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Posts tagged ‘Poetry’

Don’t read.

I haven’t written anything I want to read.

I want my words to become a language on their own, to dance before your eyes, to sing to you in the silence.

I haven’t written anything I want to read.

I want my words to sketch characters in your mind, to fill your nights with colorful dreams, to show you sparks on a bright day.

I want my words to be yours when you lose your own, to say what’s true when you’re in doubt, to be with you when I can’t.

I haven’t written anything I want you to read.

The creeper

It sprang from beneath the dark earth
Upon the dark earth
Disillusioned by the light at first
That shone in the sky above

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A dry spell

The oasis of thoughts is running dry

Unkind is the trajectory of time

Between dreaming and doing

Imagination has sketched a fine line.

Pen, paper & poetry

Poetry can truly transcend time and geography, and make you believe in the equivalent of a fairy tale for adults; a kind of serene, beautiful existence where words can smell, touch, smile and cry.

The Street: Octavio Paz

A long and silent street.
I walk in blackness and I stumble and fall
and rise, and I walk blind, my feet
stepping on silent stones and dry leaves.
Someone behind me also stepping on stones, leaves:

if I slow down, he slows:
if I run, he runs. I turn: nobody.

Everything dark and doorless.
Turning and turning among these corners
which lead forever to the street
where I pursue a man who stumbles
and rises and says when he sees me: nobody

[Original: La calle]

Mad Girl’s Love Song: Sylvia Plath

"I shut my eyes and all the world drops dead;
I lift my lids and all is born again.
(I think I made you up inside my head.)
The stars go waltzing out in blue and red, And arbitrary blackness gallops in:
I shut my eyes and all the world drops dead.

I dreamed that you bewitched me into bed
And sung me moon-struck, kissed me quite insane.
(I think I made you up inside my head.)

God topples from the sky, hell's fires fade:
Exit seraphim and Satan's men:
I shut my eyes and all the world drops dead.

I fancied you'd return the way you said,
But I grow old and I forget your name.
(I think I made you up inside my head.)
The Saddest Poem: Pablo Neruda
Tonight I can write the saddest lines.

Write, for example,'The night is shattered
and the blue stars shiver in the distance.'

The night wind revolves in the sky and sings.

Tonight I can write the saddest lines.
I loved her, and sometimes she loved me too.

Through nights like this one I held her in my arms
I kissed her again and again under the endless sky.

She loved me sometimes, and I loved her too.
How could one not have loved her great still eyes.

Tonight I can write the saddest lines.
To think that I do not have her. To feel that I have lost her.

To hear the immense night, still more immense without her.
And the verse falls to the soul like dew to the pasture.

What does it matter that my love could not keep her.
The night is shattered and she is not with me.

This is all. In the distance someone is singing. In the distance.
My soul is not satisfied that it has lost her.

My sight searches for her as though to go to her.
My heart looks for her, and she is not with me.

The same night whitening the same trees.
We, of that time, are no longer the same.

I no longer love her, that's certain, but how I loved her.
My voice tried to find the wind to touch her hearing.

Another's. She will be another's. Like my kisses before.
Her voide. Her bright body. Her inifinite eyes.

I no longer love her, that's certain, but maybe I love her.
Love is so short, forgetting is so long.

Because through nights like this one I held her in my arms
my sould is not satisfied that it has lost her.

Though this be the last pain that she makes me suffer
and these the last verses that I write for her.
[Original: La Poesia]

Tick-tock

The blogosphere, it seems, it steadily disintegrating itself from my life. I crave to get my blogging and blog-stalking hours back. Damn inefficient time management in life outside of work, as though it doesn’t flaunt its ugly head all day anyway. I’m 3 weeks old in the working world, not yet neck-deep in work, and already begging for an extension in my 24-hour days. Slow down time, prithee.

If I write any more in this brain-dead state, this post will be nothing short of a rant. So here goes, one of few those chain mail poems that I still remember and find very apt at this point:

Have you ever watched kids
On a merry-go-round?
Or listened to the rain
Slapping on the ground?
Ever followed a butterfly’s erratic flight?
Or gazed at the sun into the fading night?

You better slow down
Don’t dance so fast
Time is short
The music won’t last.

Do you run through each day
On the fly?
When you ask How are you,
Do you hear the reply?
When the day is done,
Do you lie in your bed
With the next hundred chores
Running through your head?

You’d better slow down
Don’t dance so fast
Time is short
The music won’t last.

