pause.

Your song

is a
choir of
rushed strokes
of black
hollow
paint
on a
white
anxious
canvas
dangling free.
Free.
From a
lone nail
on a
brick wall
standing old
behind
the house
of your
dreams.

You bury
the dead
behind it.
They rise
up
as
demons
on starry nights
and
throw
an embrace
around your
weary
tense
bruised
neck.

You love them.
They love you.
They love you
for giving them
a paradise
to stay at.

Your heart
was once
heaven
to the lost.
Now,
it’s home to them.
‘Cause
the lost
never knew
a comfort
half as dark
as your
darkness.

Your darkness
is
their refuge.
Away.
Away from
the light and luster.

‘Cause
the lost
got lost
in their quest
away
from the light.
And,
that light
chased them back
every morning
until
they found
your heart.

Now,
they won’t
leave.

And you,
you will
have to
make peace
with these
new demons of yours.

Will you?
If you,
then
you too,
go lost.

Would you
like that?
If not…
then,

pause.

Dear Anxiety,

I am drowning.

There is a fire in my head and it’s stinging at the back of my throat. My feet weigh a hundred pounds and I am scared to take another step. My heart is dancing to its own rhythm, but, the beats are heavy metal now; I killed the symphony for a few cheap tears. 

Air feels like poisoned water and the world feels like a bedless ocean. 

I am struggling.

Stretching my hands out. Hitting them against nothing. Trying to fetch a grip of the unknown.

I can’t see.
I can’t breathe.
I can’t feel.

But I… I can hear… I can hear you. Standing in a corner of this dingy dark room, smirking at my pale shivering body and laughing at the void in my eyes. 

There is only so much a heart can take.
You stab it once. It weeps.
Once again and it screams.
Thrice and it falls silent.

Silent. Too silent for silence to hear itself hum.
Humming to the choir of truths and lies.
Humming to the cords of your broken guitar.
Humming to you.

Do you know what follows dead silence?
A roaring storm.

And before you know it, you find yourself running.
Around the room.
Pulling curtains down.
Breaking windows.

You rage up. You let the flames out. You begin to count. You begin to sing.
You begin to hug yourself, feeling hopeless out of sheer pain and then harm yourself to cause more of it.

Dear Anxiety,
You are funny!

You heal, You lie; You tear me up and you fly… away… until next time when my peace begins to threaten you and my giggles sound like war cries.

You are a demon. You are my demon. You are the devil I love to play with. You meet me behind the fallen curtains of well-lit stages. You denounce shame on my courage and take pride in my anger. 

You are a champion. So far, in the past few years, you have never lost a battle against me.
You win.

And I… I let you. I let you walk away with victory as if I never aimed at it.
And the worst part? That is the truth!
It is!

Because, dear anxiety,

I am drowning… and it comes with a strange delusional peace.

With fear,
G.

 

Burns and Ashes

Black and burnt hearts fall down to ashes when you aim at them with the cupid’s arrow. If that doesn’t scare you enough against love stories gone rogue, then you may want to grab a glimpse of the poison spat rose pressed in the old and worn pages of a happy love story.

Heartbreaks are like untimely deaths, and the tears that follow are like watered flames of a rain-drenched funeral. Eulogies die under muffled heavy breaths and you sob till the next mourning sun dawns over your moonless night. You face that sun, smelling like stale giggles and sour hugs.

A curse too harsh for the lover inside you!

What happens next? That lover elopes.

You stop seeing the world through pink stained glasses. Your whites don’t preach out peace now, instead, they scream indifference. The yellows don’t sing for joy, but they lie, down and dusted.

Your world is no longer a castle made up of stardust and crystals. Your slippers aren’t glass and you don’t walk around, crowned with flowers. 

Now, you reign the voids and your fires cast shadows of their own. You find comfort in darkness and the Sun burns at your skin.

You sleep to howling wolves and wake up to fighting Ravens. But, regardless, you live; you learn to…

You learn to live, adorning ashes and romancing burnt ruins. You are a lone poet, except, now you aren’t in love with ‘love’.

