Thursday, 18 July 2013

House of Hearts

We go about our daily lives, doing the same chores claiming that it is the essentials of life. Somewhere along the journey to end up where we dream we are lost among the sea of struggling mortals, all seeking peace that comes with achievement. But sometimes along the same path we space out, quite randomly. Sometimes sitting in a bus, or while waiting; basically whenever time needs to be spent idly.
We start wondering more about meaning than benefit, of memories than time.  That's when we reflect back on the lives we've touched.
             What happens in the end, what happens when you have gotten everything you worked hard for? What happens to all the time piled up at your disposal then? Yeah, we can live it up. But by then a few factors have slipped out of your hands. Age, relationships, and definitely your comfort zone. All you can do is reflect again. Here's another way to look at the same path, starting now; not later.

Measure your life in terms of something that can't really be measured. The smiles you've created, the role you've played in lives, the timely help you've been... the hearts that you still live in. Touch as many hearts as you can on your struggle up the ladder and when you reach the top, you'll have an unspoken family of people who silently smile for your happiness. They might have spotted you only once, but if the impact you made was good, your face will be remembered. In this busy world, where everyone is running for their gold, if you stop to lend a few words, a shoulder it would be surprising, as that is where we are at this point. We have lost our humanity. "Let the doctors to their work"," oh, let the family take care of them",  "They have other people"
         The other people we so often assign the helping hand to probably are using it to point the finger at you, and so the person is forever alone in his life; thus the circle goes on. But what if we take time out from the countless moments we space out in and made them feel special. A gift without occasion, that felt like it must be made for them, or perhaps even cherishing the small things they've given. Let them know that whether people or no people, you will remember them. And just with that one sentence you are closer to their heart, deeper in their memory.

We encounter many people, in so many different ways. Start today, to cherish what they've done, or what they mean to you. At the end of the day, give yourself the count. Keep adding to it, and when you've become what you've wanted, see your total. And continue to live in the house of hearts.






Monday, 1 July 2013

India and Its Grave

When my mother decided to shift our home back to India, I'd have to say I was pretty much thrilled about going back to where I was born. The change from same robotic life I led, the urge to get lost in a crowd of natives and to feel safe in my country were my hopes. As for my mother, she wanted me to imbibe the rich heritage and traditions that thrived and differed from every state. Can I say the same now? Well, I'd be lying.

           Mumbai attacks in 2008, Guwahati bombings in 2009, the Pratapgarh stampede in 2010, more scams and scandals, traitors and bombers. And all this over what? Power, money, vengeance and competition. Sigh, if we followed the Chinese idea of naming our years, well this would be the epitome of all the 'glory' and named as 2013- the year of rapes. Frankly, I don't get what's happening to our country nor the agendas in store. Rape after gang rape and only 24, 206 were reported. Not even quarter of that got the hearing. I point to the TV running such news and announce to my mother- 'The rich heritage and traditions we came back for huh, mum?' She nods her head away and ignores the news. That's pretty much what every one's doing as well. What with candle marches and NGO's screaming their lives out, the bottom line will always be in vain. That's why I stopped reading the news papers long back because I just don't want to start my day with this sort of negativity. And by chance as a media student if I happen to see some news, its about the parliament fighting it out in front of the media, or the progress on cases that's been going on for years without any judgment. I might as well call myself a psychic, predict such news and make some money out of the confusion. That beats watching the south Indian channels(named after political leaders), recapping the same clip of how two opposing leaders tore each others white shirts at a conference. And the media flourishes in all this tragedy; if no deaths, scams and whatnot, no future for them. Such irony.

The other day, I looked towards the people instead of the country runners and was shocked again. National Anthem goes on in a theater and the guy in front of me is busy with his cellphone. The one next to me is blowing bubbles with gum. Another heaved sigh I let out, and watched the movie addressing the political issues with a filmy solution. Play it like that in real life and you'll realize you won't even reach to the climax situation of the movie without bribing to be heard. Must I even start on the respect we have for our leaders? No no, that's all silently understood. How can we rise from our third world crisis if the regulating bodies don't have respect, let alone support from us? Some, fly free and ride like they own these roads. Those, 'some' might be having the tag of political background. 'Might'.

