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Sunday, February 07, 2016

converfession iii

converfession iii

where can one look for peace?
round the corner from prosperity
prosperity is peace’s neighbor?
no, there is an empty plot of land
a no prosperity-no peace zone
with barbed electric fences
guarded by ferocious hirsute men with dogs 
carrying a rectangular object 
wrapped in silk around their necks
a dog eared book?
maybe 
or a parchment on rituals? aerobics?
maybe
nobody can dance with pricked toes
and the beard gets in the way 
that empty plot of land is a cemetery
to bury joy and happiness?
that is for another day

Saturday, February 06, 2016

converfession ii

converfession ii

when will this journey end?

the pebble on the sea shore
once a rock on a snow peak
now washed endlessly
by waves that travelled oceans
asked the same query

life 
no standing to lie still 
no lying to stand still
transformative 
cyclical
dust to ashes to dust
smile to smile

Friday, February 05, 2016

converfession i

converfession i


who is not
she countered
try and curb your faults
when i confessed 
am human

wondered what good 
was my confession 
but knowing where she came from
and the aftermath of explanations 
said i
appreciate and thanks 

(did i change my ways afterwards 
no, but it was nice to know she cared)

Thursday, February 04, 2016

leaky boat






leaky boat i

how much water
can a boat take
               before
it capsizes

some spent lifetime
               probing
till the pump dies


leaky boat ii

when the boat goes under
often it is not the iceberg
the storm, wear and tear
over the years past
                       it is
those rusted tin cans
                       that give up
fighting the overflow


leaky boat iii

one day the ustaad
(who took abuse
with grace, in stride)
failed to show up
they said
the vessels
carrying fluids
had succumbed
and the pump
gave in
unable to handle
pervasive dichotomy

Wednesday, February 03, 2016

leaky boat iii

leaky boat iii

one day the ustaad
(who took abuse
with grace, in stride)
failed to show up
they said
the vessels
carrying fluids
had succumbed
and the pump
gave in
unable to handle
pervasive dichotomy

Tuesday, February 02, 2016

leaky boat ii

leaky boat ii

when the boat goes under
often it is not the iceberg
the storm, wear and tear
over the years past
                       it is
those rusted tin cans
                       that give up
fighting the overflow

Monday, February 01, 2016

leaky boat i

leaky boat i

how much water
can a boat take
               before
it capsizes

some spent lifetime
               probing
till the pump dies


Sunday, January 31, 2016

a tale of two dogs / qissa dou kuttON ka

a tale of two dogs / qissa dou kuttON ka

at the peak of rush hour
commuters charge out
of the churchgate station
and in the middle
of the wide hallway
sleeps an old labrador
commuters walk past
the lying dog

and 

near the empress market
at the height of noon
a dog trying to catch a shade
under a shack
is hounded
stoned and yelled at

in dou kuttoN kay qissay maiN
aik aur katha chuphi hui hay

Saturday, January 30, 2016

smell of a long lost past

_Namita_'s avatar
نميتا
@_Namita_
Some people smell of a long lost past

____________

this kid
with an innocent smile
cute with dimples
(but kids do have innocent smiles
for they have yet to learn
our deceptive ways)
approached me 

the eyes
had a look
when our eyes locked
i knew i knew that kid

the moment passed
and i forgot about it
till i read a post
and remembered that kid

Friday, January 29, 2016

the abandoned lighthouse / ahl e kitab ki sitam zareefi

the abandoned lighthouse

the message
from bilal's minaret
the beckoning beacon
of the desert
now gone astray

the cacophony, though
still disturbs sleep

____________________

ahl e kitab ki sitam zareefi

sadiaN beet gaeeN
roshni gul hu'aye
behri minar say
aur khwaab e khargosh 
maiN ghota-zun
khuda aur na-khuda
ki joos'tu'ju maiN 
larzaaN haiN hum

Thursday, January 28, 2016

seguing tea: chai say chai tak

seguing tea: chai se chai tak

(for the lahori chatkhori @FShirin)
Koi farq nahin ho ga

janay kya baat hay 
chai ki mehak maiN
jo lay jaati  hay 
yaadouN ki baraat maiN 
roz o shub humaiN


the chainak 
in qissa khwani bazaar
in 'soldered' china
the taste imprinted
forever in the mind

the doodh-patti
by the road side stall
past jungshahi
on way to thatta

the aroma
of the tea in pokhara
watching on a clear day
dhaulagiri, annapurna & manaslu

just before nathu la pass
outside baba's mandir
the tea from the shack
reminded me of 
that welcome cuppa
half way through kalka-shimla
at the petit station 
shrouded in fog
just before the arch bridge

and it wasn't tea
but the sweet coffee
in the kanya kumari bazaar
and in chennai
at the marina beach

not to ignore 
the kashmiri chai
by the dilapidated bridge
in jammu

and how can i remiss
the tea break 
at erstwhile cafe liberty
during the pre-final 
marathons at 3 am

and then there is 
the ever present mug
beside my desk
that cascades and segues
present and past
in gratefulness
refilled all day long
by m

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

ahl e kitab ki sitam zareefi

ahl e kitab ki sitam zareefi

sadiaN beet gaeeN
roshni gul hu'aye
behri minar say
aur khwaab e khargosh 
maiN ghota-zun
khuda aur na-khuda
ki joos'tu'ju maiN 
larzaaN haiN hum

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

berlinesque walls

berlinesque walls

there are no walls
around you, me
around the houses
borders,
schools, colleges

but there are 
berlinesque walls
around the palatial abodes
of the mafia in my  country
and like the berlin wall
someday...

