Friday, December 07, 2007

Lost in a Dream

He was always different, always in a dream, lost in his own world, lost in his own thoughts, his own emotions. Though seemingly cheerful, he was a sheep who`s inner self was yet to be revealed to the world.

While the other sheep were being led safely by the shepherd through the narrow forest path, he only seemed to be walking along with them. His feet led him to the forest though. The woods seemed to beckon to him, they seemed eager to embrace him in it`s long green arms, with deep dark delightful secrets to be shared.

And thus he walked long and hard, lost in himself, every leaf, every bark, every trickling of light, picture perfect, lost in his own paradise, in his own dreams, he walked and walked and after a long such tireless, timeless walk, sat down to rest under a red wood tree. As the trickling sunlight slowly started to fade and die among the towering branches and boughs, the woods grew darker and cold, wild flowers bloomed and an enchanting fragrance spread through the woods. Small creatures of the forest sprang to life and the whole forest was suddenly illuminated in the splendid lustrous presence of the dancing fireflies. Slowly the fragrance and the soothing murmuring of the beetles and birds lulled him to sleep.

And then it happened, that rude awakening, to life`s realities as he was prodded sharply at the back, barked at by the big dog as he was led along the farm. The dreams were always the best part of his life, a life he wished he could have had, a life he yearned like mad, without, which his soul remained sad. He walked slowly along with the others.

Life was short, and the world remained to be explored, but still, he belonged to two worlds in his mind, and wished to explore both, his world of dreams and the small real world outside. He let the others walk, while he slowly entered another world. In case he was lost again, there remained the shepherd, the other sheep, the whole world outside. So he walked on and dreamt on...

P.S : I`ve been missing from this wonderful world of blogs, where there are wonderful tales, wonderful figments of imagination and poetry and a wondrous utopian society, because in the hectic race in this world outside, due to reasons unknown and best forgotten, I forgot to dream.! Here`s putting in my best effort to move on...

Let the journey continue... Warm greetings to all..!
Pics courtesy :, Painting - "Moonlit Sheep" by Susan Westwood

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Frozen in Time

The hand that toiled long, day and night
O` How I yearn to touch that immortal hand
To feel the warmth, love, pain and might
It`s owner had, while, he walked this blessed land.

The chariot remains, for all eyes to see,
Carved in stone, it does not roll.
Frozen in time, it remains golden history
Sculptor friend, is your name today on a scroll ?

The wheels, so round, so strong
The pillars so smooth, so elegant
Such a piece of marvel, nowhere wrong
Heavy it must be, the poor elephant.!

Had the chariot moved, it would have been lost
Lost; we would have, all beauty
All Myth, history, all dreams of your ghost.
No.! You stayed, my friend, did your duty.

Among rocks and boulders, your city stands
With silent magic, serene, all peace to thee
At night, I wander around, spellbound among the sands
Frozen in time, in magic, your work, our Hampi.!

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

The Indian Meal

First of all, I`m sorry my friends, that I have been such a bad, bad blogger, not updating, and perhaps doing too much work. But recently there has been too little time, and even in whatever time, I could save to sit and write, there came new demands to satisfy, and my constant battle with time, has been meeting with constant failure. But excuses apart, i`ve returned, with the definite will to keep posting once in a week. Let`s see how far it goes... Jac, hope I don`t upset you.. Thanks for prodding me.! Mathew, thanks for tagging me. Will do it soon.

I`ve not been able to think much, read much, but life still throws you challenges, you experience things, about which you want to pour your frustration.! , and so here I am.!

Recently at my workplace, in the cafeteria, the following conversation happened,
Mr X : Hi Srijith.!
Me : Hi.!
Mr X : So how`re things going..? blah blah...
Me : Blah Blah...

... and then suddenly...

Mr. X : Hey..! you`re eating with your hands..? You get spoons here..!
Me ( dumbstruck, angry and confused ) : WHAT..?!!

We`ve heard and talked about westernization, about corporate culture, but this was the limit.! Eating food with our hands has always been something so intimately Indian.! Why is it that we forget to acknowledge this.? In the book, the international bestseller, "The City of Joy", by Dominique Lapierre, the protagonist, a polish priest, visiting India, tries eating with his hands, and then observes, that he, for the first time, looked upon food as something full of life, as a gift of life, and not just something dead.!

We touch food, with respect and love, we eat with our hands accepting food as a gift, we get everyday. Would we wear gloves, before accepting a gift on our birthday.? There is a spiritual and emotional relationship which we need to build with food, and above all how can one simply ignore the heavenly pleasure in eating thus.!

It`s Onam season, which reminds me of how, as children, we used to sit on the floor and eat to our heart content, mixing all the curries, breaking the pappadams and at the end of it all, pouring the hot milk payasam on the plantain leaf and wiping it clean with our fingers..! I wonder whether that experience would have even been a fraction as memorable, if I had eaten with a spoon.!

Most Indian dishes are made to be eaten by the hand, to touch, pinch and tease those naughty white idlis, to tickle and deflate those bloated puris, to twist those rotis and dip in paneer butter masala, all require expert usage of the hands and fingers. How would a mere spoon suffice in ever providing that experience.!

I must, however tell you I am no glutton, I just try to make every meal an experience. Eating with our hands, washing our hands before and after a meal has all been something so integral to our culture, that i am truly finding it hard to digest, that eating with a spoon is becoming a "trend of sorts". Either due to this IT boom, or BPO wave, whatever we call it, we must still remain Indian.! Perhaps even show the world why this Indian gourmet experience is so heavenly because we use our fingers, and promptly lick them too at times.!

Monday, August 06, 2007

Tears untouched at CRY.!