Another aggravating issue is the whole idea of copying cultures from the west. I've seen both so I have the bad habit of comparing. I stand at a hypermarket decked with imported goodies and our local things as well. 'That's comforting. Import export policies are functioning well' I mutter and check prices. 'Hmm, I don't see our pickles being sold at such big numbers in US as much as this bottle of their mayo here'. I think. I conclude by saying that international politics is not for me and go to the billing. What's frustrating here is that the minute the cashier sees a foreigner, in flows the Indian spirit of good host and he calls them over to the front, jumping all the customers waiting. No, this isn't Indian spirit. It's just buttering and trying to draw a good impression. If I remember correctly, the impression I got from foreign cashiers doing their rightful duty was more than this display of falseness. Then the basic problem struck me.
            We have this impression about other countries and we have some vague opinion about ours too. That goes more or less like 'if we imbibe cultures from there, we can be awesome too' and in the name of imbibing you pick up things that can't quite gain acceptance from all masses. Why not punctuality, equalizing irrespective of caste, creed, career? Instead we choose the partying, the live ins and attractive tags. And we go on and on about how we are such true Indians and how our ancestor's blood boils over injustice. When elections come we crib and cry and with natural disasters we donate.We even make it through a lifetime like this, passing to be true Indians. But what do you call someone who does not represent the world he comes from?

All my 6 years in US, I proudly carried Indian lunches to school and wore that red dot on my forehead even though everyone thought I was bleeding. No matter what names I was called, I smiled and said 'Yes, next to Pakistan is where my country is, but you can't generalize because of that.' And the more I was myself, the more I felt Indian in a land where I wasn't born. I realized people all over the world like to know about our cultures, our traditions and food especially. They love our brown tinge as its the perfect tan they strive for. We have so much to educate them about if only all of this wasn't at the disposal of greed. And now, in my own country I feel alienated because it wasn't the way I had described. The fear of 'what will remain to call my country' haunts as we dig our own graves. Although I don't react much to the happenings in our country, I represent it anyways. I call myself an Indian.

What do you call yourself?

Liked this? Read another national issue!

Sunday, 23 June 2013

The Strange Entities called Luck, Fate and Destiny- 05

This is a 5 page abstract narrative of three lives each a representative of the strange entities called luck, fate and destiny. They come together to produce the climax that eventually changes these three lives, nullifying the entities momentarily. 

Click here for page 4!

PAGE 5:

They were all scattered like the vertexes of a perfect triangle as they looked at each other. Each one of them was hoping that the other get up and help them up. It look quite some time to understand that none of them were broken and it was only the shock of impact that froze them.
            Rishi staggered up and looked at the two girls in front of him. He realized he was in the same situation he had practiced his lines for. Irony, pure irony. He jerked when something soft brushed against his neck. He caught it and opened his fist slowly to reveal a crushed dandelion, srtugglig to get back into flight. He smirked, 'Your like me'. It somehow refilled the faith back into him as in the background the girl on the scooter, got to her feet and stretched.
            Nida was swollen from many places yet there she was inspecting the crime scene. Why was this scene any different? The long line on the road was there again; her heart felt heavy. 'Is this the place where you were too?' she addressed her long dead friend. 'Is this the way you want me to move on, Mira?' The dandelion dancing around her ear seemed to have the answer and Nida broke down to her knees. While it tried to float away into the aftermath, Nida enclosed it within her palms and whispered a goodbye. She turned to the sight of a dozen dandelions, floating over them without reason yet giving some message. 'Fate huh?' she told the dandelion. Then she look a long deep breath and let it go. She limped over to the other victim, the only one who seemed to have been hurt badly. The guy was already there checking her pulse.
         Anu could hear some voices and feel some movement but that was about all. She was in the middle of saying a thank you note to destiny for cancelling her marriage even though the means were really bad. Her locket had leaped into a pool of her own blood and the sticky fluid caught a dandelion.
'Hey you' she said in her mind. Her hands seemed fine when she pulled them out and touched the fine hairs of the dandelion. She opened her locket and plucked one, encasing it carefully.
'What did this destiny want me to see, now' she thought. The face of a handsome guy hovered over hers and she chuckled. She closed her eyes with the feeling that many would describe as love.

