in the inner sanctum of the darkest night

an anonymous night

went unheeded…

two souls delved deeper

in the piercing cold,

hot,the glistening beads of sweat…

in the unspent hour hurriedly,

i searched for a known semblance…

of the crispness in the wild air,

the mud patch of the wet earth,

the whining moon light,

the unmistakable sad tilt of your head…

in the inner sanctum of the dark and coldest night,

embers of romance are still warm,

a flame of nostalgic love will now be lit

for the memories of unmade love…

Does the night still possess the love to serenade the moon?

The Book-Broker

He was new to the place; with hundreds of new faces around, he not only felt new, but also out of place. Still he braced himself for what was ahead in store. With each passing day, he became familiar with the new faces. Soon there would be someone to greet him, smile at him, and stop by to ask, ‘had lunch?’ ‘Do you have class now?’ ‘Nice shirt yaar’, ‘Want to have chai?’ Casual acquaintances do happen this way in a new place.

But still there were few people, who do not need such mere casual niceties. But there was something else; Some other people who took him to them. Kevin, The Great Dane Singer, Nagaraj, Swami, Oliver Twist, Range, Henry, Kalyani, Robert Langdon, Jamie Sullivan, Sparks, Jayakanthan, Harry Potter, Erma Bombeck.

And not to forget Alvin, the cute kid, who lost his family on a Christmas Eve. It was Alvin, who showed a different him to others. People by then knew that he was a story teller. And she loved to listen to his tales. She knew, he is different and all that mattered to him was the words and what they convey to world.

There was this guy and the first novel he brought for him. “The pleasant Interlude”; and from then it was their ritual- A book for every birthday.

Oh! Not to forget how these three met on a mid-night to be introduced as hard cotter potter-maniacs. Be it the mess, corridors, Stone benches, the front shop. They were never tired to carry a conversation of what would happen to Harry and Hogwarts after the death of the beloved Headmaster Dumbledore.

There were a few girls, who met him almost every evening/weekend to get/share/exchange/rob books from him. Also they loved to call him Krishna, for they believed he has a way with girls, but not just with words alone. Those evening spent in the stone benches and those never ending conversations at the girls hostel gate. Girls, it seems had to face a tough time with their infamous warden because of him, as how someone later testified.

Then came two Psycho Seniors. Remember Kevin, not just a problem child in the case of high school shooting, but someone he held close onto and someone who grew on him. She knew that behind this stupidity and Vainokki, rather Bada Jollu Party, there is a sensitized guy.

Not to forget the beautiful world of Malgudi that R K Narayan weaved with his words and imagination, which brought us together and also the hatred of you for poor Ginny, I have never seen anybody so much drooling for our Harry.

Oh! And then the senior and the sister, with whom he had real tough time, when it comes to make her read books, and had to throw up real emotional tantrums to make her read books. Someone who got him Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows on the first day and the last day of his life in Coimbatore.

Pray for me Brother, Gone with the Wind, My Days, and a Readers Digest Edition of A Walk to Remember were their last exchanges. Rather the meen curry and Kari meen at Neyyattinkara.

Have you ever sit on a public place reading a book? Well you would. But have you ever snatched a book from someone when they were deeply immersed in it? And then call your friend and show, “Hey Look, Nicholas sparks.” And still forget that there was a guy standing in front of you, mouth wide open and little intrigued. I know someone, who just got lost in North Carolina then.

A junior, who was introduced as a fellow Potterian and a co-Aquarian, someone who shared the equal madness and passion for books. Someone who made him gift her, Tuesdays with Morrie

And then someone else walks into his life, a junior to start with, and then turning out to be a precious little brother he always longed for. They grew together without books. I remember those Friday evenings when he went to see him off. Those old book stalls, where he leisurely spend an hour or two buying half of dozen of books, only to be snatched/robbed, when he is back to campus.

It rarely happens that he gets to read the book first. It was always made sure that the book is circulated among their reading circle; read by everyone and then promptly returned to him.

Such was the life of The Book Broker.

P.S. To all my Book-Lover friends from PSG… Love you folks…

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After Twenty Years,

The smell of the stuffed oil aubergine, ghee, dal and keerai gently waft in from the kitchen and filled the room. The cutlery in blue and white is carefully juxtaposed and kept along the few candle stands. The Dinner table is set like always, with a milk jug, a pot with orange juice and a small wooden tray with sliced pine apple and papaya.

He was on his reading chair, lost in the world of J M Coetzee. She was in the kitchen with music plugged in, doing odd little things here and there, checking the pan in the stove and peeping into the dining room, now and then.