A Simple Child,
That lightly draws it`s breath
And feels it`s life in every limb.
What should it know of death.?

These were the words that I first read, when I opened the book "A Poem for Cry". William Wordsworth`s marvellous poem "We Are Seven" contributed by Kiran Bedi to this wonderful anthology of poems begins with these very lines, perhaps instantly conveying the innocence of a child, and how ignorant it is of the inherent harsh realities of life, which they later go on to realize.

As we all know children are vulnerable and they can easily fall prey to a society`s cruel whims and fancies. CRY as an organization has been doing a lot, for children who were not embraced by society as should be, and apart from CRY there are lots of NGO`s as well, which takes a lot of steps to avoid and prevent child abuse, provide child relief and so on, thereby taking care of these children so that tomorrow`s society is just to all.

But as I read these lines, my heart went out to not these children alone, but also to those much younger children, children who are still not grown, children who are still foetuses , and are yet as much a living being as we all are. How cruelly they are being killed, how sadly their time in this world is brought to a sudden standstill, the facts make us truly sick. The number of incidents of female foeticide, in different places all across the country truly makes anyone, who stands representing our nation put his head down in shame.
Do these things still happen, in a country like India, which is on the verge of progressive development.? Do these things happen , in what can be perhaps called the golden age of India, as we prepare to lobby for a permanent seat in the UN council, as we rejoice at the economic success and celebrate the rising value of the Indian rupee.?
The answer is a terrifying YES.! Read this and the whole list here. Foetuses are being dug out from the ground across the span of the country. No matter whether they were aborted, or killed, the truth is, it is a great standing example of receding moral values. This is no more a practice of just the ignorant villagers, but happens even in what is touted as the Silicon Valley of India, Bangalore.! I too was ignorant earlier. I thought it happened only in villages.! Technologically or Economically we might advance, but as far as moral values, and the innocent, spiritual practice of living, is concerned, it might do good to go back a good thousand odd years. Perhaps this is applicable to all nations as well.
The solution perhaps does not lie in just spreading awareness.!
Read on the whole issue here.( A complete showcase of this disturbing social trend.)
... BTW, the book is an excellent collection of wonderful poems, something most apt for your bookshelf, from which your future generations have a lot to learn. I first read about it on Uma`s blog

Friday, July 06, 2007

Imprisoned yet Inspiring.

Burma is a small country, so near India and culturally influenced by India. Burma has not made a great mark on the world economically or perhaps historically. But still it is this country which has produced one of the most shining modern examples of Non-violence, an ideology, a feeling which I could proudly claim originates from India.

Though she grew up in Burma Daw Aung San Suu Kyi is no stranger to India. She completed her college education in New Delhi, before moving to oxford, marrying in New York and returning to Burma.

She is one of the primary torchbearers, who is struggling to bring back democracy to her country, against a tyrant military rule, which has kept her under house arrest, for all these years even until today. Her fault, is only that she wants to form a people`s government for her nation, to provide equal rights and freedom of expression, or in other words she is struggling to provide true freedom for her brethren. Inspite of all major nations in the world requesting and even demanding her release, it has not so far been granted due to the hugely complicated military politics in this small nation of Burma.

Her story is one of those struggles and sacrifices, which only a person of great will-power and commitment can really exhibit. Her husband, in New York was diagnosed with prostrate cancer and was not allowed to enter Burma. The tyrannical military rulers told her that if she left to meet her husband, then it will be on the condition, that she must never again return to Burma. The strong woman, that she is, she stayed back for her motherland. She never met her husband later, and he passed away in 1999, in New York.

This is my tribute to this strong lady of the modern era. I am just trying to imagine what her message must have been to her husband`s departing soul in these following lines.

My dear loved one, I had to stay
Hand in hand, we walked to the sun,
But today you left me behind far away
Very Far away,my duties undone

Alone, I am in the midst of fire,
Far away, you lend me your spirit and soul
As you depart, I am not near your pyre
Tears, I bite and hold, for my goal

Wherein are my duties, I shan`t say
My mother; In me she sees light and hope
Your memories will haunt me every day
Split in soul, In darkness I grope.

My prayers for you, my beloved,
Among the clouds, i will join you soon
Will share all sweet secrets, left unsaid
Wait for me, when there is freedom at Rangoon.

In the hope that this great lady will not just secure her own freedom, but that she will continue to fight despite her 62 year old frail body and secure the freedom of her motherland as well.

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

The Thinking Blogger!

Thinking is one thing we all do a lot, and it is a wonderful exercise for the mind. But I myself never used to think so much about life, about the world around me, and so many other things which a normal human being can think about. Either I was too lazy all this while or lacked the initiative. Today if I even think a little, my complete gratitude does to this world of blogs, all my friends I have found here, and the wonderful insightful posts you have written from time to time.

All bloggers certainly make me think in one way or the other, because it is an idea which you are sharing, a question which you arise, or a wondrous talent that you exhibit. I have been given this Thinking Blogger Award, by these two other immensely thoughtful blogger friends. Hip Grandma and Ardra. Both of them, bloggers themselves who have made me think a lot.! Hip Grandma, for her treasures, which she shares from her experience and Ardra for those musings which really can drown us in thoughts all over the mind. They truly deserve this award, and it`s great that they`ve already been rightfully awarded.!

So, going ahead, the task is to recognize those people who`s blogs have made me think a lot.! So here goes...Like I said earlier i could just direct you to my blogroll, but that wouldn`t be proper so limiting it to five.

* Priya - ( A real taskmaster for a thinking exercise )
She writes short posts with such sheer energy, energy which even I don't have to read them completely. But one thing is for sure.! Any post she writes, they are so ornamented with those beautiful thoughts, those queries about every small facet of life that one just cannot move on without stopping to think.! Keep Writing Priya!. I know you`ve already been awarded this, but you truly deserve one more..!

