ten seconds

i just smacked a mosquito so hard i could almost hear it whisper before its final breath, “i deserve this for attacking you just when you sat down to write about something you have absolutely no idea about; after all, you’re just winging it, so you’re going to need all the help.” 

have you ever felt terribly, pityingly inadequate? of course you have! just when you find yourself seemingly grounded and at the same time, metaphorically suspended in the air, floating about with less worries than usual clouding your mind (do you want me to stop with these puns, really? do you?), you’re suddenly strung high up into the air, with your ankle having replaced the spot for your – or someone else’s for that matter – neck, while your blood succumbs to gravity yet again and gives you a long overdue head rush.

these past few months, i’ve been trying really hard to be optimistic about all things going wrong; i may have also started believing in fate – probably my mother’s influence, and definitely not a bad one. but there are some days when upsetting what ifs start to pick at my brain and all the negativity i’ve managed to avoid suddenly comes and sits upon my shoulder, like an annoying bird pecking my ear, except this one bird weighs a ton. human beings are weak, and a tiny peck, a nudge if you will, is enough for us to give in and descend into this underlying world of all things bad.

three seconds for your mind to register the thought; two seconds for you to frown or scrunch your eyebrows because you’re obviously startled by its sudden intrusion; four seconds for you to mull over your options panic and a hint of pity for yourself , one second for you to choose whether or not to continue that harmful four second streak.

that’s the thing though – if you refrain from giving heed to the first negative thought, you can escape the subsequent self-pity and onset of inferiority complex that follows. now, the content of this particular post is an example of what’ll happen if you give said thought more attention than required: you will have in front of you a poorly structured, aimless rant, riddled with puns and humour that have traces of pity, guilt and sadness, and a clock that reads the time as ‘way past your usual bed time, young lady’.

enigma

wrote this when i was 12 going on 13; i wonder what was going on in my mind back then hm

If the keyboard was a maze,
would you be able to find your way out?

If you were the size of an ant,
would you be able to last a day?

Or perhaps,

If you were the most important person in the world,
would you not let arrogance get in your way?

The answers to these questions,
happen to be a mystery.
An enigma such that,
no physicist, scientist or philanthropists’ mind
could have the solution initially.
Correct me if I’m wrong,
but every coin has three sides.
The two, that we’re already aware of,
and the one that’s somewhere in between.
Standing on its edge, with every answer
leaning towards being incomplete.
The answer remains buried deep,
in our heads.
Waiting for our consciousness to,
reach out and answer these questions,
by ourselves.
Put yourself in the shoes,
of the situation you’re facing,
be calm, collected and eager
to discover the answer you’ve been chasing,
At last.

ps: have you noticed i’ve changed my url? ajournalnotadiary had become borderline cringy

spotlight

Tap, tap, tap.
I hesitatingly tap the stage mic with the faltering pads of my fingers
just as I would tap the shoulder of a stranger;
I tap the head of the mic, even though I know it works perfectly well, I tap it;
I’m stalling.
On a stage, under the spotlight, with a lump in my throat,
I stand before an expectant crowd;
I have avoided this situation more times than I count.
I recall the endless videos I have watched of confident poets
painting the air with their hands on the stage;
the rhythm in their rhymes, the twangs in their ‘I’s,
the mystery behind their pauses and the drawls in their sighs;
“You’re meant to be just a writer, you could never perform.”
I hear the words of my traitorous and trembling hands;
“People are staring, don’t you dare mess up.”
I hear the hiss of my conditioned mind;
I hear but I don’t listen.
“It’s okay, go ahead; you’re doing just fine.”
I listen to the soft whisper of my rapidly beating heart;
it’s thumping so loud, the mic finally catches some sound.
It’s so quiet, I can hear the walls whispering to each other;
I close my eyes and take a deep breath,
as I would before I dive into the endless ocean.
I feel the side of my lip twitch and I unclench my hands;
I open my eyes and they shift to the clock on the right;
it’s been twelve seconds since I stepped up onto the stage.
And then, I spoke on my first fourteenth second on stage alone:
“Let me tell you about the day I overcame my stage fright,
in this hall, before this crowd and under this very spotlight.”

