March of terror – Daybreak

This morning when I woke up, it felt, like the fever is past. There was a lightness to Einaudi’s piano notes, slowly lifting me up to the infinitesimal specks of light that in my sleep slipped through the sieve of the long night. This morning, I picked up the paintbrush and I thought of beauty again.

 

I spoke to my teachers yesterday.

I have been so claustrophobic, I said, of the people in this world telling me I don’t have a right over my own dying. So I must take pills, and behave the right ways and live, why should I live because I owe it to others? I don’t want to die but it should be mine. I said, frantically gesturing.

But I do, I have a right over my own life, and over how I choose to live it and over my own death. I said, I couldn’t stop.

When one knows that, it becomes easier to not die. He said, looking carefully into the air through his thick glasses.

 

The fever is gone, I dreamt of something in my dream, of something ineffable, really fragile that was being held still with a spell. That was it, that thing I saw, there were only whispers of small stirrings on its peripheries, held inside stillness. And then, the long fever was gone.

 

They do not let me live as I want, I said, but they do not let me die either. I just want to be left in peace as how I am. I don’t understand, I know, but I am not understood either. I complained.

The whole world M, is speaking of not having been understood; in a surreal endless madness. Just live, and do not dwell over the living for too long. Live the rustic. He said.

There in nothing in what I am saying, that she does not already know. She knows that too. He said, in amused Bihari to my friends.

 

And the fever was gone. Just like that, the long night opened its doors, picked me up like a sleeping child and lay me at the threshold of the morning. She and the moon inside her breast held me to their gaze gently before letting me go to the light.

And then, there was a sweetness to the touch of the woman who lay holding me. My skin heard hers like the taste of water and my fingers danced, eager to touch, for they remembered desire again after a long long time. Her touch shed the dust off my skin and kissed light into it.

And the fever was gone.

And my laughter returned to babble and linger a little too long over a joke, surprising my witnesses to laughter too. And my breast felt the laughter cut the weights tied to my waist in reckless bliss; and it soared and let the winds in again.

I have known the sounds of the morning approaching my village a long time, through the many long nights, I have thought of them like lovers I lost to the wearing of time. And I heard the bells and the chatter and the laughter and the lightness and the light and the love and the touch and the greediness of existence; I heard them all make their way to my ruins to make their nomadic stop. There will be a festival, they know, in their quiescence.

The fever is gone. It took 52 days and nights to burn.

This morning, I picked up the paintbrush and thought of beauty again.

 

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The March of Terror – Strangeness and the moon

The moon has been lighting my nights up since the night of the white noise. I don’t remember what the moon was like that day. I remember what I was like, until quiet some time at least. I drank, wept and chopped my hair. The third time in the last three years. It is somewhat comical now, my relationship with my hair. To you, dear reader, it may be strange, even alarming.

After all the white noise, I woke up to a fresh day, as if I had been purged. I actually had strength, and clarity. The purge was painful. My whole was shrieking, with the noise of the other I had gathered over time. And in one nightlong shriek, it silenced me to myself. The awkward, tall, skinny girl with a boycut again.

I have not been this calm in weeks, all by myself, on the terrace with the moon. The moon, you see, is an extraordinary lover. It produces an ache that returns you to your own nakedness. Over the years, I have yelled doom at it, and cursed it to the eternity of being witness to lonely beings of the night; and I have tasted it, like a half cut tangerine on nights it stole the yellow from the sun; and I have listened to my breathing, on nights like this one, as it sat in witness, like a friend on a day of mourning. I have lusted for it, and tried to hold it prisoner to the rectangles of my windows, and I have let it flee me, on stormy nights when I needed a little white boat to see me to the shore. I have burnt it with endless cigarettes and gotten drunk on it, and I have walked all nights long looking for it. I have accused it, of stealing from the sun, and I have laughed at it, for always running ahead of it, I have held it’s secrets like a friend, to the jarring sounds of the day, and I have warned the world of its callousness, this lover of mine, never ceases to be. And so, I have loved it.

The nights after the white noise, I have returned to look at it, and every night, I have returned a little more to myself. The strange dark girl with a bad boy-cut. My father and I used to walk to the salon together on Sundays, sit side by side, to get a cut. It was a lousy one. I like lousy haircuts, and lousy lives. I have one, so I must like it. When I try too hard for it to not be lousy, I begin to panic. The noise of the other crowds me out. Language made to stand alert to the commands of objective order startle me. It gathers in me like left-over rubble from a factory. I used to work in factories once, advising my clients on how to make their production processes more efficient. I did a good job at it. I liked my work.

