I finally publish

Friday, January 25, 2008

'Thank you' cannot be gift wrapped

Your gifts always make me cry. Did I tell you that I opened the first one while walking back home in a light drizzle of a rain? How I stopped and stared at what came out from the tight folds of the crisp wrapper? How I was glad that the wet drops on my face could be called raindrops?

I know I didn't thank you enough for the Madeline, oranges and apples, each bite of which took hunger and loneliness away.

I know I didn't talk much when you walked me to the train station everyday after work.

Why are you so kind to me? I don’t know what to do with so much of it!

When we waved goodbye and I saw your car turn the corner and I realized that I didn’t have the keys to the hotel, I wanted to call you who'd already gone.

When people leave they should be let. Not that otherwise they won’t.

And then when I tried talking in strange tongues to another fellow-out-of-the-hotel-locked and we wondered how to wake up the neighborhood, why did you come back?
Some goodbyes don't mean a thing. And when we kissed each other in the dimly lit lobby, I didn't tell you how scared I was. Some kisses don’t mean a thing. And the same mean more than I dare understand.

I know I didn't hug you longer when we last met at the airport. A second longer and I couldn't have gone away.

I know I can never tell you I love you and how much. Because someone else did...long before me.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Down to the last cigarette

It was one of the few birthdays he had. It wasn't too hard thinking of a suitable gift.

His eyebrows went a tad up I think on seeing the perky red ribbon. All gifts are to be wrapped, I insist.

A pack of cigarettes. Happy birthday.

He was convinced yet again that I was the only person who ever understood him.

I saw him wonder whether to light one right away or whether my sentiment would be offended if not. Women's sentiments were a sore subject with him. I saw his quizzical look gauging both my femininity and sentimentality.

A smile offers him the answer.

How long would he take to smoke it all?


How soon is soon?

A day, he sighs.

I was to be called when he lit each one. It isn't a woman's duty to make anything easier.

I watched him light each one.

The smile wore down at towards the end... I think. I cannot be sure on that.

When the final one was lit n blown away, he aimed the empty carton at the basket.

Oh no! He was to save the golden silver paper of the pack, didn’t he know?! How else was my present remembered!

As he watched in trepidation, the small chin quivered in protest at this seemingly callous thought of his. Or lack of thought actually.

He later confided to a grown up chin, that it was the first time he considered quitting smoking.

Friday, January 11, 2008

The place outside the mind

Sleep comes in a small bottle of clearless liquid.

Conversation comes in the silent call of a phone that never rings.

Laughter is a strange sound that falls on the ears.

Forgetfulness is an art in the course of remembering. I should remember to forget.

Love is a feeling too scared to explore.

The voice is always too far away for the fingers to touch.

Questions are the answers one doesn’t want said.

Sadness is the coziest chair I ever sat on.

Choices are the most difficult decisions to never make.

Tears are the bookmarks at every event of my life.

Death is a photograph on the wall.

Monday, January 07, 2008

Stars don't cry

Do you remember...

How we met one summer- just as you were going out and I was coming in?

How the next summer we went to the zoo to watch the Hippos yawn? How we'd laughed at monkeys and people alike?

The summer that we first dealt with death? Your hand that you gave me across your bed and mine. I'd taken it and slept holding it. 'Stars don’t cry'. I’d wiped my eyes.

Do you remember how you'd come to see me, dirty collars and a dusty cycle? How we'd talk sitting beside each other on the brown steps of the neighbor’s house, ignoring the pointed looks of our chaperone?

When the next summer we went to the snake house? Why did we go to strange places? When you tapped on the glass cage and the tired snake gave us a scornful look, I know we both were a little scared though we pretended otherwise.

Do you remember how you confessed your fear of spiders to me?

Do you remember how we would long to be alone, away from the curious eyes of a cousin neither of us wanted?

Do you remember that sultry summer when you told me I'd changed. When you smiled at the changes of my growing body? I'd smacked you from behind the chair you sat on, trying to hide my blush. I was glad you'd noticed it. It really took a painfully long time growing!

Do you remember the saree I wore for your brother's wedding? Managing it was a so damn irritating especially when my eyes kept looking for you. I know you searched for me too. When you finally found me and brought those friends of yours and I saw their mouths droop in disappointment, my lips trembled. But when I saw the way you always looked at me, the blue saree didn't seem too awful then and I smiled my first smile of that day. I always looked best in your eyes.

Do you remember when we sat on the beach holding hands? I want you to forget that conversation.

You remember how you walked away and I never called you back?
I never knew you walked away.
You never knew I’d called a thousand times.

Stars don’t cry. Only fallen stars do.