Nothing was said at that moment when fate, luck and destiny was refreshed and the accident was repeated in history once again. None of them read into the practicality of what happened that night, just happy to start anew after keeping one thing in mind for the rest of their lives.
'Luck+ Fate + Destiny= A MIRACLE'

Paths keep crossing and we don't really know it, but look closely and maybe you'll pick out the characters that strangely played a role, knowingly or unknowingly. Love around the corner, intervention through disaster, and the harsh phase of letting go; there are always guidelines to help you. People give it numerous names, store faith in people, objects, memories. But you're on your own in figuring out how to read the signs and be grateful for the entities you yet have to see.

The Strange Entites Called Luck, Fate and Destiny- 04

This is a 5 page abstract narrative of three lives each a representative of the strange entities called luck, fate and destiny. They come together to produce the climax that eventually changes these three lives, nullifying the entities momentarily.

Go back a page, click here!

PAGE 4:

The brakes screeched down the slope with the sound of thunder rumbling above her.
'I will not stop for anyone!' she yelled and watched the manifestation of nature's anger. Trees swung groaning little warnings to themselves as the rain clouds burst and let flow their trapped tears.
'That's right, cry! But I'm not stopping!' and just as those words escaped, a huge branch dropped onto her windshield and broke it instantly. The glass shattered; along with the safety walls around her heart.Slowing down for just a bit, Anu felt it heave in fear. Then a smile crept on her lips and she breathed out 'Wow! This is what they hid from me? I love it!'. She proceeded her careless journey into introspection and watched the rain fall in patterns all around her. It sat on her eyelashes like little dew drops and as she blinked it away; things seemed clearer just like the way the wipers clear the windshield. Which was broken now; letting in freezing air wrap her in numbness.
         She reached safe grounds and by then her anger had successfully subsided. But now she was literally lost and knew going uphill will end with the death of her. She scanned the roads and grasslands that ran alongside.
'Where is this place?' she murmured to herself. The time on her dashboard read 11:45.
'Oh shit!' she thought. 'They would be all over the town! Poor Ravi!'
Anu turned the car around to go back the way she came. But that wasn't the mistake she did. It was the idea of going on the same side of the road she came. After all it was midnight, who would be here?
<of course, there were two other souls that had collided while her thoughts were sorting themselves out.>

Only when she blinked to get rid of the rain did she see the bigger picture. Her destiny, her role? Was it this? She jammed her feet onto the brakes but by then things had already been set into motion. the two figures standing, helping each other, two feet before her froze and the girl cried.
'No! Wait!' The last thing she remembered was the look on their faces. Although she expected fear, it wasn't present on her face or theirs. It was something more along the lines of regret and the hope to live again. The car pushed itself into Nida and Rishi, making them fall back once more and threw out Anu through the windshield.

Read onto page 5!

            


Sunday, 16 June 2013

The Strange Entities called Luck, Fate and Destiny- 03

click here to go back a page!
This is a 5 page abstract narrative of three lives each a representative of the strange entities called luck, fate and destiny. They come together to produce the climax that eventually changes these three lives, nullifying the entities momentarily.

Page 03- DESTINY


Sickly sweet aroma fills the air while the entire house is immersed in marriage preparations. In spite of all the excited talk, the atmosphere still witnesses murmuring silence. Away in a room, decked with rich clothes and posh jewelry sits Anusha, 22, phone in one hand and a list in the other.

'What do you mean you can't come? You must! I won't take any excuses! See you there!' She keeps the phone and strikes off another name in the list.  She dials a new number and chews on a laddoo while she waits.

'Rachana? Anu here!' she starts off excitedly. Rachana's laughter cracks all the way from the other side of the world. 
'Hey you! Heard you're getting married?!'
'Of course!' Anusha starts of her practiced string of sentences about her fiance, how rich he is and how he proposed her. Dreams of settling abroad and emptying his credit card go on for a few minutes.  
'Anyways? Why is everyone so shocked?!' she asks, little triggered by the questions she was getting. Rachna took a pause before she spoke, and when she did her tone had changed.
'I know you for a very long time Anu, you've always taken things lightly and lived life like a carnival but this is your marriage? Aren't you too young? Don't you have any dreams to chase or destinies to fulfill?'
'This has been my dream pretty much? What is life for anyways?'
'Love, I'm not trying to stop your marriage. But I really think life goes beyond an arranged marriage and a happy home.  Don''t you worry, I'll definitely be there!'
Saying so her best friend muted the line and left her speechless.

