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Tuesday, November 30, 2010

black in white

dear occupant
we are expert movers
no job is too small
or too big
for our staff
we are certified and bonded
and guarantee our work
read the generic mail

i read and threw it
in the garbage

in the wee hours today
am thinking of the white man
who will be shortly vacating
that house

a man low in self esteem
and lower in polls
who should be punished
for mayhem and incompetency
and incarcerated for the rest
of his natural life

will the movers
wrap, seal and remove
the injustices, deaths, wars
this born again zealot wreaked
on the unsuspecting many?

will it be the same movers
who move in the black man
in the white house
with hope and dreams
so children
born and unborn cackle
smile innocent smiles
in far off lands?

Monday, November 29, 2010



chalay ga
bhaee chaly ga
her khuda
her bhagwan
ab tO chalay ga
srif ik shar't hay
muskurahta ho
warna hum tumhaiN hee
khuda maan laiNgay
tum mano, ya na mano

in the tenebrous
air, am gasping
could use a god
or two
a caveat
if the god/gods are grim
will accord you godship
with or without consent

Sunday, November 28, 2010

poetry: coffee break persiflage

Made for Each Other by tanaybeherapics.

photo credit Tanay Behera


faded dreams
flagging words
forlorn look
frozen touch
frigid love

fetching smile
fervent laughter
fervid fracas
fledgling hopes
feisty mirth

doosra cup / second cup

t'ri ik muskurahat say
dhund janay kahaaN
ghayab ho jati hay
aur her rah geer
shanashai sa lagta hay
that enigmatic smile
dissipates all the murk
and each passersby
as if nods in recognition

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Poessay: Sea of Affliction and Omni Vincit Amor

There is an antediluvian connection between starlit nights and lovers. The moon's substantial and simultaneously tenuous links with the tides - of love and lovers - is intriguing and bewildering.

The Sea of Affliction is nurtured by rivers, rivulets and streams of zeal, worship, affection, amour, infatuation, passion, and rapture . Yarns narrated by storytellers of yore - Shirin-Farhad, the dark Laila and her mad Majnoon, Sassi-Pannu, Heer-Ranjha, Romeo and Juliet (enters the Raj) - move and tantalize lovers and listeners alike.

The warmth of lovers is unaffected by the heat of day. The stealth of night mixes well with the scorch and sizzle of mind and sanguine and sultry emotions of instincts.

Every inadvertent touch, a brush, a kiss, a glance is euphoric, delirious, ecstatic, devouring, entrancing, rapturous, and transporting - transporting them to the distant stars.

These encounters, few and far in between, retain most of their luster and glow for long. The reverse is obvious - they lose their sheen with frequency. Ask Mark Twain.

Thoughts wander over consummation...or the edification of lack of it.

The tragic and unconsummated aspects of love have been perhaps unconsciously and unduly glorified in folklore and literature. The lovers are consumed by their passion - and subsumed by the storytellers. They succumb to fate, living in death.

omnia vincit amor

the black hole
dissipating and drawing in chaos
with the furious fervour of passion

the black hole
exploding and imploding
a supernova of 360 degree
suctorial frenzy, confusion and
passionate mayhem
nurturing impassioned death

a hiatus to change demeanor
and resume the whirling
- of implosions and explosions
consuming and subsuming
in the once black hole of life
now death
nature's anti-climactic
antediluvian renderings
to be endlessly repeated
when the tides of venus charge

Friday, November 26, 2010

Poessay: Takht, Takhta and Takhti

Cut Out,Close To,Closed,Togetherness,Moving Up,Close-up,Communication,Ideas,Concepts,Single Object,White,Abstract,Backgrounds,Black,Glass,Glass,Ink,inkpot,Letter,Pen,Pencil,Table,Writing,Author,Antique,Japanese Script,Calligraphy,handscript,Old,Paper,Retro Revival,Old-fashioned

A writer friend is writing another book. One morning she said she is heading out of her house to the Borders to write - a change of surroundings.

(fast forward to late after noon)

Hello from Borders...

That set off this digression: I wrote her - I've written...poems planes, in waiting rooms, in kitchens, in name it...but never in a book store

why not? it's quiet, the coffee is decent, everyone around is reading....i find it quite inspiring. u should try it sometime...

Guess amidst all the great writing, the decrepit weak little words dare not descend down from the yonder...ho sakhta hay woh sharma jaatay hoN...I mused...but it might work for others

that's right. but with wireless internet i can actually work here...sometimes i get bad cabin fever at home...