What brought them together in life is the unknown. Like the every other in a fairy tale, he at one point of time believed in a happily ever after life. But life had other plans, just to mock at them. Yet they journeyed together to where they are now.
From the corner of his eyes, he would look at her, his woman of two decades. He could only wonder, at what age had done to her. And still there is a child-like aura about her.

Like always, Kenny G was playing in the background. He always had it playing in his head on and off, while she was deeply immersed in the magic of Yanni, unmindful to the melancholy of life.

From the corner of her eyes, she sees a photograph in the frame. A picture of them from many, many years ago and surrounding them were a kaleidoscope of different images from his and her life and then their life. Those were their precious memories, a few, which she cherished so much, for they were the missing pieces of the life she had only imagined about him. And then there was this one photograph of his, in his late teens, tall and lanky with his easy smile.

Perhaps sometime later, she told herself, she would have another one made, a ten by twelve that would sit on her nightstand. Each photograph was from a different time of their lives. Most of them were from the times when we they were young and together, really troubled by feelings of many kinds. And yet when you look at the pictures, you look at two people who were so much completely in love.

The dishes are set on the tables. He is there filling their glasses just the way he has been doing it for all those years together. For no particular reason, and yet for too many; for one precisely down, she smiles in her mind. He grins, reflecting on her smile. She catches him gazing at her reflection in the mirror and looks back.

The young twenty something girl scribbles these thoughts in her mind, and takes out her note pad from her bag to jot them down. On a second thought, she decides not to, and looks at him sitting opposite in the table with a stupid grin. There is warmth in the day and winter is set to leave, and people are no more clad in their sweaters.

She could see the maze of words hanging, dancing to the divine music in her mind, most of them were his words. She could not comprehend them for what they mean. All she did was try to concentrate on the drizzle outside the window, listeningly intently to the rain drops falling on the window-sill and weave a story in her mind. Still she found herself incapable to string them together to make complete sentences.

Jolting out of her pensieve mood, she awoke herself to the innocent blush on his cheeks, the music in her head and the people hustling outside the café.

This was the feeling they shared. A feeling of uncertainty at their first meet; she took a sip of her iced tea and washed down her restless thoughts with his re-assuring smile. She cupped her fingers over her ears, careful not to let any earthly sound disturb the divine music playing inside her. She let the music play.

Hmm, if I were to rip this page off my scribbling pad and give it to you, if I told you that you were the guy in there and this is the sum of things I really want and say all it matters to me is, making that meal for you from twenty years of now, would you give it to me? Huh?

Would you?

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New Year, New Dawn and New Hopes…

Let all that remain aside,
but what concerns me more these days is you. Just you.

I had been merely just lazy and have thoroughly neglected you. I am sorry baby. I promise that I will make up and be the best to you in the coming days. Promise to take you out for more, random outings, random restaurants for an eat-out and posh places once in a blue moon, More Walks, More movies, More Shopping and I need to earn for that.

It feels good to sit and write a letter, a post just for you. And more than anything I need to spend more time with you, to re-discover you, discover you and to fall in love with you once again… and that’s a promise now.

Love,
From Darling Me to Darling Me…

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A Gazillion things about me

I was supposed to write another post! but a recent conversation with an old Blogger-friend prompted me to post this. Say it is my comeback post!!! I so badly want to be back here and this is a small step towards the same..I have to post like 125 random things about me,so BIG Bro here it is…
i hope u guys don’t fall sleep reading (seriously)…

________________________________________
1.I love chocolates,
2.I easily get addicted to people,
3.White Mischief was the first vodka I had, and Vodka was my first drink
4.It still remains my favorite.
5.I have many crushes than I can afford to remember
6.I am a romantic person and I so badly want to be my old self- A stupid and a hopeless romantic..
7.I love day-dreaming
8.I probabbly have spent 20 to 30% of my time in that
9.Till the age of 22, say I had imaginary friends and would have imagined converstaions with them.
10.Most of my stories are a result of this
11.I frantically trying cutting down the number of imaginary friends I have.
12.I am never bitten by a dog till now.
13.Thrice, birds had shat on my head.
14.First time I got sloshed, I ended up crying, that nobody loves me, almost more half a dozen of my friends, were like, I love you buddy, we love you dude…
15.Dream Girl: Revathy from Puthiya mugam
16.First blogger i met: Vicky.
17.I am happiest when i am deeply immersed in a book.
18.Man I get mushy mushy, when I read Nicholas sparks
19.and I will meet Nicholas sparks for sure once in my life time.
20.I think I am an atheist. Na, say am agnostic there
21. I believe I am a true Believer
22.I have watched Anjali movie over 100 times.
23.I have read six times the entire series of Harry Potter
24.Actually I am trying to read again the series now..

