So many a time

It’s been so many a time

when times looked fiery

faces fearsome

paths unclear

that a single hope bloomed

and stayed against the wind

voices became noises too many

clamoring into emptiness

visions became illusions one too many

blinding what was left of belief

yet it stayed, the hope

rooted

strong

resilient

bending not to break

but to grow

changing not to lose

but to gain

reaching out relentlessly

against indifference

to cut a path that shows with time

only with time

amen!

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Soulful music

I studied in a convent school and believed sincerely in the power of piety. In fact I fancied becoming a nun and dutifully tending to the needy. Music, especially the film music was somehow beneath me and I immersed myself in books.

This is ironical since my mother believing that there is a musical talent in me had sent me to music classes where I simply whiled away my time, trying to get others attention!

Well my parents insisted that I learn violin the ‘carnatic’ style and even got me a home tutor. My inherent lethargy stopped me from learning even when my violin master at Kalpathi, Palakkad was the renowned Swaminathan Sir. I did however, get along well with his wife and she lent me many books from her personal library. My focus in those years was more on riding the scooter to and fro to college and classes!

Time has changed me and my approach to music.

Moh Moh Ke Dhaage from Dhum Lagake Haisha is a song that is not just melodiously rendered but also soothing to ears. The film is well composed and the actors do their parts well. But the songs in this film are truly ethereal.

Wake Up Sid was indeed a wake up call for Hindi Cinema to go realistic. Indeed the film successfully captured the angst of growing up and finding oneself. Again the songs were a winner, especially this one.

I guess Barfi! will be considered a classic in the years to come. A touching story enriched with great music and some amazingly beautiful people.

There are not many films that did justice to the acting skills of Shilpa Shetty, but Metro is a true saga of love and loneliness in the metropolitan cities that gave her some scope to act. This song is a story in itself!

Some have objection to the proliferation of songs in Indian movies but that is their beauty to me.

After all, what is life if not a song and a dance on the stage of time!

Stay Off work for fun!

It is a good feeling

to be at home

when you should be at work

to skip the routine

and dive beneath the blanket

to turn time upside down

to sit at home and watch the afternoons

the sly evenings and the entry of the dark knights

its good to know

you have done it on your own will

a cheat day

is still a good day

perhaps its still better

if you could go out and play

have friends to hang out with

and time to drink and talk and eat and sleep

hmm…maybe just don’t over do it

listen to your heart and your body

give it a break

and don’t go breaking

‘have fun when having fun

work when working’

someone said

but how about fun while working?

or fun without working?

Ps: Cheat days are fun days!

Of the leap over the doubt

Take the leap

yet land safe, my love

dream, dream big

and move fast

my love, but stop and look behind

yes, the universe beckons

sets the stage

invites, entices

you being brave

young and proud

will step up the game

do, do not delay

do not allow doubts to fester

the universe knowing you

your place will

match her step to each of yours

sometimes though

not always, not every time

there are tricks and traps

foes masquerading as friends

mentors not yet good at mentoring

yes, these are old words

the genesis of doubt

niggling bits of diffidence

clouding the sunshine

that is you

ignore my wavering

pardon my fearfulness

remember love

I am with you

forge ahead

the world is your stage

go set it on fire

the universe holds out her hands in embrace!

When girls meet

When girls meet

we talk of life

and inevitably of love

and yes, home

and many hopelessness

we laugh at our follies

and regret not having misadventures

then we crib

of the dutifulness

and mopping and cleaning and cooking

shifting to our love for dresses

of decking up

the ‘nathani’ she planned to get

the sari that has been so alluring

lingering on the shops and malls

then moving to foods

dwelling deeply on ice-creams and chocolates

we dive deep into fantasies

of outings and immersing ourselves in the many ‘unsanskari’ stuff

we decide its about time to do what we ought to do

or aren’t we going to regret

there is of course time to recollect old flames

sometimes music and films

we set our dates

and fix our plans

but the meetings call

the duties demand

the month ends threaten

some attire we struggle to fit into

with young hearts and

old bodies, maybe not old, not yet

we laugh out loud

and keep the laughter ringing

as we go on we say

we shall go out with a song in our hearts

wink in our eyes

mischief in our minds

there’s a promise of a glass of wine

or may be something stronger

to laugh out louder

drowning the freckles and the wrinkles

coz if not for living, what is life for?

so be it!

