The new year beckons as I write this post, and I wish I could drown in sentimentality. A beer down my throat, a painful resolution to grow up more and the new year is to come soon. Even as I type, the clock inches towards it. Truth be told, I don’t want this to end. Every ounce of happiness I have earned this year is quite precious as a whole, and somehow I believe that these castles would break once the year is finally over. But, then, glass castles must break if they are meant to.
To sentimentality, to honour and love, to falling in love.
And to this friend I never do appreciate enough. And to this group I appreciate lesser. I have made those mistakes this year but, come new year I won’t.
Also perhaps, just perhaps, I would accept my sexuality more.
In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “All Grown Up.”
I smoked my last cigarette a while back
I have not smoked since
The whole world moves on, and I feel the need
But, I have not smoked since
I do not feel morally superior
I do not feel like I am a great person
But, this was a decision taken
To feel better about myself
This decision was taken for me
And even though a cocktail of sadness awaits me every night
And even though, I know it ain’t going to be alright
I am growing up
And I smoked my last cigarette a week back
I bleed onto the papers and make them scream
See how cliche that sounds?
And sometimes I wonder if forever
Is just a deal that I wrote into my poetry to attract audience
And sometimes I scream out in annoyance
When my characters wouldn’t listen
I stay calm and look onto the sky
I write words onto blank spaces
That is me
In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Mystery Box.”
The camera closes in on a broken hearted man staring at the sole gift he has received. His face showcases surprise and a bit of joy. He wishes to approach the gift now, but, he stops before his hands reach the wrapping.
In his childhood, the first time he had received the gift it was a mistake. he had uncovered the filmsy covering to reveal worms underneath. Gifts thereafter had always been more and more lacklustre leaving behind nothing at all. He stopped to think if this would be the same.
Camera changes focus.
He walks up to the street lighting a half smoked cigarette. He speaks of things that he doesn’t understand in order to sound enlightened. And then he quits.
He is still reaching out, and the gift opens by itself
He cries as he realises what it is.
A friendship wrapped in cotton.
A kiss till he goes to sleep.
Silence surrounds the night as the man who talks at the night with a cigarette disappears.
I am me….
I was lonely at the end of the year, going to year-end lists just because I felt that it would be the only redemption. Then, I found this man staring me in the eye, crooning his own brand of music.
“Punk rock didn’t live up to what it was meant to be”
The words came out of the speaker and for once I leaned back, and I let the tears take me. The songs took me and broke me across the walls made of glass, it made me bleed like a little boy. I felt the pain take me as I listened to my life depicted through the songs of an English boy I had never met.
Then that was it, Frank turner has changed me immensely this year, to the point I started talking to people about him. Might be he is not the best singer out there but, when he sings about the things he has done with pride, when he sings about his friend dying and about how the life is affecting his relationships.
I guess when this guy talks about how his revolutions have failed, I imagine me being the rebel, being the one who talked of honesty and ethics and had a fall out. I do not hold out that high order of ideals anymore, I am flowing in the stream of political correctness too.
But, this guy is out there. A drunk man, a smoker, a person who sings of his vices as well his virtues and of all the friends he has lost.
That’s my gift to you then, Frank Turner.
Merry Christmas people
In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Secret Santa.”
I opened up the messaging feature in my old utility phone a few days back, I checked the inbox trying to find something that would move me. And there it was, something from a group of friends I made last year, a message about self harm, and countless others about how they showed their concern. It broke me, I spent the larger part of the day huddled up and remembering. This year, they gifted me a diary, pen and ink and to be honest I really haven’t given the bunch anything back.
I guess that is a a part of me, I rarely give anything back to those who care too much about me. I have this bad habit of ignoring them at the end of the year. Even now I sit with the letter addressed to one of them, which has still not been mailed, and I feel terrible about the same. I know I should be a better person but, then, that is hard for me.
So, what should I give them?
Well, for the youngest one, I probably reserve poetry, letters and love. I shall gift her with movies too, some of the movies that changed my life.
For one of the strongest women I know, I should probably give her something strange a trinket to remember me by.
