Monday, March 18, 2013

Mumbai, my love ...

Mumbai, my love...

To the newbies, she is a means to get ahead in life. She provides jobs, new career options and even a new life.

To me, she is the earth mother. I was born in her lap, played in her play grounds and grew up learning about her moods, her history, geography and even civics. She was different back then. More laid back, prettier.

Today there are ants crawling all over her - she is over run by a sea of humanity all out to drain her resources. A beautiful city in her hey day, today people call her all kinds of names forgetting that she is what we have made of her, over the years.

Sometimes I dream of her resplendent in her past glory and hope to see her like that again. But I also know that is just a wild dream. Things don't change, especially once we have brutalized her so awfully.

To this earth mother,  a salute and a warm hug.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008


One fine day she walked into our building compound. I don't know where she came from, this little puppy. I was off to work that morning and, as I turned the corner of the building, there she was. She spotted me from where she had been sitting near the gate, and came running at top speed to greet me, her entire body (not just her tail) wagging away to glory.

This cute pariah bitch whom I fondly named Adree (short for adrenaline.. and I hope you don't ask me why) was a hyper responder. I just had to look at her and she would get all excited and jump up at me to stare into my eyes and grin. Yes, grin! I bet she and I had been kindred souls in one of our past janams. It was I think the period just before the monsoon, maybe about ten years ago. She spent that entire rainy season in our compound. We fed her in the morning and in the evening, and left her a bowlful of water. Each day she left evidence of her greetings (muddy paw marks) on my dresses.

Then one day, she was not there. There was no evidence of an accident (our house is close to a busy thoroughfare), so we knew she was not injured/ killed. Perhaps whatever had been the purpose of our meeting, had been served? But for that brief period in time, how she enriched our lives.

Wherever you are now, Adree, I hope you are as happy as you were back then!

Monday, August 28, 2006

Writer’s block

My pen makes contact

with the surface of

the first page of the open diary

that I've purchased just today!

And then it halts,

my hand half raised

my brow deeply furrowed

my brain all scrambled ...

Hey, I'd thought up

this intricate, twisting plot,

peopled by inter-meshing characters

and such lovely, graphic imagery.

How could it all just disappear

- almost vanish into thin air -

I bemoan, as once again,

I am hit by the writer's block.

Thursday, July 13, 2006

Death be not proud ...

I spoke to him, just yesterday

This young lad - smiling happily and full of life

The excitement at his move to New York City

His visage so happy and elated

His family nudging him towards a bright career!

I visited his home earlier today

The same young lad - unmoving now and lifeless

The shock at the news of his accident in the city

His body so pale and disfigured

His family bearing him to the cremation grounds!

Blood on my hands

My arsenal for creating mayhem!

Pipes, wires, nails,

money to buy that tell-tale powder,

black bags, remote control devices,

DIY manuals for putting them all together,

and fanatically committed foot soldiers.

Such glee - see I'm about to create history!

I’m watching the telly now!

Ripped open steel bogies,

blood splattered railway tracks,

bodies carried in make-shift sheet stretchers,

limbs, body parts, blood, gore,

faceless bodies, torsoless heads.

Such glee – see what all I've achieved!

I’m reading the newspapers now!

Lists of injured, body counts,

personal accounts of individual tragedies,

desperate searches in hospitals and morgues,

ecstacy at finding a leg-less husband,

agony at identifying a son's torso.

Such glee – see how I'm being GOD now!

I’m answering the telephone now!

Neighbour asks me to rush home, for

my two sons and only grandson,

who'd left for home by train yesterday,

but failed to reach there till late last night -

their corpses have been found in a morgue.

Such glee - see my blood on my hands now!

Sunday, June 18, 2006

The Illusion that’s Life

Life is nothing but a series of stairs

that you climb, slow 'n easy,

thinking that at the next level

you'll surely find ...

that what you've been born for!

The endless climbing, the restless seeking

just going on and on ...

each turn bringing with it the wild hope

that you'll surely find, round the next corner,

the treasure trove you've been looking for!

Until one fine (or not so fine) day you discover

to your great shock and disappointment

that you've been climbing this long

and have reached this high

for ... just THIS?

The top of the stairwell - the empty attic,

that holds nothing you'd ever have wanted

and highlighting to you, oh so clearly, that

life is nothing but a mirage, an illusion

you've been pointlessly running after!