

(ababcdcdefefgg)

I stirred in the bed, you lay asleep.
I would be gone before you woke up.
The alarm shook my bitter sweet dreams
I got up and filled warm water in the tub,
I took a quiet bath, and peered over you
You still slept, like a stranger, in the dark
I felt a stab, sipping my morning brew
Another work week for us, living apart
I changed, noiseless, under a dim light
You nodded dreamily, as if you approve
The fragility, in a half morning, half night
I planted a kiss on your neck, long overdue

I hoped you would drag me back to the bed
You rolled over and hugged my pillow instead

Thursday, December 3

The Kali Temple



















On the banks of the pious Ganges
stands an old consecrated Kali temple
Symbol of my faith, the she- god
last refuge of dropouts and derelicts

The road to the temple is paved with
cobblestones, beggars and lepers
On another side, rows of shops stand
entice seekers with the smell of flowers

The staircase that leads to the precinct,
is weary, trampled over ages, by sins
The precinct is dark and dreary, walls
grown moist with human suffering

There is an old tap in one corner,
to wash off the worldly wise dust
The sacrificial lamb are washed
blood, that flows into the Ganges

The rickety bell hangs in the middle
tired of ever growing devotees
The bell’s age old ritual: to herald
the deviants awaiting her blessings

The sanctorum, where she stands
is a contrast to external austerity,
Yellow lights festoon the entrance
The mother, herself, a rare beauty


Her eyes, red, blaze with fury
A silver spear adorns one hand
a demon head, another, ungodly
a blood stained tongue hangs

In her angry incarnation, Kali
revels in her nudity, she hangs
a garland of severed heads,
the only semblance of fabric

Outside smoke rise from huts
The mellowed Ganges flows
Inside, an unlikely goddess,
keeps busy, being a goddess.

Tuesday, December 1

a ghazal

We said it with blossoms, and your slightest touch
Tickled my core, I long for that touch tonight

When we watched the rain, or wrote love notes
On a scrabble board, I long for those words tonight

The fret for bread, the mundane life consumed us
We drifted aimless, I long for the old rush tonight

A pain nags at me forever, like ice cold bitterness
You sleep dreamless, I long for your turn tonight

I fear that your coldness will enter me, my bones
Nothing will thaw me, I long for warm love tonight