Grey and Blue

The symphony courses through me and oscillates to my heartbeat.

All of me is spread out like a field of yellow daffodils.

The charred night sky stands resolute as I stare at the empty womb of stars.

As Spring wind hit my face my face tinges and takes me moment of serenity.

Serenity and Restlessness stay side by side like two skies: Blue and Grey across the horizon.

A part of me still feels happy and yet another feels apathetic to all and within.

My soul is Saeglopur yet exploring seas of emotions within.

Who am I? I am but a weary wanderer on a journey from dust to dust.

What is life: An unending journey from Grey to Grey. From the moment the grey clears and you see your first to the moment you see your last.

But life, Life is filled with shades of blue, Patches of happiness sewn into this bland existence and making our life more than a series of random moments.

I wonder how we grow on and stop noticing the Blue after a while and bask ourselves in Grey and gloom.

We sink into these grey and hollow depth and are drawn into a quicksand of emotions.

Yet we walk past this blue desert into a mirage of grey which is ever fleeting. Without stopping by and realising that we are where we need to be.

I guess that’s what we need.

Blue and Grey,

An endless everfleeting journey for a moment of respite when it has always been there, all along: Under the Blue sky.

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Nataraj Talkies

Nataraj Talkies:

It was about 9 and Vinod knew it was time, his last show as the projectionist in Nataraj Talkies.
He went into the room which was filled with many a sleepless nights and had seen him grey his beard, The worst part was living with the fact that “Vinod Deshpande” might have been on the screen and not sititing in that room at all, if only he never met Her.

She was the reason Vinod, who was seen as future starlet in Marathi Rangmanch quit everything and decided to settle down.
But in retrospect, all the 32 years with Sushma were worth it, He remembered each day; from the day he eloped with her till the day she suddenly fell sick and till the day she finally left him all alone with nothing but an empty home, a well made breakfast and a trunk load of memories.

Nataraj Talkies was built around 1984, he took a job there after he learnt the hard way that drama can’t support his love. He remembered how he had days when he felt helpless, how he would see people live the life he wanted to live, but couldn’t. All he could do as Shashi Kapoor roamed the valleys of Kashmir was to change the reel and bring Bhangda Macchi from Ganesh Peth .

This was the final show. The talkies was acquired 2 weeks ago and was set to be reconstructed as a multiplex. He sat there, took a puff from his beloved Marlboro and watched the credits roll. The End.
Now, he didn’t have Sushma, or Cinema. He felt unchained and unaccountable. What would he do? How would he earn? All kinds of unsettling thoughts gave company to Vinod along with a quarter of cheap liquor.

They say cinema mirrors life, perhaps it was true. Perhaps there was a hero, there was a heroine, there was a love story and a happily ever after.
But This, was the “ever after” from the happily ever after. The part where you are left alone with regrets and thoughts of the missing Heroine.
He always was happy because he always had his Heroine, which made him feel that he was not just acting in movie, His life was better than any movie any writer could write, with laughter, tears, fights and drama.

But he was always an actor, An actor must not let the audience know how he feels, He must play his role, The Hero doesn’t give up when the Big Bad Villain beats him up, he rises from (literal and metaphorical) dust to set things right. The Hero cannot lose. It just isn’t in the script.

Morning.
He entered Yashwant Rao Bhavan after 32 years.
“Excuse me son, could you tell me where is the director? I needed a chance..”

Mr. Rabbit: Episode 1

I entered a humid blue hallway, faded blue walls and half broken windows which brought in Mid-summer sunshine in the hall, I was told by my contact to wait for a while till he cleared the situation and asked me to proceed into the mansion.

It was an old mansion; probably colonial. It stood the tests of time quite well, It had seen good days and bad. It had seen sensuous kisses and tears through generations. Now it was owned by Kevin “The Rabbit” DeAndre. To the unwary he was just an old man who was the bartender at Apple Barrel, what most people didn’t know. He was a Voodoo King. That was the dirty little secret behind a charade of wrinkly smiling face and a weak black frame. Today, I had a job for him.

The air was smoky, even thought the home was in the middle of the town I didn’t hear anything, It was as if I was in some other era. I decided to check out the home, So I climbed the stairs near the hall to reach the library. It was well lit and the room was golden with the light from the chandelier. Something was wrong. I could feel it in my bones. The library was massive. It appeared bigger then the mansion. I walked in to check out the books. “Need anything son?” An Old man standing nearby asked me.

“Yeah, Tell me about Kevin.”

“Kev is a really nice kid, he will join college next summer in Chicago, Did he do anything wrong Sir? I am his Uncle Asgrid.”

What? Is he joking. College?

I didn’t answer. I just ignored him and came downstairs to check if Russell finished the clearence.