Anusha left the list on the dresser for later and looked at herself in the mirror. Wasn't she looking nice? Everyone in her home said she was the perfect bride. 'What was Rachana blabbering about destiny and dreams?' she thought to herself. 'Just because I don't have a goal doesn't mean I'm not happy. To be a bride is what I've dreamed about ever since I started playing with dolls. And here I am.' feeling motivated, she took a step out and was lost in her dream world.

In the late evening, when everyone was tired from all the running around and shopping, the bride strolled into the garden and plopped onto the soft grass next to her grandma.
'How beautiful you look Anu, thank God I got to see this sight before I go to him' She went into thought about how the marriage is actually happening because her grandma was dying and not because she wanted to get married early. But she quickly brushed it aside, as it was what everyone wanted. 'Including me' she added. Something made her take a walk around her huge house to meet the servants and drivers. to invite them personally for dinner. After all, they were her world during the holidays when she was restricted to the walls of their mansion.
'Ravi? Where are you going off to? Mother's made dinner for everyone today, you also! Go and sit in the garden!'
'Ma'am I have to take this car to the service centre, I'll come later' It pricked her heart somewhere and before she changed her mind she blurted.
'I'll take the car instead. You go to the garden. Why did I get my license for anyways?' she grabbed the keys from his hand and shoved him in to the lantern decorated garden. He shook his head and smiled.
'Go and come back in time ma'am. Call us if you need help'

She waved him off and got into the car. She pulled out the list and continued her virtual invitations. She had to repeat the story over and over again and the more she said that this was what she wanted, she felt like she was convincing herself more than anyone else.
'You're what?!' a husky laugh came from Girish as he asked. 'Knowing you, the little sweetheart that you are, you don't even know the meaning of marriage other than the dresses, the food and pictures. Eh?'
Again stunned to silence she cut the call and took a long drive to ease her troubled mind. Not even a single friend thought she was getting married so young. When she reached the service station, it was obviously closed. Although she wanted to curse herself and get back on the road, she dialled her dad's number and waited.
              How many times had she done this.?At every confused cross road, and at every problem her only solution was calling her father to fish her out. She never solved it on her own; wait, she didn't even face problems. Wasn't allowed to face. She cut the call and sat inside the car with the engine on. Internal imbalance disrupted anger within her, deeply hidden among the years of living the rich life.
'Why am I getting married? Is that my purpose in this life? To get married?' her eyes stung as she realized she was going to cry for real and not on some stage.
'Rachana was right, I don't know what my destiny is? What am doing with my life!'
The tipping point had arrived, and just like every emotionally contained person she burst and hit the accelerator.

Continue to page 4!

Friday, 14 June 2013

The strange entities called Luck, Fate and Destiny- 02

Missed the start? click here!

This is a 5 page abstract narrative of three lives each a representative of the strange entities called luck, fate and destiny. They come together to produce the climax that eventually changes these three lives, nullifying the entities momentarily.

FATE- Page 02

Between the typewriter sounds and stacks of papers, the deadlines and phone rings, Nida sat, eyes closed, picturing herself in such an atmosphere. The smell of fresh coffee took the nervousness of the wait away as she sorted through all the sounds around her for a particular phone ring. When it came, it shook her out of her dream world to the place she called her office, compartmentalized with cubicles and drowning in silence.
'Hello?' A pause. 'Right away sir!'
Nida, 24, a reporter greatly off the line with the genres which could be put into a newspaper, headed up the stairs to the editor's office with her story.

