I listen to the braying of my heart

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It beats without permission

This mechanical piece of passion

And when the world around me gives up

And the dreams are falling apart

I listen to the braying of my heart

 

The candles they burn out

At the turn of that last page

My story remains unread

In the depth of the dark

I still listen to the braying of my heart

 

My mirror it stares

A boorish sight it beholds

Hollow eyes on a blank canvas

While they deafen out my soul’s talk

I listen to the braying of my heart

 

The hands are now numb

The world passed me by

As my soul turns weary

And legs give up the walk

I listen to the braying of my heart

Undeterred.

I am. I am. I am.

Because…

Because it always ends
Before it even begins
Because I lose my thought
Each time time twists and spins

Because truths often
Hurt more than the lies
Because running away
Helps the soul’s infinite sky

Because the best world
Is always a fantasy
Because one step out of the bell jar
Brings you back to reality

Because every life unloved
Is a life that is dead
Because in every love what’s told
Is never enough said

Because every soul has an audience
And every audience a voice
Because even music sometimes
Is just a lot of noise

Because that which doesn’t kill
Gives you pleasure too
Because everyday I breath this dead air
I love you too….

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Sepulcher

Standing atop the hill
Where she fell
Where her beauty and her soul
In the sunlight do dwell

It is here that I walk
Alone until its dark
Then I lose myself
And my mind falls apart

Did they take her
Up this clumsy way
In a lonesome hearse
On a cold winter day

Or did they let her headless
Lump rot, in the sun
And then build a sepulcher
And call her “the one”

I wonder what that angel thought
The one whose smile is etched in stone
Deep down she might have cried
For the girl who died alone

These walls grim at my touch
Behind the dirt and grime
Tell a tale of a beauty
That stood the test of time

She was a thought
A story to the empty hearts
A few worthy words
Painted into someone’s art

One day she fell in love
With the mirrored reflection
Of her own beauty
And its flawed perfection

When I now look upon
The same silver screen
It simply shines the mighty road
And sees right through me

That life that went away
Silently in a guillotine
It still lurks around here
Floating on the night breeze

Today she lies
A pile of broken bones
Among friends and foes
Buried under the same stone

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***

I walk down the path
Passing by each goodbye
Walking among the hearts I broke
and those who made me cry

I walk the empty roads
Till dusk beckons me home
I look around at the last of light
Back into my sepulcher I go….

From Anne to Sylvia

We walk through our valleys of fear
Into the dying dawn
It’s all just peaches and pears
Until you find everything around was wrong

First it’s hundreds then thousands in the mind
The thoughts of death
Running crazy and blind
“We are not to die”, she said

“Not so quickly in life”
I am in a deeper myth my friend
For you I walked past the knife
Little, of course, can you say to this

You who embraced it like a friend
You who looked past the ignorance
Straight into a peaceful end
You who claimed it away

You don’t get to take what’s mine
Or is it yours too?
For now I will be fine
But one day I shall seek you out

No poetry or prose
Can cut me through the sorrow
Of a burial rose
O Sylvia

You are nothing and everything
You are my dark horse
Wrapped around a noose ring
I will come over, come over one day
O Sylvia, one day’s today today…

P.S: For those who don’t know their story Anne Sexton and Sylvia Plath were best friends and they openly spoke of confessional poetry and the idea of suicides that they were constantly plagued with. This here is my tribute to the friendship

The Writer: Part 5: Tonight


He wakes from his moment of bliss to see what the pen and paper has conjured up this time. Another Story.

