We were unwilling acquaintances
of separate worlds and separate minds
He, six foot tall and ready for revolution
I, five feet tall, with a dream.
Then, there was you
With your talk of change, transparency and a revolution we could all be part of
Camp to your politics of division and unity,
we were all called and all of us said yes,
all at the same time.
I still remember days of smouldering heat and burning grass as we lay on a ground we knew not to touch
They called us rebels. We called ourselves changers of a system we knew we could not change.
But then I slipped away amidst the haze as the screams got louder, the hate more bitter
I kept saying that wasn’t me. I did not want to become what you already were.
Perhaps, I already was.
Hypocrisy is a comical word. They all call you that
He, six foot tall and ready to defend you till the death of his own dignity
I, five feet tall, with an idea.
I told you long ago
That I had grown up
Altered for the better
Your hopes for sympathy
It was never love
A rocky distraction
Of youthful lust
And clandestine mistakes
I remember you
As I tell my story
To another one of you
Caught in a haze
Of blinding allure
Distracted as ever
I have not grown up at all (more…)
I enjoy solitary walks on the side of the murky
lake with its gluttonous fish and their unthinking feeders.
It’s therapeutic, I tell myself.
The grey-green grass, dew kissed leaves and dark marshy footpath-
They’re all part of the poet’s parcel.
I’m supposed to love these kinds of places.
Some days, I pay the men with the horses exorbitant amounts
so I’d have a pony to pretend was mine.
The ones I got were always ordinary,
ordinary as the dull grey pigeons that shit all over the city
buildings in New Delhi.
In Shillong, the lake is more alive
but the fish have dull eyes as they gather beneath
the bridge, fighting for their bread crumbs
and corn chips.
The water reeks of death
like someone was murdered and drowned
as naive fish watched and waited.
Death is a white man with alabaster skin,
pretty blonde hair,
and eyes grey as a monsoon sky.
I met him just last week
In a dream where old friends became strangers
and god was nowhere to be found.
Death was a man
and there was no fire, no streets paved in gold,
nothing waiting for me-
just a polite gentleman with a black Cadillac
ready to take me on my last ride.
He opened the door to the back and led me in,
whispering secrets I could not comprehend and
answering the questions that were running amuck in my mind.
Then he closed my coffin shut and all I knew was darkness.
There I lay,
as I felt the car move at blinding speeds on a curved road
much like the ones back home.
I wondered why my last ride was so miserable,
But then I heard him say it was for the best.
It was better for me to feel and not see
The life I passed by.
So that when we reached,
my heart would be free
to turn to dust and
return to nothingness.
For suddenly I remembered all the people I loved
And all ones I hated
And in that moment, I did not care anymore.
I became free.
Free to approach annihilation.
Free to die.
You see, Love is strange. But, death is stranger.(more…)
Am I a dilapidated structure that looks like a castle on the outside?
A mirage in a wet desert of unclean dreams and forbidden conversation?
Or am I real like your breathing on my neck, gentle nudges towards the sad, narrow path?
Tell me, who I am. (more…)