The editor was alone when she walked in confidently only to halt before she took a seat. He chuckled and signaled for her to sit. He read over the synopsis and gazed at her.
'Nida, again, the only problem with this is...'
'Is?' her huge eyes drilled into him as he tried to find the right words to phrase it.
'Is that, people don't like it when we put something that they can neither see or believe. I like this story, I think it's a new angle but we live in a superstitious country. This cannot be run, I'm sorry'
'But Vimal! Trust me, this spot is ill-fated! I've been observing for the past three months, and no one covers the stories of these accidents. It's our duty to bring it up to the attention. And I'm not saying its haunted, just that unknown forces are at play!'
Vimal, the editor got up and put her back on the seat and handed her a glass of water.
'Nida, just listen to yourself. You were one of my brightest reporters, I understand that your friend died on that same spot but its no excuse to waste anymore time pursuing the same story.'
'But so many lives lost at the same curb... almost like a ritual. I can't put it behind me Vimal, if only you could see that road, the white lines, mirror remains and blood stains. It takes a long time to go and when it does, another accident refreshes the scene.'
She only took a few moments to compose herself.
'Give me another lead and I will do it. But I won't stop pursuing this.I will be there witnessing these freak accidents but doing nothing about it only because you aren't letting me! Its my fate.Bye'

Nostalgia washed over her as she rode down the deserted road. She parked her bike opposite the curb and watched the vehicles pass by. 'to understand, first you must see clearly' her father's words echoed in her mind as she sipped coffee and looked at the same frame she'd been staring for, for hours. Beyond the curb was an oblivion of wilderness and hardly anyone stopped round the bend. One could neither see the road before the turn or slow down in fear of what's fast approaching. Nida was on that road many a times too, hell, far too many times, trying to figure out how her best friend died. It just made no sense to her still as she walked away from that spot defeated once again.

After work, she headed to her aunt's house for dinner. Everyone around her looked happy, having the capability to put the past behind them and put their hope in the future ahead. 'If its meant to happen it will happen, that's fate' stated her grandmother bluntly as they discussed old family matters. 'So it is all the play of fate when we cross someone on the road, or exchange notes for change with a random person. Almost like everything is written from above, and we just have to dance along?' Nida thought deeply into the matter and she felt insignificant, more than the usual level. 'Even as a reporter, I stand like a pawn in Fate's hand?' She pulled out her phone and checked the time. Far past 11. 'I won't' she promised herself while she kick-started her bike and begun the journey home. She took a detour to make one last check at the curb convinced that it will be deserted enough to stop and inspect like Sherlock Holmes.
               It wasn't until she reached the curb that she re-thought her decision but it was too late to turn back. Her eyes were too drawn to her digital clock reading 11:59 that she didn't see the road ahead, nor the person crossing it. Before even she could apply the brakes, she hit him hard. Things whizzed and right when she thought it was over, she saw the upper hand of fate playing his rightful game, once again. But this time she wasn't the pawn, she was the victim.

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Thursday, 13 June 2013

The Strange Entities called Luck, Fate and Destiny- 01

This is a 5 page abstract narrative of three lives each a representative of the strange entities called luck, fate and destiny. They come together to produce the climax that eventually changes these three lives, nullifying the entities momentarily.

Page 1: LUCK

The setting sun hung around on the horizon not wanting to drown itself in the orange waters.  Overlooking the marina was a worn out  building of gray blocks depicting that the people within had no intention of making their house a home.And inside one of those little rooms lived Rishi, 26, a struggling theater actor. 
His one room flat was strewn across with clothes, books and empty take-out boxes and like every other day, Rishi woke up to the sight of dusk, bathed by the time the sky dulled and was out by nightfall.
               Being one among the millions that crowded the only street that took him from downtown to the posh side of the city, Rishi looked up and sent a silent prayer to the Goddess of Luck.
'May today be the day in my history that I speak of when I get my first award'
The first drop of rain seemed to him like the blessing of the Goddess itself as he fished out a few notes, and counted the change.
'Maybe enough for today' he thought and hailed for a rickshaw. On the way, he read his crumpled script over and over, using a pencil to mark his modulations. When the fare reached what was in his hand he signaled the driver to stop.
'But you the place is just a little ahead! Let me drop you'
'But I don't have enough money, its ok!'
'You'll reach faster!'
A thought flashed through his mind.
'No. I will not do anything out of ordinary. It could mess up. Luck is a fragile thing'
He waved the rickshaw off and walked the rest of the way. The neon lights and strangely dressed people led him to a little bar. He looked up and scanned the customers that barged in.
'Am I slightly overdressed?' he thought as he realized he completely was. A train of thoughts that followed revolved around how his choices have led him to his place where he was, right now in the stench of alcohol.
'So it has all come down to this' he said as he walked in through the door.


