Tulips

So here we are at last, at the end of another journey. Another round of thank-you’s and goodbye’s need to be done, and I am yet not ready for them. It seems as if only yesterday we met, and somehow time rushes so fast, like sand between the fingers, that you’ve lost almost all of it even if you stop thinking about it just for a while. So why did I choose tulips as the name for the last post? Why not something more conventional? Why not a hibiscus or a chrysanthemum or a lotus?

I associate tulips widely with my nostalgia. This dates back to several years later, when one of the Windows had as its default wallpaper the Tulips. Was it XP? No, XP had the green field. Maybe Windows 2000 or Windows NT or one of those, but it was at that time when I first started using the computer. I used to spend hours trying to draw figures on MS-Paint or play Pinball and beat my own high scores. Those were simpler times. How times have changed now. Now I am a computer engineer, and soon I will become a computer scientist. Where will I get the time to relive those moments? One can never say.

So long. Let me not talk about nostalgia and my previous experiences because that will become both redundant with a lot of my early posts as well as very boring. But the thing is this, and I think you will agree with me on this one fact at least; that nostalgia is something you cannot run away from. You never know what will trigger it, it is like a gunshot, point blank, direct to your brain, and it bleeds out profusely all those memories which have been buried like rubble under big buildings of new thoughts. And then you cannot help but think about them, and join all the broken strings, and tie all the knots, and cross all the t’s and dot all the i’s and it becomes overwhelming and you cannot handle it after a point of time. What do you do then?

You throw the bouquet away.

Lilies

Dreams are in fact the only way of repose, in my understanding. Because that is only time when the mind is at rest, even if not fully. No, I do not mean to evoke psychologists to rubbish my thought by saying that the subconscious is awake at all times, and so is the unconscious during dreams, but as long as the conscious is at rest, you have an option to keep away the worries of the day piled up lazily in a corner like dirty laundry to be washed the next day. And that is exactly why I like to sleep. Because I love to dream. To dream of castles I’ve never been in, and races I have never won, and meadows I have never lay in and lilies I have never smelled.

Unfulfilled dreams and the urge to fulfil them or at least keep dreaming about them until they get fulfilled is perhaps one of the main ways I keep myself happy. Happiness is a rare thing, and looking for it is indeed difficult in my world. Don’t assume me to be a sad person, I am in fact a very jolly and funny guy who can crack the right jokes at the correct time and make those around laugh merrily. I can also bring a smile on a child’s face by giving him a chocolate or an old lady’s face by helping her cross the street. To say I do not derive happiness from these small acts would be cruel. Indeed I do. They do make me happy. And if that surmises to happiness found easily in the world, then by that definition I am indeed a very happy person. But there is more than that to life. There is a personal space, and there is an ego, and an ego needs to be fed, and food is expensive, and it comes at the cost of happiness, inner happiness, not the joys of the world that can be experienced ever so easily.

I sat by the river one day, looked into the water and saw ripples of my reflection smiling back at me, as if it almost knew what went on in my mind at that time. It is funny how reflections are just what we are, but devoid of their own emotions and feelings. They feel what we feel, they show what we ask them to. They do not have an individuality. And many people think that individuality is in fact one of the foremost important things in this world, but indeed in the case of reflections, it is not. So for shadows too. Shadows and reflections. It is such a nice thing to talk about. Shadows, darkness, reflections, brightness. Shadows do not smile or be sad, they are stoic, they are our internal selves. But reflections are what the world sees, whereas the shadow is what it needs to see to learn what is really going on in our heads because at the end of the day, what we show and how much we smile doesn’t count a penny.

My set of posts is almost at an end. Only one more post to go for this series to end. I do not remember why I had started writing this, so it would be difficult to tell you whether or not I feel that I have justified the need of these posts, because I cannot remember the reason why I began in the first place. But sometimes it so happens that we must be happy with the way things end even if we don’t remember the beginning and even if we don’t remember the entire journey but only parts of it, for the end is what counts. They did have a saying, “All’s well that ends well”, and if that is true, then I should believe all is going to be well for me, and that might be the subject of my dreams when I sleep tonight.

Roses

Roses are red, violets are blue. But violets are violet and roses can be of any color, so why do we say that?

It seems sometimes that all the paradigms upon which this world rests are but imaginary statements made to confine our thoughts and jail our passions and cut our wings to stop us from flying high in the skies. Skies are blue but they can be red and maroon and purple in the evening at twilight, and twilight is my favorite part of the day.

