The Brooding Tree

No matter where future takes me, I know life can never be easy. All the hardships I am seeing myself through...the sun, the rain. The patience and the perseverance, the fatigue, the failure and the frustration...headaches and heartaches...All that running about for one silly thing that went wrong. All the sweat...this disappointment. If i oversleep for a damn fifteen minutes the entire day goes bad. Not rare are the days at the end of which i would have set my
gtalk custom message as "life sucks", had i wanted to. I have misunderstandings and quarrels, situations which have me howling and screaming like i have lost my senses...followed by pillow biting sequences...bouts of taking wrong decisions, and facing their consequences, running from place to place with utter hopelessness, losing so many things on the way. I have a long series of problems to be tackled every many things to be brooded over. Shame and denial
to be looked at in the eye.

And amongst all this there is one subtle realisation that I have begun to live like a machine. Life is as static as that of a vegetable, despite all this crazy panademonioum. Living has been reduced to mere existence. I am not going anywhere...despite all the running.

One more thing. What has changed about me? I have learnt to defend myself, against myself. I have grown an innocuous sense of acceptance of myself as what I am, without any further changes. Gone is the desperation of a nevereneding improvisation of my skills and knowlege. I have great sympathy for myself. I spend hours in balming my own wounds, singing to myself. Laziness holds the strings of my life, and I am a great sleep lover as ever.

This i realise is a part of building the person, i would be five years hence. That's all!

Walks To Remember-3

Care to read Part-2? Y/N

Read on...Part-3

I was sure that my Saturday evening excursions were going to remain as solitary and undisturbed as before. I had proved it to him that he was just any other guy for me. I had nothing to prove to myself, I was so damn confident about myself, my decisions were so not trapped up
in my emotions as before...I would nott remain a teenager anymore in a month or two.

I had seen him in some restaurant with one hot chick last Wednesday. I would have not smiled at him otherwise, but I did. He had responded
awkwardly. I definitely wanted my presence to be acknowledged. My glad smile would have left him with no face to come back this Saturday. But that generous smile that had bloomed on my face that time was somewhat superficial. Typical 'girl-thing' you know. No! How would you

On my way back on Saturday, I was feeling some kind of a relief come over me. But he found me again. He smiled at me as if we hadn't met earlier...that Wednesday. 'Is he under the impression that I suffer from short-term amnesia or something' I thought. A sarcastic giggle rippled within me, as I didn't return that smile of his. Self-pity and cynicism have always been parts of me...I can't do without them.

He added a "hi". I looked up at him, stretched my lips into a vague smile...looked down again. This is the last time anyway, I thought. I am too mature to understand everything, i have seen so much of the world, and don't you dare think I am naive enough to fall into such traps now...

"Sorrry, I am late" said he.

You think I was waiting for you, haan? Very funny!

"So what were you doing there on Wednesday? Never thought you do hang around with the other girls."

He takes me to me that dumb, disgusting! It is all about a fair face, lovely locks and 36 24 36. Anyway, never mind!

"That was a treat that I had been taken the girl you saw me with, the other day", his voice shook.

Did she kidnap you to treat you?

I was silent all through...not a word uttered. And my muteness was irking him, or so he showed.

A "Wow, great!" escaped my lips...and my lips curled to produce a smile...I tried to hide any bitterness that was oozing from within me.I then continued, "Many guys would kill to go on a date like that". I giggled at him. I realized that i was teasing him. Oh My God!

Now what would I expect him to reply? Something like---Oh not my problem actually, I am so affable, I am made into a magnate whenver women are concerned...

My expression tried to convey him...'Why are you trying to explain things to me Mr. So & So? Who am I?'

And this time he came close to contradicting my 'every-other-guy' prejudice about him. He stayed mum for some time.
And I didnot want to believe it when i heard,"I come here every Saturday, not for nothing, you know".

Then he shrugged and sighed. Looked straight into my eyes, I got locked in that gaze...until I could bear no more of it! It was as if his vision could penetrate into my deepest insides...and he could see my past & present in one glance.

Even I before I could react, I saw him walking away into the wilderness, merging with the darkness from which he had appeared.

