Skip to main content

Posts

Showing posts from 2017

झलक

⚡मुखोटे पर मुखौटा चढ़ा कर,
यार, तुम क्यों थकते नहीं?!
खुद कि नहीं तो उस परेशान आयने की सोचो जो तुम्हें पहचाना ही भूल गया!

फिर, कुछ दोस्त ऐसे भी मिले
जो शिकायत से शिकायत रखते हैं।
खुशनसीब हैं हम की चंद लम्हे उनके साथ भी गुज़ारे। 

पर बयान-ए-नज़राना कह लो या गुलाम-ए-वक़्त,
शायर बना ही देता है शातिर जमाना।
ज़हन में जुनून लिए हमने भी मोर्चा निकाल लिया। 

त्योहार आते रहे, मौके मिलते रहे
कि अब कहीं शिकंज दूर होगी।
पर इनसानियत की बदकिसमती कह लो या इनसान की फितरत, खुशी से कोई खुश नहीं।

दो पल जो बक्शे  हैं बनाने वाले ने, यार, उन्हें गवाना नहीं।
खुद की रूह जिंदा रहे ना रहे,
हवा सबूत रखती है हर सलूक की।

हर बेग़र्ज़ कोशिश में खुदगर्जी ढूंढने वालों,
वक़्त- बेवक़्त साज़िश की तलाश छोड़ो अब।
धोखा हम भी खा चुके हैं बहुत, धोखेबाज़ को पहचानते हैं अब।

उम्र गवाह है कि उम्र टिकती नहीं,
तारीख बंधी नहीं है, वह भी रुकती नहीं।
ज़्यादती वह हद ना पार कर जाए कि हर्ज़ाने का ही वक़्त फिसल जाए।

जान है, जिंदादिली से जियो,
दिल खोलकर आहें भरो, दिल खोलकर जीने दो।
ख़ुदा कहो या भगवान, वह नज़रे गाड़े बैठा है...
इतनी इज्जत रख लो अपनी कि ऊपर मुंह दिखा सको।

A city, lost.

_____________________________ Published today in Bangalore Mirror as, 'A paradise lost, forever '.  http://bangaloremirror.indiatimes.com/bangalore/others/resident-warrior-a-paradise-lost-forever/articleshow/59312030.cms
The rain lashes against my windscreen as Axl Rose hits high decibels in praise of a ‘paradise city where the grass is green and the girls are pretty. I join in to celebrate namma own paradise city when the radio crackles and utter chaos unleashes outside.  
Barely a few yards out of a blissful, tree-canopied avenue with golf greens to my right and heavily guarded colonial buildings to my left, the cacophony of traffic violently shakes me from my happy place, launching me into my aggro-best to combat the arrogance of a dark-tinted monster-vehicle bullying its way into my lane already compromised by a police barricade. Everyone is rushing and not one will spare a second to give way to, well, save time! As for space, it costs an arm and vital organs these days, so, …

The Whole Nine Yards - 4

~Draped by the River
“Promise never to leave me alone and I will marry you”
“I promise”
“But if I ever find that you are not by my side, I will leave you for ever”
“It will never be so”
And the beautiful Cauveri, daughter of Kaver Muni, the benevolent sage of the Brahmagiri forests, was married to the powerful Rishi Agastya, besotted by the enchanting vision of Cauvery the moment he laid eyes on her.  

But this marriage, made in heaven, had a destiny to fulfil on the blessed land of Kodagu. The very first morning after their wedding, Rishi Agastya realised what he had got himself into. As usual, he was awake before the Sun and his prayer ritual needed him to take a dip in the mountain spring. He would fill his little kamandal (kettle-like container to carry holy water) and take it with him for his prayers. But Cauvery was still asleep and he didn’t want to wake her up. So, he used his powers gained from years of tapasya (penance), collected her in his little kamandal and took her with h…

Serendipity

Give it up indulgent Sun,
you've parched the land aplenty.
The mountains beyond pull their misty curtains tight
and a million greens dance in glee.
You've been harsh but Mercy's time has come.
Retreat. Desist. You're undone.

Hear the Thunder roll - heed its word.
Even Lightning streaks its say.
The Clouds have broken their pregnant pause...
how long would you bind them away?

Ah! The joy of sun-kissed trees,
that flash of gold in grey when
the clouds part just to let you in
so your presence still holds sway...
If only you knew your place in time
your glory could still reign.
Alas! You lost your plot today -
Depart. Stay sublime.