But when language becomes production lined products of reason, and I gather it all, believe it or not, I get drunk and shave my head. This ramble is a plea. It’s a plea for strangeness. A plea for strangeness to not be dear, or endearing, or necessary, or a warning; but a mere plea for strangeness to be so and stay so. I am making a plea to the moon, holding it in a linguistic entanglement that leads nowhere but to sheets of a still white nightlong strangeness I can sleep under, with no one to wake me up to the rigid commands of meaning. Why must I produce meaning, when everything else fails to. Why must I not live in the pure aesthetic delight of the meaningless produced by an utter chaos.

No, what happened the last one and a half months wasn’t chaos. It was bricks and bricks of order being sent into my skull, like buildings they build in this city, forever growing, forever under construction; it would split my head and break my skull if I allow it to go on.

Chaos is stillness, of the moon that has witnessed the horrors of the night and continued to sit still; meditating on the forevers and the nevers promised between whispering lovers, and mothers and their children, and on all those who often choose the night-time to take that silenced leap into their nothing. Chaos is the holding of it in one’s palm, like a gentle lover, and witnessing it, glide and dance and make noise and hear rhythm without demanding it, without tearing it off the chaos in an act of violence, like one skins an animal. Looking for meaning, is like skinning the chaos of living for a rhythm and a beauty that can put our fears to a drunken stupor; for a while at least.

What do you mean? The boy with clay hands often would ask.

I don’t mean anything. Do you? I would think.

I see I am drunk on the moon, three nights drinking now. I am the most sober I have been in weeks. I am tired and I am rested. I am alone, and I am no one. And I am neither happy nor unhappy. I hold nothing prisoner anymore, my windows stay shut. Tomorrow, I will try to return to meaning again, intermittently, I will take care not to stay in it for too long, take breaks from it to talk to the moon. I will do it with will and not with obedience. Or at least, I will believe it is will that drives me to little pursuits of pragmatic meanings. For I have a worrying mother, and a very compelling, mostly undesirable  world I must listen to, for no good reason. But that seems just right tonight, on the terrace with the moon. I would be losing myself again, if I were to begin looking for a good reason to do anything.

Tonight, I will let the moon see me again, as who I really am, the no one with a bad haircut. I had seen it all winter just past, and it passed me by like a piece of furniture and I passed it by too, occupied with the urgencies of constructions and orders to be lived life long. I was a 28 year old woman that needed to get life in control because the other around me demanded I do, and I let the voices in. I am a 28 year old woman, with a bad haircut, and I don’t desire the greatness of meaning, No, that isn’t why I am drunk on the moon and rambling words. I desire a quiet kind strangeness, a linguistic entanglement with my lover, unfolding into nights and nights of meaningless play. It puts me to sleep best, this one. Look, it’s here, the fabric of the moon in my eye, like blankets and blankets of sleep, where it doesn’t matter what it means.

The March of Terror – Chamber of Secrets

I am in a somewhat funny mood today. I will not go into why. But I am not really a funny person. To be funny, I learnt early in school; you must own a penis and want to impress girls with your sharp wit and ability to bully. Even if I were to be funny, I don’t think anyone would get my jokes, this world has a mental block against women and jokes put together, unless of course, they are about them. So this ramble might quickly degenerate to very bad jokes, or worse, a serious rant about something or the other you, dear reader, might find, not so important.

But anyway, I will try to keep the humor up for the sake of the organic serotonin I gathered from today’s labor at IMF. I still can’t sleep though, and TMI, am still shitting more than I am eating. My body is working like one of Ron’s spells. Confused, hurried and doing more harm than good. I have also been watching Harry Potter again, for feel goods. Whatever that means; allows me to suspend my usually comfortable existential crisis which I cannot clearly handle right now. So Harry Potter helps me forget and build with the help of simply and sweetly devised maxims in a magic world.

But I had to stop for the night, I love Chamber of Secrets for all the snake work, no offense, but when Dumbledore cancelled exams for the year in the end, I just couldn’t take it anymore.

I mean, in my muggle world, people are dying all the time, and nothing stops. And here, they cancelled exams because the teachers understand that the whole school went through something traumatizing when the Chamber of Secrets was opened.

We go through something traumatizing everyday. No, to correct myself, we are bundles of trauma gathered from the day our parents decided to hand us that toy gun, or yell at us instead of talking, or not talk to each other instead of talking, or we watched something where people hit each other instead of talking, or where we watched a body being objectified instead of being spoken to or when we were sent to play school to prepare for ‘competition’, or when we learnt what a horror groups can be or my uncle decided to sexually abuse me, or other such mundane muggle things.