To Pain, My friend

I have been trying to get back the pain
My pain
Because pain is my fuel
Fuel to live and write

But my pain has left me far behind
Distant in time
Dissolved in some past page of life
I miss you, pain

I miss the agony, the desperation
The impatience and anticipation
Now scavenging on bits of complacency and a stoical silence
I want to get back the time when I never ran out of pain…


Conversation on the phone:

Shikha: -Yeah, hi!
Salil: - where are you?
Shikha: - what where? At this hour, should I be playing basket ball? I am in my apartment of course…
Salil: - Can you come out for a moment? I, actually…
Shikha: - what? It’s 2 o’clock man! C’ mon!
Salil: - mmmm…actually I am waiting downstairs…
Shikha: - what is it actually uh? Is this the time? Go and come back tomorrow.
Salil: - I didn’t drive down 15 kilometers just for nothing.
Shikha: - then what did you drive down for? C’mon yaar!
Salil: - can I expect to have you here in another five minutes?
Shikha: -Of course not!
Call disconnected!

Ten minutes later…conversation downstairs:

Shikha: - Yes sir? What can I do for you?
Salil: - get in!
Shikha: -huh? No! I won’t!
Salil: - you think I am going to kidnap you or something?
Shikha: - well, you never know (giggles, and gets in)

The car zooms into motion.

Shikha: -(screams) Oh My God! Where are we going?
Salil: - wherever you say!
Shikha: - what? No kidding yaar, where are you taking me?
Salil: - hmmmm…the beach probably? Or do you have some other place in mind?
Shikha: - and you have plans to fish? Did you go mad or something after that promotion?
Salil: - I have always been as mad; it was you who never realized it!
Shikha: -Shut up! Priti will get worried…I told her I will get back in a minute…
Salil: - who is that?
Shikha: -uh? She is my loving flat mate, clear?

Silence persists…until the sea appears.

Salil: -here you are…I know it’s the sea you actually love (winks), so brought you here, at midnight it looks the best!
Shikha: - but why? What’s wrong with you?

Salil leaning on his car, Shikha kicking the sand…

Salil: -I love you

Shikha gives him a confused momentary stare. Gets into the car, and calms herself, trying to convince her that nothing had happened. That she had heard nothing. Anyway, she had foreseen it…

Salil: - what happened?
Shikha: - Drop me home, please!

Conversation in the apartment:

Priti: - I saw it all (grins).
Shikha: -what?
Priti: - so?
Shikha: -he proposed, I guess!
Priti: -(Hysterical) I knew this was coming! Oh my God! What did you say?
Shikha: - me? I said nothing…
Priti: -I doubt your sanity! Shikha?
Shikha: -haan
Priti: -let me tell you that you just said ‘nothing’ to a friend of 3 years and the guy you almost love.
Shikha: - Almost! (Sighs) Goodnight Sweety!
Priti: - You are absolutely hopeless!

It’s around half past eleven the next day. Shikha receives Salil’s call.

Salil: -what’s up? Where are you?
Shikha: - Me? Oh! I am playing basketball! C’mon, I am in the office, and I was conspiring to kill my new manager…
Salil: - Spare the poor chap, he already has a painful life, with you working for him!
Shikha: -Can you please shut up?
Salil: -Alright! Let’s have lunch together?
Shikha: - no! I am busy.
Salil: - Can I expect to have you at 12 30? And you know the place, don’t you?
Shikha: - No ways! Bye!

Shikha and Salil talking across their lunch table:

Salil: -Excuse me, but I proposed you last night, remember?
Shikha: -So?
Salil: - So, say something?
Shikha: - What should I say?
Salil: -Say ‘yes’.
Shikha: - Yes.

And this is the way it should be…Bingo!

¤free spirit¤

I shifted my curtains and made way for the sun. I had never known that the afternoon sun was so warm and nice. The sun shone on my face, as it tried to dry my wet hair. I looked at the newspaper make a cracking noise as it shook in the breeze. I stared at the sun, a circle of vibrant yellow, in a white sky, moving in and out of clouds. My face was a plaything for light and shade.

I thought. I like things that are slow, that do not tax my mind, that are soft and subtle. I would live in a place where everything goes on at a lazy pace. And I would suck the pleasure out, drop by drop, as life crawled sluggishly by my lane. Where the eyes could rest and the hearts could stop thinking so fast.