The mountains crave a drink of life.
Begone and let them be.
The rain is come and the land is numb...
in relief, in respite and peace.
It's kept its promise to its lot.
It's kept the Earth here green.
The Sky will testify to your ills,
the Winds will heave a sigh.

No thanks to you, the soil will sing
as Hail raises a toast.
Fog's b…

App Review - ABC MULTILINGO

ABC MULTILINGO
Language Learning App for Pre-schoolers Review



Languageproficiency is important today with travel starting young and global experiences becoming an integral part of growing up. Knowing multiple languages and speaking them comfortably help the dynamic process and build confidence. As children begin to recognise faces, places, things and their differences, they begin to imbibe nuances in speech and phonetics as well. Educators believe that multi-lingual children have a cognitive edge over others and tend to be better adjusted socially and emotionally.
Though language skills are a natural process of development, today, children are exposed to a much wider spectrum of languages at a very young age – it is essential that teachers and parents provide the right tools, at the right time, to hone their natural abilities so that the static of multiculturalism serves to homogenise, rather than ruffle the learning experience. Being a hands-on mum, I personally prefer outdoor and invent…

The Whole Nine Yards - 3

Six Yards of Simmering Svelte



I am planning my outfit for a friend’s twins' meet-and-greet luncheon and a soft silk with an exquisite multicoloured Bandhini looks perfect. It promises to be a sweltering Indian summer’s day and though classic Chandheris or comforting MulMuls are tempting, my darling mother’s exclusive collection has entrapped my heart. I find it hard to find such designs easily today, and have decided to gradually usurp her entire wardrobe, starting with this one.  
If the Indian loom is renowned for anything, it is for the plethora of Saris gifted to world fashion. There isn't a fabric invented yet that the garment has not embraced and there isn’t a nook on the globe that the Sari has not trot upon. It naturally follows that many design houses have sported a Sari line. Very few are yet to dabble with the six yards in any form – the trepidation, if that, is understandable because the Sari does evoke such reverence as to demand a very sound creative faculty to jus…

On World Poetry Day

Stand up and take a chance -
leave no glimmer without a glance.
There may be a pothole,
there might be a ranch -
you'll never know for sure
till you reach out and branch.

Never say never,
the Sun will always shine.
If yesterday was yours to keep,
tomorrow could me mine. 
Fear the thought of fear itself -
conquer what it stalls.
Life brings us sprouts anew
with every rain that falls. 
The wizened tell of daring feats -
listen to what they say.
Their ghosts won't come to change our fate -
their wisdom, though, will stay.

Trust, but keep the blindfolds off,
see what lies ahead -
For every brilliant light you see
there is a shadow shed.  Fret not the shadow that evades
your quest for what you seek.
Fret neither the time delays -
in your own time, you'll peak. 
In verse, I speak my piece today -
it's poetry's own good day.
And while I labour, still at it, I have but this to say:
Try, strive and give it your all;
when opportunity strikes, say, Hey!
I am not old, but t…

Wicked Game

Video for representation only. Courtesy YouTube. What is this curse
that your beauty shall not be seen
by those who know not to seek it?
Your fragrance fills nocturnal light
and your vision mesmerises sight;
yet before dawn you beat it.
Which immortal wish fulfilled
makes your magic rare?
Why do you hide, consort of one night?
What latent sorrow will you not share?
Why are you shy of the Sun, Earth's own star?
What unspeakable secret do you bear? Why do you tease the longing few?
Why do you make us wait?
And when we rejoice upon your blooming gait
why do you never stay?
Or is it your wait for that elusive mate
which makes you glow so bright?
Is it those wondrous dreams you weave,
which unrequited, leave you sedate?
Could it be too that you get what you seek?
That rare, unseen, in a moment so tender,
your glorious face gushes with grace ...
and spent and content you surrender?
Beauty is selfish. I have heard them proclaim
that it appears, and leaves, so it is yearned for.
Are you …

Light unseen

It takes a while to understand
that dark is light unseen.
All it takes is a moment
if you're really keen.
Tell me why the Moon is bright
and still sports a darkish side.
Why do shadows seek to speak
behind a luminous peak?
Why does the Sun shine its time
only to shortly hide?

Is it the way it's meant to be
or do we fail to see?

It doesn't really hide, does it?
It's we who turn away...
We turn our backs to fact,
to a reality, led astray.
It is us, and not the Sun
that ceases then to shine.
It is us and not the Moon
that rides a lofty tide.
It is us and not the truth
that will not stand a test.

It is us, always us,
longing, at Dark's behest.

Truth be told

They asked me for two lamps. Because a pair is more auspicious than one. But light is light. One lamp or two – how many are there in the Sun? 