Media preview

https://twitter.com/92newschannel/status/692051977719513088/photo/1

Monday, January 25, 2016

conundrum / meh'v e hairat

conundrum

his message
evolve

their message
devolve

1.6 billion +
caught in cross hair

meh'v e hairat

oos nay kaha
behtari ki janib chalo
woh kehtay haiN
lo't chalo, lo't chalo
meh'v e hairaaN haiN
niklaiN tou kis sim't...

Sunday, January 24, 2016

oh da da daesque

oh da da daesque

salmon
anadromous
return to spawn

when out of womb
homo sapiens 
strive to enter 
the womb
or its proximity

most do it
consensually 

chaos occurs
when hirsute bigots
do it citing 
scriptures

Saturday, January 23, 2016

tale of the morn after

infatuation
fog
illusory

love
true
mystifying
defying

distinction
tale
of the morn after

Friday, January 22, 2016

halaat e hazira: hanso, muskurao

hanso, muskurao

woh kehta hay
hanso, muskurao
yeh kya her lamha
ah o fagaaN 
rona dhona...
duniya bhala 
aisay chalti hay?

ab kya bataooN
in naam nehad
wehshi darindON nay
jeena marna 
haraam ker diya hay

Thursday, January 21, 2016

the boss is coming

the boss is coming today
the boss is coming today
bring out the list
vacuuming check
cleaning check
laundry check
smile check
sked check
oh no
boss is coming tomorrow

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

ephemeral musings

ephemeral musings

who decides 
what is real 
unreal

reverential tomes
aside
over the vast shoreline
specs of dust 
we were
we'll be 

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

sound, silence, tear

sound

ripped paper
slit fabric
skived leather
tire screech
chiseled stone
grated teeth
emotions
reverberating 

silence

unuttered words
dissected hopes
bisected dreams
decluttered wishes
laconic looks
receded tides
frozen sighs

tear

lacrimal lament
sound and silence 
metamorphosed
drop by drop

Monday, January 18, 2016

tear

tear

lacrimal lament
sound and silence 
metamorphosed
drop by drop

Sunday, January 17, 2016

silence

silence

unuttered words
dissected hopes
bisected dreams
decluttered wishes
laconic looks
receded tides
frozen sighs

Saturday, January 16, 2016

sound

sound

ripped paper
slit fabric
skived leather
tire screech
chiseled stone
grated teeth
emotions
reverberating 

Friday, January 15, 2016

soul-less, body-less, brain-less

soulless, body-less, brainless i

money ---
no soul
no body
no brain
but has roots
nurtured in greed
fermented in ego


soul-less, body-less, brain-less ii

money ---
causes upheavals

divides
souls

affects and afflicts
when valued
inordinately

soul-less, body-less, brain-less ii

soul-less, body-less, brain-less ii

money ---
causes upheavals

divides
souls

affects and afflicts
when valued
inordinately

Thursday, January 14, 2016

soul-less, body-less, brain-less i

soulless, body-less, brainless i

money ---
no soul
no body
no brain
but has roots
nurtured in greed
fermented in ego

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

jama kharch

baat tou app bhee theek kertay haiN
baat tou woh bhee theek kertay haiN
baat tou hum bhee theek kertay haiN


baatouN ki is mauj der mauj maiN
yeh naazuk dil kyuN hay larzaaN

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

fair is fair

fair is fair
when compared to unfair
but fair is not fair
when fair is not fair

fair is not fair
when viewed from prisms
north's fair from south's
haves from not-haves
yours from mine
now be fair
my fair (& lovely)
am i unfair

Monday, January 11, 2016

heartbreak

heartbreak: for my daughter

go and cry rivers
better to flood
then suppress

heart muscles, cold
bereft of love euphoria
the throbber feels
aches only
to blocked arteries'
delight

that workaholic
knows not pleasures
of idle companionship 
ecstatic touch
murmured conversation
dreams of shangri la pastures
commitment to grow
old(er) in unison

after the drench, move on
to face other heart aches and
in vacant moments
smile at memories
life is full of aches and
smiles

Sunday, January 10, 2016

to the media talking heads*

kuch tou reham karo babu
(note i said babu not bibi)
fore play ko fore play hee rehnay dO
monsoon ko moon-soon na banao
kuch tou reham karo babu
tum tou t'leem yafta ho
ger tum bhee aisa karo gay
tou phir... 


inspired by the unprovoked instigation of @ejazhaider but not addressed to him