The Time Traveller

She wanted
Like a little girl would,
For she was of course,
A little girl,
And so,
It wasn’t abnormal for her
To want what she wanted,
And wish for what she wished.
But then the man
Who defined normal,
Decided to poke a little fun
At this small girl,
And he changed therefore
The definition of normal,
So that her wish
Because almost synonymous,
With the most abnormal thing
One could wish for,
And so it was
That her wish wasn’t granted,
Moreover
People laughed at her,
For they found it amusing,
That a little girl,
Which she truly was,
Would want and wish
For the things
She wanted and wished.

But then she knew
What she had to do,
So she went,
To the nearest spaceport,
And picked up a spaceship
That was painted,
In pink and blue,
She of course chose it,
‘Cause those were
Her favorite colors,
And she time-travelled
To the past,
Wishing that she’d find,
The definition of normal,
To be as normal as
Any definition could be.
But the spaceship
Was an evil one,
And it took her to the past,
Where the word normal,
Had not yet been discovered,
When she reached there,
People had just come out,
Of their caves,
Looking for deer to kill,
And then ate them,
And slept merrily.

So she took the spaceship,
And travelled to the future,
But now she came back,
To where she had started.
But as far as I think,
Her wishes at the end
Were fulfilled,
Even though people
Did laugh at her,
For the wish after all,
Was to time-travel.

You

And I kept thinking
Foolishly,
That I had successfully
Forgotten you,
When all the time,
The only thing
At the back of my mind,
Was you.

So here’s a toast,
To all those times
When we were.
To all those times
That we spent
In each other’s arms,
Thinking that this,
This is it,
This is what
We always wanted.

And now I must stop.
It’s a new year,
And I have made,
Much like others,
A resolution.
I will not be
Foolish anymore,
And that this,
This is the last time,
I write about
You.

A Brighter Color

I sit in a dark room, silence all around,
No one knows the pain deep within,
I have kept it to myself,
Not wanting you to know,
For fear of troubling you,
With my baseless fears.
I fear, and do you know that?
I fear, that I might lose you again,
For my life has for sheer luck,
Given me another chance to be with you.
But the rose that had withered off,
The black rose that you’d last seen,
It’s still the same,
And will be, forever.

For love you I not anymore,
But I cannot ignore you either,
Such is the trauma in the lives of lovers,
Who can think all they wish,
That they have moved on,
Yet only a sentence,
Or sometimes only a song,
Is enough to rekindle,
All that was lost,
And much is not lost,
For you are still there, and so am I.

But let bygones be bygones,
Let a new rose bloom,
Let us let luck decide its color,
For when the night is blue,
And full of stars,
When we’d be drinking,
To wash away our scars,
We’d probably lie in one another’s arms,
For you are still there, and so am I.

I sit in a dark room, silence all around,
But will you fill it,
With lights and noise?
I hear clamors, yet only in my mind,
And the light through the windows,
Come warily at those times,
When I think of you the most,
And light my lap,
Does that ring a bell?

For now I must stop,
Yet I pray you, come back,
Forget what can yet be forgotten,
And let us turn our lives,
Into a merry affair,
For when all is said and done,
The black rose will still be,
Hidden in a pocket deep somewhere,
Wishing it met another of its kind,
Only a brighter color.

Return – Chapter 5

Sometimes things happen, and we do not really realize their importance until long after. As I now think of my past, so many events stand out in my mind, which at that point were simply instances, nothing important enough to remember, just moments. But those moments are what have made me what I am today, or at least attribute to it in some way or the other. And somehow a majority of the moments lead up to the same end point. Irtiqa. How I wish that it were untrue, and that there were more than one meaning to my life. I remember the first time I took her out for ice-cream. I loved a particular combination of flavors, and was exhilarated to make her try it, and she had looked at the icecream with disdain. She did not like it one bit. Chocolate was better. That was one of the first moments when I had realized that maybe things are not so common as we had thought they were. But what harm could it be? After all, an ice-cream flavor never disrupted anything, and we were too mature for that. Only, we were not.

Irtiqa. There was something about that name. And that something had kept me away from Shaena too long. I was not meant to do any of this. But then again, who could ever imagine that we would ever meet again, after the way we parted four years ago — she suddenly pulled me back. I had not realized I was crossing the road and that a car was headed towards me. I looked back at her. She asked, “What would have happened if I weren’t there here right now?” And I replied, “That could not have been.” She smiled. She knew. She knew what was going on in my mind. But she would never own up to it. She was too proud for that. And so was I. We already knew we had embarked on the wrong path yet once again, but somehow we had decided we would continue to walk.

