Affection

Dear you,

I’ll meet you
when I’m in a place where
my peace and mourning touch,
intertwined in each other’s ends and beginnings,
stinking of remorse
in the perfect balance of white;
After having moved on from all that was,
waiting to trip over your imperfections.
Before stepping over the line, for once,
to seek a love that feels
more like sympathy and less like affection.

Yours.

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Story #12: I’m Not Real (The Anonymous Anecdotes Project)

I’m Not Real
 preee
They say that psychologically it takes 3-4 months to know a person.
But I believe that you know people
The very first time you meet them.
 p
The kind of words they choose
After all those permutations and combinations of all the 26 letters of the English language.
The kind of look they give you,
Despite of being unable to maintain an eye contact for more than 5 seconds.
The way in which they sit a bit aloof
Just to maintain “the space”
Without risking the fact that you might just know everything about them.
 p
People say that eyes don’t lie,
I believe it’s a lie
Because the only thing in human body that doesn’t lie
Is this patch of terribly tiny mountains on your flesh.
 p
But according to behaviourists,
Children observe and learn.
So when I was a child, I learned that truth is never rewarded.
That human beings have multiple layers of flesh
To hide away their goosebumps.
 p
So you know,
I became black-listed.
For people who too often searched for compliments.
For those whom I told they weren’t in love with me
That love isn’t a feeling that can be summed up in 3 words.
That the color of love is translucent and not red.
So that we could see each other
Destroying one another.
 p
On the days I’m myself
I climb stairs of sophistication.
And stumble and fall down
Whenever I have someone to hold onto.
 p
You see,
My hands do not quiver the moment I start reciting my poems.
Because I know I’m pretentious
And they are all broken pieces of different stories
Joined together.
And in their gaps,
I hide myself.
 p
That artists are nothing but clowns in disguise.
We paint our face white
With peace, paradoxical to the cyclones we could never survive.
We apply an extra layer of red lipstick to our smiles
So that we get an extra syrup of attention
Over the icecreams we binge eat out of loneliness.
Because you know,
Deserts have been my first love,
And stayed.
 p
And I just giggle about the way
People change the topics
As if they are standing at the sea shore
And I’m the tide.
 p
They say that phobia is an irrational fear of something
And that it’s ok for me to cry in public.
But whenever I try,
My eyes get stoned.
The windows and doors of my house close down
As if there is an automatic alarm warning me of an intruder.
And I’m the biggest miser of them all,
For I cannot shed my possessions.
 p
And I solemnly admit that I’m not real.
I fake my Hello’s.
I fake that I’m contended when I’m just holes
Into which people pour love
And suck it whenever they find a better place to invest it in.
 p
I fake that I’m strong
When I have these tiny mountains growing bigger and conical
Underneath the layers of flesh
That are like the chihuahua barking over a terrorist.
 p
I fake that I’m a child in this body of a 20 year old
Tired of people trespassing the line of control
Saying that they are refugees
And my empathy is a shelter for them.
 p
I fake that I’m fake
Whenever I mistakenly behave as the truest version of myself.
So, agreed. I’m not real.
Just as you all aren’t!
p

When we talk about stories or anecdotes, we rarely contemplate them in poetic forms. But here is a version of someone’s reality, so unique and laid out in this beautiful verse. 

I can’t summarize or enlist my learning from this poem because I know each read has lead me on to a different interpretation, a different conclusion. But that’s what poems are. Open for interpretation.

So all I’ll say is this: how many of us are ‘real’ anymore? Every day, we’re going farther away from who we are. Tell me then, how do we learn to love, and be at peace with our real selves?

-:-

 
(The Anonymous Anecdotes is a project under which anyone can send me a memory, a story or an experience from their life that had a profound impact on them. It requires people to write their respective experience along with the way it changed them or their perception of life. According to the project, these stories are being published anonymously, with the intent of spreading a positive message and a hope that anyone who reads, relates or learns. If you’re interested, you can send me your story at ratti.priya5@gmail.com.)

The Open Book

If this world is a library, and its people books,
then I am the forgotten volume of heavy words and complicated phrases-
covered in dust, with my yellowing pages,
tucked at the back,
where nobody goes.
p
You will only be able to find me,
if you look for me-
it might be hard, searching for me,
setting me apart from my likeness,
but I hope you don’t give up.
p
When you do find me,
I hope the long paragraphs of my history do not bore you;
I hope you don’t put me down.
I hope you turn my pages, with hands as delicate as those tending to a bleeding wound.
I hope you read between my lines.
I hope you discover me, word by word, to be the one to fit your liking;
And if I don’t fit, I hope you don’t read me on halfheartedly-
I hope you don’t continue to hold onto me with the intention of putting me down.
I hope the words that span my existence interest you, and paint pictures inside of your head, the place where I now want to be.
I hope you devour me, with every syllable that I silently serve.
I hope you find yourself completely obsessed with me, unable to put me down,
and so we spend days and nights together,
because although you want to take it slow,
you want to get to know me just as fast.
p
I hope that when you know you’re inching towards the end,
you slacken your pace just a little, so the both of us have time
to adjust to the loss, that we will have amassed,
as you toss me aside and go looking for another
rhyme that doesn’t end as tragically as this one;
look how my ability to find love is so
abysmal, despite my dilapidated state and spine,
reckless poetic verses and metaphors,
darling, I still failed to make you mine.
~
“You see now, my love?
I’ve never really been a secret diary-
All this while,
I’ve been the open book,
that no one is willing to read.”

