Monday 31 October 2022

Oh, the lifetimes it will live!


I get that all flesh is grass, quite apart

from the lofty meanings of transience

I get it the green that sprouts must also dry

but inside my head, deep down inside my heart

there’s a rejection of both faith and science

the decrees whatever blooms must also die.

Spare me the lectures, I’ve heard all that before -

my flesh is the grass and the herbivore.

Yes it dies and no it doesn’t, lives beyond

many lifetimes and treads the grass it’s made of,

how do you measure its lifespan as finite? –

make it fit into words to correspond

exactly as given, sans leeway and love,

demarcate its death and its depth and height?

Sunday 23 October 2022

Not Happening


There are some things I know aren’t happening

although I’ve wanted them with all the force

I could muster from the very beginning.

A dormer window. Guava tree. A course

on floating. A tripfree tongue. The universe

has other work, can’t always be listening,

aligning the Rubik’s cube of perverse

desires that snatch at arbitrary things.


Some things aren’t going to happen I know

they’re going to be always denied me - 

what earthly use is a dormer window

on dead flat roofs? It’s an anomaly.

Still I press on, undeterred. Who knows? Maybe

next time, next life? Maybe just moments to go.

It's Diwali, which is actually a festival of five days the main point of which is the festival of lamps. Shubha Deepavali if you are celebrating/observing. 

May the light of peace and plenty shine brightly around you always. 

Thursday 20 October 2022

Write... Edit... Publish... October 2022 : Thriller


Time to get back to Write…Edit…Publish… for the funnest of the challenges – the Halloween fearfest. This year we are writing to musical prompts and MJ's Thriller is the one for the Halloween month. Do please note however, that WEP welcomes all genres apart from the creepy and spooky too (except erotica).

My October has been insane, super-mixed -  family visiting from the US, a power outage, an evacuation and two main festivals - head's spinning. Rather a lot of people I know who're going through stressful situations, that's been worrying too. Keeping them all in my thoughts and wishing them well and able to cope with their respective challenges. 

So - a serious crunch in writing time, let alone editing. I’ve chopped as ruthlessly as I could but am a tad over the word count still, the original was 1700+ and I got whittle fatigue and gave up. My apologies.

A Different Route to Return


There was a rickety pier, just off the port, opposite the Lequana island. One could get a boat there and leave all one’s troubles behind. The waves always rocked Eddy to peace. He used to sail out on one of his own in another lifetime. Now he had to hire one. He smiled a crooked smile. 

Monday 17 October 2022

Cursory Rhyme


One, two.

No, I don't. Maybe I do.

Three, four.

What's that bit of paper for?

Five, six.

Oil and water never mix.

Seven, eight.

Not easy to keep it straight.

Nine, ten.

Don't undo, let's try again?

Eleven, twelve.

I can do it! - with your help.

Thirteen, fourteen.

Priorities need some sorting.

Fifteen, sixteen.

All quite streamlined, and pristine.

Seventeen, eighteen.

Close windows and get offscreen.

Nineteen, twenty.

That enough? is that plenty? 

Talking about numbers - I had zero intentions of posting this, in fact I'd sat down with a completely different idea but this rhyme muscled its way in and wrote itself at top speed and then vanished and  also annihilated the other idea, far more well thought out and planned, I must tell you. I couldn't find a trace of it anywhere afterwards. Is it just me or does this happen to you as well? This lightning bolt idea that mushrooms out of nowhere and obliterates everything previously planned in a head-on mega collision that gives the big bang a run for its money? No, okay...just me then.

Btw, I've just completed six months in Fiji. With my usual unmindfulness, the day slipped by before I noticed. But the great thing was my nephew and his family were here visiting and we met up for dinner and had an entirely wonderful time, so it didn't go unmarked or uncelebrated. And the frangipanis are blooming now. Singly or in bunches of eight to ten. Love that family of flowers too.  

Monday 10 October 2022

Can't Get Her Out of My Head


A crumpled-mangled scarf lies on the ground,

it’s been rendered colourless by the sun,

it once had the tiny thumbprints of a dream

but now it’s as bleached as a skeletal scream,

she’d let the edge slip an inch – she was young,

she may’ve forgotten that even a gleam,

even a minute inch can bring dreams down.


Someone creates a monument to her hair

and to those who dream and so let their scarves slip.

The blades of grass cannot be outnumbered,

each ends in a point, each is unencumbered

by laws of mortal men and leadership.

Let those whose scarves slip be always remembered

in each word and silence, across city squares.

I'm still with her, can't get over what's happened and don't think I should or even want to. I'm in awe of  that memorial sculpture but we'd all be better off if there were no motivation to create it in the first place. The image is a screengrab from Dezeen which I can't seem to credit w/o linking back to my 'edit post' page. Weirdness unlimited, part of the same pattern. 

Personally I've had a bizarre week, which was the main festival  (Navaratri/Durgapuja) for my community - started off with a super spooky electrical fault like nothing I've experienced in my life. The power had to be shut off, piles of frozen stuff thrown away and we had to ultimately move to the guest house till the conduits were plucked out and re-laid. Back now and all running as normal. 

But my challenges pale into insignificance compared to what women elsewhere face daily. Thankful for all that I was/am given, for every challenge and its final outcome. 

Shubho Bijoya! to you if you're celebrating, and happy week if you're not. May there be much beauty for your eyes, sweets for your tongue and freedom and peace wherever in the world you are.

Sunday 2 October 2022

Don't You Dare!



Give me a word as the sunset is to sea -

a tender ocean cupped by infinity,

give me a word as the wind is to hair

rake your fingers through and give no scarves to wear.

Some...any word that humanises me.

Just say something as choice is to the soul.

But if you can’t then don’t you dare speak at all.


Give me a word as plumed grass is to free,

rooted to the ground but at one end only.

Oh I have waited far too long for you to care,

give me your word or else watch me burn and tear,

just watch my sharpest edge slash gleefully

through these massive knots that presume to control,

and if you can’t then don’t you dare speak at all. 

For all my daughters, those that were never born and those that were born to other mothers.