Friday, January 13, 2006

One Game To Rule Them All?

Why does it always have to be one single GAME, in india? Why is it that it has to kill off the others? why is it that even on a particularly bad day of the GAME, three pages gets dedicated as to what went wrong? Remember, i am not even talking about the days when things go well...

I am sick and tired of people telling me that i am not IN because i dont like the GAME, where the fuck is the freedom to love games? Isnt someone who doesnt love the GAME considered a gamer?

I wouldnt have written this post, but the frustration is too great in me to have left it unwritten.

I live, i burn, i long to see the GAME come down, and in its place a thousand others arise. Those around me did that to me, period.

that written, i retire feeling a little inner peace come over me. But not for long, for the GAME has just begun when i write this and would go for another coupla days, and thaose days, would inevitably be hell for me, as it always has been...

Sunday, January 08, 2006

Drummer Girl, Younger Boy...

This is about the kids and no, I have not mentioned them anywhere before. These are the countless nameless, faceless kids whom you meet each time you board a train in India that I talk about.

I was delving deep into my writing pad when I heard that familiar helpless music – of the drumbeat. Each fall of the stick on the tautly drawn skin drum emphasizes the hunger and pain that went into the effort. The little drummer girl looked at her tiny young brother, mutely pleading with him to break his arms behind his back, for his body to pass through the self made loop of his hands.

He was a nameless wonder boy because he had to be. The oily charcoal stain under the nose of the kid, in the shape of a moustache, heightened the pathos of the desperately little boy, in the garb of a man. He started the act by rotating a weight tied by a string, attached to his cap, round and round and round. Then, even as people watched, he somersaulted, and then did it again.

He made his hand a loop and took it all the way behind, under his leg and to the front of his body. The loop had completed itself. All the while, the little drummer girl poured her frustration into the beaten old skin drum, each beat louder than the last.

When it ended, the shameless spectators, witness to the open violation of the kids, began to concentrate on other things - for the little ones would soon come to them, to seek the rewards of pity for the inhuman act they had to perform.

The little drummer girl came to me and pointed at the empty food packet on my seat. She looked me in the eye and begged for food. I looked at my fat tummy and the tummy that was hardly there on her, for the first time in my life, I felt truly ashamed.

I pulled out my bag and emptied it on her lap. She dutifully took the food, gave a bun to her brother and saved the rest in the inside of the drum. As they walked on, I felt true sadness, but I had to blink away tears. Men don’t cry. But as I watched the young boy disappear with a bun in one hand and the metal ring to contort his body with in the other, all pretenses left me.

I cried like a baby…

Why Me Blog???

This entry is about why my blog is…

Around a 100 pages in 10 years may not be all that much, and it isn’t. That was exactly what I felt when I sat down to think about it, reflecting on what a waste I had made of my talents in writing. Then my baby started taking shape, ten years in the making, an outburst of all those lines I should have written, but didn’t and all those thoughts I have to pen down, but may not be able to…

Laziness clogged my veins and more importantly, my mind. It brought me a thousand deaths within me, but I live. Animals hibernate to wake up some day. This animal woke up too, after a long 10-year sleep. The mind does not have its previous sharpness; the words just will not come. Devoid of feelings and words, I almost suffered creative death.

I feel with each passing word a sense of belonging. This is what I do best and this is what should be done best by me. The passion to let the memories flow, from the center of the brain, to my fingertips holding the pen which became the extension of my hands years before; onto the whiteness of the paper that caused many a tree to be felled…

The words that died inside me frightens me to no end, it should have lived. My grandfathers words come back to comfort me, “nothing can bring back the dead, but nothing can take away the new born too…”

And that’s why I write, even if it means walking down painful memories, tearing away fiction from life. This is what I enjoy; this is what I truly need. This is what I was born for, and this is what I will live for. But am I getting across to people? Is anybody out there listening and comprehending?

In lands as diverse as the U.S, Dubai and Delhi, people staring at 17 inch monitors, running their eyes from the left to the right on a web page called Greeker… bear witness.

Friday, January 06, 2006

Icy Vision - The Perfect Three Minute Trick!

I had enough madness to keep my train door open and stand the blast of cold air for three full minutes at 6.45 in the morning. This post is about those three minutes, when time stood FROZEN, just like me at the door of the train.

Ice cold tears laid the boundaries of my eye even as the train chugged along. The mist caught my eye first. Where the green of the paddy fields ended in the distance, the white of the mist started. It hung on to the greens like a frail old lady- beautiful, unhurried, serene.

The green suddenly turned deathly brown – the color of a very dead land. The land was brown, the land was dry and the land was lifeless- at least for another few seconds. Then among the dead brown tree stumps, there appeared white and then bright orange, all canvassed against the misty fairness.

The whites were cheap little tarpaulin huts, while the bright orange gave them food. It glowed under the cooking pots and outstretched brown hands in search of warmth. The image soon apparated (pardon JK Rowling for that word) and another pleasing, yet dead landscape materialized which left me truly wishing that I had film in my camera.