* Alex - The Philosopher/Economist/ Art Enthusiast. Alex writes with conviction about Life, Art, and philosophy inspired from both. We`ve had differences, have agreed on certain facets of life and overall it has been an enriching experience totally. He really sets me thinking a lot of times..!

* Marthyan ( Poet, Raconteur )
Marthyan a.k.a. Vinod pens some brilliant poems and stories mostly and they are more than often instantly thought provoking.! Many times his posts have inspired me to write some of my own.!

* Seema ( Elegant Poetess )
I reproduce some of her lines here, from her poem "In Love`s Paradise..."
Passion like a song,
Written of heart and soul,
Never ending notes,
Striking unknown emotions,

Simple and exquisite!. They are truly worth a read. Since I love poetry, I truly have become a fan of hers, making me think about how such lines flow..

and finally last but not the least...
* Velu ( An artist who paints with words and sings with verses )
His blog, the Kaleidoscope is truly beautiful, with it`s images and his writing is very articulate and lyrical in quality, but beyond all that there, are thoughts and expressions in every post, which are greatly inspiring and have acted as a catalyst for my own thought process. I remember, one of his posts, where he wrote about meeting a friend at an old age home, which made me think of it days at end.! I did eventually write this poem. The inspiration truly had to come from Velu.

There are surely names which I might have missed. Like I already said, all of you who write blogs do make me think one way or the other. So if you feel that you know of someone who has made you think, then go ahead and talk about them, because i`m sure, that as long as you`re blogging you`re making someone think.!

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Do we get spotted thus..?

"And today I'll tell you how to spot a Blogger at a place:

a person with absolutely no common etiquette, no inter-personnel skills, no interest in interacting with commoners (read Non-Bloggers!) and, of course, one who seems to be finding difficulty in keeping himself/herself on our mother earth due to his/her supremely inflated EGO...Common characteristics of a Blogger!"
I found this comment on IBNLive where a reader has responded to an article on the most irritating words spawned by the so-called Web Boom!

... And to top it all, "Blogosphere" comes the top second most irritating word.

I`m not going to tell the name of the reader, because we bloggers have a lot of etiquette, and I reproduce this here in my amusement, seriously wondering why they envy us so much. Why they consider us Alien.?

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Looking beyond a milestone

The sweltering heat of the sun is punishing in it`s might and the yearning in our minds for a drop of rain is very much what keeps us going, keeps us fighting to live, to see the splendid lightning, to listen to the magnificent drum roll of thunder signalling the arrival of the monsoons. Our hearts get light and celebrate nature`s bountiful gift with aplomb. As peacocks dance and flowers bloom, as the trees wave and the plants giggle in their greenish state of glee, we become one with nature, we complete a cycle of revival, a cycle of suffering and happiness, a celebration of life and nature.

It is this very nature that revives us when we seem to sleep, ignorant of all that we need to know. It is this nature that incites our curiosity, sprinkles upon us the innocence of a child, showering us with love and yet at the same time, creating in us the urge to discover all, to seek the truth, to seek the mystery of the universe and our very existence.

Human beings rule the earth and the skies today. This power comes to us because we are inherently born with a gift, a blessing, we have the capability to be humane. Humanity does not come from being a human, but from being humane, so it is with this love and blessing that we should keep striving to complete more cycles in communion with nature, learn more, seek more and reach where we need to reach.

It was this desire to be humane, to be of service and thus seek the truth which made a little girl born somewhere in Albania, travel far to India, to Calcutta, and serve the dying, to serve the diseased and the poor. She became Mother Theresa for the world. The freshness with which we all recieve nature`s announcement of impending rain, was not hugely different from the warmth with which she recieved the poor, sick and dying. Because she saw in them nature again, she saw in them, the plants, flowers, birds and all the other beautiful things that make up the world.

Yesterday, I saw a group of blind people walking on the streets. All of them were blind and held each other`s hands and shoulders and walked as a group. They were singing as they walked slowly along the crowded road. They sang in one voice, in one spirit, with such feeling, that they were quite a sight to watch. Even in their blindness they could see their friends, they could see the world through their collective voice and combined strength.

We are even more blessed than they, and we might not even require to hold a friend`s hand, but we can surely lend a hand, and perhaps be part of a collective voice, combine our strengths, seek truth, be humane and love nature.

I didn`t know what to write, but there was this urge to let go, to stop and reflect in this journey as i reach my hundredth post(milestone). To stop and think about how I will seek my strengths, my truth.!, so forgive me for the sermonizing tone, (if any) it happened unconsciously.

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Tears of Mother Earth.

It`s World Environment Day.! What`s the big deal.? So many such days come and go by. We don`t really either celebrate them or observe them as required, then why now.?

. Because this day could now be the best possible reminder for us about what we need to do to save our home, which we haven`t stopped to clean and nurture as we should be doing.

. Today I came across this page about some places in India, which have been grossly affected by our lack of appropriate discipline or sense of responsibility. This day must serve to remind us that this list must not get better, must not get worser.

. One of the most difficult and citical problems is the huge amounts of waste we produce, and our visibly evident inability to process them. At Calicut, I remember how I heard and later saw a famous plot of ground. Famous, it was because the land could no longer be inhabited. All the waste, from homes, industries, hospitals were dumped upon this piece of poor earth. The effect was simply devastating to say the least. The whole ground, and the sky above turned black, spreading a very foul odour and sickening to the stomach. How would poor Mother Earth alone bear this.?