You bleed in the darkest shade of blue and weave out gospels. But, no matter which storm pulls you into its eye, you write… and you live!

Art and The Conflicted Face of Humanity

Blind Goldsmiths hate silver just as much as their wives hate gold. It must be a tragedy when you happen to lose the key to your craft, and this has to be the most painful of  all deaths artists can call upon themselves.

Talking about art, it can’t be understood as anything less than sorcery. You take abstracts, spin them into a few harsh truths, pour magical lies onto this intricate weave and gift it to a lone bystander in the name of beauty.

And, if that isn’t enough for you to feel the power of your craft, then you may sometimes choose to strangle a demon and then put that dead beast on a proud display.
Who said artists were kind?

Kindness, if we please, can be seen as a lost virtue to humanity. The human world gave away its tenderness as a sacrifice against all things glitter and gold. Subsequently, humanity, now, is all about the hypnotic chase; a chase for the amber drenched evening horizon; a chase against time.

Humans, lately, haven’t been acting like the wise animals they are known to be. We are still clinging onto the older, softer and prettier idea of humanity. The one that was about smiles and love.

It will only prove to be of help if we look right into the eyes of reality and face it.

Humanity, now, is the virtue of hunters; it’s about all things sharp and threatening. The sooner we realize this, the better!

Broken Cursives…

Have you ever lost your heart in the hems of broken cursives?
It’s a mystic realm that draws you in… like a black hole is known to snatch the world away.

To the people of stones and metal, it may seem like forbidden magic when a poet holds your hand and walks you through the dark.

They chant to the silent tunes of truths and wonders; and scream at the sight of lies and vows.

Vows… let’s talk about them! They belong to the grey world of lack and lustre. You may have vowed your world to the orphan, or… You may have betrothed your misery to power.

Either way… it’s a town of beauty! The finesse lures you in a blink… and you fall!

After all, who would not fall for ‘slavery’ over ‘self’? Humans do!

So, when a poet spins metaphors around a dead log of wood, and her avowal calls it ‘Ivory’… you buy it!
Why? Because we buy into words.

Our eyes have grown too tired, now that we have chased the light for ages… ‘Lack’ sounds like peace!

When Jasmines begin to smell like Lavenders!

Love stories! They are like broken glass beads thrown ashore to the dead sea! You, as a lone bystander, may happen to step upon the sharp ones every other fortnight! Then, you may bleed a little and your lips may sin to mumble a soft curse at their beauty. When that happens… don’t fret away from taking another step!

In every love story, there comes a time when jasmines begin to smell like lavenders. That’s when you must pick your tears up and run!

Why? 

Because nothing heals better than the sweet nectar which oozes out of those flowers… and healing, my friend, is a scary business!

Here’s a funny thing about scars! They walk the face of this planet with a tiny bag of peace hanging down their shoulders. When you happen to bump into one, the thorns may sting you for a second… but, sooner than you realise, you will find yourself swooning to the tunes of their tranquillising sorcery.

Having said that, love is a nightmare to the broken and boozed. It is the kind of torment which makes wolves howl on dark and lonely nights.

The worst part?

Once you trip and fall on the side of this road, you won’t wake up before dawn. Your eyes will be left yearning for the dark.

Befoolery, in our world, is a celebrated virtue… and love has always been a fool’s master trick!

So, for once, let yourself fall for the trickery and gasp at the magic. For once, make your jasmines smell like lavenders! Healing must be a scary business, but since when have the broken started shying away from fear, huh?

To the one who broke my broken heart again,

You know, our world has lost its music to the broken records of numb melancholy! Our hearts look like abandoned graves with dead corpses of beautiful love stories buried underneath. Those despised gravestones glow at night, and one of them grows a tiny pink flower every time it rains!

Do you know how much it pains to be the only ray of life in the land of death? It hurts as bad as the last push, which devours the life out of a birthing mother… except, this pain won’t end in the music of a baby’s first cry! Instead, it will fall in the shallow curve of a fading smile!

