Mother and Boy

December 9, 2012 at 23:08

Stop the traffic, let us pass
On your cycles, in your cars;
Path to path we sell our wares
Among the sound of silent stares.

"Mangoes, Rupees ten for two"
"Best price madam, just for you"
Never mind what rate it is,
Today that dinner will be his.

Even if its curd and rice,
Whatever he gets for that price;
Will have to do for him and ma
The only meal they've had so far -

Then back again to sell what's left
Though what remains is not the best
"Mangoes, Rupees ten for four"
"just for you, I'll give one more"

Third World

August 14, 2012 at 06:56

Why did they invent the cog?
Why are we clad in this oil?
Standing behind a machine?
Bleeding in sweat and in toil. 

Why are we assembling and fixing?
Will this give us a crumb or a drop?
If we are not putting parts together,
Why are we holding a mop? 

Why is there first world and third world?
Why are there classes and castes?
Why are we planning the future,
When we live in the debt of the past?


On this day, in the year 1952, French demographer, anthropologist and historian Alfred Sauvy, in an article published in the French magazine L'Observateur, coined the term 'Third World', referring to countries that were unaligned with either the Communist Soviet bloc (Second World) or the Capitalist NATO bloc (First World) during the Cold War. This is five years after India declared its Independence.
Because many of these 'Third World' countries were former Imperial colonies (like India), they no longer had the support of their colonizers, and hence had to start developing on its own - therefore the term 'developing country'. These countries, including ours, are still 'developing' as we try to reach the benchmark set but the 'First World'. 

Writing this while in the IT capital of India, seems rather strange - especially when we're developing at an immense rate; but is it being noticed? Is the fact that almost every Fortune 500 company outsources their customer relations and tech support to India being overlooked? Is the fact that we create cutting edge technology, and advances in the field of medicine and engineering being ignored? Or is it just shadowed by the corruption that eats at this country, and the state that people are in when they are forced to slave to make ends meet, in conditions that will kill them before starvation does. We can talk about it, write about it, hold rallies and protests about it, sing songs about it - maybe even run campaigns about it; but the question still remains - what are we trying to prove, and to who, when we can't even treat our own countrymen with respect and nondiscrimination? 

Rush hour

August 3, 2012 at 06:19

People rushing, like they're running out of time,
Backwards and forwards, like their life's on the line;
No regards for others, where they want to go -
Moving too fast, while life moves too slow.
No stopping to take in the sounds of the street,
No friendly faces or people to meet;
No breaths of fresh air, or newspaper stands,
Only people on phones, instead of shaking hands.

Beggars on the corner, asking for alms,
Thirteen year olds selling second-hand charms;
Steam from the street food wafts through the air,
If they were not there, nobody would care -
Nobody would notice, no one is concerned,
They've already forgotten, what as children they've learned;
Replaced by a schedule that fills up their hours,
While life on the outside moves slower than ours.


Everyday on my way to work, all I see are people in a hurry to get to their 9 to 5's. Stuck in traffic jams, running after buses or cars. They have just one purpose - to get to where they need to be, regardless of the people around them and how different their version of life is. It makes me realise sometimes that there's more to our lives than the three walls of a cubicle, or the four walls of an office. When I was a kid, I dreamed of more than being walled up in an office. I dreamed of travelling, sharing my creativity with the world and making the people I meet along the way a part of my world as well. I know we all have our dreams. Mine are coming true ... I hope yours do too.

Bombs

August 2, 2012 at 16:04

They’ve started again, dropping bombs for no good
They've started taking lives for their own;
Their beliefs fueled by ignorance – clouded by rage
Just because they feel they’re alone.
Nobody hears them, nobody cares
So they make it their point to be seen,
To put forth their dogmas through the shedding of blood
For a chance to wipe their hands clean 

Should we fight back with vengeance? What good will it do?
Except to affirm their belief;
So they could go on, stealing life from this world
Through the flaming carnage of grief -
Or should we just accept that of all the disease
This is one for which there’s no cure;
Except through prayer in a unified voice
That peace and love may endure.

Fragile

July 31, 2012 at 06:02

They are put on this earth, and are taken too soon
To be one of his angels again;
Not knowing the hour when they're called to return,
Now only their memories remain.
Memories of laughter, good times that were shared
Are moments to treasure inside;
Yet so fragile is life, that when our time has come
Those memories with us, would have died.