Wireless internet? know where my mind wanders off to? is the wooden slate rural desi pre schoolers use to learn to write alphabets on...usually a wooden board about 8x12 inch on which they practiced writing with wooden qalams...

why does your mind wander there?

Am intrigued with the irony of primitive and the wireless hi-tech...anyways...mind works in strange ways...I thought of takhti because some years back at The Art Gallery of Mississauga at the Mississaugua Convention Centre there was an exhibition-tribute to Zahoor ul Akhlaq who was murdered in Lahore the year before along with his very gifted dancer-daughter, Jehanara...his wife Sheherzad Alam who is a talented potter in her own right organised this tribute exhibition.

She handed out a takhti to all the invited participant artists...asking them to write or paint their thoughts on the takhti...later those takhtis were exhibited at the Centre.

Ah hah...well it's nice to chat while i am there! that could be a poem...the takhti in the time of wi fi...


the takhti in the time of wi fi

shahinshah ka takht
mayyat ka takhta
bachchay ki takhti
ik laf'z kay phair say
kahaaN say kahaaN
baat nikal jati hay

hazrat pehlay hee farma ga'aye haiN
aankh jo dekhtee hay lub per aa sakhta nahiN...
oos daur maiN thi takhtee
is daur maiN hay PC
likha takthi per phir mita dya
idhar PC kay gali koochON maiN
mudfun rehtay haiN hazaraha raaz

haan ik baat hay
takhti ka daur lOtay ga nahiN
PC ka daur aaj ka daur hay
aanay wali kal ka bhee shayad

peepul ka darakht, chatai, takhti, qalam-dawat
bijli, thanda kamra, keyboard, PC, internet
kahaan woh duniya jo beet ga'ayee
kahan yeh duniya jo beet ja'aye gi

waq't kay taarON say bandhay yeh rishtay
yaad kay saharay zinda haiN, rahaiN gay


the takhti in the time of wi fi

wood makes a fine throne
table in the morgue
an innocent's child's takhti...

the poet has written
seeing is believeing
but he also laments
what he sees is unbelievable

there were sixty seconds
in the minute then
but they went by s l o w l y
the takhti words were wiped clean
but the PC words haunt an eternity

the yellow stickie
a straddler of the takhti era

- under the peepul tree, mat, breeze and takhti
not to forget the zee nib, ink and pot
now the climate controlled room
PC, keyboard and wi-fi
that time passed us by and with the same certainty
we can say this time too shall pass by


Niilofer Farrukh, art historian and writer who covered this event

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Poessay: Rosary 16: Ageless Quest - tishnagi

the bachcha
chasing chimera
cheerfully crisscrossed
the same rivers, plains
and mountains
- merciless sun of desert and
moonlight cascading through clouds -
trekked through rain, hail and snow
the elements failed to dampen
the mad march -
if that was the writ

a vigorous pursuit
of flickering shadows dancing
with foggy apprehensions
to nature's cascading melody
with partners in new(er) garbs
till spiritartheritis exacts halt
and the bachcha
now a somnolent bu'zurgh
is replaced / fades away



sawaalON kay ta'aq'qoob maiN
janay kitni nadiyaaN, pahaaR
ooboor kertay jatay haiN hum

kia hay who joos't'joo
sehra, maidaan, darya
dil, jig'r, dimaagh, wajood
her ik rah e safar
kay doosray paar bhee
tishnaa hee reehti hay
kya kabhi.......?


Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Poessay: Rosary 15 - The Drop

queries go abegging
folded away
in the timeless embrace
of waves on shore

emerging from the icicle
on the blade's edge
to the hungry vortex
of boundless queries
of parched throats dry eyes

is the drop aware
it is neither a way-post
nor a destination

qatrON ki gardish maiN
yeh qatra hO ya woh qatra
qatra qatra ker jata hay

undeterred, journeying
from lip to eye to
ocean, cloud, snow, rain
spring, river, sea
endless circumambulation
the drop - a querysperm
in the enduring waltz
of fermenting queries

poetry: coloraffectations

your smile
red, orange, yellow
a drive in the country in late october
her smile
green, blue, violet
a walk on the scorching sands of negril

a virtuoso bewildered
by the warm and cool
on his pupil's canvas
and tormented by
by the tenebrific
smiles of the banal
defying dark