The whole human specie has one evolutionary advantage over the others, Language. But we have managed to collectively turn the world into a self destruct puddle of perpetual shittiness with stupid affirmations and bad pharmaceutical drugs for fake comfort using language. And no one cancels class. They send you to a counselor on top of the classes, and the other horrendous things happening all around you so that you can become emotionally stunted through the continuous pathologising and being looked at funny. So that the valid ways you learn to respond to trauma are not to be traumatized at all. Voila, if you can emotionally stunt a whole population, we will need to cancel no exams, no factory output, no productivity because something bad has happened.

But then that becomes progressively hard to do, you see, with the power of discourse and the new epistemology and all that fancy sounding crap. It is very very simple. There is a difference between maintaining mental health and emotional stunting. A mentally healthy person near about a contrary of one that is emotionally stunted. Maybe, one must look for madness in eerie silences at the sight of injustice and not in a hysterical howl. And maybe, it is to be found in the silences that have now entered the mind of people, that even the little voice in their heads don’t talk anymore when something wrong is being done, by them, and by others.

But anyway, I am in the mood to be loud and funny today, keep up the feel goods so I can survive long enough to maybe want to be alive again in this world. Words don’t help me with humor. And I have no wit whatsoever. My bullies had enough for all of us through school, college and after. And then the boys I ‘hooked up’ with later, really really killed all the remaining humor left. In our muggle world, the Chamber of Secrets lies strewn out in the open, rotting like an open wound asking to be addressed, and we are all busy running to class. I can’t believe I am using Harry Potter now to say things. So I will stop before it gets worse, I will go cut out magazines and stick them together where they do not belong. And hope, for nothing.

March of Terror – To be touched

I have no will in me to write today. But I must. I thought, even if I had no noble intentions towards the world, I was at least doing so for myself. But after last night, which seems to far away now, I am not really sure why am I writing. Maybe because some kind people told me it matters. And I barely have the courage to look at myself in the mirror; I have rage. I have for years now, shaved my head every time I felt something significant change in me. Last night, wasn’t an ordinary change. I am not even sure it was last night that all this happened to me. I am not sure what happened to me.

I have been asked endlessly to shove pills in my system for something that had a very reasonable cause which had nothing to do with my inability to be happy. I have always and will always be happy, to the last day of my life even if that were to be tonight. I say so, because I am writing this. I am writing this, because I attempt happiness. I attempt to fight back against violence and suffering instead of finding ways to walk away from it, or protect myself from it, medicate myself from how it feels in my body.

I am tired of being called crazy for having said it for years, and for the reality that dawns on me every new time I say it. This world, is full to the brim of suffering and of violence. And if you, dear reader, has a ‘but’ to add to it. You can go fuck yourself. Because there is no but. It is full of suffering. And if you think, your tricky little ‘but’ can explain it all away, by all means, walk off. It will not help. I know the world is full of suffering and violence, and I feel it in my skin, and I will need to make sense of it, and find it a language. I cannot walk away from it, because that, to me is an act of violence too.

I was taken to my trauma therapist yesterday. She said, ‘You should never have been touched this way. I hate it when someone touches someone the way all of us are often touched in this world.’ And she said, ‘You forgot how to protect yourself again, you should have been taught how to do that a long long time ago. And when you learn that, no one who touches you this way will be capable of the pain you have undergone.’

I had already known it, and somehow I lost that awareness again. I will hope this is about learning that. I don’t know if I will find a way out of these tunnels, but I hope this woman will find me a way back. I will try a little longer.

March of Terror – My Strange rooms

I cannot function still, not in straight lines yet. My body remains too tired, and my mind dulled by the cocktail of drugs in me. All I can do is wander through the twisted winding lanes of curled up words and flighty thought. K said, maybe write of your lovers.

Pain is a poison best had with the liquor of love.

 

Ambiguity

Your ambiguity

is frustrating

my language

into dull straight lines

like words lying down in a row

Instead of waltzing

like they usually do

And my lover now

Sits on the other side

of my glass walls

His words bounced off

and scattered in the dust

He is never ambiguous, he says

And I, always masochistic.

 

 

Waiting

Waiting, you said is a prelude to something beautiful, and suddenly, all the clicking clocking of time crumbled into the red rust of the moon tonight; and flickered in my eyes, sending smiles to my lip, and sighs to my breast. Waiting now, which was the motion of time felt burning into my skin, condensed and became a sea of currents that touch and go, touch and go; it’s salt making home in my skin.

 

 

Oblivion

The oppression of life unfolds it’s greatest attack on us in times of pain when the body itself revolts to the excesses of being, feeling, living, wanting. It is all silenced in one cathartic moment where everything shatters and in one last loud thunder, ceases to be.

