Soliloquy of an observant simpleton

There is so much that delights the heart,

So much that soothes the soul,

So many views to find peace,

So much warmth in the world so cold.

A light raindrop on a parched lip,

A little sun ray in cloud’s crevice

A short lived peck on a soft cheek,

An expert shot from a learning novice.

And then I see a little girl,

Her dress stained with dirt and grime,

A tattered book sheltered in thin arms,

The confidence as she rattles a rhyme.

Next I see a swarthy man,

Pushing the carts at a mighty store,

He works hard to earn a little,

Proud of the uniform he wore.

Lost in wonder, my wallet falls,

I lose a good sum of money;

Worried and anxious I feel low,

The means to go home, I don’t have any.

And then running through the rain,

An angel comes, drenched from cap to shoe

He hands me the wallet I had lost.

His uniform is white and blue.

And then I think of heart break tales,

Of killing, lies, and crimes,

And before my heart can sink to a low,

My soul hears the positive chimes.

There is so little than angers me,

And I get provoked to cry;

But it takes even lesser for me,

For my face to break into a smile.

Little things from everyday,

A treasure trove of happiness,

Little humanity from human beings,

A cure to all wretchedness.

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Ode to the love of my head

A constant companion it was,
To places far and near,
Where did I leave you friend?
Why did you go away dear?

Your protection kept me safe,
More than the creams with spf 50
You were like a brother, a lover
Saving me from cops and other difficulty.

You kept my head held high,
Light and cute you were,
Now when I ride in crowds
My eyes search you everywhere.

Only if you had strong legs,
You could have come back to me,
Sitting on top, watching the road,
And letting me be worry free.

Alas, you’re gone, and I miss you,
My pretty black sweet helmet,
No macho fibre can ever replace you,
Till your perfect match I get.

Shine and Smile

That cackling laughter was so over the top;

But the people around could not make her stop.

Her spirit was her constant companion,

And they were there for each other a lot.

That crazy toothy giggling sometimes made no sense;

The laughter would seem misplaced, when times were tense.

But there was no stopping this one,

Every minute for her was glee and fun.

But was it really all that merry?

When you are a burden, and cannot see?

She was born blind, with troubles in her blood

She chose not to break, but get wings like a bird.

She laughed at the foolishness,

When people cried and made a mess.

Mamma cried coz her baby was dying

Dadda cried coz the dying baby was thine.

Others cried at her misery;

They looked at her and got teary.

But didn’t all who come have to go?

Then why was death causing so much sorrow?

She did not wish to waste a second’s time

Feeling sad, and giving pity a dime.

Life was now, right here with her

She was going to make it better.

The joy of smiles she wished to spread,

Even when she lay on her dying bed;

Remember me as a happy child,

Not someone sick, sad, and blind.

And then she took her last breath,

And life oozed out lapped up by death.

But a beautiful smile rested on her lips,

Like she was still there, with life in her grip.

Don’t cry coz my lil one lives on,

Like a star light, even when its gone.

The mother embraced her child one last time,

And whispered in her ears, I will live like you, with shine and smile.

Ektu cholo jai

Tondra nishaar domka haowaye, prodeep nibho nibho;
Ondhokar e hotath akash halogen e bhorey gelo.
Tomosha adhaar chhinno korey, alo elo ghorey;
Keno tobe moner maajhey gohon baash korey?

Ek chiltey haashir khojey, oshru dilam daam,
Keno tobe haashir faankey, rowdawn obiraam?
Shonnashini ekla holeo, shongi shokol bhubon,
Ghor konna agley rekheo, hariye gelo shujon.

Ei besh tobe tyag korey chol, beriye pori khonje
Halogen na thakle shathe, poornima hok pothey.
Bhromon kori moho chherey, prithibir bistaar;
Shonkho cheeler paakhna mele, bhobi hobo paar!

Don’t get to a start

 

broken-heart-red-md

Girl:
I say, you go, you say no more;
I try, but cry, till my tears dry.
You leave, no good bye;
I stay and ask why?
The spiraling smoke, the fumes choke
It hurts most, when the heart’s broke.
I say, I will, but it’s a hard drill
Go on smiling, when all’s going downhill.
So listen up, when I say,
Grow up and don’t play.
Don’t get to a start,
When you know you’ll leave halfway.

Boy:
You say, I go, I say no more;
I try, but then, you have shut the door.
I stand all night;
You don’t end the fight.
The cigarette smoke, I sense;
It spirals and gets dense.
I wait, I try, but you don’t come;
You smile, I cry, I look so dumb.
So listen up, when I say,
Grow up and don’t play.
Don’t get to a start,
When you know you’ll leave halfway.

Boy and Girl:
I met; you met, people later;
He is, she is a lovely chapter.
But the book, you see, was about you;
But maybe it is not so true.
The pain, the hurt, is finally over;
Yet you slip my lip, when’s the heart isn’t sober.

Boy:
That warmth in your eyes still makes me sway;
Maybe you were the one that got away.
So listen up, when I say,
Grow up and don’t play.
Don’t get to a start,
When you know you’ll leave halfway.

Girl:
That warmth of your hug still makes sway;
Maybe you were the one that got away.
So listen up, when I say,
Grow up and don’t play.
Don’t get to a start,
When you know you’ll leave halfway.

Where Does God Fit In?

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Little Vishal did not understand it at all. Why were people not scolding him today? Why was daddy not draping the superman cape around his little back? Why was granny not shouting at him to take bath? Why was Sneha didi not complaining nor crying when he rummaged through her bag? And mom. Where was she?