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Poessay: Rosary 14 - Snow Flakes

a lazily floating snow flake
glided past my window
a white nebulae in reach
waltzing poodle's ears
this sliver
did not descend the white carpet
just lazily floated from one end
of my nightmare to the other

a mushroom cloud
showering shivering silence
--invention of the wheel
to the proliferation
a downward spiral
misnomer for progress

a cotton snow flake
dabbed with attar
rolled into a pinch sized ball
and ensconced in helix
would not have bothered
if i could have maintained
my respectful distance --
no, not possible
at 35,000 feet
that pungent redolence
creating an everest lava-ache

another cotton snow flake
four of them really
size of moth balls
placed in nostrils and ears
a final closure

other pure white snow flakes
continue to fall on the road
and transform to slush

oh, snow flakes

a'las'sub'h kal dabay qadmoun youN kaun chala aaya meray dil maiN?
bund dareechay, bar'f her soo', khunki, aur tapish oos ki baanhouN ki
taqaza e mehman nawazi say jo majboor honay lagay hum
'phir koi d'rao'na khaab dekha hay? aao aaghosh maiN aajao!'

maalik ko zara awaaz daina bhai
zaroorat hay oos ko ghulamouN ki
hum jo sadaa khilaouN maiN taktay haiN
humaiN bhi ik maalik ka hay intizaar

um'r zayah kardaitay haiN lOg
muhabbat ki joostujoo maiN
itna pyar paya qismet say
kodak moment hay her lamha
youN hee hum maray jatay haiN!

muskurahatouN ka bundh, aansoo'ouN kay sailab kO
ik aur Kodak moment maiN aisay piro daita hay
kay siskiyouN ka shOr o fughaaN, hasratouN ki jheel
pyasi dharti ka daimi khwaab e hasrat banta hay

"aao, chalay aao"
"aao, chalay aao"
maiN pukarta raha
hal'q mera khushk hu'a
ak's munjamid raha

taa'reef kay qaabil hay yeh hay
yeh hay bhee aur nahiN bhee hay
idhar hay aur oodhar bhee hay
gar na hota tO bhee hota

Monday, November 22, 2010

Sarah Palin Meets Asif Zardari and Manmohan Singh

The first-term Alaska governor plans to meet seven world leaders and former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger in New York City this week, where the U.N. General Assembly is convening. The meetings might help her answer critics who say she is not ready to handle world affairs. Palin obtained her first passport last year. Sarah Palin to meet with 7 world leaders at UN

Here is an exclusive transcript of the one on one meeting between President Asif Zardari and Sarah Palin held today in NYC.

SP: Mr President
AZ: America Khapay
SP: Yes, yes...
AZ: You remind me of Shaheed Bibi
SP: Can I invite back my interpreter?
AZ: Yes, yes
(interpreter takes seat)
AZ: You look too young to have a daughter
SP: Well, kids today....
AZ: On behalf of the people of Pakistan I invite you to Pakistan
SP: Yes, I always wanted to see the Taj
AZ: You can address the joint session
SP: Joint? You smoke too
AZ: How do you know? Oh the CIA must have told you
SP: You must do more Mr President
AZ: More? Do you want to address the Corps Commanders Conference too?
(SP looks at the interpreter: she explains CCC)
SP: Mr President I meant Pakistan must do more in war against terror
AZ: Error? We all make error. Musharraf made an error. Sharif made an error
SP: We have a fight on our hands, we have a lot in common
AZ: Yes, we do. Both of us wear glasses

(later Sarah Palin meets up with Dr. Manmohan Singh)

SP: Mr President
MS: Ha ha you are funny
SP: What did I say?
MS: We are the largest democracy in the world
SP: Yes, yes I have heard about it
MS: Good luck in November
SP: Thank you, the world does not need more camel jockeys
MS: We have camels and elephants too
SP: I'd love to skin a tiger
MS: Tamil Tigers pose a problem for us too
SP: Are they also on the endangered species list...
MS: List?
SP: ...if they are our Administration would remove them...
MS: Remove what
SP: Then we can both go shoot them
MS: Mrs. Palin...
SP: Call me Sarah
MS: Mrs. Sarah India faces the terrorist menace too
SP: Sad, sad about the Marriott. I prefer Hilton though
MS: Can we talk about the Nuclear business
SP: You must curb nuclear proliferation
MS: Mrs Sarah, you mean Pakistan should...
SP: Oh, am so sorry. You are Indian! You Pakis look so alike.

(this was published Sept 23, 2008 - before they met at NY)

Sunday, November 21, 2010

To Bare Or Not to Bare - Telling vs. Showing

Don't tell me the moon is shining; show me the glint of light on broken glass. ~Anton Chekhov

In Our Lives Laid BareDeepti Lamba writes:

I am here talking about the need for us writers to pen our lives down. The need to share our lives with those who read us...It is a catharsis that we are addicted to- lay it all out.

