Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Semi-Dark Alleys

In the beginning,
there is you,
standing alone,
waiting for me to come.
In the end there is me,
looking into the vacuum-
that you leave behind.
We exist-
in the ambiguous space,
between the beginning and end,
between breaking away
and holding back.
We exist,
where the hope springs
and flows without a form.
We are there,
in  the semi-darkness-
of our blurry alleys.
In my effort to put an end-
to the insecurity of the dark
and in your quest-
for  more clarity,
we lose us....
-Aparna

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Taking My Cast Off

There is metal on my mind,
hot molten metal,
and you came out of it,
as a cast for my weak limbs.
It is time-
to shed the cast,
to move past you.
The last time I stepped on the
mirror-polished white marble floor
I saw, dark, red, drops of blood
They came out of my lie to the world
that the cast fits me perfectly
they came out of my lie to myself,
that, you, were perfect.
I lied, again and again
I told them, I needed the cast.
My limbs were not strong,
not yet.
even at a time when -
my limbs were dying to be free,
to jump in the muddy pool,
to feel the wet grass and
to dance in the monsoon rain.
I screamed at anyone-
who tried to unscrew the cast
and save me from the pain.
Was it the joy of having you close,
right next to my skin?
even when the sharp metal caused
deep wounds on my already hurt self?
I will not claim to know.
But I do know now-
that the time has come.
To let you go and let you be.
I saw it in the ease with which
they could take you off my limbs
You didn't resist, not a bit.
You were ready to go,
It was not them or me
It was you-you wanted to go,
And I had to tell you that.
And I do know
you won't mind being melted again
To become someone else's cast.
After all, you are the generous one.
And me, I don't take charity any more.
-Aparna

Tragic Joys of an All Night-er

Run a Google search for the term "all night-er" and the first few listings will give you tips to successfully pull off one. The number of tips can vary depending on the creativity and imagination of the author and most of them focus on the obvious problem, "How to keep sleep at bay?". There are tips ranging from keeping your feet dipped in a bucket of cold water to watching a scary movie just before you start working on your all night-er project.

My trouble with all-night-ers is mostly not in terms of keeping myself awake. It is the amazing list of interesting things which I discover (mostly rediscover) in the middle of the night, as if they never existed before. Here is my damage list for today's all nighter.

1. A. S. Byatt's 'Possession'- I have been reading the novel in the frequent intervals between work, to not let the mind go dull and now I have the mind of an over enthusiastic detective and I am whining about the lack of opportunity to go on a thrilling archival discovery like Maud Bailey and Roland Mitchell. Fortunately or unfortunately, romance is not my area of research!

2. Windows 8.1- The newly updated Operating System comes with a lot of interesting distractions and lots of new apps.

3. Old mails and messages- There is nothing like revisiting old messages and mails to destroy a night. These isolated cluster of words are good enough to rock your mind with a storm. They tell stories of people who moved on with an ease that took you by surprise, they remind you of the emotions you held by a leash and the ones you decided to let out. They tell tales of momentous joys which came as though they were to stay there forever and then without notice vanished into thin air leaving you without anything, oh except these messages. They are like taking a time travel, except, they don't give you the chance to relive anything or redo anything. So they can either fill you with pleasure of momentous joys or make you cry about things you couldn't do, the words you couldn't utter. In either case there is a sense of loss. And weepy eyes, not good for an all-night-er!

4.Rediscovering the joy of eating in the middle of the night. In the last few hours I have finished two packets of Maggi, two cups of tea and my hand is frequently going back to the salted peanuts' packet. Such a pleasurable distraction....

5. Sometime in the middle of the night, when I am almost at the point of giving up, a chat window pops open and there is a friend still wide awake miles and miles away in a different part of the world. Conversations about all the exciting things in life has to happen now. Of course, the friend cheers me up and pushes me to work harder, but as the old saying goes time waits for no one,not a bit!

6.Music- Here is my list. All these pieces are available on You Tube if anyone is interested in listening. I am not adding the links as I might be violating the copyright laws.

Christina Perri
'Human'
'Lonely'
'Jar of Hearts'
'Thousand years.'

From Bollywood

London Thumakda (from 'Queen')
Soona Saha (From 'Highway')
Patakha Guddi (From 'Highway')
Naina Neer (From 'Water')

Anoushka Shankar
Just yesterday her publicity team released this new song, Lasya,  have a look :)
http://sinfinimusic.com/uk/watch/performances/other-performances/anoushka-shankar-performs-lasya

Maire Brennan
'Against the wind.'
I started listening to Celtic Music very recently. It does have an element of charm to it. This one by Brennan comes with extraordinary persuasive energy.

(I will keep editing the list as the night progresses!)

7. And finally, the temptation to write this blog right now and not wait until tomorrow, until I finish the submission....

Need I say that the all-night-er project is rapidly moving towards a tragic ending? Anyway I am going now, back to work, hoping against hopes to make some good come out of the all night-er!

-Aparna