25.HAVE YOU EVER:

1. Dated someone twice → Yes.
2. Been cheated on? → Yes
3. Kissed someone & regretted it? → No.
4. Lost someone special? → Yes
5. Been depressed?→ Yes
6. Been drunk and threw up? → Na. Though got sloshed

26.HAVE YOU:

1. Made new friends → Yes.Two great ones.
2. Fallen out of love → Yes.
3. Laughed until you cried → yes.
4. Met someone who changed you → yes,a lot many and I can sense them in me.
5. Found out who your true friends were → Yes
6. Found out someone was talking about you → Yes
7. Kissed anyone on your friend’s list → Yes
8. Made the first Move → yes and have failed
10. Do you have any pets → Yes.
11. Do you want to change your name → No
12. What did you do for your last birthday → Temple Visit with my family.. Man..Please..
13. What time did you wake up today – 8:49 a.m.
14. What were you doing at midnight last night→ chatting with a budd over phone
15. Name something you CANNOT wait for → February 6th 2011
16. Last time you saw your father → yesterday night
17. What is one thing you wish you could change about your life → Like I have made it there — A Medic
18. Most visited webpage → Gmail, Musings of True Believer, a friend’s tweet page, until two days back.

27.ABOUT U:

1. What’s your name→ Barath Nataraj
2. Nicknames→ Baru, baratha, barre, febi
3. Height → 5’6”
4. Zodiac sign → Aquarian
5. Male or female or transgendered → Male
6. Elementary→ Amala English School
7. Schools → Sri Vijay Vidhyalaya MHSS, Ideal HSS
8. Colleges → PSG Coimbatore, UOH
9. Fantasy:to Wake up looking at the snow capped mountains of the Alps, not alone…

10. Hair color → Black
11. Long or short → short
12. Ever been in love? Yes, once, I think twice…
13. Do you have a crush on someone? → Yes, The current count is 3.
14. Piercings → want one
15. Tattoos → never
16. Righty or lefty → Righty
17. First piercing → Soon
18: First best friends → Jeevs
19. First sport you joined: Football
20. First pet → Dog named ‘Tiger’.
21. First vacation → hmmmm…Ooty
22. First concert → Never
23. First crush –> Gayathri
24. Eating → ? ——— A real foodie at heart
25. Drinking → Vodka in my masters second year with friends on a star lit night at VC rocks
26. I am looking forward to meet someone, so eagerly…
27. I’m about to → Get up and go to pee

28. I like to say ayyo a lot of times
30. Listening to–> Pachai Killigal tholodu
31. no problem in adjusting at anyone’s place…just show me where I need to sleep
32. I don’t forget a favor either.
34. Build ma dream house n christen it ‘Malgudi’

35.I eat everything, almost. No probs there
36.I am always interested to go ‘places’.I am a traveler.
37.I want to sleep under the stars in a sea shore
38.I want to learn to care less a damn about those printed papers- Money
39.I had real problem in the first year of my hostel in mess, cos I couldn’t eat when people stare at me.
40.I hate it when people peep over when I amd doing something. I easily get iritated then.
41.There are many times, I just wanted to turn back and punch them on face
42.I am sure, someone will get that for me oneday.
43.Till my age of ten or eleven, I used to buy cigarettes for my dad.
44.I don’t believe in true love anymore, rather the happily-ever after kind
45.When i feel lonely, i go to sleep.
46.I love to cook, especially for others.
47.I don’t want to die

48.I am shy ,when it comes to talking to strangers
49.I dont trust strangers easily.
50.My hindi is real bad, Real.
51.I prefer to hit the gym, but too lazy
52.I Hate shaving.
53.I can be real real mean at times.
54.I am waiting to welcome, someone home, yet another dimension to the same person in my life..
55.At times I hate staying with my parents at times and even think I wish I was born else where.
56.I don’t forgive easily.
57.I have a bet with my mom, I don’t want to lose on this here, now..