In a response Ritu wrote:

There is a certain bit of ourselves that we lay bare everytime we write. Yet, I don't have the courage to lay bare the innards of my soul or write of the issues that really plague me. I always marvel the courage of writers who are able to reveal the innermost struggles of their lives in print.

Bathroom singing should not be for public consumption. This page is not a couch. The reader is not a psychiatrist. A writer's words should do the talking, if they could. The reader could nod, decipher, discern, relate and share the writer, if indeed they would like to, in those written words.


I have not commented yet on Our Lives Laid Bare. That is for not lack of attempts. I must have dispatched many comments, some short and some very long to cyber oblivion. [The wastebasket is a writer's best friend. ~Isaac Bashevis Singer.]

Dee, you elicited some very strong reaction. Being cast in a different mold, I have respect and admiration for those who are completely at ease with their "selves" and can write (about themselves) with ease.

I am not a writer, nor a poet: small time poets are not poets they are merely passionate scribblers. I belong to the group (am not sure if there exists such a group - but am willing to bet there is one on evidence) that would rather let their words lead the way - unadulterated and unmixed with raw personal details as much as possible.

And what I write (here) is not intended to encourage or discourage the writer in you [It is impossible to discourage the real writers - they don't give a damn what you say, they're going to write. ~Sinclair Lewis]

When Franz Kafka wrote, "Writing is utter solitude, the descent into the cold abyss of oneself" I understood it to mean an arrangement of words on paper that lays bare the intense internal bombardment of thoughts in a manner that may present easily decipherable hints for the interested reader.

Here is a test. Tell me how their contemporary reader would have reacted to Yukio Mishima, Japanese Author, 1925-1970 [The average age for a man in the Bronze Age was eighteen, in the Roman era, twenty-two. Heaven must have been beautiful then. Today it must look dreadful. When a man reaches forty, he has no chance to die beautifully. No matter how he tries, he will die of decay. He must compel himself to live.- Yukio Mishima] [True beauty is something that attacks, overpowers, robs, and finally destroys. - Yukio Mishima] and Lord Byron, English Poet, 1788-1824. [If I don't write to empty my mind, I go mad. - Lord Byron][To withdraw myself from myself has ever been my sole, my entire, my sincere motive in scribbling at all. - Lord Byron]?

If you are unfamiliar with their eccentricities then you can check them out here: 7 "Eccentric" Geniuses Who Were Clearly Just Insane.

I cannot speak for Temple, V.S Naipaul or countless others who share bits and pieces of themselves with the world but one thing is for sure it does take courage to lay oneself open and its a gift few are willing to share.

Unapologetically I'd say Dee, Naipaul is a uncouth and unmitigated lowlife who should have taken a vow of silence after A House for Mr Biswas - or become a monk. Sorry Dee, I have no respect for those who loathe and are bereft of self respect - such persons cannot respect the reader. A reader is the prime reason for writing. Writing, in essence cannot exist in a vacuum, even though words are small gods. And baring the soul should be done through the "glint of light on broken glass."

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Poessay: On Writer's Block

Is there an affliction known as writer's block? Or is it an overblown condition to camouflage fear, lethargy or lack of discipline? Why does it affect some writers and not others? Why does it affect good writers and not not-so-good ones?

"One of the most difficult things is the first paragraph. I have spent many months on a first paragraph, and once I get it, the rest just comes out very easily." (Gabriel Garcia Marquez)

The key to come out is in preparation: Getting Started.

Sit down. Roll out a fresh sheet or turn on a fresh page on the laptop. Look around. Start writing. Don't stare.

You have seen so many things, have smelled the dew and the tea leaves, have experienced joy and sadness, cherished memories, weathered loss. Recall one and express your thoughts as they come.

You have tried it and it does not work for you? You are still staring at the blank page/screen?

OK, do not wait for the deluge of thoughts to flow. If they do not descend on their own, and if your efforts to persuade them to come out have borne no result you will get stuck and dig yourself deeper into this self afflicted despair.

Try harder. You can coax them, it is simple. Just write down a thought - the first thought you have and out it on the page. Slowly, more words will follow and the haze would lift. From that page you will be able to pick up something that would start the flow.

You do not believe me?

You are not convinced? OK, let' are sitting at a desk...twirling a pen gazing at that paper...looking around...self, some books, a painting or a print, color on the wall, paint fresh or faded, phone perhaps, or a cell phone, that cuppa, some old mail, maybe bills, a window, curtains or blinds!