Ever told your child,
We’ll do it tomorrow?
And in your haste,
Not see his sorrow?
Ever lost touch,
Let a good friendship die
Cause you never had time
To call and say,’Hi’ ?

You’d better slow down.
Don’t dance so fast.
Time is short.
The music won’t last.

When you run so fast to get somewhere
You miss half the fun of getting there.
When you worry and hurry through your day,
It is like an unopened gift,
Thrown away.

Life is not a race
Do take it slower
Hear the music
Before the song is over.

Remembering August 6th

Today marks the anniversary of the atomic bombing of Hiroshima, and continues to send shivers down the spines of those that dare to reminisce. 64 years later, the world is still a cradle of hatred, cruelty and destruction.

Although we probably had our first tryst with World War II in 6th grade history textbooks, I deeply encountered the implications of war, weapons & death only in 9th grade literature. It tragically transformed historical numbers, facts and figures into real people, emotions and scars.
A doctor’s journal entry for August 6, 1945

The morning stretched calm, beautiful, and warm.
Sprawling half clad, I gazed out at the form
Of shimmering leaves and shadows. Suddenly
A strong flash, then another, startled me.
I saw the old stone lantern brightly lit.
Magnesium flares? While I debated it,
The roof, the walls and, as it seemed, the world
Collapsed in timber and debris, dust swirled
Around me – in the garden now – and, weird,
My drawers and undershirt disappeared.
A splinter jutted from my mangled thigh.
My right side bled, my cheek was torn, and I
Dislodged, detachedly, a piece of glass,
All the time wondering what had come to pass.
Where was my wife? Alarmed, I gave a shout,
‘Where are you, Yecko-san?’ My blood gushed out.
The artery in my neck? Scared for my life,
I called out, panic-stricken, to my wife.
Pale, bloodstained, frightened, Yecko-san emerged,
Holding her elbow. ‘We’ll be fine,’ I urged –
‘Let’s get out quickly.’ Stumbling to the street
We fell, tripped by something at our feet.
I gasped out, when I saw it was a head:
‘Excuse me, please excuse me –‘ He was dead:
A gate had crushed him. There we stood, afraid.
A house standing before us tilted, swayed,
Toppled, and crashed. Fire sprang up in the dust,
Spread by the wind. It dawned on us we must
Get to the hospital: we needed aid –
And I should help my staff too. (Though this made
Sense to me then, I wonder how I could)
My legs gave way. I sat down on the ground.
Thirst seized me, but no water could be found.
My breath was short, but bit by bit my strength
Seemed to revive, and I got up at length.
I was still naked, but I felt no shame.
This thought disturbed me somewhat, till I came
Upon a soldier, standing silently,
Who gave the towel round his neck to me
My legs, stiff with dried blood, rebelled. I said
To Yecko-san she must go on ahead.
She did not wish to, but in our distress
What choice had we? A dreadful loneliness
Came over me when she had gone. My mind
Ran at high speed, my body crept behind.
I saw the shadowy forms of people, some
Were ghosts, some scarecrows, all were wordless dumb –
Arms stretched straight out, shoulder to dangling hand;
It took some time for me to understand
The friction on their burns caused so much pain
They feared to chafe flesh against flesh again.
Those who could, shuffled in a blank parade
Towards the hospital. I saw, dismayed,
A woman with a child stand in my path –
Both naked. Had they come back from the bath?
I turned my gaze, but was at a loss
That she should stand thus, till I came across
A naked man – and now the thought arose
That some strange thing had stripped us of our clothes.
The face of an old woman on the ground
Was marred with suffering, but she made no sound.
Silence was common to us all. I heard
No cries of anguish, or a single word.

Poetry at its finest

While reading The Motorycle Diaries, I came across this hauntingly beautiful poem written by Otero Silva, a Venezuelan poet and novelist born in 1908:

I heard splashing on the boat
her bare feet
And sensed in our faces
the hungry dusk
My heart swaying between her
and the street, the road
I don’t know where I found the strength
to free myself from her eyes
to slip from her arms
She stayed, crying through rain and glass
clouded with grief and tears
She stayed, unable to cry
Wait! I will come
walking with you.

Take me home, to the place, I belong

When you’ve lived away from home for an extended period of time, you start to feel like a leaf, blown far away from its tree by the wind. Its roots though, which nourished and nurtured it, continue to deepen, as though replicating gravity that tends to draw you back to the earth you belong to.

