It was the summer of possibilities
of hopes that filled the heart,
of dreams that strained to come true,
of joy that was smug and proud.
Youth can be foolish, I knew not then,
invincibility a mirage, I knew not then,
hopes, frail,a dried leaf, I knew not then,
broken I was when ended that summer.
It was the summer of pain and loss,
of pieces of me mixed with sweat,
of nursing a broken heart and penning
songs of betrayal and disbelief.
Those long afternoons, friends and guitar,
The sweet lemonade ma made,
did little to wipe off the bitterness,
A friend that had come to stay.
It was the summer I grew up
when naive me I buried and let go
When I stopped believing in hopes
and started trusting the darkness.
A foe was that summer and yet
t’was a summer to remember.
Love arrives, raw and simple
bringing along cousins
questions and complexities.
Will love stay, will it grow?
Or with time, wither, will it?
You step into the unknown,
love rendering you fearless,
You believe that it will all be roses,
dreaming of a happily ever after.
Oh, my dear, blundering fool!
Your love is to be tested and tried
and tempered and tossed,
each corner measuring its strength
each turn assessing its value.
You want to give up, you are tired
Yet, you decide to cling on,
for you believe in your heart,
you believe in being together.
And then one day, the sun comes out,
and up there somewhere, God smiles,
At last, at the end of the last blow
and the last bump, it hits you.
Suddenly, you know, overcoming
tempests, turns and twists,
you know, now, this love is forever,
it is to stay, come what may.
The sweet nothings of the star struck lovers made me smile, the romance of the newly weds made me blush. Those first baby steps still reverberates in my soul.
I have seen it all. The fights, the love, the hate. I have chuckled at those bad TV shows you loved. The delicious smells from the kitchen, I have soaked in-I think I smell like the curries, the paellas, the baklavas, the barbequed ribs even now.
And I smell of you, of the families that made a home in me, of the families that grew, and those that sometimes, sadly became smaller.
Oh, the birthdays I celebrated with you and the mad parties I tolerated. The successes that made me proud, the failures that I helped you bear.
Your fights made me cringe, the hate that you spewed in that spur of that moment crushed my soul. But when you made up, I knew love owns a greater space in your hearts. And that made my heart grow big too.
I am the blend of so many of you, I am, in myself, a book not written. I am not made of bricks, but of stories untold.
I am the house you lived in, the one you called home, albeit just for sometime.
She see a tiny dot that glows,
A blob so blinding that she blinks.
She edges closer, parched and dry,
The darkness still trying to swallow her.
The light comes closer to her,
Or she to it, she knows not,
But it beckons, it tempts, it seduces.
The blackness grabs her from the back.
But there is fight still left in her,
the dark tunnel cannot be her end.
It is enough, she says to the abyss
She drags herself and her soul
Towards the brilliance that is growing.
A light so ethereal, so imposing
that darkness recedes, giving up.
She reaches out, grabbing
a handful of luminescence,
a handful of hope.
She has made it, she has won,
defeating the darkness,
conquering the pain.
As the waves of life pin me down,
I wonder if drowning would be easier
Will it set me free, will it bring peace?
But then as I sink deeper and deeper,
I get a glimpse of what I know not.
A light breaks into the water,
a sliver of silver that promises to grow.
It is blinding, it is alluring, it finds its way
into the deepest corners of a heart
that has succumbed to sorrow.
Suddenly, the waves feel lighter,
they part way for me to rise.
My feet wake to life, and I slowly
begin to swim, strides becoming faster
as the unknown light draws closer.
I break free, I rise, I breathe new air
I reach out and touch that light.
It fills my being with a new purpose.
Is this light a sign of hope?
Is it faith? Is it God? I know not.
Just a force that has made me rise,
that has nudged me out of despair,
that has whispered, my time is not yet up.
The magician looks into the blue eyes, momentarily forgetting who he is. He is being washed away by the waves in those eyes.
He is young, but he is fascinated by the old craft of magic, markets like this one being the perfect place to practice. Hyptonism is his favourite art. The swinging of a trinket, seeing people sleep with their eyes open, getting transported to their past, floating into the dark recesses of their minds.
Today is the second day of the fair and he has been hoping he would be able to practice his craft on some young uns. They are more difficult to break through, so alert and skeptical that they are.
And in walks this girl into the little tent. Soft and light, like a breeze. His heart stops for a moment, his soul stirs, his stomach flutters. Love at first sight? Nonsense, he thinks.
And then he looks at her eyes and he knows he has sunk. Deep into that ocean of blue, of indigo, of violet.