I would sit on a table-for-one, in the quiet smoky corner of a buzzing restaurant and watch people chatting, smiling, laughing, crying, and going about their lives.

I wouldn’t know joy or sorrow, good and bad, my thoughts would blur into a haze. My nerves, will soothe. This just may give me an equilibrium.

Walks To Remember-2

Walks To Remember-1 is here

This Saturday, I reached a little late than usual. Within myself, there was a big fight going on, should I go, or shouldn’t I?

I did go, only half an hour late. A part of me was relieved not to find him there. I just couldn’t get myself to concentrate. Basically I go to the temple every Saturday, to talk to God. People chill out with their buddies; I unwind in the company of God.

But do I need to mention I was disappointed? Yeah, I was!

Why do I do this again and again? Why can’t I teach myself a simple thing? Why can’t I be self-sufficient? Why do I expect things from people? And all this after the stone hearted men never cared to look back? Why?

As I was leaving I found myself smiling. At someone who had a bigger smile stuck on his face…

‘I thought you wouldn’t come’, he began.

‘Naa, I just got screwed up in the hostel, something turned up in the last moment’

‘Mmmm…. all the hostel responsibilities are thrust upon thy frail shoulders!’

I looked up at him…and raised eyebrows must have told him why-do-you-care-&-you-think-I-am-frail-huh?

When will my ‘stay-away’ attitude bid me adieu, oh! Man!

And we began walking. This time, he didn’t find it necessary to ask whether he could accompany me or not! Took me for granted I guess.

He talked a lot this time. I am someone very much in love with herself. I can never have anytime for someone outside my world. So I never was a patient listener. I call myself very selfish that way. But as he talked, I realized, that an interest rose from some place I never knew existed. I wanted to know more about everything about him. I tried to ward him off my mind, by telling myself ‘I have too many issues in my head, to look into yours, Excuse me!’ But I couldn’t, no matter how hard I tried. And, I did try pretty hard. I always try hard not to fall.

‘So you ‘got yourself rid of your deeds huh?’

I looked at him, and smiled. He grinned. He was no ways perfect, I realized, but nice he was in every possible way…

Again I was walking as if I was I had lost my toes; I realized my face muscles were static. But there was some movement happening within. I was elated. I tried to find out, whether it was for those much craved for evening walks coming true, or for the company of this person.

It was not the first time with me, that I meet some person and I cannot stop thinking about him, so I tried to push him away. And then it occurred that he had stopped talking from quite some time, there was a fearful silence between us. And the road was lonely.

The trees bent down to see what was cooking between the two of us, and then all of a sudden, darkness flew in. I went pale…all the streetlights went off…and I forgot which way I was walking. In a situation as this I always call out, “Mummy!!!” and I did it then also. For a moment I wanted to cry.

Then I could feel his fingers around my wrist, he lead me back home.


she was so emotional
she cried at the slightest thing that hurt her
she felt a lot
she thought a lot
she was an outcast
mocked at
laughed at
& sadly different

she never got their jokes
nor the shrewd human tricks
their back biting
she was so absent all the time...
preoccupied she said
in another world...
where that world lie, she didn't know

some call she heard
to think beyond the usual
to see beyond the horizon
to hear the non-existent, the non-significant
to live beyond the mundane

but she had not grown a heart strong enough
to bear all the criticism
not to care for the ostracism

Walks To Remember

Episode 1: -

I have always had an instinctive feeling that I would meet my soul mate on any of my Saturday evening temple visits. Soul mate is not the boy friend; soul mate is not the future husband. He is the one who complements my soul.

So when this fellow brushed arms with me while taking the charnamrit, I definitely could not neglect it as nothing. Anyway, I didn’t look at his face. I am a girl. And have been taught to look down. And I do this as an act of self-defense. I want to shirk away from that there are other people who exist on earth, beside me. While I was turning away, I heard a ‘Sorry’. I pretended as if I had not heard it and as if I was in a hurry. There was hardly anyone around, and so I thought I should leave. As I was toeing down the stairs and having a final look at the ‘face-of-God’ I raised my eyes, to see the guy smiling. Rare that a guy smiles at me. Such a poker face that I am. I didn’t smile back.