YOUR FUTURE :

58. Want kids? –> yes
59. Want to get married ? –> Dunno there.Honestly
60. Careers in mind? –> When I was a kid, I seriously considered becoming (rather being) a shepherd.
61.I am scared of water.But i want to go river rafting.
62.Fav actor(Male):Hollywood:- Keanu Reeves
63.Fav actor(Female):Hollywood:- Not anyone in particular, kate winslet
64.Fav actor(Male):Indian:- Kamal Hasaan.
65.Fav actor(Female):Indian:- Reavthy and Nandita Das.
66.I like to get drenched in rains
67.I want to learn Guitar
68. Lips or eyes → Eyes, says Lips on Eyes
69. Hugs or kisses→ Hugs, say with kisses
70. Shorter or taller → Shorter
71. Older or Younger → both
72. Romantic or spontaneous → Spontaneously Romantic..
73. Nice stomach or nice arms → stomach …lol, I change.. Arms actually
74. Sensitive or loud → Can’t say there
75. Hook-up or relationship → relationship
76. Sex on first date → Na, there are many more things to a date
77. Trouble maker or hesitant → a hesitant Troublemaker
78. Kissed a stranger → Na…
79. Lost glasses/contacts → Nope
80. Broken someone’s heart → Yes.
81. Had your own heart broken → Yes.
82. Been arrested → No
83. Turned someone down → Yes
85. Cried when someone died → Yes
86. Liked a friend that is a girl/boy? → Both…
87. Cheated on a friend → Never, though have hurt
88. Felt Betrayed → yes.Dont keep a count there
DO YOU BELIEVE IN:

89. Yourself → Always,Yes
90. Miracles → I can neither say no, nor be blind for one.
91. Love at first sight → never in both.
92. Heaven → NO
93. Santa Clause → YES
94. Peace in this lifetime→ I WISH
95. Kissing on the first date? → maybe/yes if, the other makes the move.
96. Angels → YES
97. Is there one person you want to be with right now? –> Yes.
98. Had more than one boyfriend/girlfriend at one time in the past? –> No
99. You will die Young→ Yes, I want to die in late-forties, real early
100. You will end with the one you love and learn to love the one you are with – yeah I will.

101.I want to be a smoker. I believe smokers have a charm and a grace.
102.I am scared of driving bikes.
103.Though i have a lot of patience but I hate to wait.

104. Last beverage → Chai
105. Last phone call–> Dad, 65 mins ago
106. Last text message→ Deepti,
107. Last song you listened to→ lukka chhupi
108. Last time you cried→ three days back
110. Last meal: Paniyaram

111.ice-creams I have them, when I feel low and down..
112.My idol: Mother Teresa (actually too many)
113.I want to have a real physique. too lazy to work it out
114.In my dreams I was once chased by a dementor…
115.I go deaf on certain people always!!!
116.MY first prized possession was an old tattered book.
117.I love gloves…
118.My two Seniors call me a demony bro.
119.I was once called a group of guys and been threatened.I got scared.
120.I love my smile
121.I had a bad crush on my juns… the Innocent camel
122.I got a call and I couldnt answer, gonna call him right back after I post
123.I Purposefully missed out no.29
124.When i get drunk : i chat a lot and now people tell I get silent after drinking
125.I Wish I can go back in time and have more sibling rivalries, rather more siblings.

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All I want is…..

A few thoughts that I couldn’t actually let it flip by, time and again, I take out time more to contemplate on the lived life. I wish I could have lived that time, but greater the time is needed for me to sit still and let life pass by in minutes to regale in the moments passed by. There are certain ways of understanding the uncertainties. Accepting the uncertainties whole-heartedly gives the re-assurances to face them. It is umpteenth time that the romantic in me is set out for a leash. I take all that I have in me to detach from life with a passion that I realize which is set on a blaze in me.

Guilt is the gift that keeps on giving as Erma Bombeck points out rightly, plus I realise that guilt is also an element that keeps the going on. For that matter, I don’t set out on a propaganda that I’ve stopped feeling guilty, but I don’t necessarily guilt myself for I have also realized the guiltiness of nothing and the nothingness of guilt is more dangerous than the guilt itself. There are things that matters as they are something that I have learned to appreciate. For I remember a few glimpses that which compels itself to be told and to be shown.

The myriad of memories that oozes out from me turns me numb in pain. I wish I could cry out loud and let the despair out than to be gnawed inside by the memories that are set on a painful blooming inside me. They create a pattern, a pattern that would set my mind to a roller coaster ride through the times I have lived. What I couldn’t do is to muster enough courage and say a Positive NO and be out of the maze. Photographs are not mere memories of the past frozen to future. The shadows bring in a cocktailed tinge of nostalgia and regret and set us to a brink. What can one possibly trade with time to go back once to a moment and re-live them? No wonder, God is cruel. And Fate is crueller.