 

conflict

his brows furrowed, with a ticking vein,
her face mirroring only anguish and pain;
he’s angry, she’s scared; they’re fighting yet again
what could they possibly have to gain?

their fight is over something so trivial, so petty,
but she knows exactly why her heart is so heavy;
it’s almost become customary,
how regularly they fight; it’s become utterly weary.

he knows that she’s done no wrong,
she knows that he’s just been working too long;
they’re tired, they’ve never been too strong,
a mere moment of silence feels like a song.

in between their hollow words they failed to see,
their little boy, hiding behind the tapestry;
it was each other at whom they were angry,
but it was the boy who cowered, stiff as a tree.

one of the few things that kept the boy awake at night,
was not the odd flickering of his bedroom light,
or even monsters under the bed that gave most a fright,
but the mere thought of his parents having a fight.

the seven year old boy had not one clue
about the meaning of 11:11 or how it worked too
yet everyday, he’d wish for both to forgive and let go
he’d wish and he’d wish, never for anything new.

infatuation

i haven’t had the pleasure of meeting you,
i’ve never had a conversation with you;
neither do i know what you’re like in person,
and nor have i heard your voice;
it’s strange, how the only eye contact with you
has been one-sided, with a picture on your profile;
the only side of your personality i’ve seen,
is the one you show to everyone online,
and i hate to come terms with the fact
that i am merely one of the many hundreds
who has failed to catch your eye.
i’m not being biased one bit, when i say
that we could be great friends,
but there must be another few hundreds,
who probably have the same very thought;
is this what is infatuation?
this unfounded, seemingly false, intense longing
when i have no clue of your real being,
when i have no clue of your true thoughts,
when i have no clue of your feelings and emotions,
and yet, my admiration for you has no bounds;
i truly hate that i feel this way; that sometimes
my actions are governed by your reactions,
my expressions are ruled by your disregarding eye,
my thoughts are disturbed by your typed words.
i despise that i’m unable to control my feelings,
and that i’ve put you on a pedestal
when all that we have in common,
is my infatuation towards you and
yours towards someone else.

“what happened to your face?”

what happened to your face?
a small girl of six asked me today.
her voice was soft and her eyes round,
startled and upset, i hadn’t a clue what to say.
she was looking up at me innocently,
even though i myself am just five feet tall;
my lips gently quivered and my brows scrunched,
for the first time today, i could feel my face fall.
i was shocked and a little hurt,
at the little girl’s harmless question
and how it could easily plague my mind
with recurrent thoughts about my very own skin.
she turned away, confusion evident in her features
after i rushed out an unconvincing, feeble reply;
hoping that nobody had witnessed this exchange,
i closed my eyes and let out a long and deep sigh.
most places i go, with most people i speak to,
it’s hard to avoid their questions, which make me ache;
it’s painful to listen to them give me useless remedies,
when all i want to scream is, i’ve tried it all, give me a break.
i realise that they are all my well-wishers,
hoping to help me out of this seemingly permanent phase,
so i shrug it off, with an embarrassed smile,
and a hesitant nod silently saying yes, i’ll try your ways.
two brown eyes, a cute nose, thin lips
straight teeth and a nice chin,
what’s wrong? chubby cheeks peppered with blemishes,
they trigger one to ask me the question;
they ask, i frown then shrug,
they raise their eyebrows and i sigh
i mumble a convincing answer, one that ensures
no follow up questions, internally thinking WHY?
the little girl’s honest, guileless query however
caught me off guard and i stuttered,
since the syntax of my usual interaction
was out the window, leaving me perturbed.
these blemishes have made themselves at home,
uninvited guests that have exceeded their stay;
with aloe vera and fruits as my best friends,
i exhaustingly wait for the day, when they all go away.

on diwali

 


w i s h
a l l  y o u  
l o v e l y  p e o p l e
a  v e r y  h a p p y
d i w a l i
On this day, the Indian skies seem a little brighter, a little happier. Down below, we awake with spirit and joy, warm wishes on the tips of our tongues. Today, we clean and rid every crevice of specks of dust that have mistakenly made themselves at home. We adorn our plain, bare bodies with colourful and grand robes, one more beautiful than the other;
Family and friends eat together, dining on the spread of all our missed memories.
Bright faces, twinkle in our eyes, our lips never failing to turn upside down;
We join our palms and bow our heads, grateful for all the good this year,
grateful for all the good fortune that is yet to come into our lives
and grateful for all the little good in this terrible world.
Today while half the world is celebrating darkness,
here we are, adorning our homes and
our lives with beautiful,
guiding lights.

(boy, this arrangement took a while)