'Excuse me, I'm Rishi.  I'm here to meet Mr.Varma?' The waitress eyed him fully.
'Follow me'
She led him to the back where the scenery fully changed. A properly lit stage and a quiet ambiance made him run the lines in his head with gusto. He almost didn't see Mr. Varma calling him. Rishi hurried over and introduced himself.
'Very nice to meet you Rishi, but we've already finalized someone for the role just 5 minutes back. We won't be needing you this time' Rishi followed Varma's eyes to a tall man standing and laughing.
'Enjoy it while it lasts' he cursed. Though his face fell, he thanked and left with only one thought in his mind.
'That could've been me if I let the rickshaw guy drop me'
Nonetheless, he made use of the bar, pulled out the rolled notes in his socks that he was saving for his big day and drank like a fish.
            When he left, it was half  past 11 and the streets which were crowded were a little deserted.
'Rishi! The Goddess of luck is watching everything! She will not let you down. Every actor has a struggling face, yours is just taking too damn long!' he started off well and ended up yelling.  
'I will not let his become my life! Enough of struggling!' he said as he took another swig from his bottle.Some more self talk and he found himself in the part of town that he didn't recognize. He shook his hand and stared at the clock for a while before it made sense to him that it was close to midnight.
'Ah! They say at the stroke of midnight, everyone's luck changes, refreshes! Really? To hell with it!To hell with all this luck.' he said as he crossed the curb.
And the first ray of the headlights seemed to him like the anger of the Goddess of luck.

keep reading, click here for page 2!



Wednesday, 10 April 2013

The Writer's Justice




‘You’re the… the writer! Ac-Across the block!’ she stammered shoving off things from a chair and gestured.
‘I’m sorry… um… can you open a window? I need some air’ Raoul spoke indirectly while he took his seat.
The girl in shadows crossed her toes and stood silently before him.
‘I don’t really have a window.’ Then she mumbled ‘Can’t afford a place with it’

As they sat quietly for the power to come back, his apparent muse watched him keenly during his inspection of her house. The rags she wore, the sour bread on the table, nothing was amounting to his vision of her. When the lights finally came back, Raoul was fetching a glass of water and his heart sped. He didn’t want to turn around and see her fully… see that she wasn’t that entire illusion he imagined. There were other unexplained things happening; things he couldn’t comprehend. Eventually, he did have to turn and to his utter disappointment she wasn’t the picture of ease and passion.
            The first thing he saw was her. Her hair was burgundy not blond; her lips had weird freckles near them; and she sprinted in overalls. His dream muse shattered.
Oh my god he thought. She quickly fixed her glasses and wiped off paint from her fingers. That’s when he realized he actually said them aloud. A few bright colors caught his attention and he glanced away to a window.
‘I thought you said you didn’t have a window?’ Raoul exclaimed as looked at his own loft out of it.
‘Oh it’s not real!’ the young girl went to the amazingly real looking window and tapped.
‘See? Glass. I painted over it. This is the view that inspires me to work’ she rattled showing murals on her walls and designs on her furniture. But Raoul couldn’t take his eyes off her.
‘This, inspires you?’ he asked nodding towards the glass painting.
‘Yes, weirdly it does. The architecture of this building, the angels carved into them… everything about it makes me feel like a creator.’ Raoul smiled.
‘It looks very real to me’    

A few months later, he gets her a window out of which she sees exactly what she had imagined and for him? Well… he realized that after seeing her, the muse was too perfect to bring any reality in his writing. He gave it up to see Heather in all her imperfection doing what she loved.
     Raoul looks out the window to see his actual muse. Overalls weren’t the only kind of clothes she possesses he realizes. And her freckles were washable paint after all. They sometimes meet for a weekend dinner at the cafĂ© round the corner. And while they eat, she pushes back a strand of her hair awkwardly. They laugh over wine, and debate about artists. Life goes back to clichĂ© and everyday Raoul dines in heaven thinking of her. But if it weren’t for that writer’s block, he never could’ve done justice to his own writing…or to his heart. The past was something he couldn't comprehend, but like many other things in life, he didn't need to for if its meant to be it happens. Even if its in the most delusional way! 