Three months ago, when I met you, I remember frowning at your story! It was the same old chronicle of a saddening sunset that kept you from gasping at the beauty of your mourning sun.
You told me how you ran behind the dying glaze of that somber afternoon, trying to pause time… you wanted those shades of gold to paint your life forever. I remember listening to you as you sobbed on my shoulder, in the silence of those lonely midnights.

In those moments, you know, I wanted to take your hands in mine, spill my sunshine into your world and then call it a sweet accident. I didn’t… I didn’t until you told me to!

I didn’t, until you woke up one day, pulled me into a corner, and bared your heart. You wanted my fingers to trace the hem of your bleeding wounds. You wanted me to fall into your tired arms, put all the scattered pieces back together, and build a humble abode for us.

I don’t know if you will be happy to know this, but I fell for those dreams! I fell for the way your eyes shined at the thought of that! I fell for the way you set my soul ablaze. So, I… I chose to stay there!
I unpacked my bags and started decorating those old wooden shelves with shiny charms and painted vases. I pulled the old curtains down to let the sun in! I made the bed, smiling at the idea of ‘us’ in it! I cooked food… and then!

Then, I took a chair, sat in front of the door, and waited… for seconds, minutes, hours… I waited as the noisy hands of your wall clock went around it! I waited until I ran out of breath; till my eyes started to daze in sleep… I waited for an eternity!

You never came back home… you never did!

I wanted to wait, but I can’t wait any longer! So, I am leaving this letter under your favorite blue vase. When you find it, it may rain over the gloom in your heart. Just walk around and look for a tiny pink flower, smile at it, and bask in its rarity.

Because it takes courage to be the only ray of life in the land of death. That courage, when shown, must be celebrated!

Still waiting in a flower somewhere,
G.

 

Cassettes and wine!

 

You were that lazy sip of wine under the beaming silver of falling stars. You would swirl on my skin, tingle my tongue and tease my throat till my lips would break into a dimming smile and my eyes would spill love.⁣⁣⁣⁣⁣⁣
⁣⁣⁣⁣⁣⁣
My fingers traced… they traced the chiseled edges of your jaw just like they run over the cracked hem of my wine glass.⁣⁣⁣⁣⁣⁣
⁣⁣⁣⁣⁣⁣
You were special…⁣⁣⁣⁣⁣⁣
⁣⁣⁣⁣⁣⁣
You… you were the rare cassette. One that’s worthy of honoring every vintage collection. Kept in a case of shimmering gold; draped in velvet.⁣⁣⁣⁣⁣⁣
⁣⁣⁣⁣⁣⁣
You would sing the songs of pinching nostalgia, paint the walls with colors of retro sepia and calm my nerves like forbidden magic.⁣⁣⁣⁣⁣⁣
⁣⁣⁣⁣⁣⁣
You were rare…⁣⁣⁣⁣⁣⁣
⁣⁣⁣⁣⁣⁣
But then… every writer has a fancy oil lamp in her room, and I am no exception!⁣⁣⁣⁣⁣⁣
⁣⁣⁣⁣⁣⁣
Every night, I feed some oil to its fire. It burns with somber brilliance and dies by midnight.⁣⁣⁣⁣⁣⁣
⁣⁣⁣⁣⁣⁣
Every night, I stare at its dying flame like a doomed lunatic. I stare long enough for its soul to haunt my eyes every time I blink.⁣⁣⁣⁣⁣⁣
⁣⁣⁣⁣⁣⁣
Every night, I witness fate! I listen to its hushed lessons as it howls back at me!⁣⁣⁣⁣⁣⁣
⁣⁣⁣⁣⁣⁣
Flames die, you see!⁣⁣⁣⁣⁣⁣
⁣⁣⁣⁣⁣⁣
Now… sitting beside those dying flames, sipping on wine out of my crooked wine glass and listening to a stuck cassette tape… I know what made you leave…⁣⁣⁣⁣⁣⁣
⁣⁣⁣⁣⁣⁣
Flames died sooner than I wanted them to!⁣⁣⁣⁣⁣⁣
⁣⁣⁣⁣⁣⁣

 

Bone china

These days, I find myself swooning over lazy afternoon naps. I may have found a strange solace in the cruel lucidity of my dreams. Well, it’s strange how sleep is my refuge in ‘our’ memories, away from the worn relics.