Over the past month, I have been witness to just how fragile life is. This is for those who are greiving the loss of someone special. They will always be with you, because they never left you ...

One

July 29, 2012 at 20:12

In the spirit of love, you enveloped my heart
And you gave me the wings of a bird;
You dusted the scrolls, and wrote out my past
In the words of a song never heard.

A journey that spanned two decades and five
Was a journey to discover my own;
To start at the end, and go back to the start
Just to find I was never alone.

Before time had a name, and a number to count
When the heavens were part of this land;
We played in the light of spirits divine
And you never let go of my hand ...

Till our worlds were divided, and our bodies got lost
Somewhere between present and past;
Yet we clung to a truth we believed in, knowing
We would find each other at last.

So here we are now, lost souls that were one
Reunited like once long ago;
A bond so strong, forged in fire by the Gods
For a year, and for centuries more.


Thank you ... for a beautiful year. I love you.

Unclean

December 23, 2011 at 07:07

He remains unclean as long as he has the disease,
And must live outside the camp, away from others.
- Lev 13:46

From whence comes this swelling,
This unwelcome, unannounced guest?
Maybe today and gone tomorrow?
But to the elder I must go,
He shall examine it and make his diagnosis.
For six days I am isolated – come the seventh I am checked.
The swelling’s increased, it’s being spread – dreaded skin disease.
Damned am I, accursed be the one who looks on me.
No longer do I belong to my people,
Thrown out to suffer alone.
Clothes torn and hair uncut.

But who are you who approach me?
I cover my lower lip and cry ‘unclean, unclean’
You hear and still you approach.
Poorer than poor, yet much richer;
One of wealth – though you have none.
Only one thing you can give me – and so I beg thee,
‘Please sir, if you want – heal me …’ 


He was sent unto us, so that we may be healed ... 

Merry Christmas everybody. God bless.

Fallen Leaves

November 9, 2011 at 10:40

Fallen leaves return to their roots
- Chinese proverb

Crumble under my foot
Dried leaf, fallen to the ground.
Autumn has left you lifeless;
Brown like the bark of which you grow.
In your prime you blossomed
Bright, green – alive.
But bring new pleasure to little ones,
Crumbling and crackling under little feet.


In a place like Bangalore, it's difficult to experience that transition from Summer to Autumn - then again I guess that's how it is in most parts of India. I sometimes wish I was in a place where I could observe the changes in seasons, as the colours gradually change from green to yellow to brown - then cease to exist before it is green again.
I remember writing this one when I was in college in Goa, sitting under a tree and watching boys and girls go by jumping through the dried leaves that had fallen from that very tree that I was under. I'm not one to write about nature, but I guess there's  a first time for everything ... 

Of Flames and Frames

May 28, 2011 at 13:40

Life leaving bodies,
Souls leaving earth;
The wind takes them swiftly
Away from their birth.
The clouds are all scattered,
No sun in the skies;
An old father laughs,
While a young mother cries.

Shadows they dance
To the tune of the flames,
Like a movie through tattered
Old celluloid frames;
And as the light dawns
Upon innocent eyes,
The young mother smiles
While the old father dies.


Everyday, life leaves this world and enters the next, and somewhere, there is life coming in. I often wonder, as they make this transition, do they meet? Is there a chance for warning - premonition? But most of all,  is there a second chance for us to return with someone - back into the world from which we left? Sometimes we meet people with whom we connect and bond instantaneously through similar likes, dislikes ... soul mates if you will. Did we know these people before? Were we friends? Siblings? Lovers? When I leave  this world, can I hitch a ride back through the living and finish what i started? Or does it all end when my eyes close and my heart stops?

Gold and Ash

March 4, 2011 at 18:57

Half a century in days, there's no sage who'd have known
that we'd plot out the stars, and then carve them in stone.
Ebb and flow through the crevices, funnel down glass
slipping silently - clouds, past the earth to the grass -
count the seconds, time flies as we run to the door
dare we walk through to find our forever no more.

In the shadows that separate us, from surreal
I reach out and offer - "my heart you may steal";
yet you pass right through me, and the world turns to gold -
light floods the sky as my fingers you hold;
you let go and it's gone, like the sound of a crash,
my whole world turns to grey, upon pillars of ash.

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