The desire of pain is the kindness of oblivion.

 

Citrus

I cut my tongue
on your citrus this morning,
and all my wounds came alive
at the taste of your salt
They glower now, in a secret room,
which I try to lock away,
before it burns the rest of my house.
But your calls in the dark
have a nasty taste of honey
on my parched tongue,
turning sour as I taste,
in my sweet forgetting,
the sight of you before you fly..
You fly and falls to the ground
a sorry ruin, built in the skies
of my greedy glittery eyes
And then under the sheets of dust
I heard another honeyed call
for greens and blues,
and all the other unbearable things
that I dreamt of in my winter’s sleep
And I wake and leave
My bed of dust, the moon and rust
To the summons of your skin
To cut my tongue
On your salt again…

 

Stay

Stay, for a tiny minute longer, in this; in the glowing moment and let the experience make you weak, resigned, broken, and naked. Watch it carefully, as your skin slips against mine, almost touching, and almost not, hear as a million fireflies light up in parts of us that touch. Listen carefully, close your eyes and look inside; on the inside, there are only forests, dense, sugar sprinkled peaks, and dark unknown depths, and in places your touch touches, there are rivers, warm and cool, flowing by, nurturing and tearing at the same time. Now breathe, and let the winds walk the world inside you, like a lonely traveler on a solitary route.

And now close your eyes, and smile, when you smile, that silent wind, the quietened lands, the mute rivers will jolt to a life so large, like a dead heart that started beating again, and the forests will come alive, birds will screech and take off , the rivers will babble by the ghats as they fly by, and the trees like flutes, sing tunes as their lover, the wind passes through. They will sing of love. Close your eyes now, listen to the music of our touch this morning, see it inside out, we are the world, the world is in us.

 

 

Counting Lovers

I’ve lost track of the lovers that walked away. I have lost track of the times this kind of crippling silence follows a feeble festival of warm bodies and easy laughters.

Its good you are leaving also now. My desire had melted into your shapes and rested, growing on that island of ours we will never see again together. It was in me, the want of you, and in me also to run away from you. In between our embraces and childish distractions, the word love often rose again and again threatening to spill out of my breast but I smothered it each time and held you tighter. Not just yet, I told myself.

But I see that I never could love you blind because it wasn’t very long ago that life had dried up my eyes and held them by force wide open to burn in the witness of some very ugly truths.

Your leaving is one of those ugly truths now. And my eyes wide open still.

I woke up this morning and saw my old lover sitting next to me, watching me sleep.

I cheated on my pain with you. He knew, and he has his retribution, my punishment spills from my broken body. We didn’t have to greet each other, we have no need for pleasantries because he never really leaves. I put some things in my bag, a book, a pack of cigarettes and the new ugly truth. My lover waited at the door.

I hung the bag on my shoulder and walked out, my fingers wrapped around the finger of my old lover in sweet resignation.

One more, once again and I never learn.

I’ve lost track of lovers that walked away; now, I do not want to remember.

 

 

 

What happens when that happens

I unlatch the door to the room where the sounds of you live, and walk in like one walks into a place that once was home. You see, I suffer from a discontinuous memory and persistent fragmentation, and so I have these rooms in my mind, and hoarded in them are all the trinkets from my life, and ghosts and deaths and births.

This room, it has the touch of you, and the sound of your voice, and the gently lying words you said, I kept them in a little box. It has hair stuck in the button of my shirt and it has the sweetened dream ripened by the onset of spring, before the winter dried up my eyes. It has all our secret dark desires and the sweet violences of want. Gasps that spilled from our mouths and fell down by the bed hang in the windows like wind chimes and the bells of our laughters hang on the door, waking it all up as I unlatch the door and walk into the room of my mind where you live.

 

 

It happened again

I am formless again

I broke into fragments

one unexpected moment

somewhere on my way to the university

The urgencies of life became translucent.

It is a struggle

to live inside the walls of life

Gather me will you?

In your clay hands.

 

 

To write of you

I’ve always envied people who can write of desire for I have to suffer in silence, the cravings of your touch. They come out jittery and small, my words when I begin to write of you, like I am worried you ll spill out onto the pages through my fingers and empty me out. I have thought a long time now that my words are small and twisted and ugly, that they fall off the homes I build, like so much rust. Not long ago, in the ruins of my time, my desire became jittery, and in quiet fidelity, my words did too. I am only recently remembering again, the rhythms of these words, and my desire is beginning only now, to build long green winding bridges across the fractures of my cracked skin.

