Tuesday, July 31, 2007

So Harry Potter’s not dead? That’s a terrible shame. Now I know that while it’s in fashion these days to be a Harry Potter Fan, it’s also cool not be a Harry Potter Fan – but I had actually something different to look forward for, while fans I know were scratching days on the walls for the day to come last week. Oh Harry! You see I have my reasons, just as you had headaches.
I’m an over-grown Harry Potter Fan, but when I first picked up the first three books, Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone, Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets and Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban – it was one of those warm summer holidays in 1999. Young and impressionable that I was then in 8th class, with Enid Blyton fairytales in my head, Harry Potter seemed plain interesting and simple to follow.
Another year passed, with another oblivious summer holiday gone, and I had my folks parcelling the Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire to me in my boarding school in Ajmer.
Till all this while I had nothing to complain, Harry Potter seemed no commercial success to me – and with a Booker in the pocket, I was told that even some oldies were enjoying reading it too. I guessed that they didn’t want to lag with time, and that was all.
But at that time I pictured no kid waiting an entire night for a bookshop to open early next morning, and I couldn’t see myself to believe that any bookshop would ever open for these nocturnal kids. But one evening, many distant moons away, I swear I heard Sir Will groaning.
When Harry Potter and the Order of Phoenix was released in 2003, three years had whizzed passed me, and while I had discovered Douglas Adams, Tolkein, Vonnegut and other of their quirky likes. I gave the book a shot, and look I found myself bored.
That was it, I wasn’t going to watch the movies, and I wasn’t going to reread the series to make new girlfriends – but from plot summaries on the net I followed the plot till the very end, very secretly.
And – well, the ending is just lame.
We are told: nineteen years later – which I suppose were as uninteresting as the rest – the bespectacled, magical boy wonder, is all grown up and has kids. What happened to the fans that were growing along with Harry? And so his scar doesn’t hurt anymore? Damn! I think Harry should die, just like Backstreet Boys and hippies now.


Friday, July 27, 2007

Sometimes the over familiarity of it all leads me cocooned into a blanket of vagueness. I'm an outsider not only to emotions that settle in on me like dusty cobwebs in an unopened room, but that I also fail to recognise any possibility of seeing any point at all.
And despair.
Sometimes I'm an escapist, an artist nonetheless, who avoids anything and everything. I have stared often into glass jars peeking into life and oblivion. A reason of every reason and its departure, what could it be through the looking glass?

Saturday, July 14, 2007

Everything is so dusty,
Outside or inside?
Oh yes it happens.
And the song of a broken sigh,
And a beaten oak on a windy night,
And a river that swallows everything.
Broken sigh.
A dream shattered like glass on the stairs
That lead to despair,
When will the city end?
Romance in red?
And to what sense,
Missiles and broken lens.
Give me sadness in another thin cup
Push me on a cross and cry God
Save it all, and open another file.
Walk into another room; don’t leave any closed,
Wait for the one, who drinks champagne.
For the violins and all the meaningless songs,
And Mr Bojangles dance.
And I'll pour it into their hands,
Ask them for another room,
In a dusty cheap hotel,
And broken lights, endless lost roads
On a bed where I cannot sink anymore.
Wake me up before the trains don’t leave,
And sing me songs with words.
Words for all those fallen birds'.
And autumn?
And in autumn, we will leave for the woods.
And I will step into the river
Like Virginia, or dream Eliot.
Save this, and leave to haunt in a jar,
Besides the windowsill.
Edit the words, and marinate them with time,
Till they seem like broken dreams of a yesterday's young man,
Hold them till they dry like flowers.
When the morning tastes of honey and garbage,
And nights of burnt wood.
Time holds me and leaves me,
And drops me into a river.
To lay below the fish,
With an English accent.
Someday soon
No it has to end,
It’s all vicious,
Another drift,
Somewhere the wind too drops.


Friday, July 13, 2007

Little girl blues

Where have you reached, you little one,
After travelling on foot, against the sun,
Wondering will it be, could it be?
Could you not see?
They were dragging their feet,
Their fingers following the beat,
You words too hollow,
And a fellow, Shallow?
Where now do you lead?
Is all forgotten, do you mislead.
Could it be, wondering will it be?
When all you had to see,
Her pretty frock,
My writers block?
Will you jump into a tunnel,
Why don't you tell?
Did you really make a find?
Were they kind?
Well, I was there too,
We were very few.
Did you sing for the wind,
And you felt it end?
Will you tell me?