When we were small I remember we were taught (not by our teachers, but by friends), how red roses meant love and yellow roses meant friendship and white roses meant peace and blue roses were so rare that “as rare a blue rose” was a simile that was taught to us in Grammar. Growing up, I realized that all of this was just a cover up. Everything surmounts to love. Whether it be black, brown, yellow, red or white, every rose symbolized only one aspect of human life. And that was love. And that was the most important thing in the world. But this was my notion in high school.

By the time I started attending college, roses meant nothing to me. They were just flowers, like the chrysanthemums and petunias and bluebells and daffodils, pretty to look at and made a good show at a nursery, but nothing more and nothing less. Obviously, love was overrated. To have a flower just for one emotion and not for the other seemed unjust. Love was injustice. Hence I should not love. My conclusions were very hand-wavy, but they seemed to fill in the void that had been existing in my life for a while now, and helped to make me happier than I was, and I thought it was important that life should be this way. I never fell in love in college again.

Alright, that was a bit of a lie. I did, but I didn’t pay much heed to it.

And somehow whenever I talk about roses, at the end of the day, it is all the same. It boils down to the same color. Black. Someone once asked me whether I named my blog such because black was my favorite color. I did not know what to say, for I did not have a favorite color until then. But I thought, maybe, this is a good thing to think about. Maybe I should have a favorite color. So I looked at all the colors in a crayon box and tried to figure out which one I liked best. I scribbled them on empty sheets and painted images. I painted the skies green and the waters pink and the houses blue and the people red. My friends laughed at it and told me what a weird person I was. When my parents saw, they said it was the prettiest drawing they had ever seen. And that made me happy, because my parents liked it and if your parents like something it means that is good and you should therefore love your parents because they love you too.

What about the color, you ask? Well yes, I did figure out my favorite color. I’ll tell you about it in my next post.

Lavenders

For it is only a coward that hides his face under wet palms in the wake of even the slightest adversity in his life. And it is so that she reminds me of the smell of lavenders, much like she reminds me of the smell of love, of the smell of the sand after a rain, and of the smell of defeat.

How sweet is the taste of being defeated! Of lying on the ground and knowing you cannot get up how hard you might try. The puddles, the water, the soiled roads, you take a step and you fall again, the slippery grounds, the muddy footpaths, the heavy rains. Always it is the heavy rains. They wash away everything in their wake, and drench you so that you are wet from head to toe. I remember those rains, always slanted, so that even my umbrellas would not protect me from it.

I was driving on a road which was being repaired. It was being doubled in width, and for that they have been cutting down trees on both sides of the road. What earlier looked as a small path inside a forest, the trees providing shade to the road from both sides, now looks like a street in a city. Places change as much as people. I cannot connect with that road anymore because it is not what it used to be. It seems as if, along with the trees, a lot of my memories have been cut down as well, deforested, and piled up in a corner, to be carved into furniture or burned as fuel. At least the furniture still has the marks that the tree bore, but being burnt for fuel must hurt. It must. Because I have seen people burning themselves and I know it hurts.

The gardens in my house grow flowers no more. In my absence, they withered without water, and now they are but thin veins of what earlier looked like forearms. The flowers have died absent sunlight, and are now black and hard and crumple like paper. But somewhere at the back of my mind, despite all of this, despite the fact that I won’t be able to see so much anymore, that should I think of it a little more, a part of me would die and never return, much like my garden, for what is a garden but a manifestation of the soul and the materialization of the wishes that one pursues in life, yet sees them fulfilled in the planting of the root, in the growing out of a shoot, of the first bud in the plant, of the smell of the fresh flowers and the bees that hover them and the honey, and the memories attached with them which persist for so long; like the time when I waited ever so patiently for the first rose to bloom to its fullest so that I could give it to her? And yet, for all the roses that I gave her, she still smells of lavender, and enchants me into dreams which best remain unfulfilled, for then I have something to look forward to in my sleep.

Jasmines

What I often miss in the day, or which pass away as fleeting thoughts, come back at night to me, raking old memories and thoughts, and propagate a chain of dreams, so that when I wake up, I feel my subconscious laughing away at my conscious as to how ignorant it could be of such simple facts. And if that does not make sense, let me tell you what happened yesterday so that you could sympathize with me and understand my position.