The plane ride back to India from another country is a journey of nostalgia. There’s something sweet, touching and homely about it. Perhaps it is that warm feeling inside, a sense of belonging, a knot that seems to have been tied again. Perhaps just the change in air. The last few minutes before the plane hits the ground, with the seat tilting forward, ears blocked, thoughts turbulent, eyes trying to absorb the city lights outside the window…

And then it happens. The thud. The sound of tires screeching. Ears pop open to sounds you’ve known and lived among for years. The accents, the language. The smell of the air freshener, that you know will soon be replaced by salivating aromas. The blast of air that strokes your face when you step right outside the place, carrying with it  images to flood your mind. The warmth. Even the slow-moving immigration queue that you thought you’d become alien to, but not quite. And the lone thought that this is where you belong. Such is home.

In all the nostalgia, here’s my favorite poem from 12th grade literature:

To India – My Native Land
- Henry Louis Vivian Derozio

My country! In thy day of glory past
A beauteous halo circled round thy brow,
And worshipped as a deity thou wast.
Where is that glory, where that reverence now?
Thy eagle pinion is chained down at last,
And groveling in the lowly dust art thou:
Thy minstrel hath no wreath to weave for thee
Save the sad story of thy misery!

Well let me dive into the depths of time,
And bring from out the ages that have rolled
A few small fragments of those wrecks sublime,
Which human eyes may never more behold;
And let the guerdon of my labour be
My fallen country! One kind wish from thee!

Happy Birthday Blog!

T hree-6-5 days ago, this was just another wordpress.com weblog

H ere its umbilical chord was cut, it became The Shooting Star.

E nchanted by its first post, first reader & first comment, this blog

S ang its way into the blogosphere, with cliched themes & bizarre.

H ome to 105 posts & graced by 16,000 readers, now is a moment

O f reflection & joy, and gratitude & celebration.

O nce upon a time, a blog was merely meant

T o be a goofy forum; today it redefines communication

I n a world where time & ideas are hard to find.

N ow I deviate from this happy, proud occasion,

G lad indeed that The Shooting Star has defined

S omething in my life that was once mere anticipation.

T hrough this journey, my blog has become a part of me

A s I write this, I think about the future and what has been

R eally, all I want to say is, dear blog, Happy Birthday!

happy_birthday_stars

On The Shooting Star’s first birthday, I must thank all my fellow bloggers for keeping me company through this incredible journey! A special thanks to Amit, Premanjali, Varun, Radhika, AadilAkanksha, Pranav, Jayesh & Mahak.

The Blogosphere would be so lonely without all of you :D

Untitled

This happened in the summer of 2007, when all I wanted to do was lie under the mango tree in the backyard of my house, and make patterns in my head by tracing out the blue of the sky and the white of the clouds, visible through the small peep-holes made by the leaves of the mango tree. It was still a fortnight and a rain shower before the first batch of mangos would be magically transformed from raw green to the color of the sun whose rays they bathed in day after day.   

It wasn’t a particularly hot or dry summer. I spent many an evening sprawling under the voluminous mango tree, listening to the evening cries of birds that nested in my backyard, watching the leaves dance in the occasional breeze, toying with infinite thoughts about our universe. On one such daily dates with nature, when the birds hadn’t yet started chirping, the silence of the evening was broken by my pet dog howling in the distance. His pitch would rise and fall, but his head remained turned upward towards the sky. You probably know the myths that associate dogs crying with spirits floating in the sky. Not that I believed any of them.

I drifted back to reality and yelled out his name, wondering what he saw up there that I couldn’t see. I barely had time to consider, for he was right beside me, violently digging up the ground. Now, if you have been around dogs, you’d know they do that kind of a thing; they dig, sometimes for no apparent reason. I decided to ignore the digging as I watched the sun slowly wrap up for the day, a sight that has never ceased to capture me.

What happened next is why I remember those days so vividly. It turned out that my dog had been digging so conscientiously in that particular spot for a reason, a treasure of sorts. I remember observing him under the last traces of daylight, digging relentlessly. He suddenly stopped and ran out of the backyard, leaving me alone in the looming dark, with a pit as deep as an arm, and something shiny inside it. Somewhere near the main entrance of the house, he began howling again, as though reporting the completion of his task. He was joined by several others, all crying at variable pitches, while a shiver passed through me as I looked upon the shine in the dark and thought about all their faces fixed towards the dark sky.

The shiny object buried and recovered from the earth in my backyard, was a piece of paper. I can’t say how it got there or how my dog found it, but there it sat, waiting to be read. It’s lines are etched in my head, and I still shudder to think of the interpretations.

“In passing by this land I lie
Upon the dark earth about me
The flesh, the blood.”

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