The journey is long so is the night.
I desperately hope to reach home quick.
The aftereffects of a delayed flight
seem beautiful as the city lights blink.
That orange light from a distant building
could have been from the room of a child.
And that dim blue light from a porch shining
might have filled a lonely mind with thoughts mild.
City lights never fail to amaze me
with their nearness…attainability.
The stars never fail to disappoint me
with their shine…unattainability.
The colourful city lights fade away.
But the glimmering stars decide to stay.
poetry inspiring and
of the unextraordinary story
and its panicked end.
[Creative writing session]
Me: Now, use this text as reference and write your own ad for an imaginary island. You’ll have to plan your ad. First decide what you’re going to name your island and what its specialties are.
[Five minutes of loud murmurs and brainstorming for names]
Studious Kid: Ma’am, what would be the size of one twelfth of India?
Me: Approximately the size of two states, I guess…
Studious Kid: So, how many square kilometres would that be?
Me (smiling sarcastically): My dear, have you ever wondered why I’m an English teacher and not a Math teacher?
Studious Kid: Because you’re really really reeeeeally good at English?
Me: No…it’s because I’m really really reeeeeally bad at Math.
[A brief spell of silence]
Studious Kid: But, this has nothing to do with Math. It’s more of general knowledge…
The Usually Silent Kid: If it is general knowledge how come you don’t know the answer?
[I try not to laugh but end up doing exactly that]
Forget the scattered colours
Fearlessly break through…
-Yesterday, during lunch break-
Student: Why are you eating rice with a fork?
Me: There are no spoons.
Student: Why don’t you use your fingers then?
Me: Didn’t have time to wash my hands. Rushed here immediately after the class.
The same student hands me this:
Me: Why would anyone push a pin into a chalk?
Student: Now your hands won’t get dirty.
Being a teacher has its own perks, I guess.
Late Nights used to scare me
with thoughts of hiding monsters
and malignant entities…
Late Nights belonged to fear;
to thefts, rapes and murders.
To unexpected fires and intruders.
I was so wrong.
Late Mornings scare me now
with groping hands in broad daylight.
With unwanted glances
that are not compliments.
Late Mornings belong to heartbreaks;
to bad news one phone call away.
I have learnt so much now.
Late Nights are beautiful
with glimmering distant lights
blurred by the cigarette smoke.
Late nights belong to silence;
to serenity and retrospection
that make me look forward
to another dreaded dawn.
Red are the eyes caught by the camera
Red are the lips that kissed the childhood crush
Red are the scars on the waxed left arm
Red are the gatherings of insecure people
Red are the dreams of the lost soul
Red are the hands that come to help
Red are the hopes that stay
Bottled up monsters,
An almost real stolen smile.
Disclaimer: If anyone feels this is a parody of Victoria Morgan’s poem… well it is not. It is, in fact, a tribute.
- Got a haircut: Cliched as it might sound. A haircut really helps in the initial days of heartbreak. I began to feel bad about the lost hair more than anything else two days after the decision.
- Ate the Junk Food I so detested earlier: That included lots of French Fries, Cakes, Brownies and Biriyani. My mother once told me that there is no heartbreak that can’t be cured by yummy food. She was right. A few weeks of ‘yummy’ food and I had forgotten all about the ‘broken’ heart. I was worried about the increasing waistline.
- Wrote Poems: Initially they were all sad poems which reflected how pathetic I was. But then, they started getting better and I began to feel good about the rhythm and the beauty that I had created.
- Tried some DIY Makeover: It began with funky lip colours like neon pink and siren red and smokey eye which looked more like a black eye or the side-effect of sleeplessness. But it felt good, nonetheless.
- Developed a new Hobby: I began Smartphone photography as an experiment and soon I began to see everything around me through the eyes of a camera. I have captured some really beautiful things and have also realized that there are moments which can only be captured by the eye and preserved in memory.
- Binge Watched TV Series: There was no fixed genre. American Horror Story, Grimm, Witches of East End, Wayward Pines, Agents of SHIELD, Game of Thrones…they transported me to different worlds where there were problems much bigger and greater than what I was going through.
- Read Sophie Kinsella: Becky, Lara, Lottie, Lexi, Poppy, Samantha, Emma and Audrey made me laugh and move on just like they did, through debts, broken engagements, amnesia, ghosts and anxiety disorders.
- Got Addicted to Dystopian Fiction: Hunger Games, Divergent, The Maze Runner…they reminded me that one need not be pretty or loved to be a hero and make a difference in the world. For a few weeks I was busy listing out my plans to save the world which might come in handy someday…
- Read Me Before You by Jojo Moyes: It made me cry till I couldn’t cry anymore. For the first time in years, I was crying for something/someone other than myself. For once, I wasn’t miserably drowning in self-pity. The book helped me mourn, not just the sad story of Lou and Will, but the many days I had whined away. It gave me the catharsis I needed.
- Forgave Myself: I could love and forgive myself finally because I wasn’t the same person anymore. Surely not the person who let a rejection hurt and depress her.
P.S. Find your catharsis to finally let go of the thing which is hurting you. For me it was a book. For you it could be a job or a journey. Find it, let it wash you and purge you. And once the catharsis is complete, work on getting rid of the extra fat. 🙂
If you’ve ever wondered
how I turned out to be who I am
the answer is ‘you’.
When I am complimented (often hated)
for being a grammar Nazi,
I feel thankful to you
for the song of ABC.
Force fed during those early years
when all I wanted to do
was eat, sleep, cry and just be.
When my colleagues praise
my vegetable pulao and
when I bake the perfect cake
and the Shepherd’s pie,
I silently thank you
for sharing your space in the kitchen
with the truant and lazy girl
that I once was.
When I see my degrees
and academic achievements piling up,
I thank you for not giving up on me
even when the whole world believed
I was and would be a failure…always.
When I win an argument with you
with prompt sarcastic comebacks,
I thank you for teaching me the language.
When I think women empowerment,
I think of you.
When I want an honest opinion,
I call you.
I’m proud of you
Not because you’re my mother,
(both of us are beyond conventions)
But because you are a wonderful person.
And I’m writing this today
Not because it happens to be your birthday
but because I happened to remember
that I am more like you
than I could’ve ever thought.