Thursday, July 12, 2007

It’s the brink of the 60th anniversary of Indian democracy – and as an Indian there is no reason to feel my heart swelled with enthusiasm and patriotism. But there’s a magnificent pin that punctures this dream balloon – for never in my life have I felt more closer in seeing the façade of this democracy that we are planning to celebrate. There are glimpses of totalitarian oppression that the common man and I face from the police every single day.
I have no intentions of humiliating their terrible practice of mocking people, their smug expressions while they challan you or the common attitude that everyone has of them, that they can be bought over a few hundred rupees.
I began being terrified of them three years back while I was travelling by bus from Ajmer (to visit my school) to return to Delhi at night. While the bus rolled in at the Jaipur bus station, I was half sleepy in those stiff reluctant to recline chairs, and the droopy incontrollable head of the passenger sleeping next to me. I was soon woken up to find four policemen dragging me out in the middle of the night because they had received some unaccountable gibberish suspicion on me.
When I was back in the bus, I found my arms and hands were scratched and bleeding, my shirt torn, and the most sheepish faces I had ever seen. Not only did I feel like another Joseph K accused for a crime that no longer had any relevance to the case, I felt fear on a guiltless night.
Just a night before, I was with a few friends, after dinner at a nearby joint, and we are casually talking. It’s late, yes, but the doorbell rings, and in walks a policeman asking us what we are doing.
And even though, in the back our heads, we are groaning that he’s here to fleece some money. The policeman refuses to leave the room till he has asked us to verify ourselves.
He then walks out to wait for us downstairs, waiting for the entire company to leave till he, and his colleague, can pounce on us again. This time, he wants to take me to police station, for a reason he wouldn’t tell me. He’s drunk, and I have to resort to showing my press card.
Personally, I’m not rowdy, or over-smart, and most time it gets my goat. Innumerable times, I don’t feel that city’s streets are safe at all at nights. The later it is, the easier it is for a cop to get money out of you.
Those who can drop names, faster than you and I can produce the entire car papers, often are let gone easily. But the humble one’s are put in a terrible situation. If I am not up to any trouble, what gives the reason for cops to be abusive, drunken and misbehaving with us at night?
The morning autowallah says that they are underpaid and make good money out of us, but he also points out that if someone is up to mischief by giving them money it legitimises them to so it more.
It’s a pity to lose faith on those that guard the common man, make a mockery of their institution. And democracy? Sure we are with or without it.

Sunday, July 08, 2007

After a while, you really can't tell. One week imitates the other, and every late Sunday evening I can't help but feel more morose. The very biggest threat to life -- is monotony. Then it gets depressing, and you really don't know what to do. And well the blues are beautiful, but that's if you find it in the end of a whisky bottle, perhaps in Chicago, in a club, where I suppose there's enough tobacco burning, and your fingers twitch when the guitar slides.
When suddenly the needle starts to skip, and there's always that scratch on your favourite record, and when it reaches to that point...
And you find yourself sitting there not getting very old, but at home, wondering that there's always an effing Monday after every bloody week. Your old glories are smudged with a new list of what to do, that can't help but be drawn, and that's how you justify your salary, as so many others can't help but to do so. Not knowing what else to do.
But we won't talk no more about it, always optimists out there who take great offence to see their asshole-ism being tied against a pole and shot down.
I'm singing in the rain.

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Ode to a crumpled sheet

And she walks into the room,
with a guitar on her hip,
and when she turns to look at you,
you're nervous, do you need another sip?
She's dressed for the world,
for them to look and to look again,
her silk stocking and careless heels,
her song, your song, will it rain?
A cup of coffee or another cigarette,
your sketch or my broken line,
your vision or my headache,
why not another glass of wine?
We're drawn and not written,
we're born on a crumpled sheet,
we search for just beat and tea,
in an hour, shall we meet?
The curtain is drawn,
the telephone rings,
someone helpless, someone fixed,
broken wings, summer brings, tired kings?
Another year, wow.
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