I don't know what you write...what genre you favour...for me poetry at times is easier than! you stare at the wall...the wall?


the wall

silent, fortuitous, obtrusive
a witness to lost laughter

sighs, sobs and smiles
emotions overt, suppressed

the wall
never subpoenaed

has seen many
pacing the room
- expectant fathers

lost in thoughts
elusive dreams

the wall
keeper of sighs
and silent shouts

it supports
but does not offer
comfort stands
immovable, unmoved

yes the walls can be tough
like my friend

the tongueless wall
knows so much
why can't it be my friend?


I would look this over tomorrow. Would bounce it off some trusted folks, sit on it, chisel and polish, save, look it up another time in a few months time and work on it again...a poem is never finished really.

So friend, despair not...look around and write that first word. Good luck!

Friday, November 19, 2010

Poetry: Cobwebbed Cognizance II - Wanderlust

chasing vagaries
motored vistas

misty daybreak
ambushed sunrises

rigor mortis
floated as dawn's fog

cars pursued
elusive mileposts

smile to smile
traveled sighs

pauses and
embracing beds

tolls paid duly
to stern collectors

fata morgana

sighs and smiles
in the stupor
of solecism

sabulous words
awed and gnawed

milepost mirage
kept distance


cobwebbed cognizance

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Poetoons: Al Qaeda Needs You...

1: al qaeda needs you

imagine a caricature
of mullah george bin laden
with star and striped stovepipe hat
in a recruiting poster
for osama bin bush

2: it's all about freedom

while the skies rain uranium tipped bombs
and smoke is seen rising in the background
in the foreground a little bird confides
it's all about freedom and democracy

3: oil crisis

running after bicycles
and tired pedestrians
isn't the same as chasing cars
driven by lawyers, bloggers
and two faced politicians

4: on the tarmac

said the Airbus 380
to the Cessna 172
tell me if you are dieting

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Poetry: Tanhaee by Faiz Ahmed Faiz, Translated by MHK and t

Sadiquain- Faiz's Tanhaee. Calligraphy by and © property of Dr. Zoya Zaidi

phir koi aaya dil-e-zaar! nahiN, koi nahiN
rah'ro hoga, kahiN aur chala ja'aye ga
dhal chuki raat, bikharnay laga taarouN ka ghubaar
laR-khaRa-nay lagay aaiwanouN maiN khabeeda chiraagh
sO gayee rasta tuk tuk kay her ik reh guzar
ajnabi khaak nay dhundla dyay qadmouN kay suraagh
gul karo shammaiN! baRha dou meena-o-ayyagh
apnay bay khaab kiwaRouN ko muqafful kar lo
ab yahaN koi nahiN, koi nahiN aa'aye ga!
--Faiz Ahmed Faiz
This translation is by my late mentor MHK Qureshi

Again has someone come, sad heart---no; no one
May be a passerby ---will go somewhere else
Night declines, the stardust scatters
Drowsy lamps waver in the buildings
Every path, after long waiting, sleeps
The unfamiliar dust has blurred traces of footsteps
Put out the candles, take away wine and jug and cup
Lock up your sleepless doors
Now no one, no one will come here.

Dr. Zoya Zaidi's transcreation here.

And my humble effort.

Has someone come again, O Sad Heart!---no, no one!
May be a straggler, will go somewhere else
Night wanes, stardust scatters
Drowsy lamps flicker in the palaces
Every path has given up and dozed off
Drifting dust has covered footstep traces
Extinguish the lamps, remove the decanter and the cups
Lock up your dream-less doors
Now, now one shall come one!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Poessay: Rosary 13 - By the Lake

By the Lake

time, tide, toddler

move forward

expunge tide

it comes and recedes

omit toddler too

the child grows

then turns a child


from womb to womb

that leaves father time

the lonely straggler

with mystic smile

at the fair

Vain Thought

if that moment



gar woh lamha



Said the Soldier

said the soldier

going to the front

should i fall and find

it was all in vain

i will kill myself

So What?

room with a view

shelf full of books

enough in the pantry

and the wallet

humble goals

modest existence

then past the allotted

three score and ten

the recycling chamber


Poessay: Rosary 13 - By the Lake

Monday, November 15, 2010

Poessay: the one time

Detail from Temptation and Fall Michelangelo
from the Sistine Chapel Ceiling

the one time she should have resisted the temptation to wave back...Benazir
the one time horses and donkeys should have resisted...
the one time pedestrian legends in their minds get off their horses...(defies logic- editor)
the one time Gore should have challenged the Senile Court
the one time Bush could utter a simple sentence...dream on
the one time Palestinians could roll over and play dead (like the immortal Hussain of Karbela)
the one time Israelis could resist ghettoising and Bantustising...
the one time Nelson Mandela could lay it on Mugabe
the one time she should have resisted my advances...OK it is conjectural...and the Editor agrees
the one time riders run and horses ride...only in Wonderland
the one time the bulldozer had stopped dead...instead of Rachel Corrie
the one time a bullet could be recalled...Arch Duke Ferdinand...runners-up JFK, MLK, Gandhi, LAK...
the one time commonsense should have held his peace (OK disregard one time)
the one time smallsquirrel should have bitten her lips (hmmmm...not likely)
the one time i should have held my peace (one time?)
the one time the driver was not drunk...Diana
the one time the snake should have refrained...