It was different.

The Hall looked amazing. There were people dancing. People drinking Whiskey and Jazz tunes in the air. And It was night as I looked out of the window.

What is happening?

I rushed past all these people into the room where I was supposed to go.

Russell stood there with an Old Man, The Rabbit.

“You lost son?” The Rabbit asked me with a smile.

“What is wrong with your house? How is it night? Who was that old man in the library?” I asked.

“Now now Joe, You shouln’t go on sneaky peaky in someone’s home. Dincha’ Ma teach ya that? Mariline wasn’t it her name?” he said as he gulped down some whiskey from his glass as he sat on a satin covered couch.

I knew this man was a Voodoo King. I just wanted a simple love potion. That’s all.  That too on Julia’s pestering. He was not ordinary.

“I want Love Sir”

“Oh, Do ya now?” He smiled as he looked me with those dark eyes which had black circles and were sunk into his cheeks as if for centuries.

 

To be Continued.

D R O W N

I drown.

I sink in the paragraphs and lines of my own creation. I transcend into memories of yore; Of times of 5 Rupee Ice Golas and Street Side food. The times where I used to ride along on my Appa’s Hero Honda yelling at the top of my lungs “Appa, Faster.” Closed eyes and laughing; Showing all my teeth and a blue tongue.

But as I open my eyes, I see myself in another time. A time of neatly ironed uniforms, standing in a line and praying during assembly (But trying to open one eye and look at what my best friend was up to), A time of Amma’s cooking packed in dabbi; which probably will always be tastier than any “Fine-Dine” restaurant. A time of fighting with friends for silly reasons and naively believing that Undertaker came back from the dead 6 times (Or was it more?). A time of waking up on Sunday mornings to catch Shaktimaan on DD1 and Cat-Dog on Nickelodeon.

As I drowned further, I saw myself writing down formulas and diagrams. A time of hard work and running away from it to read Ender’s Game during chemistry Pre-boards. A time when I disappointed myself and my teachers with a marks on a piece of paper which perhaps would forever be my identity as 85.5%; No 95+ Halo. But two digits which gave me a frown from all but my Amma. The time I realised one can never have what one desires but at the same time could never truly make Lemonade from life’s lemons.

Then I tried to breathe. I was here again. Living in a city of Silicon; A place where bodies were sold on the streets and knowledge was sold in pretty classrooms in overpriced colleges. A time of placements, CV, Internships, Research and other words which were shoved down my throat, A time when I am given a pair of running shoes; Transformed into a rat, shown the track and told to keep on running and “keep on solving” .

“Why?”

Is this necessary?”

No replies as I stare at a faceless crowd which too runs. Runs for Money, Power, Ambition and Sex. “Do I want to do this?” I shake off such thoughts from my mind and keep on running till I reach The Promised Land.

Is it worth it?”

Perhaps. Perhaps not. I might never get to eat a gola and make my tongue blue in corporate cubicles. I might seldom or never have Amma’s uuta as I gobble down with etiquette some overpriced salad in some restaurant .

What can I do? I am a Drowner you see, I could never swim.

A part in me still longs for sunbaked happazha on a sunday lunch with family. To feel the sunrays on my face as I wake up at 10 AM. I want to feel the wind on my face and go back when I was a kid. I want to be free. I want to unbounded by these shackles and expectaions. To be just me. To lull my demons to sleep and sneak out into a world of simple faces with smiles.

 

But what can I do? I must drown. Drown again, into these sheets and numbers.

 

 

Mirror-rorriM

He stood in front of the mirror.

It was : 1:11 AM

His brown eyes, filled with anger and regret stared at a man who killed his family.

“She should have let me kill her, She should have moved.”

He wanted to wash the red off his palm.

His only daughter and wife lay dead in the bedroom.

“Is this fight worth fighting?”


“This is a fight which must be fought.”

Two non-believers lay dead in the bedroom.

He wanted to dispose the bodies and go to sleep.

“She died because it was destined. Nothing special about an infidel dying.”

His brown eyes, filled with serenity and hope stared at a hero who wiped two infidels.

It was 1:11 AM

He stood in front of the mirror.

The MeowNator: Part Une

Yes, I am blogging. Read. On.

 

It was a cold night in Bangalore. Parmeet McFluffy was a strong, independent cat who didn’t need anyone’s lewd comment about her or her lifestyle choices (She likes to eat from trash, It is her choice. Accept it). She was a left leaning liberal cat.

Parmeet was taking a walk near Pecos (She found it extremely noisy). This time of the night, large-creatures-that-provide-food-and-cuddle where walking into strange closed spaces and coming out smelly and loud.