. She`s dying, and in return for all she`s given us, like how we would look after our own mother if she was not doing well, we must look after mother earth too. In many ways this day is more important than Mother`s Day, because this is Mother Earth`s Day, a day to remind us that we must nurse the mother of all mothers back to health.

Monday, May 28, 2007

Why I Sleep

Pic, by David Primer

Where do you run in such a hurry?
To the embracing arms of god,
Or to relish a feast, spread by the lord
Is there someone there to ferry?
To another bank of this mad river.

"Going Home", you say, and I stare
"What is home?", I've never known
"What do you do there?", I seek by my own
"It`s night!, I am going to sleep"
I died in laughter that day and my life long.

Slept, I have all this life, right here
On this solid ground, slept in peace.
No lack of mirth, in my hungry soul
No lack of bruises, on my lonely body
And, Slept I have in peace, right here.

"Why on the streets?", you demand to know
"Help yourselves", you seem to say
"Why, Where and How?", my eyes plead
Do you have the time to show me the way?
Poor Helpless soul, you simply walk away.

I roam by day, in search of shady trees
In between these huge palaces of stone
A shady place to sleep time and sun away
and then return to that old cold stone.
And to dream, looking at the mocking stars.

The sun slowly peeps at me, smiling
and I naughtily show my back to him
The world starts running around quickly
And tries to wake me up, but in vain
All I know and have, is my sleep galore.

These few lines, for those homeless friends, who sleep on the streets, these few lines, for our helplessness on seeing them. These few lines for their prayers and our reasons.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

A Tag to Wake Up.!

It hasn`t really been a conscious break from blogging, but was rather unable to find the time, to really sit and write something. When you have very little space up there in your mind, it is tough to squeeze in some time to think and write. Well!, that`s just what`s been happening to me.

Luckily, I have a tag to break the ice. Alex has just done it again.

I have to simply take a book, turn to page 123 and reproduce the fifth paragraph here. Well it`s as simple as that.! But Alas!, no book here.. Hmm.. Let`s see.. I have a lot of soft copies of books. Some well known and some lesser known.

I open one book by one. Some don`t have 123 pages, so i keep looking, which is not what the tag says. and after all books; I have many this way, so why not keep searching.

Ahh..ah. a book which has more than 123 pages. Good!. and perhaps not good enough. There are no paragraphs. It`s just one stretch of writing, something like how i used to write my exams!.

So i keep searching... and there I find another one. But the paragraph is just one line, and makes no meaning at all. Putting that up would be the most lame thing to do.. How can I do that.?

I keep opening and closing, opening and closing. Hmm.. at last, there i have it. It is not quite the 5th paragraph, but at least it`s on page 123.

The book is called "Why my wife thinks I am an Idiot", and it`s written by a genius called Mike Greenberg.
You don`t believe me..? Well then just look at what he says here...

You see, I’ve realized that the only answer is just to acknowledge defeat. Stop trying to fight it. Stop trying to say anything at a time when even silence may not save you. There is no answer, boys, and the sooner we make peace with that, the sooner we may actually find peace. The answer is to punt, even if you think it’s still first down. See if your defense can win it for you.

Now that`s what I call understanding of human psyche.!

Yippee..! A tag completed and a new post, done!.

and on my part, I also tag, Keshi, Hip Grandma, Starry, Sreejith and Kakshi

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Lost, Times Apart

With rounded breasts concealed by cloth of bark
Fastened at the shoulder in a fine knot
Her youthful form enfolded like a flower
In it`s pale beauty sheath unfolds not it`s glory

"Wow!. Kalidasa`s a genius!", exclaimed Sanjay. His face was bright with excitement as he motioned towards his roommate and friend Jeevan. Jeevan came over and looked at the book and read a few lines.

"No.. not really worthy of praise", he remarked. Sanjay could not hold back a frown. "You know what.? Kalidasa must have been a pretty normal guy. What is more important is that he must have had some really heavenly looking women around him in those times, and thus the inspiration."

"Jeevan it`s not funny..!. I`m amazed, by these verses", replied Sanjay.

"I`m being pretty serious here. Just think about it. If Kalidasa were in our generation, and if we were to take him to one of these malls and show him all those girls in Tee-shirts and Jeans, do you think he will be writing poetry..? He would mostly have been a software engineer rather writing code in C and C++. Haa haa..!". Jeevan was besides himself with laughter. He always had this strange habit of laughing at his own jokes. Even stranger was the fact that he went and looked at the mirror while laughing.

But Sanjay wasn't listening. He looked rather lost in another world of his own. He kept reading those beautiful words and verses, getting transported to a totally different realm.

Her cheeks grow thin; her breast and shoulders fail;
Her waist is weary and her face is pale:
She fades for love; oh, pitifully sweet!
As vine-leaves wither in the scorching heat.

It was sometime before he remarked, "You know what, Jeevan. I think I am in love with Shakuntala.!"

This time, there was no response from Jeevan, because he was already snoring. Sanjay smiled, looking at his friend and went back to reading the book. He didn't even realize that the book fell from his hand and that he himself had fallen deep in sleep.

All was silent as the night moved on over the town, concealing it with it`s cloak of darkness.


It wasn't night actually, though it was pretty dark. The sun was still reluctant to bid goodbye to earth and kept holding it in it`s shiny embrace. But Raja Meghanatha could not feel the pleasure of twilight. The towering trees in the forest over which different vines hung around enclosing it like a protective sheath, the light rays of twilight were cruelly denied permission from entering the ground beneath them.

Hunting had always been an excellent pastime and the king had a great reputation of being an immense power in bringing peace to the forests and the sages, ridding the dark woods of demons and dangerous beasts. However, today he had gone too far in chasing that beautiful gazelle and in time had gone very far away from his retinue of soldiers and attendants.

