interruptions

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Some cyclist crosses the road, a motorist moves through but pauses a few seconds longer

A chubby squirrel perches on the fence, tiny paws breaking open a nut

The autumn leaves swirl, in circles of organized wakefulness before they fall

Of the two eggs in a pan, a yolk meanders through the folds of white, the flame flickers unresisting

She raises her hand to make a point in a winsome gesture, her companion is enthralled

That girl tugs at the swing rope, her mother smiling at the simplicity of her joy

A young man holds the door open and waits, an old woman crosses over the frontier with her walker

Trance like clouds hang in limbo, they choose to gather vital raindrops

Hesitantly a lily bursts into color, petals slowly curling as they dip into sunshine

Songs play loud into the street corners, pedestrian feet twirl to the rhythm

At the bus stop you astonish me with your smile, eloquent in it’s interludes

Vendors sell their Sunday wares, secrets are bought in bargaining moments

A bride beams incandescent behind her veil, the room gasps in unison

Letters await anxiously, fearful for the moment when they are opened

Popcorn is an ultimate conversationalist, forcing a tender reciprocity

Glassmaking is a process in flux, the product is a fruition of desire

At the core of understanding complications, are interludes

 

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The tallest man ever

22D8A2CF-CDF5-4701-B929-3CEDFFCFC9DA

You are the masterplan

of our lives

present always in

encouragement and forgiveness

You gifted us the genes

those that focus

on the quality

of experience and engagement

You have been timeless

and resilient in learning

rejuvenation from grief

and humility in praise

You have never failed

in bringing to us

fearless faith

through what you chose

and how you lived

 

You never cease to surprise

with your lofty soul

and immeasurable love

 

You always inspire me to stretch

beyond myself

into the world

and for others

 

I love you Papa

Thank you

 

In transit

885C0FC4-44BA-45EC-8CC1-E6203C185AB7Iran

scatter me across borders, my broad chest

fitted me in when I broke nan with

men whose husky voice made Farsi sound

like marinated meat in luscious herbs

Italy

Shed my memories to the sea

my honeyed skin tone merged

into the reflections of Sicilians

sipping wine and sharing nuanced

differences between sea bass and sea bream

Vietnam

Silence my heart into the place

that loaned me its tender soul

along with handshakes, and aroma

of simplicity as they relished bowls

of lemongrass broth and pickled fish

Japan

Surround my tatto’ed limbs with Geisha’s

so they can envelop me into the quiet

let me float, and experience the lightness

of their land, with the same abundant content

that came with warm miso soup and ramen

Spain

Set me to rest, so my curiosity

continues to merge into the history

of Barcelona, where I relished a potent

legacy of unfinished art as I shared

paella and understood siesta’s

And more

Preserve my jaw, my souvenir to you

representing my potent desire for a full life

the jutting jaw that took me to places

opened crisp conversations, encouraged

exotic experiments in food that were

bold, delectable and expansive

Inspite of 

the frequent contradictions with my own diminished load

of days that I drifted, and nights that were seared

I found moments that mattered

through the honesty of my critics

unfiltered laughter of strange company

tears shed over meals in unknown homes

keep watching

the afterglow of my unknown parts

will remind you of my curly grey

the reserved twist in my wood fired smile

should remind you to watch for the weary

the enthusiast voice in replayed episodes

must remind you to find the pygmy in all giants

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

“we laughed until we cried”

725ECD0A-A00B-474B-8C5B-E6F6E6580F89We shared an exquisite connection

that is hard to portray or paint

It did not have a defined pattern

could not be copied, or questioned

instead mesmerized with a sincere gaze

 

We had a package deal

that juxtaposed an uplifting joy

with angst, and confusion

offered surety and strength

through uncertainty and storms

 

We watched each other closely

and as our extensions intertwined

we absorbed the wear and tear

while relishing sunshine and blossoms

Cultivating deep roots of our friendship

 

We created a new syntax, traced a new DNA

and let our bond be a teacher

It’s simplicity always elevating

refreshing in a predictable way

defining us as we grew into our lives

 

We laughed at and with each other

listening to tears before they trickled

never lacking a conversation

often choosing silence

letting our spaces absorb our fears

 