She wanted to reach home and get some shut eye, her creature-that-provided-food-and-cuddle was perhaps home, as she was walking, she noticed a shadow.  Shadows in Bangalorepura following you at night are never a good thing, her mother cat Jaspreet Kaur McFluffy (née “Cutiepie”) had taught her such small life lessons (Sardine turned Tomcats on, never eat mice like flithy middle-class cats to name a few.) before running away with an unknown Tomcat to parts unknown. (The word in McFluffy khandan was that Jaspreet-ji eloped with someone went to Canada.)

She kept moving, she was hungry; as always. So she decided to go near Onesta which was around the block and nibble on some pizza before she went to sleep at home. It was about to rain, that’s something sad as well as exciting about Bengalurpura. The weather was unpredictable. She liked in comparison to Delhinagar. Yes, she used to live in Delhinagar. It had been 4 years (In cat-years) since they shifted to Bengalurpura. She missed Pinkie Floyd, Mikesh Fufa and the rest of the family that lived back home.

Suddenly, the lights disappeared and all her Meow-ing was useless.

She Meow-ed her last.

 

 

She woke up on a table “Woof.” (Roughly Translated as “Eh ki ho riya?”)

She had changed to something she never imagined in her wildest tuna induced stupor.

She, was a dog.

Fatima

7 months and 3 days. Today Abbu was going to return. It had been a long wait for little Fatima. Abbu had gone to the land beyond the horizon. He said he would be back soon. He promised her Chocolates and even a Talking doll. Fatima was excited. The wait was worth it she felt. 

But after a week, she began to wonder, What is beyond the Horizon. Where did Abba go? So, She decided to go to Karim Ajja. Who lived a few minutes away from her home. 

Karim Sheikh was once a famous cloth merchant in Oman. But a series of bad deals and a few betrayals later Karim was forced to come to India to his family and worked in Mangalore port for 12 years before retiring . His hair was white now ripe with humility and wisdom accumulated by living in the fishing hamlet. He was one of the few people who could read in the hamlet. All letters and documents went through Karim’s weary eyes before proceeding further.

Fatima rushed to Karim Ajja wearing her Green and Red frock. It was her special day after all. Her birthday. Yet Abbu hadn’t come. 

“oye Karim Ajja, What land is there beyond the ocean? Where did Abbu go?”

Karim. Hearing the question. Smiled. And said “He has gone far away. To the land of Sheikhs. To earn a fortune. When he’ll come he will have the finest of clothes and sweetest of fruits for you” as he patted her head.

“Land of The Sheikhs? Adu yenta?” She questioned.

“Land of Sheikhs is a place where Sheikhs rule. Sheikhs. You have seen my old photo no? The one in white? They wear Clothes like that. All the people are rich and they even have camels there. Camels.” As he displayed his teeth and grunted like one. 

Fatima was excited. Sheikhs, Camels, Chocolates, Clothes. She imagined her Abbu in a Sheikh dress. It was hilarious.

A few more days she told herself. And she would be the happiest girl in the village .

4 months had passed. Still he didn’t return. She was now afraid if Abbu even remembered her Chocolates and her doll. She asked ammi to write to him to bring Chocolates. Ammi just nodded and went away to the other room.

6 months had passed. Yet no sign of Abbu. She didn’t want any Chocolates or dolls or clothes. She wanted her Abbu. She wanted him to carry her on his shoulders to the market. She wanted him to wake her up early morning by tickling her. She missed him.

She went to Ammi and screamed. “I want Abbu. I want him. I want him. I want him. Now”. Ammi smiled at her and ran out of the room. That night Fatima heard Ammi sob. Maybe Abbu told he would get her Chocolates too. That’s why she was sad.

And so she waited again. 

7 month 3 days. Maybe today he was going to return. Maybe today Ammi would stop crying at night. She waited till Dusk. Yet so sign of him. She felt helpless. And she cried. She cried and Cried. And fell asleep near the window.

“Fatima. Fatima look what I have bought for you!”. It was him. Abbu had come. She saw him near the door. She ran to him and hugged him tight as if she meant she was not letting him leave anywhere soon. He kissed her on her cheek and lifted her into his arms. She saw bags with him. “Adu yenu Abbu?” She asked pointing at the bags. 

“Chocolate, Clothes for you and Ammi. And, A Talking Doll!”. He remembered. He remembered after all. She was indeed the happiest of all girls in the village. She had all she wanted. Now she could brag to Selvi and Nagma about her clothes. 

“You won’t leave no?” She asked in a mellow tone. “I’ll always be there” Abbu said. As he patted her head.
And then she woke up. It was all a dream. She wiped the tears and went looked out the window 

It was time to wait again. 
And then. She saw him.