***

The room was a well lit white. The stack of books in the corner was beginning to gather dust. The tiny window at the top of the room was merely for the tiny ray of sunlight that stole itself into the room. He looked up for a moment; the rain had splattered the dirt from the road on to the window as if the white of room was fighting against the filth outside. The door was ajar, he must have been waiting for someone. Or something. The sounds of the rain got louder, as if daring him to let it enter the room. He looked up and hoped the glass would hold. The books began to shudder, must be the wind, he thought. It was all dark now. The lights had gone out in the white room. He sighed a sigh, this has happened before, he thought. In a dream once. Only this wasn’t a dream. When the lights came on, the room was now red. All his books were alive. His mother’s hanging in the bedroom, and the worst of all, the babysitter, her tortured body walking across the room, they all came back to him. That little friend, he met at the park, that voice, he was back. It had always been him.
He wanted to get out! Out of this horrendous room, he tried to shout but there was no sound. Even the rain had gone quiet now. Could he not hear anymore? He took away his hearing? That’s how he would never get scared? He looked back around the room. All the horrors of the world coming alive, why could he not hear himself screaming? Was he not able to scream at all? The red was overwhelming now. He had to start listening again; if he could just dig a little deeper and remove the thing stuck in his ear. The pen! He would use the pen to remove the block. He felt no pain as he jabbed it in, maybe he took away my pain too, he thought. Or did I do that to myself?
He jabbed it again and tried to scream and still couldn’t hear a thing. Maybe if I open my mouth wider. He held his lower jaw and started pulling away harder and harder. But nothing happened, the patter of the rain was gone, the sound of his screams nonexistent. It was just him and the red room.

***

The writer reads on with horror as he reads the story, he feels the left of his head go soft and the pen covered with blood.

***

My Little Dark Beans



The little dark beans,
they call me home
wire me up
even when I’m alone


The little dark beans
They crush and crumble
As the big black machine
It rumbles


Little girl screams
nice and sweet
she wishes for her mommy
as she eats


Little girl screams
wouldn’t give me peace
for me and my beloved
little coffee beans


Tonight my coffee
Is nice and dark
The juicy fingers
They leave a red mark


The little girl is quiet
her voice is gone
in this dark night
I’m finally alone


The clock strikes 3
And there is blood on the floor
My little black beans
Ain’t black no  more

Random Rumblings

I never really sought to become a good writer, I think that explains the mediocrity of this blog, until, that is, last month, when some random publishers in Allahbad agreed to publish me for some minimal amount of money (I had sent my work to them as a joke!). Now suddenly a book is looming large on my horizon and I’m subsequently sending my work to other, ahem, KNOWN publishers (with the hope that it wasn’t just some foolish act of god or perhaps the internet!)
The idea of a book of poetry has been so alien to me in India that for large part of my life I pictured myself mailing all of my life’s work to Adam Foulds (a poet who wasn’t known until he won his Man Booker for his novel) and subsequently kill myself (for that’d just be more romantic) and have him publish it (for he’d probably have no other work to do). My idea of a poem too was just rhymes that generally just contain no real meaning (like say that song “Smelly Cat” by Phoebe in Friends). People often told me how they never really understood what I wrote (truth be told neither did I). All of it changed that fateful night. There are publishers, actual PUBLISHERS who publish poetry in India and they were willing to take a chance, provided I took that chance with them.
I just realized, this is going to be a rather self depreciating rumbling (because I know little else to do in life), but having had ummm…single-digit number of followers of my blog (who by the way I LOVE) to have gotten a call from a man in Allahbad who is ready to shift the date of my publication by months just so that I have the BOOK (weird sentence) ready by then. It really did help the tiny little voice in me who told me I wasn’t half as bad. I used to tell myself that if Chetan Bhagat can get pulished anybody can. But I recently concluded (after a lot of primary survey), he writes what people want to read. And I write what they don’t really understand. Now under these circumstances do I actually go ahead with the publication? Only to force the 177 classmates of my batch to buy my book, so that many years later, they point at it and go, “Some weirdo in our class used to write shit loads of poems. I never really understood it but you know how it is, you buy it coz the mob does. There is 100 Rs gone down the drain.” Or I spare myself and them the torture and leave these 100-odd vain moments of glory unpublished.