Sepia

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That’s the thing about old friends. Instinct becomes your first and only language when emotions stay shrouded behind cooled gestures.

There are layers anew to peel off, bespoke of tense energy. But unexpectedly, a collision opens a floodgate of unspoken sentiments that simmer for an instant. Time goes back and in your heart you know that there can never be a second round. But you imagine a once over, desperate to pick out an alternative where barriers don’t need to be broken down, where your laugh is louder than the wind and the music isn’t a sanctum of restrained emotion.

But time doesn’t stop and the last vestiges of the sparks remain in the pointed scrawls lurking in the latent mind and the splinters of memories tinged with sepia.

Monologue

Long back,  I could have never talked.

Barely gotten a word in, perhaps.

Two little girls, squabbling and yelling.

What a ruckus they made – but I listened.

I didn’t have much choice, eh?

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Sisters in crime, backing each other up.

Building fairy tales out of barbie sets

And teaching fuzzy koalas to race cars.

Sharing secrets and sneaking snacks.

What a lovely din on a lucid day!

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I could still sing though… 

A lullaby as they smiled in their dreams.

Mussed-up hair and hands clasped tight.

Warm in the comfort of my arms,

United in bonds of sisterhood.

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I wish I had spoken as they grew.

Asked them to cherish the past.

School and studies, alarms at ghastly hours.

Secrets turned to worries. Snacks turned to diets.

Adulthood dawning upon them.

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I can talk all I want now, but…

There is no one to listen, no one to talk to.

My arms have been empty far too long.

I only hope they remember me at times,

As they talk within walls far beyond.


My room. I miss my room! And I miss it more remembering the times I spent with my sister. Wrote this as an impulsive response on behalf of my room’s walls to the prompt at dVerse Poetics – “If walls could talk…”

Identity Check | Who am I?

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Home time! Four years since I left and as always, the excitement just grows. But my last visit was different with a handful of bittersweet realizations.

A timeline…

08:00 hours: Outside the railway station

To my horror, I blanked out and couldn’t place a key lane on my way home! Armed with determination to make up for the loss of that one name, I spoke in my very best Gujarati (local language) to showcase my diminishing authority over the city where I have spent about twenty years of my life. Assurance seeped in as I recalled every nook and crevice in the lanes around my home.

08:45 hours: My first peek

The sofa covers had been changed. The ceiling fan creaked more than usual. The potted plants had been rearranged. My steps faltered, albeit for barely a second. The easy familiarity that usually engulfs me was deferrred by that one second, yet I stubbornly refused to acknowledge the delay… But for how long??

13:00 hours: Post lunch “siesta”

I took it upon myself to clean the drawing and dining rooms. And hello smug realization! I could have done it blindfolded. My memory did not betray me – my fingers lovingly remembered every scratch and dent. I was humming and chatting with Dad as I have done a thousand times before. It was just another regular autumn cleaning to make Mom happy and earn brownie points.

17:00 hours: A ride to… forget?

As I rode my beloved scooter after almost six months, I was aghast that I had to open Google Maps. I could no longer place the cafe at its precise location. My mind was playing games. A lane brought memories of another hundreds of miles away. A building looked exactly like my old flat in Mumbai. A colored house transported me to a quaint one near my old institute in Goa. Was I disloyal and cheating on my city??

22:00 hours: The skirt quest!

Hunting for an old skirt made me stumble upon a big bunch of letters, photographs, hand-made greeting cards, love notes, embroidered handkerchiefs, school reports and old cassettes. A plate of onions kept distracting me as I went through every item, laughing over my effortlessly absurd past self. The diary entries (Man! We learn to bitch early!) and moments of “Oh! I had a crush on him??”  were priceless. I ended up clinging to that faded piece of paper as if my whole life depended on it… Where is time travel when you need it the most??

02:00 hours: Panic Attack!!!

I belonged to this city. I knew it. I had proof and was woefully curled up in a nest of them – reports, photos, letters and books. I am NEVER EVER throwing them away; those old souvenirs made me and are invested deep inside me.