It is not in my habit to wind up long sentences to explain what I feel. I just blurt out what I do feel, as much in real life as in my posts. But with wishes, it is different. When I wish for something that I know I will not get, I do not let tongue give voice to them. But here they are, my dreams, which act as a wish-fulfilment and force me to pen down these thoughts here. For I would have never given them a second thought unless I dreamt of what I dreamt yesterday. Before I begin, let me tell you what happened a week earlier.

So it was last Monday which was my last day at office. All but my closest friend S were present at this occasion. It would have been a long celebration, but was cut short because I had not much to say about the matter. I could have given them long speeches about what is right and what is wrong, and how we should follow our dreams, and at least try to understand them so that we might learn of what we want, but I did not say anything. One of the reasons was also that I was missing S at the occasion, and since we had only parted a couple of days before in a hurry where our farewell was kind of clumsy and incomplete.

No wonder my dream took this string of thought and wound it up completely, so that yesterday in my dream, I was present at my farewell and S was present too. It would have been okay if this was the only alteration, for that would have made sense to me regarding my wishes. However, it is the second alteration in the occasion that makes me think about it. Let me now introduce you to my colleague A, who shares his name with my best friend from school. My best friend (also called A), as you might be aware, passed away in 2010. In my dream, he substitutes the person with the same name, such that now he was my colleague. But now my mind had a goal to achieve, namely, to furnish me a proof that this was in fact possible. To do this, it fabricated a very rich story, which I would like to share with you. It may sound absurd, for it was a dream after all, but the details in it were so true that it cannot be kept muffled in my heart for long.

I see that soon after his death, a couple of months later in fact, it had so happened that news had arrived that my friend was in fact found somewhere below in the country where the river leads. I go down and in the middle of a field which is full of jasmines, I see my old friend again. I joke with him and tell him how funny it is going to be when everyone else gets to know about this fact too. Then my dream simultaneously transports back to the office, and I pat his back and ask him to accompany me to the café. But however suddenly, I realize that he does not work at my office and now his face is distinctly superimposed with the actual face. I wake up, and I try to remember where my friend is currently working, and what happened to him, when after a moment I realize that I was in fact dreaming and that he has been gone since forever. Thus my sleep breaks and I wake up.

It is funny how when I write this I feel I had so much more to write but I cannot pen down anything more. In fact I do remember a scene where we are having lunch, but it is a dim cave with yellow lights and lots of people, and we sit on the floor later with our food, but I do not remember where that figment goes and how it ends up. And hence this post must be left incomplete as such, because I find it strange that such a queer post be given a fitting conclusion. All in all, I must say that now onwards, whenever I hear of jasmines or see them or smell them, I know I will invariably be drawn back to the field in my dreams, and be forced to think of the prospects and the imaginary life that I could have led were this dream to stand true in front of me.

Bouquet

What if I handed over to you a bouquet of flowers? Would you keep them by your bedside, and look at them once a while? Would you water them until they die, and wish silently that they stayed forever, now that I am not there to take its stead? I don’t think so. I have a feeling you’d rather forget me and get busy with your chores and affairs of your daily life, making me only a reminiscent of a candle that once existed but has now outlived its purpose. Bouquet is a collection of five such posts where I have tried to bring to life my innermost thoughts. They are not outstandingly good articles; they are just what an average guy would feel and write when his mind is full of different thoughts when each of them are at war against each other to gain the maximum amount of space in one’s mind.

The race between thoughts and the conflicts of the mind, and the way they affect us is what Bouquet talks about. How an array of emotions can get beaded up into a string just by the force of thought, forgetting the limits of space and time, of continuum, and of life itself, is what makes thoughts and dreams such an important part of our life. Bouquet celebrates dreaming and urges you to dream more, so that you can achieve more. It talks of love, and it talks of grief. It talks about success, and failure, and how they can coexist.

So without much ado, here are the five posts which I have collected in this small collection. They are
1. Jasmines
2. Lavenders
3. Roses
4. Lilies, and
5. Tulips

I hope you have a good time reading them as much as I loved writing them, and that we might understand each other a little better after all this is said and done.

Cluttered Thoughts

[1]

Somehow now I want to write this, and I don’t know if this will turn out the way I intend it to, if it will overshoot its purpose, or if I will be able to express what I want in the simplest of words. Already I am extremely sure that this post will be the least viewed or at least the least famous of everything and anything that I have ever written, because I think most of it will not make sense to anyone but me. But now that I have decided to write about it, and talk about it, I better get on with it.