Maybe someday I will write of the man with clay hands and the memory of a rain one stormy night.

 

 

S came today

S came today. She brought a little bit of you with her. I can’t say these things to you, you have never let me, so I never did. What’s the point of writing these words, curling them up into loops that are no good for no eye cares for them and no ears receive them.

But then S came today and with a little bit of you; there was the whole of her always a little empty, her eyes are like that, it’s got empty rooms that hold echoes. Echoes of you.

 

 

Adultery

Tonight, the absent moon decided to cast its shadow on the heart, dark and heavy with intimate knowings and failed forgettings.

What perverse pleasure it has in summoning a child’s desire in the broken body of an adult, raising in its breast howls of protests, futile, for it; this desire from the dreams of my past, doesn’t burn with cigarettes of my sleepless nights. And it doesn’t cease it’s wild dance, behind my sleeping eyes. It conjures up dreams night after night, holding me prisoner, like a lover that won’t leave; a lover that demands surrender from a will that wasn’t taught how to cease.

This lover of mine, watches, waiting patiently, as I commit adultery with happiness on careless reckless evenings, to return on mornings; with clenched jaws, it sits by me, smiling. On the nights of those mornings, the absent moon and it’s shadow holds me muted, still, with a scattering of intimate knowings and failed forgettings, all around me, for the perverse pleasures of an evil moon, and an old lover that won’t leave.

 

 

When I return from you

You’ve got me a little scared. Just a little. And you’ve sent me down these streets, scattered with puddles of spent rain that hold the dream of an evening in their dusky yellows, stolen from the sun this morning. Now, I walk them, looking nowhere outside and everywhere inside for what is it that quaked alive that has caused me to wander, adrift, in ache.

You’ve got me scared, just a little; just enough, to set me wandering again and again, towards earthly lights and soft orange doorways into rooms where the moon finds no love and the nights and days sit outside, ignored. And I am scared, a little, that when I return, from the timelessness of you, I will have to make up, for my blasphemies.

Time returns, ticking away at me, and I look back at it in the eye, and write and write, wandering through what time failed to touch not very long ago.

 

 

 

Should I be nervous fucking you?

There is nothing much to this story really. A series of endless people, and a crawling away, in progressive dark so the dust settles on you and your sharp young mind and you can’t really tell stories anymore. I think I grabbed onto something in my sleep and now it’s gone.

Like that unnecessary question that didn’t really desire an answer.

‘Should I be nervous fucking you?’ Echoed an old voice in the dark, sitting on the edge of suspect victory, for she knew he clearly wasn’t.

She turned around in the anguish of why everything takes an ugly character when awake. We are always kinder to ourselves in our sleep.

I forgot about the incredible line of thought that I had found, half asleep.

Tired she said to the plain boy with no frills, ‘Come here, can I put my stomach against yours? I am scared I will go.’

And he said, ‘When you are gone away from me, and shut the world out; I will stand outside your door and wait.’

There really is nothing to this story; there mostly a mad desire to return to the ignorant fearlessness of a child and not knowing you can’t run blind in bliss anymore as a grown up woman in the streets of dusty adults.

Vulnerability is only an endearing quality of an infant. For the rest, it’s a usable object.

 

 

The way I love

To love the way I do, often means to be hated, doubted, and more often, to be reduced to someone’s playtoy. My love could never be greater than the smallest things of the world, to no one I found in the streets of my wide home. Maybe it really isn’t.

To love the way I do, is to be naked. And naked things in this world of mine, are shameful. My love is often shameful, demanding prolonged explanations that crash at the feet of all things earthly, like so many wanting waves that break into pitiful froth and wind.

You love me naked, so I think to myself, maybe you love the ways I love. And I think maybe, you’ll love to watch me walk through these streets of the world and curiously witness in all corners, incredible stories I can bring back to you like so many sea shells. And lay them in your witness as you put your beautiful head in my lap again after long fevered love makings in rooms with blue skies and a sea. And maybe, you’ll love the nakedness of me and of those raw unwritten stories that choke me so often, for few indulge in the art of storytelling now; and I my love, was made from stories, my grandmother built me with a mesh of words sent out into the night, from her lip, to my soft sleepy surfaces, now entangled.

So I love in odd ways, in listenings and tellings of untold naked stories, in baring our bodies and souls to unashamed festivals, in loving and not knowing all the rest that makes the earthly so rigid and me so claustrophobic.

When I return from being loved by you, and I am scared just a little of the time I will be that hated one, or the one you doubt or the one toyed with. I am scared, it will be your eyes some day that will not look at me right, and then, I will face the mirror once again, chop all my hair and wear a new face; so I can forget once more the home I made in you, and leave to find more stories and their sleepy smiling listeners and tiredly try to hope once again, that to love the the way I do, has a place in the world.

