Tuesday, December 21, 2010

ANOTHER CONFLICT. ANOTHER PROTAGONIST.

What do I have
But to suck happiness from these books
Pressing upon these leather bound yellow pages
As though its life would assume mine
Or the other way round,
 To implant my life
Into these pages
That so and so loved me,
Hated me, scorned me,
 That I fought for what I thought
Was given to me in birth
If I could convert it all into words
Written in black ink on white paper.
That my futile experiments to love
Threw me into chaos and disharmony
Unsure, Afraid, Uncertain
Worries and torments
I don’t quite know if I did love him
But memories, they don’t fade.
 They stay embedded like ice on the Arctic
Receding during summers
 But back again in winters.
 And then there are other things
 That press upon my soul
 Knocking on my door
 To be let in during a midwinter’s night.
Lovers or murderers, I know not.
I do not wish to know
 So I turn the page.
 Another chapter, another conflict, another protagonist.

THE WORLD IN NOT QUITE RIGHT

You know the world is not quite right
When you wake up in the morning late
And the beams of light fall into your eyes like pins.
And then your mother’s voice
Rattle on, about duties
 You never fulfilled, mentioning
 The darling daughter next door.
 You can’t bear her sly smile
She wouldn’t lift a finger
Even if she sees her friend murdered.
 But you keep your thoughts to yourself.
And there is sugar in the milk,
 You bite into an apple not quite crisp,
 The toast is burnt coal black
 And the butter doesn’t melt.
 You haven’t talked to him in six days.
 And he doesn’t show signs of making the first move
And callous seems the world.
Too much in a hurry to stop by
And inquire into your troubles and sorrows
You pick up your favorite book
You don’t read beyond a word.
You don’t pick up his call.
 You don’t want to go for dinner
With the man, you thought yesterday
Was the love of your life.
You break the wine glass
While wiping them clean.
 You can’t quite find the paintbrushes
For your Audrey Hepburn pop-art.
 And hot tears of resentment
Stream down your face
 Even though not a single sob escapes
From your embittered mouth,
 Lips drawn in a line.
 And you throw yourself on the unmade bed
 And try to sleep it off.

Monday, December 20, 2010

CAGED IN BEAUTY

Ivory skin, red lips,
 Doe eyes, black curls
The world rises to greet you.
 Men flutter around you like bees on violets.
 Women smile at you, with awe and envy.
From your Rolls Royce, you see
Sunny faces in their rusted bicycles.
 You envy them, their freedom.
 You could have been one of them.
 When you utter a word, the world nods.
 Not fully understanding
But eager to please you.
 They agree, they consent,
 They never understood.
You light your cigarette,
 Toast your champagne.
 Another wedding anniversary,
 Another unhappy marriage.
You are marked for  a life
Where all pretty things dwell.
 You don’t want them,
 They don’t hear you.
 Cruel those kind words
 And strained smiling faces seem to you
To cage you in beauty.
 Trapped by high birth.
 Isn’t it as pathetic to see
A child trapped in wealth as it is to see
A child struggling with poverty?

I more You & You more I

Whenever I slip out of your orbit
 You send me a comet to remember you by.
There are times when both of us
 Fall out of love
And your features blurr
And desire crumbles into dust
Replaced by mild bewilderment.
 And the painless loss of the one I loved
Or thought I loved.
We meet in dreams,
 In the early morning dawn
Bathed in fog and drops of dew.
So much hesitation,
 Would this mark our lives?
But when I think I have left you behind
 In the pen on your mahogany office desk.
In the incessant meetings, oblivious to my absence,
Your scent lingers
It wafts into my bedroom window
Seeps into my Marchesa gown
Wears my gloves,
 Picks up my Chanel bag.
 Our road leads to nowhere
But it doesn’t deter us from
Leaving indelible marks
On each other’s features,
 Like permanent tattoos
 Conspicuous, noticeable,
 As though to draw attention.
Whenever I slip out of your orbit
You send me a comet to remember you by.
By now I have become more you
 And you more I.

Monday, December 13, 2010

I AM THE DAMNED

No, the sun wasn’t out
And her smile failed
To illuminate the gloomy day
Nor can I go on to describe her
In grand and ornate words.
 I am not the literary sort
And the last thing I want to do
Is pretend to be one.
I hated her then.
She, with her flawless ivory skin
And high spirits; the marks
Of a life devoid of humiliation
And then she did something
 Which caught me offguard-
She inquired the cause of my bruises, my scars,
That day, I was stopped by one of them
 In a khaki uniform
 You see hundreds of them
Littered all over the town…..
Brandishing their cold metallic toy
He had told me to lie down…
Flat on the ground
I hadn’t moved, just stared back
Insolently, he must have thought
 And that was when a piercing stab of pain
 Penetrated my skull
A part of me wanted to tell someone
And who better than a fool of a girl?
But would she understand my contempt
 Or would she, like everyone else,
 Chide me for not having had
 The sense to comply?
We stood for a while …
 As I contemplated whether to tell her.
 But I was afraid to change my image of her,
 Lest she spoke what
 I was afraid she might.
 She didn’t press me further
 Though in her heart,
 She might have understood.
                

WHO UNDERSTANDS?

 Searching
 For God knows what,
 Heavy steps on pebble-strewn grounds,
 The weight of ancient books,
 Agitated fingers moving constantly,
 Eyes darting, dream-like, faraway
 Cold, dark, gray,
 Who understands?
Of pop art and Andy Warhol,
 Neon, bright, blood red lips, peroxide blondes
 More agitation, the pent-up feeling of suppressed hopes,
 Trapped by birth, by communist principles,
 Soul shrieking at the subtle betrayal by best friends
 They laughed, and mocked, sniggered,
 Those wounds, still open, unhealed, unbandaged,
 Thinking of faraway lands, of Spanish tongues,
 Thinking, telling herself to think
 Of the jazz age, an escape
 Tired of the superficial embraces
 In the blue and white worlds
Exhausted by the constant monotony
Hands trembling at the sight of translucent dreams,
The photographs she would never click,
 The films she would never make.
 Nailed by convention, by circumstances,
Hurt by words, said and those left unsaid.
 Who understands
 But the people she finds in history books?
And the music that filters in her window
Or so she imagines,
 Beethoven and Mozart and Tchaikovsky,
 They understood.
 Not the people lying fast asleep in her dorm
 In the early Sunday dawn.
 There were no tears left to shed,
 No explanations to make.
 In a crowded city of skyscrapers-
 Ah! No more people, strangers shall prevail.