So what is this about? This is about me, and my dreams. And this is a very stupid topic to talk about. I recently had a talk with a couple of guys who are staying with me and they told me that I should write about things that other people can relate to, that other people have already seen; for example, one said, talk about current affairs and what is happening. I asked them, why? I do not agree with this. I write what I write for my pleasure. If someone likes to read it, that is an added bonus for me; precisely why I post them. I am sure there are many of those who sometimes stumble upon my blog, get really bored because they cannot relate to my poetry, because they think, “What does this guy intend to write?” and move on. I do not write for them. And so they do not affect me. Affection is like a disease. And that is why I must stay away from it.

I am currently reading “The Interpretation of Dreams” by Sigmund Freud, and I have come to realize finally that maybe if I could find people who could relate to this book, maybe they could relate to what I think and how I write. How I write is a very different procedure from how most bloggers write, and I know this because I have made some friends in the past who are bloggers. After I finish writing a post, I do not reread it, unless for the grammatical errors. This is very important for me. I do not want to put a check on my thoughts and their flow. When I write, my free-flow thoughts are not curbed. Curbing them by re-reading and changing words seems then, treason to my own faculties.

Hence this small new category. This category is going to be the most unique one out of anything I have ever written. This is because of two things. Firstly, I am not going to think anything before I sit down to write. I will write whatever comes to my mind and however crude it comes out to be, that would be it. Second, I will write in this section only in the late hours of the night when my mind is free of other thoughts and pressing business so that I can focus completely on writing and freeing my mind of all the burdens that it carries in it throughout the day. In this way, I would be achieving two things at one time. My mind would be well-rested because when everything is said and done and written, I do not need to ponder on it again. Secondly, sometimes it is good to let one’s thoughts flow freely. In today’s world and in the industrial life that we lead, which very soon I will be free of, the mind is seasoned to work like the others do in a procedural manner, one step after the next.

I do not want my mind to work procedurally. I want it to flow from a thousand tributaries from a river and randomly diverge them into different distributaries before they finally all join the sea. This is my story. It will be fun, and if you can do this with me, I am sure you will be happy as well. For example, when I had started writing this piece, I wasn’t smiling but now I am because I see how much was pent up in my mind that I have already put down in less than five minutes since I sat down. That is how the mind works right? So many cluttered thoughts rambling up, racing to reach the end, so that other thoughts might come up. Often we suppress some of the unimportant thoughts to give space to other ones which we think are more important, but this is exactly what we shouldn’t do. We should let them all run parallel and see where each of them ends. Let them all be free birds, free of the cages. But then the mind is only that big, and how much can we do at once? That is what I wish to test in this series. Welcome to my life.

[2]

Now that I have started pouring out a lot of words which might seem incoherent now, let me tell you why I am doing this. I want to realize why I think the way I think, and exactly what all things I actually think about. When I read these posts later, maybe a couple of years from now, I would like to smile and think of this initiative as one that made me a happier person by letting my inner self open up to my outer self. Sometimes I feel that I am a multitude of people, and not a single entity. I feel there is this person in me who wants to shout and tell everyone what he feels about this world and how he wants to change it and how he wants to change himself to fit into the things that he cannot change. And simultaneously, there is this second person in me who does not care a bit about this world. For him, everything is okay as long as it does not affect him. He wants to be silent, he does not want to fight the world, he wants peace. And when the first person tries to fight this second person, he shouts at him and tells him he needs to change, but the second person just remains quiet and waits for all the energy to drain out from the other. And that is precisely what is going on right now. There is this first person who is urging me to write right now, and the second person who tells me I would probably be better off sleeping, and that this is a waste of time and that I should probably never make this public because it would make me seem insane. But that is exactly what I need to fight. This tumult of inner self is what I need to get beyond. And I think somehow since I have given the first person preference over the second, I now know which one I am more inclined towards.