To the woman who has become more of an elder sister, I give a book, that is torn from the middle, and has trod upon by the feet of all the human beings that have read it before
To the weird woman with the heart of gold, I give chocolate, because everything else wouldn’t really do. I would probably give her a packet of toys too.
To the two elder brothers, I probably should just send books that have impacted me so. I do not know what though, perhaps something that is purely mine. Something from Keats may be? Or would Neruda be true-er? I really do not know for sure.
For the girl who knows to have a lot of fun and carries a personal philosophy with herself, I reserve a bottle of wine, and a meet up in a quaint little shed by the beach.
And to this other sister, who I do not see as much, I would probably give this pair of earrings that smell of home.
I do not have a lot of money but, someday I might be able to gift them. Till then, these posts would probably have to do. Maybe poetry is the poor man’s diamond ring, who knows?
In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “To Be Resolved.”
I do not keep clear cut resolutions but, I do have hope as I start the new years. I have hopes for a better tomorrow and a few things that I always think that I would do.
This years, these goals were –
- Polishing up my first novel
- Losing weight
- Becoming and keeping more happy
Let me get this out first, I did not actually revise the first novel fully. I did start out on it but, then the move came and I was stuck in a different space with no way to continue. Yet, that novel remains in the works.
I did lose a lot of weight leaving to my hostel (which coincidentally is the abandoned hospital in the title of my blog). The things turned up pretty well there, the world went about on its own axis, and we made it through.
However, the last one.
See, I feel ashamed to say this, but, I messed up on staying happy. Heck, I wouldn’t be alive right now if a little angel didn’t help me through those months. And I know that i should commend my own courage for getting out of being suicidal, but, I cannot praise myself after sitting before a cup of bleach and drinking through it, just because I had not made it through to a medical school.
I was.. I was crappy, a very dark, person who was going on a train ride to the bottom of a cliff. And the whole metal body, my body was pulling me towards to ground.
When, the results came back, I was staring out at the railway lines and if my mother had not called right at the moment, I would have probably walked towards it.
I tell this to N a lot, I tell her that I shouldn’t be alive, and that isn’t a good thing to say to a person you respect. But, I am telling the truth. A whole bunch of Paracetamols taken one night on an impulse the thoughts of death driving it home.
So, yes, that is what I carry forward. This year is ending on a higher note, am happier, and I ought to be more happy next year. I would lose more weight, and perhaps, publish that one novel.
“I cannot ever forgive you, but, that doesn’t mean I love you any less.”
Some times when I look back into childhood, I do not see the good things anymore. I see the darkness and the blackness that huddled around me. Much like the lover who plays only the break up scenes in their mind after it all has been put on shelf.
My father smokes, my father smokes like a chimney. He is addicted and that is something I have lived with for the whole of my life. And when I was a child he came to me once smelling of smoke. I was much more self-righteous then, I was hopeful for a better future, and I told him to quit, told him that it was bad for his health and his response was.
“I am tensed about you.”
For those not familiar with smokers, tension is one of the easiest excuses to give for us (I am two days clean by the way).
That broke me, the fact that I was the cause, the fact that I was the reason he was destroying himself. Heck, the situation was not under my control. I had broken my leg, I was always suffering, I had lost most of my friends, I was probably never going to play in the fields again and then this gem from my father.
I am in a hostel and I do not even talk to him now, but, some part of me has forgiven him for his transgressions then, perhaps because I intend to be a better man.
But, more so because I cannot afford to be a poorer father. I do care for him more but, I talk lesser and lesser to him each day, because I have moved farther away from my childhood days. Every day he still lights his cigarettes and I watch him, and I sigh, I do not protest anymore. Every man must have his poison.
But, then today is about forgiveness, and this time around I didn’t stop him, and this vacation at least I talked to him about the thing. Not forcing, just a silent wish for him to lay off the smoke.
“This post is a part of Project 365 program at We post daily. Prompt for today was “Share a story where it was very difficult for you to forgive the perpetrator for wronging you, but you did it — you forgave them.”
Last few days the world has seen much darkness, it has seen blood and pain and it has anguished and writhed in it’s cage with vengeance, screaming for blood. Even my peace loving friends, people close to my heart; screamed out for the death of the people who had murdered thus. And heck, who am I to point fingers? I screamed for the same.