The three year old had not heard his mom’s voice since morning. Everyone was out in the veranda and the lawn. But whenever he tried to go there, he was stopped by someone. So he made ruckus inside, in the hope that someone would ask him to go out. But it was strange today. Not one soul shouted at him. And all of them looked…now what was it called? Sad? Papa avoided looking at him. But his eyes looked red, like the monster on Nickelodeon. But why? Granny did not bother to change her saree; she generally did that every morning. But where was mom? Was she angry with him for fussing over his dinner last night?

“Oh Krishnaji, I will drink my milk and eat my food without troubling mom. I promise. Please tell her not to be angry with me.” Vishal closed his eyes, joined his baby palms and prayed faithfully.

But his mother was not going to come back to him ever again.

At 5:30 every morning, Saakshi went to the milk booth nearby. Like any other day she had gone out today. She bought the milk and was on her way back. Suddenly a man attacked her. He had a sharp blade in his hand. He asked her to give her valuables to him. Frightened at the situation, Saakshi looked around for help. There were others who had come to the milk shop. But everyone watched with intrigue and fear. Not one person stood up for helpless Sakshi. She handed over the milk packet to him, and cried out loud, “Please let me go. I don’t have anything with me.” Furious and frustrated the attacker caught her by the hair and pulled her away from public sight. The bystanders tiptoed and followed. The attacker looked back and fumed at them, flashing at them the sharp blade. At his hideout nearby, the angry man raped Sakshi and then slit her wrists like it was a demon’s doing. 6:30am Saakshi, a mother, a wife, a daughter died.

Where is father? Why hasn’t he come back home? Has God listened to mother’s prayers? We have not eaten the whole day. I am very hungry. But so is mother. So I cannot complain right now. But tomorrow morning I will sit at the mosque gate. Someone will surely give me something to eat.

The little four year old Shabnam was worried about her father. He had left in the afternoon. He had beaten mother as usual and then left the shack with Rs 50. That was all mother had with her. Mother had cried the whole day cursing her luck. She had prayed to god to make this man, her husband disappear forever. And then she had cried again. Now her tears had dried and she was asleep on the dirty floor. There was nothing to eat inside the shack. Shabnam did not feel like crying again. Instead she took her limbless doll and pretended to make dough with water and loose mud. Evening had given way to night and now all was quiet. Tired and lonely, Shabnam sat down beside her mother; ‘where is father? When will he come?’ she thought.

Her mother stirred a little. Shabnam put her dirty little palm on her mother’s forehead. It was burning. The little girl had seen others put wet cloth on the forehead when it was hot. She did the same. And she prayed. “Allah, please make my mother fine. I will not complain about being hungry. I promise.”

Suddenly at the dead of the night, she heard her father come in. He was screaming and calling names to someone or something called ‘Sala Sarkar’. Shabnam did not understand the target for his father’s rage, but he was very angry, and she understood that perfectly. Getting up from beside her mother, little Shabnam put a glass of water near the entrance. “Father must be parched after all the screaming.” She thought.

Finally he came inside the shack. He demanded food. Shabnam was scared to say no. So she kept quiet. She was expecting a tight slap on her face. To her shock and surprise, her father broke down crying.

“Why is he crying? Is he hungry like me? But I am not crying. Maybe the Sarkar he was shouting at has hurt him. Or maybe he lost the Rs 50.” Her tiny mind could not process the scene before her.

Her father looked at her sick mother. Her breathing had become very shallow. In a vain effort, he tried to soothe her. And then slowly, like a wilted leaf, she stopped breathing. Like a possessed man, the father looked around for something. He was not crying. Certain hardness had set upon his face.  He was searching frantically for something.

The little four year old Shabnam had dozed off in the middle of all this. The noise of utensils falling woke her up. As she opened her eyes, she saw her father run out of the house with a shining sharp blade in his hand!

A day after Sakshi’s death, riot broke out in the city.

Hindus blamed Muslims for their barbaric behavior. Muslims in the city retorted. Hindu men attacked Muslim women on the streets. Muslims responded with equal violence. A curfew set in. Military troops poured in to control the violence. Hindus were injured. Muslims lay bleeding. Blood banks we busy supplying blood to the injured men. And in the midst of all this two little children wondered:

“Why didn’t Krishna bring back my mom?”

“Why did Allah take my mom?”

The Mystery of it

 

It

He never promised to be there;
She never asked him to stay;
They knew when the time came,
Both would have to go their way.
He never promised commitment;
She never demanded any;
Then what was ‘it’, they had between?
Neither clue nor epiphany.

The glow of the night was saying something,
Some whisper she failed to hear;
The glow of the night was saying something,
The whisper he got them clear.
The moment struck, the lips met
Desires ran deep;
He held her close, she held her tear,
Coz it was no time to weep.

The morning light saw him smile,
Her face too caught the light;
His eyes shone with victory,
Her eyes shone all bright.
Adieu sweet soul, see you soon
Was what he said aloud…
It was a game, she let you win
That’s all it was about.

The tide of time washed it all,
The memories lingered on;
He laughed with her and she with him,
Like nothing had come nor gone.
But a part of him he had shared,
His feelings he had shown;
A part of her she had given,
Hers it was no more.

So what was it that he had shared?
The present, His soul or being?
What was it that she had given?
Her emotions and feeling?
The ‘it’ is still unknown to her;
She wants to cherish it still.
The ‘it’ is still elusive to him,
The blanks he has to fill.