They thought a while and considered. Beat, they smiled and surrendered. But logic is stark and doctrine is dark – fact became as fiction rendered. 

Scriptures preach to set us free. Believe. And you won’t be forsaken. But freedom comes from fearlessness – or are the bonded yet to awaken? 

Ask and you’ll receive say the Good. If charity were free I probably would. Here all things that count, come at a price – so, you do what you can and I’ll do what I should. 

Action counts more than words. That’s a simple truth to keep. Learnings from life don’t come without sight – yet the blind will drive us into deep. 

Look within, you’ll find your fate. Believe your instincts, you’ll never hate. Faith and freedom beget one another – beyond the church, or temple, or caliphate. 

‘It’s a wonderful world’, sang the blind bard. Still, those with eyes fail to see it. C…

The Whole Nine Yards - 2

Once Upon a Pallu

A trustylittle black dress works its magic at a high-stakes gala and all goes as planned until heads turn to pay due respects to a swooshing six-yarder making itshauteentry. Quite clear in her mandate and assured in her stance, this real-life cat-woman wears her cape on her arm.  She is well-heeled, suitably accessorised and, despite a racy neckline, she is utterly graceful. And because she is technically ‘traditionally’ dressed, she is also appropriately attired to address an unexpected boardroom debacle directly after. Back home, when a conservative elder meets her at the door, a firm tug of thepalluover her shoulders serves her just fine. For the benefit of a stricter doctrine, she simply drapes it over her head. Yes, she plays it well. Dignified, contemporary, complete and confident in her ethnicity, she is oursampoorna bharatiya nari, the epitome of elegance.  


True to its cultural roots, very few apparels lend themselves to such versatility and grace as thesarido…

To my birthday boy

When they say age is a number,
ask a mother's heart
that waits upon each moment
right from the start.

Every turn, every coo,
every kick that turns her blue,
every twitch, every ache...
a million times over she will take
because those nine months were not numbers,
they were worlds she cherished
awake and sedate...dawn to late.

And now, there are fights and senseless squabbles.
There are those 'orders' and sporadic baubles.
Each year that rolls on is a laurel on laurels -
every one a victor, despite the foibles.

And now I stand, the mist filling my eye.
When I look up to you, I can't help but sigh.
My not-so-little man, all of fifteen,
I see it in your eyes, in your manner so keen
that age was never just a number.
Your years, Son, are an appraisal, of goals seen and unseen.
It's my score-card of promise - my graph past the mean.

My heart swells with pride,
as I watch your unmistakable stride.
Your life lies ahead, waiting,
its winds, serenading.
Happy Birthday, my darling, my life, my love, m…

She, the keeper

He waits for the dark to engulf him.
He finds that rather safe.
The moonlight sways to tease his eye
but gets lost in the alley’s haze.
     She walks alone, her home in sight
     of the city that’s asleep.
     He makes his move. Under the street lamps high,
     he bids to daunt her grace.
She fends him off.
"That daring bitch! How dare she stay out late!
And then to say she’s not for takes ...
what insolent craze!"
     A city swells in loud lament,
     its reputation at stake!
     What’s changed so much? Why do evils rise now
     from celebrations’ daze?
"The winter’s winds are warmer", you say,
"And the streets are rife with life!"
What one would think as grand design
is another’s watcher’s maze.
     You blame the wind, the people new.
     You blame the men in chair,
     while all the while their clout returns
     its misogynistic gaze.
"Times have changed!" you beat your chest
so someone sane might hear.
But what should work with the culture-cross

Book Review - Mr Iyer Goes to War

Mr Iyer Goes to War - Ryan Lobo
A logic-defying, maverick, rollercoaster of a thriller 3D read.
Popcorn, anyone?
     “ When Gregor Samsa woke up one morning from unsettling dreams, he found himself changed in his bed into a monstrous vermin”. Even in translation, even with the day’s twitter-size sensibilities, and even though very few find succour in the existentialist stronghold of Franz Kafka’s writing, his most unforgettable opening line of The Metamorphosis, haunts. This is not just because the writing is stark but because the imagery connects at a basic level of humanity’s absurd struggle for emotional wellbeing. Cut to Varanasi. Ryan Lobo’s debut protagonist, Mr Iyer, breaks free from the absurdity of his own existence and takes us on a fantastical rampage, all too real. The Ganges flows unperturbed, as two accomplished gentlemen lay on adjacent hospice beds, waiting to die, alone. While one fought for the country and has a gallantry medal honouring that service, the other, Mr Iyer…