Have you ever sat alone and listened intently to the rain? Have not you ever realized that the rain drops falling on the roof with a clutter actually long for an intimate conversation? Have you ever looked at a child watching wistfully at the rain outside through a window? Why would we distance ourselves from such beautiful moments of life? I realize the beautiful rain, which rains inside me, when I sit and watch the rain that rains rhythmically to the music of my solitude. And then I do the loveliest thing. I let it rain and I let myself rain.

But where on earth or heaven can I expect a shower in this arid Hyderabad April? All I want is to rain outside my window and me cosily sitting with a book? For a change my thesis this time, as my countdown is set to write and submit. Here I come, to you, the world of academia….

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And I, a True Believer still Muse…

Goavaiku Poovam, My name is Khan, BalyakalaSakhi, Rendezvous with Vicky, B’day surprises, Loonnnnng Hiatus, Un-blogging days, A laid-back life, JRF, New year, Life and all…. etc.., all for a cosy-catch up………

Never Ever, I had been so desperate, that I came back from two back to back movies, and log on at five to write a post! I knew, I’d been idle for almost four months. I realise now that I’d been simply procrastinating life, in every way possible. Kind of guilty too for that. But indeed life had been happening, The best of Books, The best of people, the best of all, I’d wished for, Life goes on and I cling on…. And this is an attempt, a desperate one to get back and come back… I wish i could wish….

Been in a book-buying spree, mind you, Buying but NOT READING. Have ordered a dozen books online, and waiting for them and Thesis took huge diversions, yeah! Am doing my M Phil in Comparative literature for people who had forgotten me… And the most wonderful part is that now i’m a JRF qualified Research Scholar, which means LIFE is settled as of now…

Ever started a trip, just like that. The fun in doing things as a matter of fact, the spontaneous crazy decisions. I wish I can live life, just like that!!! It started as a long drive in Bombay Highway! Four guys, two bikes, Started from Campus, went to Sangareddy district, caught up a little dinner and drove just like that to reach Humnabad, the border district of Karnataka and lucky were we, to be guided by a lorry driver who understood us so well that he minuted every little detail well and we were just left with two bikes, a lil cash and of course ATM cards to fuel up the journey. With all fun, driving safely at 60-70, we reached Gulbarga at around 5 in the morning.

And it actually started like this, four guys riding and suddenly met with a question from one, Why don’t we go to Goa, the only fact we knew was it is around 800kms from our place. And it started thinking we would decide to return back to campus at some point of the trip and after reaching Humnabad, we decided to go on further. And after reaching Gulbarga, Something struck me about Goa, a friend of mine, from whom I have heard about his frequent freaking to Goa, And then We came to know through Vicky, who enlightened us with his information that From Gulbarga it is 400kms to Belguam and from Belgaum its 160kms to Goa, well we already drove 250 kms and reached a place called Jewargi, where we thought we will freshen up. But the thought riding another 500+ kms and we didnt even have anything with us except money. We had our breakfast, caught a little nap in Gulbarga fort and started back, and reached our campus around 6. It was fun and well, what Azeef said was true. When we plan, we fail, with every other reasons coming up and Things get dropped out at least we were able to ride upto Gulbarga… And it was FUN!!!!

My Name is Barath, and I’m NOT a RSS, But Why such things like this movie? Karan Johar takes up the burden on him to Indianize Muslim. And HE sucks.I don’t understand his need to stuff movies with too many things.. Muslim life, Terrorism, Good-will, Autism, Good Muslim- Bad Muslim, NRI life, Natural disasters, Bad Bush, Good Obama, US-Elections, I really wish Bollywoods comes out of this formula of representation. I don’t understand why the burden is placed on muslims often? To showcase their good-will,Patriotism and Loyalty to the Nation… And Talkie towns can stop playing National Anthems during the start of the movie and let me tell, I DONT STAND UP THEN FOR NATIONAL ANTHEM…

Balyakalasakhi, a malayalam novel of Basheer is a timeless tale of love, sorrow, hope, childhood-love and Optimism.I read the Translated version in tamil, though I had been read to, the original in malayalam, It is flavored with muslim dialect of malabar malayalam and the everyday life of Muslims. No other story can stand before it for its narration. Majeedh and Sughara were childhood friends and they grow up only to face the harsh realities of this world. It is also partly-auto-biographical. The first half is a delightfully narrated on with happiness, that makes us long for a childhood and the second half with grim and sorrow, yet the author has brimmed it up with his humour. It is the story of the most sincerest and innocent, yet unfulfilled love. As M.P.Paul suggests in his foreword, it is a page torn from life, bleeding at its edges.

