I Love You

For the world may not care,
And the seasons might not stop,
And the rivers could keep flowing,
And the song in my mind,
The song in my mind,
That could keep playing,
And those words you said,
Those would keep ringing,
And come back to me every single night,
This one thing,
I cannot lose,
Or simply put,
I cannot afford to,
For the world may not care,
And the lights keep turning,
From red to green to yellow to red,
And people may think,
That within my heart I’m dead,
But you know,
And that’s all that matters.
For people might hate me,
And I couldn’t care lesser,
And the world could loathe me,
I wouldn’t bat an eye,
But you over there,
Standing in the shadows,
Never turn away,
Or I might die,
For I love you,
And that’s the only truth.

Black

Happiness is not money,
And they’ve said so,
But what if money could buy you happiness?
They said, sure, it can.
I asked,
What if you don’t have time to buy it?
They kept quiet.

I’ve realized over time,
It doesn’t really matter,
What you do or where you go,
Or where you are, and how you do,
It only matters if you care,
About what you do,
And if what you do,
Cares about you.

For no one really cares how the day is,
Bright, cloudy, sunny, or rains,
But when the black of night sets in,
And when you want to dream,
Will the dreams come easily to you,
Or will you have to struggle?
That matters.

Static

I wonder how it would be,
If something lasted forever,
Just like it is,
And if everyone accessed it commonly,
No separate quotas for everyone.
I wonder if we could take inspiration,
From how we share the sunlight,
And shared our wisdom, and our abilities,
Towards the development of ourselves.
Where people are not focused,
On trying to snatch out,
The biggest slice of a cake,
Because all the slices are cut equally,
Where gambling is just a word,
To exchange money, without losing it,
If everything were common,
Like the soil and the air,
How I wish I could have said,
Nature itself is static,
But now we do not share it anymore,
We are busy trying to make the best for ourselves,
It is a rat race,
A race which no one can win,
And yet all try,
And lose so much in the process,
Before learning to give in,
Before realizing that it is not really worth it,
Because by the time we realize,
It is too late,
We are probably on our death-beds.
And we try to tell our children,
Don’t fall for it like I fell in,
But we already know they won’t listen to us,
‘Cause they are already too busy running in the race.

Return – Chapter 2

I knocked on the door. I knew what was impending, and even as I knocked again, I felt it would have been a relief if I could just run down the road beside, and keep running until I was tired. But then, I wanted to face what reality had in store for me. It wouldn’t be easy, I knew. In fact, the next few minutes could be the most tough moments of my life, something that I could pass on to my grandchildren in anonymous stories. I waited. A lady shouted from inside, which roughly translated to “I swear this is the thousandth time since morning someone knocked on my door. I will break this door someday.” She opened the door, and for a while she kept looking at me. I realized she wouldn’t know me; when I had last left her, I did not have a stubble. My hair was neatly combed that morning as I left for school. That was four years back. I smiled at her, hoping that would remind her of the past. She did not look a day older. She was the same old woman that I had left a few years ago. Same white sari, same white hair, plump but weak, fat rimmed spectacles, nothing had changed; except time. “Namaste Taaya,” I said, which meant, “Hello, Taaya”. Taaya was what I called her when I was small. I did not know how I came to learnt that name, and why no one asserted a problem to me calling her by that name when she was in fact not my taaya. In relations, taaya refers to an elder aunt. But she was not an aunt of mine, neither did she have any nephews. I was the only person she had, and only had she been the only person I had, nothing would have ever gone wrong. She was my mother.

She looked at me melancholically, kept looking at my eyes for about a minute, and then shut the door on my face. I couldn’t expect anything less or more than that. When I was young, sometimes we used to fight over small trivial matters. Then I used to pretend I was angry and would shut the door of my room and lock myself inside for hours. My mother would cry, thinking I was really angry. I felt sad about that, but I didn’t want to break it to her. If I did, she would never again think I was angry, and things wouldn’t work out. So many incidents flashed into my mind. But then, things changed. Today we played a role reversal. I was crying, and she had shut the door. Only, she literally did it. There was only one person I could now go to. I didn’t know if she would remember me at all, or whether she would give it any thought if I stepped up in front of her, but I owed it to myself, and I owed it to her, to meet her once more, to try to set things right, and to live my life as I should have done before. It was late, but they say it’s better to be late than never. I was praying they said it right. As I walked down the road, an old friend met me. He looked at me strangely, as I stood, stagnated, not moving an inch. He hugged me for a while, and as we walked, he narrated all what had happened in the interim that I was gone. I was gone. I had never thought anyone would put it that way. I was not gone, I was right here. All the while, I was right here. But I couldn’t explain that to him, nor could I talk about it to anyone else around. So I just nodded. He left me after a while, when he saw the way I was headed. “Don’t do it,” he said. “For your sake.”