To the meandering years of being us

and the many more we will make

A Remembrance –

Here lives our friendship

scribbles + poetry

toast +  condensed milk

embroidery + imagination

rituals + weddings

journeys + cities

homes + decisions

tea + warmth

fears + opinions

cakes + crumbs

togetherness + tragedy

So long,

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I returned once

15462B9E-4695-43BF-9127-4E84BF36B1F8I set out once,

looking for the mangroves

with haunted stories

about the withered woman

with feet that turned in and jingled

the mangroves

with secret spells

hovering over lamposts

the mangroves where

boys scuffled and

where men gathered

to grope for survival

the mangroves

that displaced the rotten

smell of burning flesh

as each canopy collapsed

into an ashen pile

I waited,

to enter the looming gates

of the house that echoed

my mother’s desires

in hidden gold and treasures

the house that watched, silent

the gates that creaked

each howling creak

recollecting a plea

pleas of bruised bodies

and naked shadows

still lingering behind

it’s walls

I walked,

the platform again

chugging wheels, that

recited memories of trains

moving like ghosts

between places, bringing ghosts

the platform I walked again

covered me in soot

of butchered history

I lifted,

some soil along with some scars

I opened,

the tall gates

and entered against my will

into the verandah

to my beginnings

I swaddled myself with,

the elegance of my mother

the industriousness of my father

the grit of my brothers

the sacrifice of my sisters

the flawlessness

of their songs

as they chanted, possessed

to their dead

and their crippled

and their humiliated

and their young, and new born

 

I bow in thankfulness

and accept the warm

tea served by the lady

in the verandah

 

NaPoWriMo 2018

Historical event

Fatal Plunge

E6361FEE-1B11-45E1-839B-3BC5832D7415

I hear, a million points of view

Border games on ripped atlas scraps

wandering has pulled me away, and afar

over land and seas,I left behind lost breadcrumbs

bradycardiac, my pulses beat, and I stagger to stand

In hope, at many homesteads

she sets a hot pot of coffee as she wrings her hands

he fills his chocolate jug with spices and anticipates

they sit around a kettle full of kahwa, intending to mourn

 

silence wearing thin, I howl aloud

roam the streets, into arteries of brick towns

where ruins emerge alive, echoing young lives

ghostly screams of greeting, guffawing at little deaths

danger of separation, palpable in the migrant caravan

bullets pierce broken wings, voices break out of breath

faded eyes loom large over dark tents

banished families, and human parts

nervous air across them all

young and old alike

chaos to chaos, they search

crowd to crowd, they collapse

 

fatal plunge, to a corner of final rest

pathway to pathway, gamble if you must

dare to lead if you can

your identity and mine

will go down as rubble

no matter which side of a border or wall

into the same water

we will bite the same dust

 

 

NaPoWriMo 2018

Bolded words used above are from the Sylvia Plath poem Family Reunion – referenced below

Family Reunion, Sylvia Plath

Outside in the street I hear
A car door slam; voices coming near;
Incoherent scraps of talk
And high heels clicking up the walk;
The doorbell rends the noonday heat
With copper claws;
A second’s pause.
The dull drums of my pulses beat
Against a silence wearing thin.
The door now opens from within.
Oh, hear the clash of people meeting —
The laughter and the screams of greeting :

Fat always, and out of breath,
A greasy smack on every cheek
From Aunt Elizabeth;
There, that’s the pink, pleased squeak
Of Cousin Jane, out spinster with
The faded eyes
And hands like nervous butterflies;
While rough as splintered wood
Across them all
Rasps the jarring baritone of Uncle Paul;
The youngest nephew gives a fretful whine
And drools at the reception line.

Like a diver on a lofty spar of land
Atop the flight of stairs I stand.
A whirlpool leers at me,
I cast off my identity
And make the fatal plunge.

Postcard from 1966

BE7B7693-8883-4121-8B30-44CD18936B066th February, 1966

My light,

I shared your picture with the boys in the bunker and they are mesmerized. Thank you for walking into my life. Your thoughts intoxicate my days. Strangely, I am smitten by your silent ways. I wait for the day when I am beside your tender heart. Until then, do write back and time will not keep us apart.

p.s – You will soon receive a colorful paper mache’ frame. By the way, do you like my very own version of your name –

Jyots, I love you

I will see you soon,

yours

 

NaPoWriMo 2018

Poem on a postcard