 

 

Nakedness

Some days, when I am next to a man naked, feeling not naked enough; like a madwoman, I parade us, embraced in a nakedness so complete, that it stops being beautiful to him. I am suddenly ugly.

He asked that nakedness of me, that beautiful strange man, and now he begs me to hastily clothe myself; that innocent boyish hurt in his eyes.

A broken woman, I am slowly learning, in between cigarettes after sex, is like a beautiful ruin. She teases and tempts an urgent undressing. Undressed, with layers of tormented poetry lying strewn on the floor with the rest of our clothes, what remains is a ruin; and love, the men that I know, didn’t learn any fixing, like you; they only learnt breaking.

No one wants to make home of a ruin, not even the one they made, let alone, someone else’s.

 

Words for movement

What words married

will make the things

that the spell is made of

that will

Shake your tongue

Like the wind

that shivers

like a being of the autumn

Making fall

The rusty orange

Of all that bloomed

Waited

And wilted on you

So I can sleep

After you’ve fallen

And I have heard

And passed

Into waiting

For new greens again

 

 

Stillborn 

Words rise now

Surging in me, painfully

Yet failing to be

The yelping new born

They should have been

On my shaking lip

Stillborn, these words

I once dreamed would be

The wind that

Makes shiver

The autumn beings

To shedding all

from you

Rusty once green

Waited wilted

Baring you to

my sleepy embrace

Futile

Words desert me

When all else does too

Cruel the season

Of sorrow

Leaves none but

None but

A silenced breathing

Under the sheets

Of a night

Letting fall everywhere

My eye throws

a hand for help

The dark of nights

Where silence

Breathes

And all else

sleeps

Childless, my dead words

Buried next to me

I sleep too

 

 

 

For Sleep to come

The night is dark

With Intricate alleys

That end in walls

of doorless homes

And fires burn,

In orange kitchens,

There must be tinklings of life

That my ear aches to hear

Tonight,

when the night is dark

And all I have

In my fractured palms

And torn up pockets

The memory of the city

With a fevered noon

jaundiced yellow

Of the sun that filters

through the soot

That floats timeless

In a thinning air

I write to calm,

My nails that bleed

From scratching

on too many a door

I write to let out

The grime that gathered

In the cracks I have

The cracks from which

The memory of a home escaped

I write to ask

A tear to come

And drag with it,

Another or two

So my eyes are sore,

And see no more

The doorless homes,

And the moonless night

But tears don’t come

And I ache to drink

And ache to cry

And ache to sleep

But the night is dark

And all its pieces must

Gather around

My own dark heart

And leave no room, no window

Not a crack

Through which I could

slip out somewhere

I scratch on doors,

And write again

And then I burn down

Another cigarette

And scratch on doors,

And write again

For sleep to come

For sleep to come

And the lights in homes

They’re switching them off

The dark outside, and me,

Are barely two

And they don’t look

Out the window anyway

I scratch at a door or two

It’s unheard knock,

is in the pit of my stomach

And another cigarette

Another line written,

One more for the sleep to come

And the doors are now

Firmly shut,

And no orange light

Or tinklings of life,

Spill out the windows,

To keep me fed

So I light one more,

And I write one more

A cigarette and a line

For sleep to come

For sleep to come

I revolt once more

No it can’t be

So I make a call

To a familiar door

But they packed

And left

For the lands of sleep

So one more line

To forget the ticking

Of maddening time

One more cigarette

To burn the night

And hope it’s soot

Will Bury me

In these intricate alleys

Where no one comes

From their homes

To feed me a morsel

Or just sit with me

The night is dark

And it won’t pass

And my words now

Fall like dried up leaves

From the branches I weave

They fall

Into silence

The cigarette burns

And burns all words

And my writing now

Jittery with despair

Runs no more

The words leaving

They’re leaving me

Just one

Please just one more

To forget the ticking

Of maddening time

Just one more

For the sleep to come

What would I do

When the last ones leave

And the silence eats

At my sanity

With nothing to drink

And mute the noise

Of these streets

Where no one comes

To sit with me

Words don’t talk

I cut my hair

And talk to my skin

It bursts in red

And a shiny pain

And the scizzoring of my hair talk too

I am lesser and lesser

And lesser to take

Alone in the streets

of this moonless night

There is despair

And a memory

Of an old desire

But I can’t remember

Too well anymore

The passings of this night

I write and write

I read again

To remember the poem

And forget the ticking

Of maddening time

I repeat myself

Like clinging to

The rope that burns

In to my palm

But the rope is all

I have to hold

For I will fall

And I don’t where

But I know the rats are there

To eat at all my sanity

So one more word

And one more word

For sleep to come

For sleep to come

The March of Terror – Frustration of Honesty

I feel a terrible difficulty. I sensed a dishonesty today. Maybe, I am writing the most difficult one of my rambles right now. Something shook me and threw me off all my proud dishonesty. I do not know anything. I have never known anything. I will never know anything.I will have to write more honestly now, for my dishonesty has been exposed to myself.