 

 

Love. (User Discretion Advised)

I will never understand how
people let the word love 
cascade down their lips like
a meaningless sound,
blurted out in responses that
could have done without the indulgence.
The casual air around
a feeling that can potentially either
disarm you of your sanity for the length of it,
or rob you of the knowledge that the universe extends beyond their aura,
deserves to be destroyed.
Love should be used with caution,
like an imported good that carries instruction:
think before you jump into it;
don’t let it consume you, and the like.
Love should be treated
like a delicate relic that must exist in protection
from the eyes of all those who may want to rob you off of it.
Rehearse it like the sound you exude in happy sighs,
But don’t make it as easy as exhaling.
Let love belong to the conventional corridors it once lived in;
Let it announce itself with the fragrance of roses pressed between Bukowski’s poems;
Let it manifest in whispers and handwritten notes exchanged under the table.
Love.
Save this combination of four alphabets for an occasion where
it becomes the one last piece of the jigsaw you make to win her over;
Use it to make up for the unsaid words;
and when you know all the pieces of the puzzle fitting together
need just one more to complete the picture,
that’s when you tell her;
I love you. 

Saturation

I type rhymed verses onto my phone
and chase metaphors;
my dry days are free versed poems
and I’m forced into food strikes when my words don’t gulp down my thoughts;
I draw parallels between slanted lines and
call them straight as I
myself go on tangents, searching for
words to say.
I am a writer of thoughts and
speaker of my own mind,
but lately they have been withdrawing,
fading into the darkness,
hiding behind the blinds.
In a first, I know how to say
but not what;
it’s the knowledge of speech but
the ignorance of word.
So what do I do, when my
saturation point is not too much input but
no output at all;
what do I do when,
I want to shout but
no words would come out at all?

Hindustan In The Emergency Room

The following poem was written as a slam, on the prompt India versus Pakistan. In it, the conflict between the two countries manifests as a case of sibling rivalry.
 ccccc
Hindustan was a queen, a distant dream:
one that powerful dynasties wanted to conquer;
Hindustan was a gold mine churning out castles
and emperors and lattice works.
ccc
Until one day,
the sounds of army boots shook her land;
when men clad in red and black took over her,
and all she could do was watch and stand.
The queen, conquered, a trespasser in her own estate;
Hindustan stood a prisoner, locked up within the expanse of her own gates.
ccc
Damsel in distress the queen, carried in her womb,
hearts that raged against the unfair rule;
rebels with tongues sharp as the kings’ sword,
rebels who became preys to monarchs divide and rule,
rebels who now
began to fall into groups.
mm
The sides were divided, on one-
tongues lathered with Arabic syllables,
heads covered in white caps and
feet that knew the way to Mecca all to well.
And the other with tongues laced with accents of Hindi,
hearts that swayed at the name of ram,
bodies that had dipped in the Ganga
and eyes that had scanned the Geeta at least once.
mm
The mother to be, Hindustan,
watched as god, religion and language became barricades
that gradually began pulling
her unborn children apart.
xsx
The 15th of August, 1947
India and Pakistan awake to freedom,
and Hindustan,
failing to unite her heirs, dies in the emergency room.
When differences fanned the flames of sibling rivalries,
and civilians cried over communal atrocities,
The cold blooded rivalry had just began,
as Hindustan became India and Pakistan.
x
She never wrote a will and the brothers couldn’t share the property;
the greed for land and mothers’ inheritance,
put miles between the neighboring countries.
x
These siblings played, but with bullets and bombs,
and though they didn’t mask their insecurities or play pretend
they sent masked militants and planned on revenge.
c
Now the brothers are fighting over the one girl they both love;
but she, Kashmir, loves none.
With Punjab and Bengal alike,
they’re asking their cousins to choose sides.
Kargil, Bangladesh and a pair of hands tainted red,
still playing passing the parcel, with the blame on each others’ heads.
2
-:-
partition-of-india-3-728
Image Source: Google
The longstanding situation of conflict between India and Pakistan is not unknown and goes on till today. 

Reasons Why I Hate Reciting My Poetry

I hate reciting my poetry,
Because I feel somewhere speech mars the beauty of a word read in ink;
Because somewhere my voice is not delicate enough where it needs to be
Because speaking doesn’t even give me enough time to think.
I think recitation is for extravagant spendthrifts,
Not a frugal like me who can’t afford the air to carry away my words-
My words, my words that contain my heart and soul
As they are born every instant in my mind
My words are fossils of dead memories
that exist even when the person who gave birth to them left.
My words take a different escape route than yours:
After being manufactured up there they only approach my lips hesitantly ;
Sometimes almost about to pour out like the autumn leaves falling off trees
But each time, rejected desperately
They sit like dead bodies on the tip of my tongue, denied the luxury of having a gravestone
They eventually end up dripping,
down my fingertips
& into my phone.