It happened last june, when I went to write my JRF exam and I met him again after I have got my results. The first rendezvous should have been accounted, I didnt, for my sheer lazyness and Now I do try just to recollect those wonderful moments for it is the first that lingers as best. Vicky, Amazwi, a name that would recall a part of life, where I happened to meet an Alter-Ego. A casual Blog-hopping, comments, mails, discussions on books and movies, a casual SMS sent, the first phone-call, and life happening, and through been dumps and downs and after all that you feel that someone had been with you all the while, the unalarming yet the filling presence of a sole-soul. With all the apprehensions, I made the effort to meet him, You have known so much a person, shared a million minute details of life, and meet him for the first time, you will feel Butterflies.. Thats was it…

And the second time, it happened, met! went for a Movies, shared all that could be in a few-while and the rest is his Tweet, “Met Barath. in that little time we had, discussed everything we could. I drove behind his Bus till he went out of sight. Tresure you Bro.” and looking forward for our proposed trip(s).

Yeah. I had the best birthday. with me, the desperate soul, who took all attempts to surprise people, gets hugely surprised. A dark night, deep into woods, when I was hoodwinked by the little devil with all his emotional blackmails, takes me into woods, the way towards Mushroom Rock, and I saw someone lying by, got scared when two bombs go offf. and then these guys sneak out. Najadh, Visakh, Chaitra, Monty, Javed, Mithun, Swati, shareef, deepti, Azeef and Rauul

These poor souls have been waiting for almost two hours for us to arrive and we detour and detour and make it to the place. the sleepy souls greeted me with wishes, cake, sweets and Hugs.

And I was visibly shocked and surprised for the rest of the celebrations. It was indeed the best of celebrations we had. Love you little ones……


And That’s how the celbration ended with a victorious march inside the campus…

And As I confessed, I am at the peak of my laid back life and each day passes with at most certain uncertainty and I rejoice fully regale in them

P.S.1And This post is an attempt modest from me, almost after four months to get back. the return of the Native. Hope to see everyone around… Love you folks 🙂

P.S.2 And Guys, the template is a gift from Amazwi. And am loving it bro! And I kept my word.

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A few deaths

Some dreams just don’t fade like the reality; they don’t glare in either, but creeps in and freaks you out. Some dreams about a few I knew haunt me. Some are dead, some alive. Some in a trance, some in a deep despair and some like in the dream I dreamt the other day about an elderly- good- woman-friend of him. She was naked and looked pale like a pearly white ghost. Her body glowed like the moon on a starless night. Her breasts were full and looked sagged. Her stomach showed her youth replaced with folds of fat. She looked heavenly with a calmness that only the blessed-dead could have. I felt happy for her, but all the while guilty for having imagined her that way. I wonder why I dreamed her death, for she is the still-healthy living woman.

Deaths have always scared the day lights out of me. I was scared, haunted, rather to an extent possessed by death all through my growing up days. I have more wondered about death, as where people would go after life. How someone who lived all their life could, just disappear to nowhere after death.

The first death I saw was that of my neighbour uncle, who died of a heart-attack, I still remember how shocked and frozen, I was when I saw him first with his head tied with a white cloth and cotton filled in his nostrils. Will that be done to me once when I die? It disturbed me to know that people would be taken to heaven that way. I ran from the place and went to my bedroom and hid under the cot, thinking that I could evade death. I remember how I hid under the blankets on my bed and peeped out of the window to see him been taken to the heavenly abode.

Deaths scared me only, till I hadn’t met it. The first death for which I cried was for Tiger, a faithful dog of mine. She died having lived her life; it was the first stab of pain for a ten year old. I couldn’t understand what it would be then for me, to be a ten year old and to cry and grieve for the loss of a loved one. All I knew then and now was; it hurts. I look back from then till now, I learnt that with every death, a part of me inevitably dies, I bury a part of myself and it creates a vacuum in me. An emptiness that turns to a scar in me, a wound that I wish time heals, knowing otherwise that, Till death do us apart.

As I grew up, I understood one thing; death is a great-leveller of life. It teaches us love and humility, and with every death I have learnt to love more and be more humble. I have learnt to love everyone around for they may not be alive to be loved tomorrow or I may not be alive to hate them today. It has humbled me, for I have learnt the value of life through death. How I wish I could trade in these lessons for the life of a dead-few.

The scene of her lying clad in her angelic white bride wear in her coffin, ever smiling her sweet smile to the world of her loved ones. I wish God could have understood the value of love, if then He wouldn’t have taken her with him, the scene of a middle-aged mother, knowing well that her orphaned-son had no-one to love and to be loved, the death of a grand-father who gave away his old age to the pain of cocktails of radiation and chemotherapy rather than the loving company of his grandchildren, the death of a brother whose youthful life was wasted in drugs. It is the way life is learnt through a few deaths.