But honesty is not the immediate outcome of a dishonesty made naked. They do not have a causal relationship. Dishonesty is an event, honesty is disclosure. And the most difficult of all. I know, when I can write with the utmost honesty, underneath all the layers of delusional honesty I will be able to call myself a writer.

Until then, I will just have to ramble and think and ramble and live and die and confront suffering over and over again, until I reach that place. This is what I am doing now. But what I am really doing is performing dishonesty. Because I can feel the honesty sitting right under my breast, and it is not a pleasant feeling, and I am not letting it out. I am delaying its speech.

In school, mother would sign all my grade sheets. When I would get really bad marks, I would wait for the very last minute to show them to her. The minute before I had to run for school in the morning. I hoped she would just sign it in a hurry and I will not have to deal with what follows. But the evening would come inevitably. And I would be made to sit down and talk about my grade as well as my lethargic honesty. So I slowly learnt to ramble my immediate streams and bouts of honesty.

But when they became dishonesty, I do not know. But they did I think. How could there be one honesty when there are many me’s and how could there be any honesty when I do not exist? This has become far more complicated that my grade card deception in school.

See, watch me prolong the moment of honesty with words; dear reader, I will not say the truth. But I think the truth is often left unsaid for the sake of the other. Is that a lie? Maybe.

Here is my honesty, I write this and stop, like I did when I had to jump a cliff. The instructor told me to not think and just jump. And I would brace myself for the fall, and stop at the last moment. The ecstasy was in that moment, in between the fear and the jump. So I will say it again and try again. Here is my honesty.

See, I almost said it and I misplaced it again. Was it ever there? Did I deliberately eat it up like a note I didn’t want someone to read. In a hurry, I swallowed it and lost it in the pit of my stomach. Maybe it dissolved in acid.

Struggling with honesty is difficult. First, I must make sense of this craving I have of honesty. Then, I must answer what is the honesty required about? Then, maybe, I might find out, what is it?

Look at how frustrating the act is, I am already bored, my words are sulking because they cannot take flights into dreamy deceptive metaphors. I feel the urge to give up. Maybe, if I sleep on it, it will come to me in a dream.

Father used to say that about math problems that I couldn’t solve and obsessed over.

Sleep now. You’ll solve it in your dreams.

It really works. I would sometimes wake up and solve it first thing in the morning.

So, alright, I will evade the questions on honesty tonight. I already know it. I just have to write it. I know if I can write with more honesty, I can live with it too. I will sleep and find the courage for it in time or in the landscapes of my nightly being.

And then, I would not be any longer in such a terrible difficulty.

The March of terror – Metaphors and bullet points

The story of my terrible March seems too have come to an abrupt halt. This is so, because I must make my mind fall back into the straight lines and pointy structures of institutional living in order to survive.

It is an agonizing kind of process, but is at least akin to, if not is, coming back to life. But there is little recovery in such rushing back to life and announcing it to all my colleagues and friends.

Hey, I am coming back to life a little now, let us catch up.

Hello, I am back and a little more functional now. I am sorry for the delays, I will be able to meet the deadlines.

I always say these things with caution, for over the last few weeks, I have tried very hard to raise myself through all means possible, and come back falling again and again into the same very familiar abyss.

Functional. Dysfunctional. These words have become as common in my daily living as the pills I pop several times a day. How does a human achieve functionality and dysfunctionality? What is the function of a human being? Is there a function of a human being? How does marking, keeping track of time, dates, deadlines; being able to shower, being able to look ‘normal’ happen to fall under categories of functionality?

What is this normal? When did normal become aspiration? What is abnormal? Which abnormal is appropriately abnormal; which inappropriate?

I feel like this is the first time I am asking these questions, looking up at the adults around me like a small 3 year old child just walking into the world. I didn’t really ask these questions when I was three, we don’t. No one tells us living must begin with asking these questions and carefully noting the answers down. Because otherwise, you learn it all wrong and become a ‘dysfunctional’ human being and when that happens, you never belong anywhere, you are punished over and over again for crossing these invisible boundaries of normal and abnormal that always evade you.