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Poessay: Rosary 12 - Kohled Eyes

the bird perched on that leafless tree
has no wings

fasurda bulbul
zakhmON ki paasdaari kertay hu’aye
shaakh per baithi hay

the smiling eyes
on the mime's face streaking red rained fate
or vodka

woh shOkh aankhiaN
lakh duk’h chupha’aye muskurati
rehti haiN sada

the kohled eyes
behind shades, under the wide hat

the speaking eyes
smiling, mischievous, inviting - or red
and swollen

hard to know
unless we discard blinkers and peer


Saturday, November 13, 2010

Dear Allah

[Caveat: Not for the humour impaired]

Dear Allah:

Bismillah Ar Rehman Ar Rahim

We begin in Your name - You are Most Beneficent and Most Merciful. You do not appear to be the betting kind, but if You were You could bet we are counting on that. Now that it is out of the way, Dear Allah, looking around all the mayhem and fasad brought about in your name we are wondering if we could wonder aloud and perhaps not question your motives and timings but ask a few well-meant questions about them.

Since You are Omnipotent and all powerful why did You not delay Muhammed's arrival till the dawn of the internet era? Or alternatively, brought this era forward by 1500 years skipping Gutenberg and Galileo altogether?

Had there been the Internet then, citizen bloggers would have noted and debated all of Muhammed's moves as well as that of his companions and their successors and shared his Sunnah with others for eternity safe and sound, protected and documented instead of allowing the hindsight of the well-meaning 'believers'. And why haven't You made rules to safeguard the hadiths if we were supposed to follow You and Your messenger and instead allowed the likes of Abu Hurraira to put words in Your messenger's mouth. Ayesha's birth would have been documented, and the entire mess about her age at the wedding would not have occurred and we would have avoided child-brides and kid-weddings. Warraq and Pipes et al would have had more time for leisure activities.

Bukhari, Muslim and Tirmizi would have had to find alternate careers perhaps in micro documenting? Abu Hureira would not have the universal Rent-a-Hadith franchise.

But we are getting ahead of ourselves. We are mortals at Your mercy, O Allah.

Since Muslims are supposed to be so caring of everyone around them, we are sure the new Muslim would be environmentally the greenest of people inhabiting Your world, turning the rest greener with envy. They would conserve, re-use, recycle and use biodegradable products.

Muhammed could have been happy with one wife or two (after the first one passes away, if you deem so) like most of us are, or pretend to.

He could have bought an online Last Will and Testament Kit for $19.95 (with money back guarantee) and this would have satisfied everyone and not caused a schism in Islam.

And You could have let Muhammed communicate in English understood all over the world. If he had set the tone in English, the jaahil Mullahs would have learned English too and just by that effort be less jaahil and more abreast of science and technology and what is happening all over the modern world? And with Muhammed speaking in English you would have to place him somewhere other than Arabia. Which is not a bad thing come to think about it.

And why not elaborate on the fact that You created us in a perfect form so as not to allow anyone to mess up this perfection by performing FGM and the likes?

You could have cleared up the controversy between au natural, one piece, two piece bathing suits and the burquinis. And while at it cleared the veil issue and settled the controversies between headscarf, veil and one-woman-mobile-tent.

O Allah, we mean no disrespect, but You say Your words are valid for all communities at all times, yet between us Muslims we have ceased to be able to understand one another or communicate meaningfully. Between Bin Laden, Qutb and Mawdudi on one side and Rushdie, Manji, Hirsi Ali on the other, with all shades in between, who speaks the truth? And why should we need interpreters in the first place?

Merciful Allah, You have created us as different tribes so we can get to know and understand one another, appreciate our differences, and learn from each other, yet we are missing the complete edited and revised Islamic dictionary. Couldn't You have helped out a little bit?
yours bowingly,
t and tbs
[all indiscretions and aspersions cast on the living and the dead are the other collaborator's fault – signed t and tbs]

Friday, November 12, 2010

Poessay: Rosary 11 - Creating In Isolation

Is utter isolation the flip side of the intense focus necessary for creating? Some become reclusive and others maintain a public profile - guess to each his or her own. How far removed is the sculptor from the sculpture?