Life is when you know that death doesn’t stop things, it doesn’t end a relationship, but how the cursed few learn to carry the life of the dead in them. Life is when it sharply pains at the stab of a twinge of a remembrance of the long-gone-loved one and a tear or two is dropped and you brush it aside with your finger and turn aside, Smile gently and offer the prayer. I Love You.

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A letter you will never read

I lay here on the sofa in my drawing room awake to the sense of being alive in the thoughts of my dead mother. There are times, when I wished she was here with me in this very home where we loved to hate each other and lived a life of lies. Lost in the oblivion, I sat looking at the fan in the ceiling, my mind swirls to certain moments in my life, I feel bad to know that I had been worse to her, there is a painful lump in my throat, my heart gnaws in pain at the very thought of those days. I wish I could ease this numbing pain. I wish I can get rid of this guiltiness of nothing and the nothingness of the guilt that this life had for me to offer.

Dear Mom,

Wish I had written this letter a few years ago, when you could have possibly read this to know that your son loves you, no matter what happened between us. Remember the first letter I wrote in my fourth standard summer vacation camp, rather that was the last letter too. I know I have wronged you, I had never been a son to you, never loved you, never let you love me. but honestly you have never known your son. What happened in our life, which made us hate each other in such vehement hostility? Have you ever wondered how difficult it was for me to live under one roof and still pass each other day as strangers?

You never had time to think about these things, you had your son, who was the world to you. What did I do in life? what was wrong in a nine-year old boy to expect his dad and mom live together? I don’t understand this mom, well for that matter I don’t understand anything you did in your life, How can you stand to see dad with another woman? you let him live a life with another woman, when you know very well that he cheated you and walk out of the family abandoning the two kids? And more of that, you and him being that good friends even after divorce. I honestly wonder, did you expect your nine year kid to make sense out of all this and then realize that one plus one, not only makes two, but also something that is not one, but actually two. It took me time to understand things and more importantly to put them in perspectives and understand that my mom and dad are divorced, but still love each other.

I knew mom, you were more understanding with dad, you loved him so much that you didn’t really mind him, loving another woman. I was the one who didn’t understand you and dad. There were times, when you had plainly ignored me and my pain of being the left-over of the love you shared with him. I understood that he was that good friend for you and the husband who felt it was more important for him to bring down his family to ruins, and then expect his kid to understand that it was man enough on his part to part his family. But mom, where you ever there for me to hold me, to ease my pain, help me grow up, ease my adolescent agonies, help me come up with my teen-aches.

Yet I lived life on my own terms, had a dad for name-sake, who felt it was important for me to have a constant male-companion, he was there in my greater-part of life as an unwanted mute spectator, who felt me as a mere awkward acquaintance, who made it a point to be just there in all occasions. I never had a proper father-son conversation with him in all this years. Let me tell you one thing, I just cannot accept him as my father in my life, knowing very well that he had shattered you and your life by a gross betrayal which I cannot just forget or forgive. Also I found it hard to accept you as a mother who would just willfully accept her husband’s decision to live with other woman. I lived in a fuss of constant anger, frustration, despair, solitude and a constant longing for love and a quest to know what made my dad and mom decide to part ways and bring to ruins a decade of wedded bliss.

I remember that august evening, when you were about to leave to delhi. I was late from dad’s place. I totally forgot that you had your flight at 1 AM, I came home around 11. The first thing you asked me as usual was whether I had dinner. I answered a usual I-don’t-care-a-damn-why-you-bother-me NO. I didn’t expect that you would take pain to fix up a dinner for me at the last minute. It rather irritated me, knowing that you still care for me and I just couldn’t bring myself either to love you or feel grateful to you. And worst of all, you choosing to make rotis then, When you served rotis to me, you very well understand me, by my mere flinching reaction. And still you decided your luck with idlies and chutney.

I came to the kitchen frustrated, to find you cooking when you were already late for the air-port. I shouted at you for no reason. I was rather wild, came behind the counter and threw the vegetable board down, knowing very well that would make you hurt your fingers with the knife. I saw the blood staining the floor, I took the first-aid kit and got the gauze cloth and cotton to bandage you. I tried to hold your hand and help you, you reluctantly got out of my hold and turned to me with tears welled up in your eyes. When I tried to comfort you, you shrinked away from me and sat down the counter and started crying. You drifted away and sobbed heavily into your lap, I wish I could hold you and make up for every wrong I did. I wished you would take me in your arms and let me drown in your love and ease my life out of the hell I made. But you didn’t. Instead You again left me. In a minute you sprang up and left the kitchen. I sat there dumbfounded. I sat there still, watching you move inside the house to get ready for your flight. I heard a distant sound of the screeching of the reversing of the car.