“We should go drinking sometime,” she said. “I will make you vomit out every secret that you keep from me.” I smiled. She still did not know anything about that night. It is queer how intoxication can be a boon sometimes. Perhaps that is why people get drunk, to be themselves. They know they do not have the guts to unmask themselves when they are in their wits, but they desperately want to unmask themselves. And that is why they drink. That is why I drink. I remember the last time I was drunk. It was a total fiasco. I always drink only till I know I am okay. After that I stop. This one time, I did not. I wanted to lose my senses for once. I wanted to be just me for once. No limiting boundaries. People think that drunk people usually speak truthfully and that it is best to make them ogle out whatever they might have buried in their hearts. And that is somewhat true. Only, sometimes we lie so much to ourselves that the lie gets buried deep within, and we start thinking that it is true. And there lies the problem. We have moulded ourselves into something that we wish were true, and have believed in the alternate theory so much that it seems a part of our reality.

I dropped her at her home, but decided to stay out for a while. As I walked, the breeze blew through my hair. It was a starry night. The river shone brightly, lit up by the street lights and the stars and the moon. I sat on the bank, the cold water lapping against my feet. In a restaurant a few blocks ahead, someone was singing folk songs. I checked my phone, the battery was dead. There was nothing else that I could want at this moment. Nothing more, nothing less. I think I was happy. I was satisfied by my life, even though it had nothing to give, because I was too full to take anything more, like a tumbler full of water. The friend I had met in the morning crossed paths once again. “How was it?” he asked, not waiting for an answer. He knew I would say it was okay, irrespective of how it was. Sometimes it is foolish to anticipate anything out of anyone. And we had both learned that, the hard way. He left after a while, when he realized I had nothing more to say. I walked back to Shaena’s house. She opened the door, but blocked it. “What troubles you so much?” she asked. “Tell me or I will stop talking to you.” Déjà vu. Was she still so kiddish? “Are you seriously gonna do that, now, again?” “No, I am joking. But you need to tell me. I am a friend, believe me, I am, and will be. We are past all that now, and I promise nothing of that sort will ever happen again.”

Perhaps I took a wrong decision at that very moment.

Previous

Five

I want to talk a bit on the idea that some of us like to follow. “Live in the present”.

Although it sounds very appealing, I want each one of us to really think how much this matters and how much or how less this would affect our lives. The effect of living in the present is huge. We are always happy in the moment. We love today, and we know we will love what tomorrow has in store for us. But personally, though I love today, and I might love tomorrow, I really hate yesterday.

Think about it, if we were to live in the present, we cannot control our past, nor our future. Great quotes have been made which say, “Do not think of the future or the past because you cannot control them, so live in the present.” But now when I see back at all those years, I see so many mistakes that I have committed, that I was well aware even at that time, but disregarded their importance because I was too busy living in the present. Sometimes, I just sit, and introspect. What if I had done this instead of that? Would I be happier today? The answer is almost always “Yes!” Almost all through my school and college, I used to put this extra focus on friendship. My early posts bear testimony to this. Friendship and love were the two things that I considered the most important. Then slowly I realized that love is not really that important, you can make-do without it. This one time my blog put my friendship with an entire group in jeopardy. Now that I think about them, everything seems so trivial, so stupid; we seem so immature it is hard to believe we have come this far.

Back to where I was, introspection. I am one person who believes in the power of it. “Five” represents my very motive to write about introspection. Give yourself five minutes of your day, but give those five minutes entirely to yourself. We are so busy with the affairs of the world that we sometimes forget that we should take care of ourselves. Wake up in the morning, watch the news, Air Asia flight missing, rapes all around, people dying of the winter, new parliaments, red alerts. Go upstairs and your computer is waiting for you with a hundred mails that huddled up last night. Bring a cup of coffee, but you’ll forget to sip until it gets cold. You read a Whatsapp message, write down the reply, forget to press the Send button. Story of our lives. And so, sometime in the day, just sit back, close your eyes, feel the darkness, plan out your evening, plan out your night, smile that the weekend is almost around the corner, and be happy again. Those five minutes will be the best ones of your day.

I am more than half-way into Decagon now. In another four posts, I will have to close this chapter. This has been the most personal and treasured set of write-ups that I have shared. And yet, I yearn for more. I yearn for your response. I wish, some day, you come and read this again. And then you will remember about today, and how much your life has changed between the two times you read this. Change is lovely, and change is inevitable. So embrace it, let the new year bring a fresh wind in its winter, wrap you in furs, prepare you to battle against all odds, and make you a stronger and happier person in the days to come. Happy reading!