Know what I would be doing when this hibernation is over. Big time pruning. Will whip this into an essay. No, no I protest to myself. Will make this into an essay and a stream of consciousness piece. No, have a better idea. After I have pruned the essay will separately add these thoughts in the middle of the essay and see what emerges. But it still needs a summation, an effective round up and closing if it were an essay, I tell myself.

In the mind seas thoughts ferment, brew, overwhelm and dissipate with the ceaseless intensity of the waves hitting the shore. Some return to make their mark, others whither or whirl to strike at distant shores.

Thoughts strike alike the living and the petrified. Innocent or enigmatic contemplation provides the wind in sails, passion in emotions. The magic potion between irresistible dreams and impossible logic: cerebration. And meditation? One a wind and the other cloud? The petrified remain untouched, unharmed and unaffected.

Nothing comes between the neurons of an agile mind and the keyboard, the brush and the canvas, the chisel and the rock, when the creator is obsessed and driven. The result endeavors to capture, share and reflect the clarity of that moment of revelation.

The existential angst mixes with atomic intensity and bombards the restless mind. In desolate and hostile terrain of Living, it creates images that unblur Truth, Beauty, Appreciation, Stillness and Life. Life keeps returning. No death can keep it at bay. Disaster, calamities, dictators and ultra-orthodox firebrands do not know this.


Thursday, November 11, 2010

Poessay: A New Cult?

...being wired as we human beings...we profess to follow or not follow the faith we were born into as we grow up...the degree of adherence and questioning varies...and this is lifelong endeavor...the only individuals who consciously suppress this questioning and follow blindly are the born-again die-hards and they are universally despised and condemned...

...when it comes to religion (or faith's absence) in the end only this matters:do you feel good and do you spread goodness...if your faith or whatever dictum you profess to follow in life does not enhance your life and the life of those around you then it is suspect...

...this simple temporal test is applicable to all of us...those who are born into a faith or belief system and those who later in life reject, modify, or acquire another faith or value must feel good and spread goodness (happiness) around...during this temporal sojourn...

when i confessed i am human
who is not she countered
[ forward]
why not try to curb your faults?
wondered what good was my confession
but knowing where it came from
said i, appreciate and thanks

did i change my ways afterwards
no, but it is nice to know she cared

* * *

when will this journey end?
you don't want to know dear

life is one big journey
and when this journey ends
we stand to lie still

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Poessay: Rosary 10 - Life Rosary II

four wheels


rosary words

in rosary


those lips

conjoined words

kahaan na dhooNda
dil may paya

in self


Poessay: Rosary 1 - Pink Sand Beach
Poessay: Rosary 2 - Fishing
Poessay: Rosary 3 - Adam and Eve Limited - I

Poessay: Rosary 4 - Adam and Eve Limited - II
Poessay: Rosary 5 - Descending
Poessay: Rosary 6 - Dinner In The Park
Poessay: Rosary 7 - Under the Jamun Tree
Poessay: Rosary 9 - Life Rosary I
Poessay: Rosary 10 - Life Rosary II

Tuesday, November 09, 2010

Bernie, You Touched Me

I did not know you Bernie. Can I call you Bernie?

Were you married? Did you celebrate your 20th or 25th anniversary? Did you have children? Were you a good father? Were you good friend?

If I do some research I can find out more about you. But that would be later. Here in this park I can only guess.

You must have had your share of cloud nine days just as you would have had pit days.


The full moon peaked through the clouds and the waves in Lake Ontario near Lock 1 of the Welland canal reflected the peek-a-boo moon. the light house of the St. Catharines Marina warned the sailors. Sitting under a weeping willow, just east of Jones Beach, the distant lights of Whitby and Oshawa visible over the horizon, a sense of calm prevailed.

It was an unreal calm that for a few moments pushed the headlines mentioning Georgia, Russia, Kashmir, Occupied Palestine, Musharraf far away.

Few moments? Try 3:30 am! Next morning….er….afternoon, after brunch we headed out to a local bird sanctuary and zoo. In the pond a turtle crept up on a rock and was philosophically musing about the world around. A flock of Canada Geese rested in the shade. Past the pond a sign read Nature Trail. I thought, nature does not trail, we do.

There were weeping willows, oaks, maples, birches on this trail. At the end of this short trail we entered a well manicured small park: a memorial to the 47 Canadians who were killed in the twin tower collapse.