My writing now, is dry, not like a stale chapati had after long labor. It’s dry like the bitter brittle pill of the industry that sends you coughing. It commits the violence of bullet points on the pages of my notebook, and of frantically noted down dates and times, as if, in doing so, I would be able to capture my temporality, rearrange it into a neat tolerable order of minutes, and make a structure called M. This organisation of M is achieved in neat straight lines, with only an incidental minimal use of language.

My beloved metaphors stare at the page on which I wrote my task list today, wondering at the sudden scarcity of movement. They are innocent of words reduced to symbols of pragmatic machinistic living. Puzzled, they peer over my notebook like children looking into the study of their father, a little scared, a little curious.

But the halt is incomplete. It moves slowly, moving on is a slow agonizing process. The list is the first step. The next step that must follow is the working on the list. Learning to ignore the pain of my body, learning to sit straight up, not resign to the aches, and the torrents of the mind that throw me off the presence of the thing immediate to my senses.

Right now, a torrent of a thought has gotten hold of me. I can’t tell you the thought, or of whom the thought is. It is not letting me write really, even though my fingers continue to hop all over the keyboard mechanically, I am not there anymore my dear reader. My fingers know strange rhythms. The author eloped to a conversation once had with someone, a touch remembered, the sound of a voice, a morning, a smell. See, there’s leakage now, this one that continues to type frantically for the fear of sinking is going on and on, and M, the disordered one is somewhere else, in another room, another day, another being that was called M too. That place leaks onto the page now and takes me farther and farther away from what I was writing just now before the memory came. The thought of someone occurred to me and jolted me violently to a room in my mind not so dusty yet. It opened a pit in the depths of my stomach, and from there arises the liquid made of salt. It’s something a lover would understand.

I am gone far away, I am not here anymore. I left the task list, my metaphors are now dissolving like ink on a blotting paper, flooding all over my dates and times and tasks. They are bleeding through my neat pragmatic lines, through eyes that left and turned to the space behind them where there’s the disorder of me, where reason does not enter, where memories are. The metaphors are dancing, like children, those same children, that wreck their fathers’ study when he is gone away. Running wild through it, breaking things, turning objects for use into objects for play. Making such a clatter; these metaphors provoked so much from the touch of a gentle memory of a gentle day.

I must stop, before I sound any more crazy, but I am not really crazy, I am just writing without really willing it. There is nothing crazy about it. That is how I have lived a long time. And yet, there is all the willing involved. I cannot deny the violence of my fingers on this keyboard. I willed it all, and I didn’t. And here I am with another paradox that I must hold. I need not unravel it, I haven’t yet learnt the art of unraveling paradoxes. I shall not attempt it, because, I am trained to the black and to the white, and unless I un-train my mind to this military drill, and until I learn to swim and dissolve and be a disorganized order, I will not unravel any paradoxes I encounter. I will just put them in my belly.

When I was young, I thought, there’s a cupboard in my tummy where different foods are put once I eat them. I really did imagine and believe it for the longest time. Tiny little shelves for all the bites I eat. I shall put all my paradoxes in the cupboard in my belly then, for I am too moved this moment right now and the movement is too startling.

I forgot what I meant to say next; that vanished with the moment, for the forgetting was a moment past too. What was it I wanted to say? I wanted to go out, take a walk, cry a little, rearrange my thoughts to this new knowledge and memory, put them in their right boxes, because only today I had found the order of M again in neat lines and bullet points. Only today I wrote to friends and colleagues; I am more functional now and will keep my deadlines. Only today I found the will to return to the normal, whatever that means.

And now, I am moved and startled and fragmented, so I must go gather myself again. In a walk, I will put my legs together, and my head on my body and my arms, and I will bring my fingers to a halt now. They are running wild and there is such ecstasy in the meaninglessness of their frantic movement, but there is also a surge of passion and I must learn to be normal. I must learn to write in straight lines, make bullet points of them, then I must know reason, and I must know its secret language, and I must speak it to not be banished anymore.

I still cannot stop. The walk sits and waits for me. The walk to the cigarette shop in the scorching sun. And my fingers coax me to stay still. No.

I will go for a walk today, and I will wash my notebook of my beloved metaphors. And I will put them all behind my eyes where they hide from reason, and reason hides from them. Like stubborn children, I will put them to a nap.

It’s time to continue the halting of my terrible March. There’s things to be done, an M to be constructed all over again from the fragments all around me. There’s parts that must be put away in my hoarders’ room and parts to be thrown away. There are straight lines to walk, and a strange destination to be met for reasons, this and that and pragmatic most of all. I will try.