But, then the opinions change as you see the world more. Two days ago I was screaming for blood and today I hope that somehow this is resolved without that. You see, I do not like Gandhian philosophy much, but, this rings true “An eye for an eye makes the whole world blind.”
Do the people who murder children deserve punishment? Sure they do, they deserve more though. They deserve to feel guilty, they deserve to look at their faces in the mirror and feel worthless and hopeless and irredeemable every moment of their waking life. Perhaps that is more cruel, but, perhaps not.
There was this scene in “Doctor Who” in the first season of the revived series, there this genocidal maniac alien realizes the fears and pains and he just stops. There are moments when this machine of hatred sees the things he has caused and then he destroys himself. That affected me.
You see, terrorism thrives on violence.
Today if we burn the homes of all the Taliban forces in the world, and kill 90% of the soldiers, the other 10% would use that to fill little people with the ideas of revenge. They would burn through the youth with their ideologies that promise redemption and salvation, that promise a better life and fulfillment of every dream that the child has, and they’d answer.
They’d answer because that is what propaganda does.
When Kasab was being hanged I raised my voice too, I said that hanging a boy doesn’t solve the problem. An angry response is not going to solve the larger crisis that is going on. Sure we need to be angry, we need to be burning up inside, but, we need to be angry enough to realise that we need to get rid of the whole deal and not individual soldiers.
We need to make them feel guilt.
And I get the feelings of revenge. Those were children, juniors of mine who were killed mercilessly.
Blood stained floors and seats that were vacated for the whole terms, that makes me want to kill. That makes me want to take up a gun, to take up a sword and go on a rampage. But, then when I have killed these brainwashed children, what difference have I from them?
Maybe, the difference would be that I was more moral, but, they’d twist the facts. They’d create another such army. Their would be another Peshawar in response and it won’t stop. If instead we took these poor kids they target and educated them, gave them books and pens instead of guns. If we just did that.
Maybe we’d be better.
Current Song – Þú Ert Sólin
When I was younger I would hide the cigarettes that my father smoked in a desperate attempt to make him stop. He didn’t.
Till date he smokes with glee whenever he feels the need. He smokes a variety of brands and hasn’t got a choice, he just loves the tobacco in his lungs.
When I was in class 8, I met my uncle who used to chain smoke. His heart had gone bad and finally after two bypass surgeries, he had stopped.
Last month I met a guy who was beginning to fall into a spiral of addiction with smoking. Every time he didn’t have a smoke, he would go intro irritation and anger, and he would blame everyone around him. I burnt a Classic in front of him, and he has finally, truly let go.
Last day, I smoked my last cigarette.
In fact it was probably my tenth last cigarette in a week, or twentieth, I lost count. Even though all of my friends probably still firmly believe I have quit the habit, that I have finally kicked it to the curb, I was there, smoking just because I was back home and I couldn’t help it.
Heck, I can’t even inhale anymore because my lungs were getting used to the fresh air, and I coughed the first time I tried that after the period of abstaining.
And yet, I smoked.
There is this allure of smoking that hangs over my hometown, everyone seems to have smoked sometime or the other. We do not drink, we do not get high, we do not do the thousand other things that we would do in this age; but, we smoke. The heritage is there. There are shops that sell expensive foreign brands, and there are people who enjoy them.
I believe that my city is a burning cigarette and often we are the ashes.
Yet, some days I introspect. I despise smoking, and often the association I make with the the smoke is death and not life. Often, I wish to leave it all behind, but, the wrap remains and the Marlboro is lit with glee as the evening closes in.
And I get aboard the Metro train with my mouth smelling of poison.
And the next day I promise to quit again, now with more hope of succeeding.
I guess I must try harder now, but, I am afraid.
This is my city and it pulls me, and I have lesser control on what I feel.
This brings me to a musician I like, Frank Turner, this guy smokes even after being a professional singer. He is trying to quit but, can’t, and somehow that is more painful that anything else.
Then again, am sorry towards N, and myself. Perhaps more so towards myself than anybody else. I ought to have gotten out of this mood now, but, I cannot. And maybe, this guilt means that this time I really do quit, once and for all.