Yesterday I saw a dream. It was a very funny dream. I don’t remember anything about it right now but I remember I was very happy when I had woken up; but by the time I reached the washroom I had already forgotten the entire dream. That made me sad. There was one reason that I was happy, the dream; and now I had completely forgotten what it showed me. The dream definitely had a girl, that much I remember. Anyway, since I have forgotten about it, there is no point talking much about it, is there? Today is my last day in office. From tomorrow I will not have to go to work anymore. Samsung will be in the past for me. The thing that pains me is this. It is not the fact that I will never have to walk in through those doors anymore, or the fact that I will not sit on that chair anymore, nor the coffee that the machine vended out to me whenever I stood in front of it. (That reminds me of a joke, when a friend was on a phone and asked the coffee-machine guy to pour her a cappuccino, and the person on the other side of the phone thought the coffee-machine could recognize voices. It doesn’t sound funny on paper, but it was really funny back then.) No, this is not why I am sad or why I am awake now. It is the people who I am going to miss, and not really all the people, but only some of them who were really close to me; so close that I cannot imagine that I won’t see them from tomorrow, because it was almost a habit of being around them. When I wrote “The Parting” earlier today, I was still thinking about this, and the strange thing is I have never given so much thought to this as much as I am giving it right now. Maybe I am overreacting, but anyways, I do not care what others think about it. There are sometimes some unachievable things in life which you already know are out of your reach but you still try to reach them. Like a small child, trying to reach the cookie jar kept on the top shelf. He brings in a stool and gets up on it and what not, and still is unable to reach the shelf. When finally after a long time he does reach the shelf, he sweeps his hand against the jar and it falls down on the floor and smashes to pieces, much like what would happen to our relation had I pursued it further; so thank God I did not; not that I wanted to, but sometimes people say things and that gets into your head.

The people saying things getting into my head is not something new. I remember now the first time I fell in love. It was just a hoax that I had started, when my cousins pestered me to tell the name of the girl I loved, I just picked up the first name on my contacts list. But this continued for a while, and I kept telling them that I love her, and one day I suddenly realized that I do in fact love her. It was a pure induction; you need to believe me that I did not feel anything for her and suddenly out of the blue, my love for her had crossed all limits, I couldn’t think of a life where she was not present; and when I finally told her about this, she shun me out of her life as we shun street dogs when they come to our doorstep. But anyways this was over eight years back and we have both come a long way, but that is how the thought works I think, it joins different threads where even a small connection, however unrealistic it might be, is found. Thus sometimes it happens with my friends that we start talking about politics and somehow reach about why our dinner is not healthy, and then we sit and ponder for a while where our conversation had started from. Only yesterday, one of them cracked a joke about one of us not paying our taxes and somehow the conversation steered away to Scandinavian countries, I don’t remember how.

[3]

Lots of problems in my life; the most important one now being that my phone does not have enough internal memory to store songs and my SD card is corrupted so I cannot use it on my phone. It all started way back last year when one day I carried the SD card in my old phone to work. Now officially since it is an R&D center, we are not allowed to carry SD cards, but I had forgotten that and carried it inside anyways, and then when I was checking out, I saw the security checking the phones for memory cards and then I suddenly remembered about it and I popped out my SD card in a hurry without ejecting it first and that corrupted it I think; I am not really sure that that was exactly what happened but I think it was. Anyways now I am stuck with no songs on my phone. I bought a new phone, a Samsung one, so it has the customary “Over the Horizon” already in it, which I absolutely hate.

My fingers hurt now. I think I have written much for today and that I should stop now. Maybe I should go and continue reading my book or I should go and catch up with some sleep. Whatever it is, good-bye for now. Let me see if I decide to post this on the blog. I think I will in fact post this on the blog and see what kind of response it gets. If the response is okay, I might consider putting up the rest of them which I am going to write regularly from now on. If it is not, well then this will serve as my personal diary where I can vent out everything I want without fearing the prying eyes of people who are involved in my stories. Earlier it has happened that I did once long back (maybe six years ago), published a post of a dear friend of mine and had talked about how he met up with his girlfriend. My friend was infuriated; how dare I publicize his personal life? Had I taken his permission? Why was I using him to increase my publicity? It was a sour affair, and he had severed all contacts with me for almost three years. And though I had deleted that post there and then, I have always kept this at the back of my mind since then that I should never write about anyone publicly or at least use their names unless I have been given permission. But to be honest, I was new back then. My blog was just months old and I had no idea how to go about things. I had thought it would be fun to let people know who were the people I was hanging out with, and why they were so awesome. After I pulled that post down, I scrapped the entire idea of talking about my life, and resorted to writing fictitious poems instead. It worked well, for I got my friends back.

That much for today. See you tomorrow again. I am not going to make any commitments of writing on a daily basis because I know how that works. I keep the promise for a day or two but then invariably I have some other work to do and I cannot complete my resolutions. So I will write when I have the chance, and this section will remain the most treasured section for me. But for now, I must go. My eyes have become red and if I do not sleep off now, I will not be able to reach my office on time, and that is the last thing I want to do on my last day at office. Bye-bye.