I halted to tie the straps of my sandal, and then would walk back to my hostel. That’s what I do every Saturday evenings. On my way back, I look at the God-like Mountains that bound my college campus. Also this is my only time to star and moon gaze in the entire week. I watch couples walk by, hand-in-hand. So much in love. And I certainly had some expectations from my life also.

But today, there was this guy who said, ‘You are in second year, right?’

Me: -‘Hmmmm…. ya’. I wanted to run away. I saw on his face, an impish curl of lips.

I had never seen him. Damn! Two years at this place, and I don’t know all the fellow humans who are here like me to acquire knowledge!

‘I’m so-&-so’

‘Okay, I guess I have to go’

‘Aaaa…. I guess we can walk together till your hostel, I am going that way anyway.’

I look at him again. Oh! Guts!!!

‘It’s dark, and some ghost might just make his evening snack out of you’

And before I said my next word, I realized, we were walking together. ‘Electrical huh?’, he asked

‘Yeah’, I mumbled….

I was feeling stupid. Being a girl in a college where the sex ratio is as horrendous as 12:1, there are females who are quite like stars in the boys’ hostels, without them knowing it. But me? No ways…I used to be a behenji until a moment ago!

With all my pre-conceived notions about men, I hardly can take any in my life. I just can’t believe anything they say. I wouldn’t call them prejudice, because I am cent percent sure about my findings. And this one? Why on earth was I walking with this guy I don’t happen to know! Just because I didn’t know how to run?

‘Heard, you come here every Saturday?’

‘Ya, I do. Just to get myself rid of the deeds of the week.’

There was a silence, a pregnant one. I said ‘get myself rid of’? Blunder!

May be he is laughing out loud at me inside his heart. Who knows? He is just an agent sent my class guys to find out what ‘behenji’ does in the temple…

My feet wanted to fasten pace. But I wanted to slow down. I was held back by thoughts. I had always wanted to go out on prolonged evening walks on these tree shrouded roads…cool breeze, my companion and me. The companion should of course be should be far from intruding, like a part of the darkness. And even then I should be conscious of the warmth of his breath, the spark of his company.

Coming back to the present, what was happening at present? He was presence was so innocuous and err..nice... Like a part of the darkness. An invisible chord of chemistry linked our persons.

People walked by, people cycled by. They looked at us. I was looking down at the road, as if I had lost two of my toes or something.

‘When did you come back here?’, he broke the ice…

‘Me? Thursday!’

‘I had to return a week earlier, for my project submission and stuff’


‘I’m a year senior’

‘I see’

Did he not get bored of my monosyllabic answers?

‘You are the only one who comes to the temple hun? None of ya friends and all?’

I try to give him one of those why-do-you-care kinda looks.

‘Religious!’ he sighed.

‘Not exactly! But spiritual!

‘Gotcha!’ he chuckled.

As if he understood everything! Because I am something, no one understands…

I saw my hostel approach. He hadn’t asked my number yet. Surprising!

Hell! All the guys do that, or I guess so.

After a couple of minutes, I found myself standing near my gate, watching my ‘so-&-so’ disappear into the darkness…

‘See ya next Saturday’ were his parting words…

®--£$₭The Rat Race€¥₩--®

I run I run I run
In the sun

And in the rain
I sweat I scream

I run I rush

I cry in despair
Tired legs
Sprained ankles
Eyes all burnt
And a mind that refuses to obey

No food, no water
But no hunger even then
Nor am I thirsty
Just that the walls of my stomach
Give me pangs and burns, intolerable

No time to think, and feel, to rest…
To be myself
I am in a desert, and I don’t even see a mirage
Just run, run and run

Run, where?
I don’t know
Blinded by the dust and my dreariness
I follow the crowd and go
Wherever the mob leads me…

Run, drenched in my tears
Drenched in my regrets
Smeared in the ashes of my passions…
Hopelessness, darkness shroud me

I have stopped believing in flowery stuff
Music doesn’t heal my wounds
Poetry cannot satisfy my appetite
Tears can’t bring me to a point
When I can say “I have cried enough”

Like a piece of stone
In the green vastness of a graveyard…
I lie, in my solitary corner…
Weeping away my melancholy

And not an ear to hear
But even then I run, I run and I run…