Trees found in Eastern Canada were planted and a plaque in front of each tree mentioned the names – Cynthia Connolly, Albert Alfie William Elmarry, Colin Macarthur…

I stopped at Bernard Mascrenhas, born Karachi, 1950.


I don’t know you Bernie. Your life was extinguished at a ripe age by the dastardly act of a former CIA golden boy Osama bin Laden. He did not know or care that you were on the 97th floor of the North Tower.

After the fall of former USSR, the US desperately wanted an opponent and 9/11 created that opportunity. At the cost of innocent civilian lives like yours and the others whose misfortune it was to be in the twin towers that day, they nearly succeeded in creating an enemy group that could fill the vacuum of the erstwhile bi-polar world. It found willing accomplices in Islamophobes organizations and states.

Whether Osama still sings to Langley, Va. tunes is open to conjectures.

At lock 1, of the Welland Canal I saw BBC Elbe pass through. I could have touched it. It appeared huge, almost 12 stories high. Later I saw it in Lake Ontario, still big, then growing smaller before fading from view. You will always be close to those who love you, even though you have faded from the memory of others.

I am against the loss of a single civilian life at the hands of a deluded individual, an organization or a state. Not knowing you personally I mourn you. May you be peaceful wherever you are. And may the tree planted in your honour thrive.

Monday, November 08, 2010

Poessay: Rosary 9 - Life Rosary I

alien riverbanks

keyboard warriors

melting identity

soul diamonds

defying reason

colliding neurons

function of

nigah ka takrao

a’na ka takrao

jhuki nazraiN

nazrON ka tasado'om

nazaON ka tasado'om


Poessay: Rosary 1 - Pink Sand Beach
Poessay: Rosary 2 - Fishing
Poessay: Rosary 3 - Adam and Eve Limited - I

Poessay: Rosary 4 - Adam and Eve Limited - II
Poessay: Rosary 5 - Descending
Poessay: Rosary 6 - Dinner In The Park
Poessay: Rosary 7 - Under the Jamun Tree
Poessay: Rosary 9 - Life Rosary I

Sunday, November 07, 2010


Mr. P L Desi*

born free
singly and collectively
pile and hamper
tint and prejudice

Mango Man*

born free
large family
no school
street smarts
to prejudices
also without

You and I

also born free


* P. L - Pyare Lal, PaRha Likha, Pervez Latif, Parmjit Ludhianvi
* Mango = Aam, Man = Aadmi

Roget's II: The New Thesaurus
Main Entry: hamper
Part of Speech: verb
Definition: To restrict the activity or free movement of.
Synonyms: chain, fetter, hamstring, handcuff, hobble, leash, manacle, shackle, tie, trammel, basket, block, clog, confine, container, cramp, crate, curb, embarrass, encumber, fetter, foil, frustrate, halter, handcuff, handicap, hinder, hobble, impede, inhibit, load, manacle, obstruct, pannier, restrain, restrict, shackle, slow, stymie, trammel

Saturday, November 06, 2010

Poessay: Rosary 8 - Voices In The Air

Do they hear voices? What if I write do they also hear voices? Shhh….speak softly. You know you do not hear voices out of ether. You hear and read looks, glances and thoughts. And interpolate, interpret and re-interpret. Have you forgotten who hears voices out of thin air? And what happens to them?

While in that room with monster speakers and dark-flashing strobes, heard the call. Not the grotesque rendering of fine verse and equally distorted rhythms but irresistible urges that lure you to the special peace of quiet, away from that oasis of cacophony. The headache caused by the palpitating strobes provided an excuse to leave.

The key in hand is an alien intruder in the lock. So I walk back to the front desk. 'You got the right key, Sir.' Hmmmmm. Maybe the building moved! The key works fine this time. Fetched a pen and some papers and walked back to the beach. Under a floodlight found a chair and started imprisoning fleeting thoughts.

An unbridled chasm between reality and logic bridged by words throbs.

Celestial lubrication.

But there is no PC, no laptop, just some photocopied papers where the reverse is write able. So started capturing them at random and am desperately trying to read and key in the words now.

Forget those words, focus on the thoughts. Capture the stray soldiers now, reflect upon the pincer movements later. Time enough to record the battles and wars.

What would they say?

Who cares was the first reaction. Depends on they too. Have never cared enough about them. So who cares holds.


Poessay: Rosary 1 - Pink Sand Beach
Poessay: Rosary 2 - Fishing
Poessay: Rosary 3 - Adam and Eve Limited - I

Poessay: Rosary 4 - Adam and Eve Limited - II
Poessay: Rosary 5 - Descending
Poessay: Rosary 6 - Dinner In The Park