“I heard you hyptonise people,” Are you a psychic? Can you do that to me and find out what my soul is searching for?”, she says. Her voice smooth as velvet, musical as a songbird.
“I can’t hyptonise someone who has hyptonised me.” He thinks, but does not say.
“Yes, sure. I think I know who your soul has been searching for,” he says.
“I do. For maybe I have been searching for the same thing.”
“Thats nonsense,” says the girl.
“I thought so too. Till a moment ago.”
A lone cloud floating in the azure vastness,
a walking companion, it decided to be.
A step I took, and so did it,
I smiled, and it seemed to too.
I trudged along my path, lonely,
Not another soul in sight.
The amiable cloud whispered,
with you I am, walk along.
The orange blob beat down
the burdens becoming heavier
with each winding turn in the path
Burdens not seen but etched deep.
That cloud seemed to understand
and slowly it covered the sun.
Quite a distance, we both covered today,
then as my destination edged closer
I whispered a good bye, and slowly,
into the blue ocean, the cloud melted away.
So strange are the workings of the universe
that a lone cloud and a lonely me
formed a friendship , took a walk
maybe we were kindred souls, maybe not.
Respite, it did give me, and oh, a smile too.
The warm hearth of my home
the cocoon that was my mom’s hug
the small joys that made me laugh
the hearty soups,the muddy puddles,
all beckon, take me back, life.
Oh, the games we played ,
Raindrops racing against the pane,
Cricket in the front yards and
on starry nights, fingers our pen,
shimmering sky our board,
constellations we traced.
Those were the times when
the sun glowed a bit more
smiles formed easier
The heart sang more in tune
rain had more gloss.
Alas, I am now grown up,
Alas, the world has now lost its shine
A rainbow peeps through my window
scattering colour in the dark room
struggling to sneak into my being
determined, stubborn, steady.
My head and I, push back,
So accustomed to darkness,
that blinding are the slivers
Of red blue, violet and indigo.
Feel some light, some colour,
urges my heart, weak and soft.
Live, breathe, sense, caress,
the kaleidoscope of colours,
their warmth , their brightness.
I give in, I sigh, I smile.
The blinds I open, of my window,
of my heart, of my soul.
It is not a mere rainbow in my window,
it is a promise of this universe
that all is not lost, or gone.
There are still breaths left and some joy,
There are still myriad hues to colour life.
Ah time, you are closing in on me,
I hear the screech as you come closer.
The incessant ringing becomes louder,
Life has passed me by.
You, time, have won, by far.
Dream stay dreams, hopes still hopes,
I had so much to do, so much to see
Lands far, oceans across,
the world was waiting for me,
But you, time, have come for me too soon.
Don’t give up, they say,
Hope on, believe, they say.
How can I, when what I walk on
are the broken pieces of my life?
The past reel of my life constantly whirrs,
glimpses of the moments I lost prick.
When there was still time, I heeded not.
Now, when all is lost, when all is gone,
I wish, time, you take me back to start again.
The ocean whispers to me sometimes,
sweet nothings that lift my heart.
With a whoosh of the waves,
with a sea shell left behind, it says,
I will be all right, after all.
The azure sky sometimes smiles,
as a message from the heavens,
that my wishes will come true,
to that, the golden ball nods,
sending rays of hope my way.
My heart flutters on tall mountains,
but they pull me to their bosoms,
passing on their power to me.
You can do so much more, say they,
touch the skies, like we do.
At nights, as I gaze out the window,
the stars twinkle a little brighter
the moon shyly peeps outs,
and reminds me, that I too,
can shine through darkness if I try.
Oh, reassuring, soothing Nature,
you shower me with hope,
with love and with faith.
If you can be powerful, you tell me,
in my own little world, so can I.
My dad’s rickety old car I now wish to ride
The one that would break down always,
too lazy to carry its passengers
to places in one single smooth ride.
A tyre puncture, overheating, an oil change
would always punctuate a road trip.
Stranded at the side of the road,
The orange earth and the dead trees
not an oasis we would want.
We would take in unwillingly
an entirely unfetching concoction
of heat, wind and dust.
Dad would try to fix his beloved car,
As under our breaths we would pray,
He learns his lesson this time.
Alas, not a lesson he or his car learnt,
Both blindly in love with each other,
blaming the bumpy roads for breakdowns,
Cursing the rains and earth below.
Now, the roads are sleeker,
so is my car, but then, sometimes,
all I want is a ride in my dad’s car.
Those were the good ol’ nineties
when nothing was as shiny as now.
A tiny bit of extra effort for everything,
yet each moment a memory in making.