So, this afternoon, after I was done meandering in my beautiful dreams, I woke up…

I woke up to the taste of honey, dancing at the tip of my tongue.

An hour later, I stood there, with hot pancakes piled over my plate and the memoirs of my peaceful sleep hanging down my lashes. Warm soul hugging-fragrance of pancakes bathed in the gleaming yellows of honey… and that is how I paint winter on a white plate of bone china.

The glass jar sat in a lonely corner of the mahogany table, basking under hushed shadows of the evening twilight. Sliding into a chair, I grabbed a spoon and unscrewed the lid.

First spoon…

Second spoon…

And the third one to waltz on its way, from the tip of my tongue to the cusp at its end.

And… Ahhh! It stung! I gagged at the bitterness, stomped the plate against the table and then leaned back in my chair, frowning at the sugary scam that just stabbed me in my throat.

Right in front of my house, there is an old Sheesham tree. It has been there for years now and I wonder if it has ever heard me cry in the silence of lonely midnights… for, when I wake up to the dawns of such nights, I find some wilted leaves mourning at the ground underneath and the tree feels a little naked without them.

Four years ago, I walked up to it and drew a heart against your name, with the tip of my finger. Oh! Don’t worry, no one came to know… but, now when I walk past that well-kept secret…

The wind blows;

Leaves rustle;

And I look at the tree and sigh back… We have a language of our own.

I mean… of course, it has seen it all! From that dreamy smile, when you walked past that door for the first time… to that sly spark in my eyes, when our lips touched; from those quiet questions that yearned to leave my lips, when you left the door frowning… to that lonely sigh when you didn’t choose to return.

I am afraid… it knows way too much for comfort! I might have failed to hide the piercing hatred my eyes spat in the last four years.

I am afraid that the tree breathed in the poison of my rage, flowers wilted in the ruthless fire of my pain and some lost bees took that nectar away…

I am afraid… that those broken pieces of my heart burnt in my throat today… I am afraid that you left our story behind… and it lives here with me… I am afraid!

Dear ‘home’

We live in a lost world.
We are wanderers, miserable vagabonds!
We feed on anger and breathe out fires, then cry at the sight of burnt cities and homeless hearts.
We gulp tears and our eyes bleed, then we frown at the sight of spilled gore.
We smoke ashes, bathe in swamps, wear mere shreds of envy and then flaunt our prides.
Such is our foolery.
And, in a world as lost as ours, we dream of love and preach its beauty.
Sing it to glory.
I believe; hiding behind our quest for bliss, we are at strife for a ‘home’.
Enraged by our solitude and grieving our nostalgia…we are demons!
We are demons, hiding behind a charming bouquet of scented paper roses.
We hawk those flowers and break inside the deserted hearts of our patrons, vowing to fill their void with nectar and honey.
But….
We are hungry bandits!
We rob them off their peace and leave them to suffer in the torment of heartbreak.
Dear ‘home’,
I know; I know that you are lost in this pack of howling misers and you fear the day when you will have to wake up… to the nightmare of a shattered heart and an empty soul.
I know; I know that you want to find your ‘home’, as much as I want to find you.
But… what assures you, that our greed won’t take over and we won’t abandon each other, as soon as we catch our breathes and the sores on our feet stop oozing blood?
What assures you, that our ‘forever’ won’t be just another voice in the piercing cacophony of lies and that our ‘happy ending’ will not abide to the taunting title of ‘crippled rainbows and fantasies’?
Dear ‘home’,
Don’t you fret the horror… It may be lying at the end of our quests?
Isn’t ‘homelessness’ a bliss, when the walls of your abode chase the daylight out of your life?
With love,
From the ‘home’ that you may never find.