Three days later, I awoke to a phone call from Neethu aunty to know that you passed away in your sleep. It was a massive cardiac-arrest. You appeared calmer and prettier than ever. I couldn’t forgive myself for our last day. I still keep asking bobo whether you spoke anything about me after you left to delhi. He maintains that You spoke nothing. I wish you had spoken something about me. What did we achieve in our life with all this hatredness? I wish I can shout aloud and tell the world that my mom loves me. Never once in your life, you told me that you loved me or made me feel warm and important. But why mom?

All that I have in memory of our lives is the sight of dad playing with little leila, you in kitchen cooking, either singing or humming a favorite tune of yours, the smell of dad’s old spice lotion and the smell of cuticura talcum on you, me sitting in your lap when you read from those tattered books, or when you and dad going for those long walks, me holding each of yours hand. Till Today when ever I see the couch, all I could remember is the sight of you lying dreamily across and reading a book. You’re so much in me mom, that I hate to admit that you’re no more with us and that I never loved you.

PS ***A Draft of a story that i’m experimenting with***

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UoH elections: A Pre-view

There are two kinds of people in this world – idealists and practical people. Everybody else falls somewhere between these extremes. But if one should want for an educational institution to create more than just employable graduates; if one thinks that they should create future leaders of tomorrow who will be motivated and honest, one would then be probably branded as a hopeless idealist. And not without cause.

The power mongering sham that the Students’ Union elections 2009 in the University of Hyderabad became would disgust even the faintly idealistic at heart. What should have been a simple but powerful election of student representatives within a university became a thicket of controversy, a bellowing of self servicing political ideologies and an undisguised struggle for power which left many students questioning the point of it all.

The General Body Meeting (GBM) held on 20 August was a hungama with shouting, tantrums, a physical fight and the ultimate walk-out characteristic of our parliament. The philosophy is simple – either you shout and get yourself heard. If you can’t, don’t bother listening to the others as well. It’s survival of the loudest.

The GBM was but the beginning. People who are ‘the upholders of democracy in the campus’ did not disappoint the cynics with their expected behaviour. The days of nomination provided entertainment for all those who consider shouting threats and obscenities without consideration for age or gender but a general pastime. Rumours about cases of sexual harassment being filed against certain candidates started flying. Violence was also reported with one student being roughened up. Apart from this, certain other students wielding cameras and camcorders were questioned and stopped. The reasons behind such behaviour may seem justified to some, but the behaviour in itself is never so.

The day of the counting saw a huge amount of confusion with allegation of rigging, raised voices and slogans being thrown around. The fact that it took an unprecedented amount of security to maintain at least a facsimile of peace speaks for itself. The rude behaviour of students, not just against the members of their rival parties, but also the faculty members present was shocking but what is positively saddening is that such behaviour is not an isolated incident. It happens every year and hence the advice for only the thick-skinned to enter into politics.

The goings on of this election may fill up pages but the question that has to be asked is whether all that has happened is any different from what we all term as the corrupt politics and hopeless Indian scenario. We read news about this political scam or that political hungama but are the political scenarios in our intellectually ‘enlightened’ educational institutions any different? Idealistically speaking, if we hope to change the inescapable, dirt ridden politics of our country, the change needs to come from such places of learning. But sadly, university politics only serves to hold a mirror to national politics. It is viewed as a training ground for future politicians. But it kills any hope for a different set of leaders for tomorrow as the few people who may seriously try for change get bogged down by a system that goes around in loops.

In terms of politics, apart from the hardly existing idealists and the rampant opportunity seekers, a third group titled ‘I-don’t-care’ exists. Neither do they hold opinions about politics nor they do they feel it is important to hold them. They have given up like a seasoned cynic. A semblance of democracy does remain because they tell you that you have the right to vote, but when you do not have the right to contest for a post without fear or subscribing to any particular ideology (superficial or otherwise), the definition of democracy needs a re-look. This process of re-moulding of attitudes and behaviour needs to start with education. But the meandering words of hopeless idealists are often lost in silence.

By Deepti Nair

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P.S. Thanks to Deepti, My junior and a good friend for her article. Well the background of this article is University of Hyderabad’s Student’s Union elections-2009. If, to read more. Please Click here. And catch everyone up soon in their space. And this time. I’m serious folks… And more on this election by me and My another Juns Swati.

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