His tongue was parched and his body trembled with hunger and fatigue. He smiled at the irony of events that a king so powerful as himself who delivered prosperity to thousands of his subjects was today at the mercy of the all-pervading lord for survival.

Suddenly, he heard the sound of small bells. As he struggled and heaved himself onto the nearest tree, he saw that heavenly woman, who dressed in hermit clothes was tenderly plucking flowers. Her every movement so graceful, accompanied with the bells that tinkled on the girdle that adorned her slender waist. The movement so magical that he almost mistook it for an unearthly vision of the great lord`s cosmic dance. Her slender arms and that vibrant, peaceful face glowing with radiance and piety in that otherwise dark jungle evoked complete awe and fascination in his mind.

Her, very presence and gentle touch seemed to awaken the sleepy reclining plants and the trees around with mystic grace. His eyes were transfixed upon her, his mind forgetting to seek help, his body forgetting all fatigue and pain.

The cups of flowers, she has just plucked
Have not as yet sealed themselves
and these tender shoots, broken off
are still moist with their milky sap.
He could only look on as she walked ahead and soon was lost from his sight. He cursed his tongue, which failed to call out. But then, he himself had failed or rather lost himself to that holy woman. Who could he blame.?

His legs failed him, and with great difficulty, he shed himself of his headgear and bow and arrow and crawled and heaved himself in the direction, where the woman had left that prominent trail of footprints, along his path to salvation.

Upon moving himself in that painful and strange way, for what seemed to him, like generations, he finally reached a clearing. There was a thatched hut, with trees all around, with the fragrance of incense and sandalwood welcoming him. He reached up to the entrance of the hut and peered inside. And, there she sat that same woman, he had seen before. She was in meditation and he was dumbfounded again, by the beautiful picture of peace and auspiciousness, she painted upon the natural canvas of her surroundings.

After some time, he gathered himself to call her for help, but his body failed him again, his vision was blurred and in this dizzying state, he fell down unconscious.


He felt the warmth of the morning sun, filtering on to his body, and slowly he opened his eyes. It was 10`o clock in the morning. He looked at his cell phone. There were 8 missed calls, five from his office and three from Jeevan. Jeevan, it seemed had already left. Sanjay slowly sat up and tried to stop feeling drowsy.

And then suddenly out of the blue it struck him.! He had gone up to the hermitage, he had seen her, he had felt intense love for that divine woman, he had felt the pain in his body. He remembered falling down. What had happened..? His head started aching as he tried to see that picture again in his mind, in vain.

And then the phone rung. He picked it up. It was Jeevan!.

“Get up Lazy Goose!. I've been getting royal enquiries from your office for quite some time now.. Get up, go to office and ask that teammate of yours, never to call me again.!”, barked Jeevan. He hung up sometime later.

Sanjay slowly went about getting ready, but the thought of that dream or rather experience never left his mind at ease. He folded his bedspread and arranged the pillows, and then his eyes fell on the book. He opened it and read out a verse.

Now that the moon has set, the pool of moon-lotuses
Delights not my eye –
her beauty is but a memory
The grief of women left alone when loved
Travel far are beyond measure hard to bear

He was suddenly grief stricken. So that was it. He had fallen in love, with that women of his dreams. His one love was trapped in another dimension, where he could not reach, and the pain he now felt in his heart was the pain of separation, the pain of longing and the agony of loneliness.

The phone rung again. It was from his office this time. His teammate Vinay almost shouted in to the phone.
"Sanjay, you've got to be here. This release is crucial and we've got to ship it by tonight. Just be here man.!", he pleaded.

Sanjay still had the book in his hand. He kept leafing through the pages, in search of his love, in search of peace of mind, and then he saw those lines.

Required to perform duties in places
Widely separated, I am in two
Like a river that strikes a hill in mid course
And forced back parts
into streams

He realized his dilemma. He was lost in two places, his soul not deriving peace from both. Putting aside the book, he slumped down on the bed, and then he bent down and cried.

The phone started ringing again. It just kept ringing.

Verses taken from translations of Kalidasa`s AbhijnanaShakuntalam by Chandra Rajan - "The Loom of Time", Arthur Ryder.

Pics - Courtesy, Paintings of Raja Ravi Verma.

Monday, April 02, 2007

3 things to let know.

Yes..! I have three things to let know. First thing is of course that I`ve again been mercilessly tagged by Sreejith. This guy is just not going to let me rest..! :-)
Secondly, I have not been active on the blogosphere recently. Well!, there is currently a lot of change happening in my professional life and my mind does not have the necessary space in terms of time and energy to really post/comment. So forgive me about that.. Will be back soon and kicking..! There`s no permanent goodbye to blogging on the cards at all.
Thirdly, Wish you all a great time.. Keep Dropping by and blogging yourselves..!
... and, now the taG.
Three things that scare me

* Big Rats, Centipedes and Heights.

Three people who make me laugh

* Charlie Chaplin
* Jagathy Sreekumar
* A big group of teasing friends

Three things I love

* Poetry
* A Good Movie
* A Good Dose of Sleep

Three things I hate

* An Unnecessary Crowd
* Over the top Restriction of Freedom.
* A Dilemma :-)

Three things I don't understand

* Why good things dont last forever
* How Time moves so slow, when you want it to move fast
* Where we will reach at the end of it all.

Three things I am doing now

* A lot of thinking
* Listening to "Sivaji" Music
* Searching for a new Desktop Picture.. Everything except working..!:)

Three things I want to do before I die

* Write a book of poems and stories..!
* Speak at a public gathering
* Lend my full fledged hand to a social cause.

Three things I can do

* Dream a Lot.!
* Talk to some friend anytime
* Eat beyond my limits..!

