Tuesday, December 31, 2019

The Blurring Days

Days merge into night
Dawning again in silence
Seasons come and go
Into each other they flow

Saturday, December 28, 2019


"Why? Why don't you tell me what's bothering you?" he pleaded with her.

She looked at him confused. "No, nothing is," she said, feeling as if he were assaulting her with that tone of his voice - an urgent demand, a persistent plea that wanted to grab her heart and open it violently. She felt her heart trembling and shrinking. "Don't imagine things," she said and turned away to continue pretending that everything was as should be.

Saturday, December 7, 2019

Waiting for a Change

To wake up every morning
And to be the same
A routine that is comforting
And yet unsurprisingly inane!

Sunday, December 1, 2019

Number Trap

From school days I struggled
Numbers making me feel strangled
Exponents, permutations, combinations
Triggering severe perspiration

Saturday, November 23, 2019

The Voice From Beyond

"Hi honey."
The voice seemed so real that Priya jumped. Though she looked up instantly, she went back to reading the instruction for the pregnancy test.
"I thought you would have outgrown this behaviour now that you are older. Still behaving like a teenager!" the voice of her mother continued in that particular exasperating tone of amusement.
Priya had to look up and was startled to see her mother actually there. "I am seeing things," she told herself loudly and went back to reading.

Saturday, November 9, 2019

Saturday, October 19, 2019

When the Music Stops

"Very impressive singing," the message made her look at the sender a second time. The sender was a good singer himself.

So she replied, "Thank you. You sing very well too."

"That means a lot. I didn't know the song, but loved your rendition. Wanted to join your collab."

Sunday, September 29, 2019

Possessed by Possession

"Do we really need this brassplate?" Suhas asked frustrated.

"It is ornamental and will look good in our dining room. And look at the price! It's a steal!" his wife Archana exclaimed. Suhas raised his eyebrows and rolled his eyes, knowing any argument against that logic was a waste of time.

Saturday, September 7, 2019

Embers That Start a Fire

Daya stared at the television and felt tears stab her eyes. The collective sigh of disappointment in the room revealed how much everybody was affected by the space mission's failure. She could hear her mother-in-law chanting, no doubt, hoping for some miracle to save it. Her husband Nitin loudly slapped the sofa as the headlines repeated the disappointing end - or hopefully, interlude - to this much awaited event. Her father-in-law shook his head and got up, clearly having expected some such fate.

But Daya herself felt as if it were a personal loss, a loss that had its roots fifteen years ago, when she gave up her pursuit of education to pursue Nitin and eloped to get married to him. Shalini, a friend she had reconnected with recently, told her, "I had expected you would be somewhere in NASA, working on some space mission! Never expected you to give it all up for marriage!"

Sunday, September 1, 2019

The Square Peg

Raksha glanced up as she cleared the dining table. "Don't you think you are a little too much in love with your phone?" she asked Arun.

"I don't come here to be nagged," he said sharply, without taking his eyes away from the phone.

She shrugged. "Not nagged, but surely, I can tell you when it starts hurting..."

He looked up with a twinkle in his eyes, "Hurting whom, you or me?"

Saturday, August 17, 2019

Joy, I Choose

I sharpened my nails
I bared my fangs
I readied words
More hurtful than bombs

Sunday, July 28, 2019

The Path that Forked

The path branched in two.
Leaving her thoroughly confused.

Could she straddle both at once?
Run back and forth one by one?

Sunday, July 7, 2019

An Ode to A Reunion

The road seemed straight and clear
Her own path seemed to lead away
Turning sharply to a side
Leaving others behind to go their way

Saturday, June 29, 2019

For Whom the Wedding Bells Toll

It was a simple affair, exactly as Rishi had desired. Only the closest family and friends in his favourite Krishna temple to witness his wedding to the lovely Sharmila were invited. His parents had arranged the match and he had met Sharmila informally in a cafe. He had communicated his willingness the same evening, but Sharmila's family had taken some time to respond, citing her professional commitments and travel as reasons for being unable to decide quickly. After the informal 'fixing' of the wedding too, her parents had preferred to conduct the wedding right away instead of delaying the actual event with a 'meaningless engagement'. "Can we have a simple wedding but a grand reception as we are going at breakneck speed," her father had asked politely, much to Rishi's mother's dissatisfaction. "We didn't ask for the wedding to be rushed! He is an only son, so we would like to call our relatives..." she had insisted.

Saturday, May 18, 2019

Silence, the Strength

Waves upon waves
Constant, unceasing
Up they rise
Pulled down briefly
Only to garner strength
And rise up again

Saturday, May 11, 2019

Wipe the Slate Clean

We decided we needed to make space in our house and optimise the use of existing shelves. It began with segregating clothes, into:
1. What we will definitely wear
2. What we wear every other day but should not because - yes, the cloth is soft and it was beautiful when we got it, but now it is beyond recognition and must absolutely be thrown
3. Grand, but sorry, too itchy, dazzling and not the kind we would wear ever though it looks brand new.

Saturday, May 4, 2019

Master of Destiny

It was the March of 2050. He felt as good as new. "Medical technology is amazing," he told his friends. "You must try it. In fact, there is an app that tells you the condition of your organs, whom to contact, and even fixes an appointment with specific doctors who have the right equipment. They scan you, find you a match, grow new organs and replace old ones. That's it! That part is good to run for another fifty years!" he said.

Monday, April 29, 2019

Tides of Time

Does everything that begins
have to finally finish?
Every step forward
take you closer to the end?
Be it made of stone
Or mere skin and bone

Sunday, March 24, 2019

Time to Go

"What more is there to live for, ma? It is time for me to go," 90-year-old Gagan told his daughter Shriya.

Shriya, herself 65, felt a stab in her heart. "Don't speak like this, papa!" She still turned to him with questions and his wisdom was a beacon light she couldn't do without.

Saturday, March 9, 2019

Twist in Fate

Sona got up from the bed but had to flop back because of the way her head reeled. She called out for her husband Nilesh weakly and then shut up, her discomfiture aggravated by the pain that shot through her heart. There was no Nilesh to respond to her. She should have got used to it, given the way he had been travelling because of work. But he had still been just a phone call away.

When had the distance grown. When had they drifted so apart that she couldn't even call him anymore? How had she missed the signals? Or had he camouflaged them so well?

Friday, February 8, 2019

No. 101

Shraddha looked at the message from her brother Shankar with a frown. "Paapu is unwell, it seems. Mom told me today. Please visit, if you can."

She was puzzled that her mom had told Shankar this but not her. Was it because it had slipped her mother's mind that she also knew Paapu; was it because her mother didn't think the news would matter to her; or did her mother think that she couldn't be bothered with it? Why tell Shankar the news? What could he do, either? He had simply passed the buck to her, after all.

Tuesday, January 29, 2019

The Flipped Image

Ragini put the book down, a certain melancholy settling in her heart. Memories chased each other, leading to that moment of nothingness - the anti-climax when truth came calling, when reality proved to be far simpler and much farther than her imagination. Staring at the emptiness ahead, she had wondered at the power of her own mind in projecting a future that had no basis on the present.

Friday, January 4, 2019

Obituary to a Tree

With a resounding sound
More overpowering than the drill
That finally cut you down
Shaking the earth you fell

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