The land was red as blood, vast numbers of deserted thatched huts and brick kilns adding to the hue. One kiln stood far away, apart from the rest, smoking, as if against its own free will. The smoke, as it left the safe warmth of its mothers womb into the cold world outside, lost strength and withered into nothingness. Knowing it to be a losing battle, the mother kiln continued pushing out its smoke children, as if to prove a point…

The cold had reached my bones and I had to risk falling off, my hands were frozen. I pulled myself in and let the door shut in front of me with a bang. My connection with the misty speeding world outside was broken, I was once again inside the safe domicile of the moving train…

When I Went Back To Being 'Between Five And Nine'...

Those two neighbouring kids on my train made me write this one as they finally got to me… and my nerves. Ignoring and frightening them did not get the desired result and I delved back deep into my writing pad.

The elder one, around nine was younger than his younger brother of five. While the five year old was as calm as a saint when it came to specialized destruction, his elder mold took pleasure in publicizing his work, and it was chaos.

Their father, with the Border Security Force, admitted – “I would gladly face the enemy bullets than a day in the train with my two young brats.” It was a sentiment that my father often had of me, when I was between the ages of five and nine, so it was a sense of Déjà vu, period.

Not a moment passed without one of them screaming, running, laughing, screeching, clawing at one another, imitating the hawkers, throwing around pea nuts, taking money out of the blind beggar’s battered begging bowl, rolling on the ground, putting their fingers through the safety net of the turned off ceiling fan, drawing moustaches with the dust thus acquired, sending the parents into a mixture of craziness and despair, spitting, beating each other, crying and in general, making my life on the train hell.

Now I realize what it was that I had put my parents through, I am sure they have seriously contemplated throwing me out of the train on more occasions than one. If I was wondering how I would pass my three days on the train, I had found my answer.

It would be three days of madness, but at the same time, it would also be my journey into what I once proudly was… five years!

Dynamite-Opium, In Tandem...

My train is two and a half hours late, I just found out, on the train. Ten minutes from Vijayawada, the eye cannot escape the destruction of beauty and grandeur. What formed over a million years breaks away in one millionth of a second. The expression ‘Rock Solid’ has suddenly lost the solidity.

Rock formations, a thousand feet high are suddenly withering away, they are being dynamited. The scars on its proud face are still fresh and bleeding. Tiny specks on wheels, yellow and red, throng its base - moving away with the spoils of the dead. What was once an almost living organism stand frozen, unable to see little men do to it what millions of years of nature could not.

We move ahead and watch the poppy fields, as far as eyes will go. People diligently work among the fields, the sun heating their arse’s pointed skywards. They go about reaping the fully grown white fluffy balls with manic precision. Its scary.

I saw Destruction and Euphoria, in the space of 30 minutes. The point is driven home, without destruction, there cannot be euphoria. The price of Euphoria is almost always destruction. Drugs, fagging and boozing, all come to my mind. Euphoria-destruction, an equation almost as old as time.

It is as if a heavy tempest inside me just left me drained, or it may be the sudden change in clime, I retreat back to my mood of contemplation, euphoria…destruction…

Night Flight, By Train!

These are the final few thoughts that I am sharing before I fall off into a deep slumber. That heavy dinner packed tight with generous proportions of a mother’s love has assured me that.

I was washing my hand after dinner when the rattle of the unlocked train door, swaying with the motion of the train caught my fancy. I opened it and as is my habit, watched the black landscape whiz past me. I felt like writing poetry, but soon after banished that thought from my mind. I was safer with prose, has always been.

The wind pushed me back and played magic with my hair. The tear started at the corner of my eye and even as I felt it, welled and made a channel across my face. The world lay in darkness- cold and menacing. I felt cold, through the thin T-shirt I was wearing.

I stretched- holding both those yellow iron bars at the trains entrance- outwards, till I could go no more. It must have been the heavier darkness than the one around it, I saw the plant coming at me and pulled back just in time – it just grazed my face. My near brush with death, left me drained, I felt sleep coming to my eyes.

Pushing close the door with a bang, I ascended my berth, and there, looking at the bright white light shining down on my eyes and the incessant cry of the little kid on the berth next to me, I retired, I slept like a baby.


Sadhu, Will I Live Or Explode?

There is a certain thrill to the fear of the unknown. On my way back to Delhi from Kottayam, two sadhu’s, dressed in black, left their bags in my possession. “10 minutes,” they said. My uneasiness grew as the minutes they promised grew into hours. ‘El Diego’, the book I was reading continued to grow fatter on the left side, the pages flew.

The fear of the unknown grew along with the depleting pages. I took a walk to the other end of the bogie, stinking and unclean as always. Though I found a tonne of other Sadhu’s, in all sizes and shapes, brown and white and black, all with 90 days of uncut hair on them, the only two I was interested in was nowhere to be found. The same two who sat beside me, drinking coffee by leaking it between the cup and the lip.

The fear is there, the question remains, would I live to type this onto my blog site? Or would I be one of those countless pieces of unidentifiable flesh pieces, scattered and recovered from the site of the blast – seat number 16, S3, Kerala Express…

Six hours later – Ah, the Sadhu has returned for the baggage, I live!