Though I was restless in those tearful thoughts, sleep eventually took over. The home sleep. The best’est’ and incomparable!

But! Where do I belong? Who am I? A Pseudo Gujju? A Neo Maharashtrian? A wanna-be Goan? My loyalties stand confused. Meanwhile, I was at peace. I was home. It felt good to be back home.


I am nowhere close to finding the answers – it is definitely more complex than home is where the heart is… Anyone feel the same? How do you deal with it? Have you made peace with this?

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Carnival of Fantasy

Welcome O’ Wanderer, to the greatest carnival on Earth,

You look all revved up to join this happening party!

Why don’t you relax with Long John Silver and his rum?

Or share a butterbeer with Harry if that strikes your fancy!

 

Join Snow White and Cinderella with their dizzy foxtrot,

And try your luck to kiss and wake the Sleeping Beauty!

Stop over to pat Moby Dick by the pond – he’s real friendly,

And hop over for an animated gambol with Timmy the Dog!

 

Glinda the Good Witch will merrily teach you her magic,

And while you’re at it, cheer up Sam and Frodo with some!

Try not to disturb Alice looking through the glass though,

And watch your head for Peter Pan juggling Miss Moppet!

 

This party is happening in every room around the world,

When any child picks up a book and unlocks his dreams!

Take some time to wipe the dust from your old bookshelf,

And unhook the anchor to sail towards your wonderland!


As a kid, I was living a part in almost every book I read – an escape into my personal fantasy. I forget now how easy it was to run away with my thoughts.  The prompt given by Anthony at dVerse to go crazy with our imagination was a perfect way to bring my best friends back to life!

Oh!! To Be a Kid Again…

I miss being a kid – well who doesn’t! Apart from the fact that now I can have ice-cream for lunch and can splurge on a dress without feeling too guilty about it, I pretty much want my childhood back. I am specifically talking about my childhood – not the pouty selfie nation of the present-day kids.

So tada! Here’s presenting a list of 7 things I miss about being a kid –

  1. The inexhaustible energy! Running here and there, slipping down and under, incessant scampering and shouting … Whew! If only there was a way to bottle all that energy! I hope there is someone out there inventing a ludicrous way to store that energy. Then I am going to chase those loud and noisy munchkins like a scary energy-leeching parasite!
  2. It was a beautiful time when my only worry was whether him borrowing my pencil and not returning it meant:
    • He was an angel wanting to keep a piece of me close to his heart or
    • He was a rotten thief with sticky fingers and a sniveling nose.
  3. The bedtime stories! The whole process of being tucked in bed, being narrated a nice story, then taking a pee break only to demand one more story was  priceless. I mean, who wants late night texting and Angry Birds when you get bed-time stories! And if you are really nice, mommy (or daddy) can be manipulated into making you a cup of warm chocolate milk.
  4. The certain reality that anyone and everyone who smells good can double as a human mountain! Or a horse, or a goat or a frog. It is inevitable! You climb all over them, use them for piggy back rides or make them your mattresses. Ah, good times!
  5. Fall asleep anywhere but you will still wake up in bed! The couch, movie theaters, cars or someone’s lap – irrespective of where you start off, you will wake up in that snuggly bed with no memory of which considerate person carried you to bed.
  6. It was a time when terms like carbs, low fat, calories and lean anything were just stupid, meaningless and boring words that did not belong in any happy place. One more cheese fry please!
  7. The clothes! Have you realized that it is extremely difficult to see a badly dressed kid? Because almost any color, any style will look amazing… the cuteness factor comes to yet another rescue.

Bonus point as I am feeling extremely generous about doing my bit for the world –

  1. Be able to wear a gigantic cowboy hat and be appreciated! Look at this… I had a happy time wearing this piece of beauty. And no one even considered getting me checked for damages 😀
My Awesome Hat 🙂

Written for the prompt 2.) List 7 things you miss about being a kid. So, what do you miss the most about your sweet time as a kid?b

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