Three things you should listen to

* Soulful Music
* Voices of Children
* Opinions of Elders

Three things you should never listen to

* Something bad about a third person
* Sycophancy
* Anything demotivating

Three things I'd like to learn
* To ride a bike
* To moonwalk
* Photography

Three favourite books
Narrowing down my favourite books to three would be injustice so let`s make it three recent books, i`ve read.
* Shantaram, by Gregory David Roberts
* Godan, by Premchand
* The Argumentative Indian, by Amartya Sen

Three favourite foods

* Idiyappam with Ishtu!
* Masala Dosa
* Kadai Chicken

Three beverages I drink regularly

* Light Coffee
* Iced Tea
* Tender Coconut Water

Three TV shows/books I watched/read when I was kid

* Ramanand Sagar`s Ramayana (T.V Serial )
* Tintin, By Herge
* Chandamama
And finally I tag three of my good friends, who painfully seem to have suddenly shut off from the blogosphere, in the hope that they return... I tag,

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

The Sea and Beyond

In those moments of truthful silence
With deepest desires, eyes filled
Of passion, of treading the world hence
Life seems still, as courage is instilled.
Unlike an obstacle, the waves really charm
The salty breeze seems so hard to resist
Will they hug me and set my mind at calm ?
Or will I drift away, like the sand from my fist ?
Far ahead, I see a ship set sail
As the birds make a ruckus, much like the waves
From the sea, shall be born a great tale
Else the road lies dark to long forgotten graves
The lonely wave grows really tall
My thoughts they are, my life they make
In drenched glory, I yearn to see it all
Or is this just a mirage for my earthy sake ?
The ship moves afar as the sun sets to sleep
In my blindness, do I see nature taunt?
My legs in the sand, are down pretty deep
Will I conquer the calm blue sea, and everything beyond ?

Monday, March 05, 2007

Threat to Security, Or Democracy ?

Naxalism, or the Naxalite Movement is heralded as the biggest internal security threat to the nation, by the honourable prime minister, Mr. Manmohan Singh. Perhaps it is, considering the brutal killings of political leaders across the nation. Newspaper headlines scream of the recent killings of M.P Sunil Mahto in Jharkand, a separate congress party leader in Andhra Pradesh, the brutality of the killing of villagers in Chhattisgarh.

Violence is never a means to an end and fighting of this kind should be against the enemies who are out to kill you, or to invade you, not against your neighbour or brother who is committing a mistake. Now this is a touchy issue, because ultimately when I write this I am aware that I have never been directly affected by those whom they are fighting against. But ultimately the truth is their efforts or struggle so to say, has not brought collective good upon the nation.

Now, there is reason enough to admit that politicians are primarily responsible for creating discontent and frustration among people. When we hear of figures like a hundred crores, being spent for the functioning of the parliament, with only 85 days in a year, when they actually sit to work there. So ideally when someone raises commotion over silly issues and stalls proceedings, the nation loses 1 crore rupees in a day. Isn't that alone enough to cause irritation among the downtrodden or the labourer community.

The 'labourer' community specifically being mentioned here because naxalism is a violent and revolutionary offspring of the communist ideology and sadly this movement is growing much more rapidly, in fact achieving more than what the Communist party in it`s peaceful version has stood to achieve in India.

Violence v/s Non-Violence

Very evidently right from our freedom movement onwards there have been conflicting ideologies. The Nationalist movement which sought to peaceful means of protest headed by stalwarts like Gopal Krishna Gokhale, followed by Mahatma Gandhi and so on. On the other hand, we had the extremist movement which had great heroes like Lokmanya Tilak, Lala Lajpat Rai, Bhagat Singh and the charismatic leader Subhash Chandra Bose. But it would be very wrong if I were to be inspired from the violent form of protest they made and justify it for naxalism today.

Both their struggles had a common goal and the welfare of the common man of India in mind. It was not a matter of whether you were doing a right thing or a wrong thing, but whether you were doing it for the right/wrong reasons. Their reasons were right, and to comment upon the things they did then is not of relevance today.

The Fundamental Question

The fundamental question, we have in minds is of course about who they are a threat to ? Is it a threat to security ?

Yes! it is.! It is these kinds of movements and guerrilla warfare that led to the devastation in countries like Vietnam, Iraq, Afghanistan or Srilanka for example, so it is a security threat.

So the truth is, ultimately the common man of India will have to bear the brunt, no matter which side wins.

Now to return to the question, it is an even bigger threat to Democracy or the present form of the government. It is a challenge and war cry against democracy.

Democracy should be a government of the people for the people, but the situation is sadly where we have today a government of the political class for and by the industrial class. There are reforms announced for the rural sectors, for the unemployed youth but the deep loopholes in the implementation will surely cause unrest in any nation.

It is a red signal from the red corridor that it is time, democracy seeks to cleanse itself and thereby oust such a movement. The Government needs to take stringent steps towards elimination of naxalism, but it should not start with an iron hand. It should start by first cleansing itself of it`s ills, and then seek to reform these misled, mostly tribal youth and address their concerns . The government would do well to slow down on aggressive steps such as land acquisition and granting of SEZ`s or at least take care not to do so at the cost of other sectors like agriculture or other cottage industries and by hurting local sentiments.

In a government which allocates ninety six thousand crore rupees for defence, it remains to be seen how much of it will get used to solve these internal problems. Because if it does not, tomorrow Naxalism could grow into terrorism. Civil War will not be far away.

This whole issue requires to be treated with sensitivity and an equal rate of alarm. With sensitivity, because they are mostly people of the farms and forests who have been wronged and with alarm, because their armies are recently regularly marching out from their forest hideouts.