I strolled on. I had to see if there were a life that I wished for, if there were a destiny that defined me. So I reached her house. And I knocked, hoping she would open and recognize me. I hadn’t been away that long that she’d not recognize me. Unless she did it purposefully… The door opened. She looked at me with her shining eyes. So much of her had changed. Except her eyes. They were still the same. They still said the same story that they said four years ago. And her tears still pained me as it did in my dreams. She had grown thinner, and she looked prettier than I could have ever imagined her to be. “I still love you,” I said. She put a finger on her lips, indicating me to stop talking. And she hugged me. “I’ve missed you,” she said. “I’ve missed you too, Shaena,” I said.

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If Only

If only I could tell you,
How fairies are real,
How faces can change,
How moons can die,
How love can wither,
How cold the summer is,
How my thoughts are frozen,
How I still love you,
How beautiful you are,
How journeys never end,
How smiles get killed,
How you really didn’t care,
How I wished you did,
How I now don’t care,
How roses blossom,
How the sun never sets,
How warm ice is,
How happy I am,
If only I could tell you.

If only I could tell you,
Why I loved you,
Why night turns to day,
Why so many cry,
Why love doesn’t hurt,
Why I never stopped,
Why that day had come,
Why I still think of it,
Why boys like girls,
Why dogs love men,
Why toys always break,
Why nothing is real,
Why dreams don’t materialize,
Why beggars are kicked,
Why names fade out,
Why sands seeps between fingers,
Why lies are good,
Why bruises don’t hurt,
If only I could tell you.

Stranded – 1

They reached the city gates, hand in hand,
The guards looking at them melancholically,
He choked on his voice, but bravely enough,
Asked them to open the gates for them.
The guard’s eyes met with those of the girl,
All lachrymal, trying to rub off her tears,
Her eyes looked into his and a moment later,
Her vision buried into the sands below.

Then a screech of the gates, and a toll of the bell,
Made it known to one and all,
That the two would remain unwelcome as long,
As they drew breath from this world.
They limped out slowly, eyes forever on each other,
Neither knew what stood against them,
For the sands of time were running loose off their hands,
Nothing perennial in their lives anymore.

Save he, the girl had nowhere to go,
Or to see, or talk, or wail loudly,
But he seemed disheartened, became laconic,
Owned brevity in speech, in thoughts, and smiles.
Once she thought she was in love,
But that sentiment was only ephemeral,
And withered like leaves that fall off in autumn,
Never getting to see another spring.

Their hands had the mark of the city they came from,
And no one else would take them in,
So they walked by day and they walked by night,
Until they came by a petite inn.
As he drank his ale, she thought about him,
How their lives had changed for just one decision,
She thought of the evening when her hands was bloodied,
The blood never washing out, the oceans turning red.

She remembered how she had pleaded at first,
Explaining to her father that it wasn’t her fault,
Telling him how much she had fallen in love,
How she tried not to do so, but all in vain.
She remembered how she had been tied,
Beaten up till her skin almost came off,
She touched her bruises and almost instantly,
A tear silently fell into her wine.

Read the next part in Stranded – 2.

The Point of No Return

Don’t push him,
To the point of no return,
Quiescence though might prevail now,
The storms will rise with tumultuous waves,
And you won’t succeed in stopping him then,
So don’t push him,
To the point of no return.

He balances on a rope and walks on a leg,
His master drumming nonchalantly below,
Everyone’s eyes up at the sky,
Looking at him with penchant glimpses,
Whilst the tears from his eyes never stop running,
And rains down on them,
Evaporating before they reach their skins.

You’ll elope with him at the stroke of midnight,
To a faraway land of striped zorses and unicorns,
Did you ask him if he is happy?
No, don’t push him,
To the point of no return.
For when he turns, and when he strikes,
You’d be helpless like a sheep amongst wolves,
Do you know what happens to sheep amongst wolves?
No, you don’t, so don’t push him,
To the point of no return.