Four | Six

Subtle Differences

As the land and the sea,
And the day and night,
Opposites, yet complementing,
We ourselves have become.
Have we changed so much,
Than when we started,
That now when I look back,
All I see is the remnants of an old self,
Looking into a mirror,
Finding his image mentally altered,
Seeing his reflection in the ponds,
Ripples distorting his face,
Just as much as his mind was distorted.
How the smiles back then,
Turn into frowns inside the heart,
But the face never shows them,
Fearing it would be contagious,
Seeping into the lives around,
Yet when all around seem happy,
With whatever this change is,
Good or bad,
Should we think so much about it?
Or leave it be,
As the rocks wither out into grains of sand,
By the rushing streams,
From the top, that is where the mind is,
To there, where the heart resides.

Return – Chapter 4

As I walked back, I pondered on how she would feel if she knew of this. She had always been patient when it came to listening to stories about Shaena. She was beautiful. We were beautiful. Irtiqa. When we first met, we had talked for a couple of hours before we exchanged our names, and by then it had been too late for us to back out. How everything went after that, and what it led to, only we knew. Irtiqa, she said, meant progression. She had kept the entire thing afloat, and somehow I had felt it was her who I owed so much in my life. But life is a strange affair, and we were meant to not be. If she were here today, she would probably have walked with me, discussed if it were right, whatever I was doing, and maybe even encourage me a little, boost up my confidence, that pretty smile that changed everything, those instantaneous hugs and pats on the head… it had been a good time together.

I sat in the drawing room, waiting for Shaena to come downstairs. On the opposite wall, there was a poster, which reminded me of a stanza which she had read out to me ages ago.

“For when the sky is dark,
The rains will come,
And when the rains do come,
The dust will wash off,
And when the dust washes off,
New dust will settle,
Until the sky turns dark again.”

It seemed so true and so clearly untrue at the same time. Indeed life was a circle. Not one big one, but many small circles. You kept going round and round unless you found the way out. For me, I still hadn’t discovered the way, and was engulfed in it, round and round and round. I looked up at the ceiling, the fan moving persistently, in slow circles, never tiring. I wondered what would happen if the fan rotated counter clockwise instead of clockwise, and whether it would just break out of the ceiling and fall on my head if I were to close my eyes. I kept my eyes open. Irtiqa kept interrupting my thoughts. I thought of the day when I had finally decided I would ask her out, and then the tumultuous events that led to me deciding for once and all, that it was never meant to be. Once a while I looked up the stairs to see if she was coming down.

After half an hour she did. She looked mesmerizing. It would have been wrong to say she looked just pretty, or gorgeous. She looked different. Different from how she looked yesterday, when we met for the first time in years. Of course, she didn’t realize she was talking to me then. She had drank more than she was capable of. We had talked as if we were strangers, until Saeeka turned up. Things changed, and I instantaneously left that place. But how she talked today didn’t really suggest she had any idea of what happened yesterday. And maybe that was for the good, because it would have been the worst possible reunion I could have imagined if it were to happen that way. But things happen, they just, happen. They are not always under your control. Two years back, when Irtiqa and I first kissed (and it was the last time too), it just happened. We never talked about it again, pretending as if it never happened. Could it be Shaena was pretending too? Whatever it was, I decided to let it be as it was. She came down the stairs. “Let’s go?” she asked. “Yes,” I replied, and we walked out.

On our way, she chattered consistently. It felt nice to listen to her, after such a long time. The wind blew through her hair, so she took it up all in a bun, but then she saw the dismayed face that I had involuntarily and unintentionally made, and she left it open again. It was only after she smiled that I realized my face was crooked. “Have you read A Song of Ice and Fire?” she asked. “Oh yes, it is one of my favorite series,” I replied. It had been fifteen minutes since the last time I spoke, and so I had to grab this opportunity. But she didn’t let me. Instead, she prattled about her friends, college, life, thoughts, plans, wishes, memories and what not. Even so, it felt good. The winter wind on my face, the damp sun after the rain, and the snowy streets, all reminded me of times long gone by. We crossed a pond, where in the summer you would spot lots of fishermen trying to grab their lot of fishes for the day. Now, however, it was covered with a sheet of ice. The trees were white too, as if they had white leaves. The aroma of Christmas floated. It was less than a fortnight away. “I have a friend, her name is Irtiqa,” I said. “Oh, nice name,” she said, before continuing with whatever she was talking about. It was five minutes later that she realized I wanted to tell her something, and then she finally stopped talking. It was my turn.

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