As taxpayers and voters, we have a right to raise these concerns or to make it more pressing it is our duty to do so.

Friday, March 02, 2007

The Secret in the Attic.!

In a normal young boy`s mind, anything dark and eerie is not just scary. It is also his need, his complete fantasy and the answer to his quest for adventure, for he sees in it an opportunity to explore, an occasion to become an hero and perhaps discover deep secrets of the past.

I was once this normal young boy, who often went dreamy eyed to his ancestral house in kerala, with a great craving for that discovery in the most darkest and dangerous corners of the house looking for secret doors and traps, hidden treasures, or documents with details of unknown property. There is no limit to a child`s imagination. The stories read, the tales and experiences heard from elders are often the main fodder for this great exercise of the mind and body.

In that huge ancestral house, there was a place of primary interest though. It was called the ' Thattumpuram', in other words, the attic, where there were old furniture, books, plenty of dust and above all, a multitude of stories linked to it. Unnerving stories of ghosts, murders and scheming spirits which were embedded in it`s walls and were ready to throw stones at you. It only took a gentle breeze to knock down something, and this normal young boy and his band of pirates and explorers would shriek and scream in unison and rush downstairs.

The stories and secrets remained smiling in the dark...

Years passed and time kept rolling and the once young boy was now in his college reading things much more advanced or rather suiting his age as his friends had instructed him to. One fine day, he however did walk up to the attic, just to look around. He wasn't scared, nor was he intimidated by the dark walls and once heard stories. However nostalgia is a strange feeling. One tends to relive the past, and so he kept walking around, looking at things.

And then he saw that beautiful thing, an added surprise which set his heart light. There upon a small ledge below the roof of tiles sat this wonderful creature, a pretty barn owl, with it`s cute eyes closed as if sitting in penance.

The attic had done it again, It had performed magic once again for his uninterested soul. He brought all the children of the house and showed them his discovery, happy in looking at their smiling faces, admonishing them, when they made a noise. But children make a noise and there is no known solution for stopping that, because their excitement, is something the world stops to relish.

The barn owl flew away in a few days, leaving the attic behind. Children however kept rushing there every day awaiting the visit of the barn owl. They knew he would come. Their wise big brother had assured them that it would.

Years still kept rolling, time never stopping to wait.

The once young child had by then, grown up into a young man, ready to face life in all seriousness, ready to bear the strain of all family responsibilities and prove himself worthy of his difficult upbringing. He had no time to spare and was always busy with his life, but certain encounters are preplanned by nature and there`s nothing one can do about it.

And so one fine day, this young man found himself at the same ancestral house again and as if by effect of some unearthly interference he found himself walking up to that dark attic again. He felt stupid for doing so, but like we already discussed nostalgia is a strange feeling. He found himself searching for something..

perhaps for hidden treasures, perhaps for a barn owl in penance..

or perhaps he was just seeking to rediscover the child in him, to relive the past and become that normal young child again.

I can only tell you that he left in tears...

Wednesday, February 28, 2007

In Style, truly Mine...

Style is a beautiful word. I discovered this after I got tagged by the one and only Hip Grandma.

She has asked me to write about ten things that define my style, and it is then that I discovered that in every person`s style there is an identity, there is a self realization and a craving for one`s inherent dreams.

So I look at my self and set out on an exercise in finding out the things, which I really feel define me a lot, or rather are in sync with my 'style'.

* The Black Umbrella - I usually feel very uncomfortable walking outside if my hands are empty, so I take care to take something in my hands, and most often it is my umbrella, and a black one at that.! My friends at times even tease me, that I am being a typical Malayali, but the truth is it defines me. I never open it, but the memories of my grandfather and the other old people at my native place walking majestically with a long black umbrella in their hands, it really gives me a rooted feeling.

* Old Photographs - Old, in the sense very old. Photographs are reminiscent of a time period, a happening. They have character and stand testimony to those golden ages. They can be sad, they can be happy or naughty, proud and damp, but they retain that one value. They are true and remain so and I love them, especially, the black and white ones.

* Rain - Yes!, just rain. A rainy day, looking outside the windows, watching those raindrops trickle down from the trees and rocks. I truly feel liberated on a rainy day. In essence I feel a rain is a gift from nature and there is an element of divinity in it. The nature of gifting and blessing, the urge to help and nurture.

* Food - Now wasn't that simple.? Yes I love food. I simply cannot bear to waste a single morsel. Eating, is something which defines me. I am not good at cooking, though. Maybe that's not part of my style.

* Travel - I am not much of a traveler, but whatever small journeys I go on, I try my best to make it a great experience. After all, Man will take some time to go beyond earth and conquer space. Until then we only have the earth to roam around.

* Lonely Mountain - The lonely mountain, with no mountains nearby. Looking majestic, yet solemn and sober. Looking down at the world around, with a kind of peace and sense of total satisfaction. I think that defines my style. I would like to be like that mountain, detached yet completely near, completely noticed from everywhere silently.

* Laughter - I love to have a good laugh. To laugh hard until my stomach hurts. It is a momentary state of bliss, which I truly love. I remember how once while in college, we used to break into a fit of laughter impromptu without reason enjoying it thoroughly. My laugh is a goofy kind of laughter. I get teased about it, and then I laugh again.

* The Hare and Tortoise Story - When I first learned this story as a child, someone asked me, what I would want to be. I said I want to be both. I like both of them. I like doing things fast like the hare and the innocence of the tortoise. I generally like tortoises anyway.. and to top it all I liked the story very much.

* Water - The great scientist Ramanujam described water as the elixir of life. He couldn't have described it better. I love water. To drink, bath and swim in this wonderful elixir of life. It`s ability to purify itself is something which truly inspires. Water defines me.