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Tuesday, 9 April 2013

The Writer's Muse


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Scattered around his chair was a blanket of worded paper sheets. His eyes were sill wide as he scooped them off the floor and stacked them into a neat pile. Then he sighed. What he couldn’t do for weeks, he did within a day. And that was not normal…Especially when one doesn’t remember doing it.
‘I’m definitely dining in hell’ he thought as he methodically ate his reheated frozen dinner. Somewhere he was satisfied with his work, but when he reconsidered if it really was his, Raoul could feel a strange fear creeping. And that’s how he slept through the night, his worries manifesting as the wildest of dreams he’d ever had.
Next day, his muse was there again. She had braided her hair; some strands hung from the imprisonment and she trudged around in a long plaid blue shirt. But like always her face was something he couldn’t call concrete and that made it all the more reason to wait till she showed her straight face.
‘So carefree and…real’ he mouthed as he began his writing for the day. Cups of coffee willed him to stay awake to find out the mystery behind yesterday. But he dozed off again, waking to a similar sight.    

When the morning arrived Raoul draped a cloth over his typewriter, fixed his tie and locked his door. He was finally going to meet his source of inspiration. ‘Tonight I shall dine in heaven’ he thought as he pictured the hearty meal they’d have together and the talks they’d share as artists over glasses of wine.
Dreaming forth, he rang the bell and waited.
‘Come in!’ she called as if she knew exactly who was at her doorstep. Raoul smiled wide counting the possibility that she’d been watching him too. He turned the knob and a draft of cold musty air hit him unexpectedly. The inside was barely lit, a candle or two at every compartment of the tiny room. He could make out a figure against the orange glow, slowly approaching but his mind was wandering restlessly. She was what made him come here but now the frustration was not that he still couldn’t see her.
‘Can I help you, sir?’ she asked meekly her blue eyes judging his expensive clothing.
Raoul couldn’t reply. His eyes darted everywhere. It registered the easel and the smell of paint. What it couldn’t register was the fact that no matter how much he searched, he couldn’t find the window where it was meant to be. 

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Monday, 8 April 2013

The Writer's Block



‘Tonight, I shall dine in hell’ he said with conviction as he drew apart the curtains. Another long summer day… long enough to derive some useful work of expression. However the past few weeks were spent in tossing and moaning in bed all afternoon, caffeine and music at nights and a bunch of complaining neighbors the very next morning. Raoul didn’t seem to get past the first chapter he’d written; often wondering if that too should be deleted. Today he decided to approach his thought processing a little differently.
            For an hour he tidied up his ‘shrine’; a cozy corner desk facing his French windows. He decided to clean a bit around it just in case during a trail of awesome words, his eyes would fall on clutter. Midway arranging the snacks he’d need for inspiration, he glanced out the window and saw her. Across his loft, the morbid households were allocated, but suddenly they didn’t seem so anymore. Her open white curtains brought the glow to the tall wall of congested windows. He’d probably never seen her, and no amount of tracing back brought that ‘something’ that she carried. Raoul slid into his ebony chair while she sat on a wooden stool, legs dangling and hand positioned at her neck. She was examining the canvas in front of her, brush in the other hand. She looked like a prefect picture of ease and passion and yet her lips twitched with dissatisfaction. The more he looked at her, the more words he found to describe her every move, even when she did nothing more than brush back her hair. ‘She is it’ he mouthed slowly running his cold fingers across the keys of the typewriter.
‘She is my muse’. With a smile struggling to spread all over his face, he pulled his chair up close and started typing away to glory. He wrote nothing of her, but every word was connected with the thoughts she invoked. He occasionally applauded himself, and when his thoughts were losing momentum, one look her careless grace put him back on track. He didn’t know why he found himself waking up at twilight, lightheaded and fingers sore.
‘As if one can fall asleep of thinking too much’ he muttered to himself and he fixed his glasses. Her curtains were closed now with soft yellow light peeping and her easel was kept half against the window. But, behind it he could see her twirl around in a flowing dress, ladle in hand. He presumed that she was cooking her dinner. Raoul sighed happily and flipped on the switches to the unexpected sight on the floor. He couldn’t believe it.