* Writing - Yes, finally writing is something which defines my style and personality. I may not be good at it, but still keep going on and on. I remember since my school days I have been writing poems and stories. Most of them are downright bad. In fact most of my earlier posts on this blog are rubbish. But still I like them, because writing is something close to my heart. It defines my style.

I am going to tag Lera, Vishesh, Sunil, Sreejith and Seema for this one. Come on!, Show us your style.

Friday, February 02, 2007

My Sparrow Friend

Where are you, my little feathered friend?
My hands, full of your favourite grain
Fly down here, before my time will end
Fly to my balcony, before it does rain.

Twig by twig, where did you take away?
Is your cozy nest all ready and done?
On the guava tree, alight, perch and sway
Accept your share and we gladly run

So different, are the lives we lead
And yet the same, in more ways than one
With a smiling tweet, little stomachs you feed
In the small puddles, you bathe in the sun

In a rush, you suddenly come, flying down
And beckon with your hungry little beak
Amidst your meal, at my face you peep
And happily say, “Chirrup! Chirrup, Cheep! Cheep! ”

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Amidst the Flames

Fire! Fire! , Fire Everywhere
Hungry and at rage, my life does it seek
What is it that I fear more?
The raging fire or my loss of words to speak

In my thoughtful utopia, free birds fly
Reality has cast chains, will they ever break?
Should my duties lead me, or for my rights; cry
At crossroads, what remains is one path to take.

Learnt, I have of battles won and lost
Is it the fear of the eventual loss?
Or the mere reluctance before the battle-cry
At dusk, wherever I stand, my eyes shan’t be dry

Drowsy in gloom, yet I know that I must move
I know I might just burn up in the flames
Amidst all pain, my soul smiles and says
“I am so glad you never ran away”

Sunday, January 21, 2007

Divinity on Earth

There are different kinds of values, different kinds of virtues, that we see in this world. We like all of them. But there is this one virtue that is truly powerful and leaves us overpowered by emotion. That is truly forgiveness.

It is forgiveness which binds humanity strongly despite all the bloodshed, spite and violence , which we have silently witnessed and endured. When someone wrongs you, our first and most humane instinct is to fight back, but it takes a brave man or woman to let go and forgive. It is this noble virtue of all virtues that keeps the world going on and on.

Unknowingly or knowingly we wrong a lot of people. We do not really even know at times of the other person`s existence at all, yet it happens. And the most important part is that we get forgiven a lot. Both are blessed, the forgiving and the forgiven.

It was recently while reading about Mother Theresa, I came across this interesting anecdote. Mother Theresa, once while walking in the streets of Bengal, saw in a garbage dump, an old woman, with barely any clothes, left there to die. Her face had been half eaten already by ants and rats. There was just that small tidbit of life left hanging in her body with hope.

Mother Theresa brought the lady to her home for the Dying and nursed her and prayed for her. She found out that the lady had been thrown there by her own son. In those last moments, before her tormented soul left her body, she was asked to pray to the lord and to forgive her son, by mother. She, with tears in her eyes said, "I forgive my son, my child I love him, Thank You", and then passes away.

What really struck me most about the story was how the lady seemed to regain some peace and happiness in her broken heart as she became one with divinity in those moments of forgiveness. The truth is forgiveness is not at all easy. It is not practical and hence it is the most apt example of being a divine virtue. We, as humans have never been able to forgive, be it in the form of riots, or in the form of capital punishment, we seek our revenge with a monstrous passion, which is frightening.

Therefore in every moment of our life, we come across these situations, where we just cannot keep quiet, we fight with our brothers, with our sisters, our society. Our mind has not been capable of maturing with the ages. But Life always seems most colourful and full of hope in those rare moments where we witness some divine act of forgiveness. These incidents are few and far but they do exist. Let us learn to forgive. It is surely the right path towards that which we seek in our quest to completion of meaning for our lives. Forgiveness is truly a work of art. Let us become those great artists who can paint those masterful strokes of forgiveness upon our lives, thereby crafting portraits of divinity upon earth for the generations to come and learn.

To preach is not what I yearn for. Just making a mental note of those small things which I learn from life, which I hope to note down and share.

Monday, January 15, 2007

Silent Valley

Like the small flowers of green thick hills
With fragrance, did her words; bloom
Wild yet passionate in love, are the tribal's
So was hers, for them and theirs

Sad was her heart, at the jungle's ruin
Starved was her pen, of any words
To the children, she lent a voice, therein
To save the jungle, her poetry and birds

While planting seeds, with hope they croon
Cast your magic, of life, dearest monsoon
As the clouds poured, and lent some life
To life, the jungle sprang, and they all sang

Like the mother herself, she nursed and cared
Days later, the deers came smiling
For lifetimes, shall the tribals sing, her praise
Her story of life, her pen; still flowing.
This is a small tribute to noted Malayalam poetess and social activist, PadmaShri SugathaKumari, who through her beautiful gems of poetry, refreshed the love for forests and also organized the Adivasi people into infusing life once again into the once dead forest at Attapady, in Kerala. These words are dedicated as a mark of respect for her efforts in bringing back the forests.

I wish to thank, noted writer and good friend, Scharada Bail, through whose book,"Icons of Social Change", I came to know of this extraordinary work of this great poetess, who has also won the Kendra Sahitya Akademi Award.

P.S: This is to inform all blogger friends, that due to a new internet usage policy at my workplace, I have been deprived of access to blogger, to write new posts and comment on other wonderful posts in the blogosphere, and also to reply to your most encouraging and inspiring comments. I shall not be capable of blogging as frequently as I had or rather desperately want to, but shall always be reading your blogs. Please remember, I shall always be there, just an email away.