Thathastu!

The universe said

or maybe I just made it up!

PS: To Vi, Ro and Lee and our many flights!

Of ‘no’,’yes’ or better still ‘why not’

Some of us make it a matter of pride to be able to say ‘no’ and rightly so. If you are someone who can stand up and say the formidable ‘no’ to a situation, individual or an opinion you are probably doing the right thing.

As someone who usually hesitates to say an outright ‘no’, I find myself sometimes saddled with more work than I can handle or more pressure than I should probably take.

Yet, I would still say it is better to leave room for change, compromise and reconciliation than stick to the big ‘no’. Leave a ‘sliding door’ for new beginnings!

When given an opportunity to anchor a program, some of my students were quick to say a ‘no’, two of them said, ‘why not’, just guide us mam’ and there they are on the stage. For those who said ‘no’ without even blinking, an opportunity has been lost, perhaps forever. I guess it is rightly said, ‘stand up to be counted’.

During a crisis, a somewhat do or die situation viz a viz finances my friend approached someone who she thought should share the responsibility for help, ‘no, I can’t do anything’, he said. A few more firm ‘nos’ and she had made up her mind. Perhaps the repeated ‘nos’ put an end to the possibility of a beautiful relationship.

I am usually eager to ask ‘why not’ because some of the best experiences I have had have come to me from my asking ‘why not’.

Whether it be opportunities at work or friendships, hmm… (I am a bit wary of people some times), I find myself asking ‘why not’ more often than ‘why’ and it has helped me, so far, at least.

I subscribe to this view of Richard Branson, ‘If somebody offers you an amazing opportunity but you are not sure you can do it, say yes – then learn how to do it later!’ So what is your view, which is better, ‘A big no’, ‘ A Why?’ or ‘A Why Not?’.

I breathe you

‘Lend a hand will you’, I asked life and he smiled

‘Sit down with me and let me hear you talk’

I told the wind and he waved his hand

‘Hold your glare and bend down so I can touch you’

I told the sky and he frowned

‘Stop and hear me speak’

I told the universe

and she roared

I breathe you

I am housed in you

Your words drive me

Your dreams are what I thrive on

What is within is without

What is without is within

She said sagely

And I was quiet!

And life goes on

At the station waiting for the train they sat quietly. Apprehensions of change, new place, new people and separation, each kept to herself.

The kindness of the universe has bound them well and circumstances have only strengthened the bond.

The elder woman kept a brave face, holding back her true feelings and praying silently for the other’s success.

The younger one sat glued to the mobile, saying byes to her friends, the elephant in the room, she too did not want to address.

But then, who could have stopped time, who could have not wished for growth and prosperity and new avenues to challenge oneself.

Thirst for success became the younger one’s courage. The wish to see the other prosper gave the older one solace even in separation.

Then there is the wisdom that time alone bestows.

Some things looked crystal clear.

Some decisions seemed to have been validated.

A small tender hand fragile,soft and weak now often held the other in confidence and surety.

These are not tears…

She smiled through the rain…

This is bounty. And the universe holds them close, very close…..

Thank you for the magical 31,000 !

I always wanted to write.

I got some acknowledgement of my creative abilities when my effort to translate a text from Malayalam to English at the age of 10 got noticed.

I must have really enjoyed the experience back then because later as I grew up, I almost quit writing. I was filled with a certain self-doubt, a self- hate, a feeling of being incompetent, not good enough which left me confused and unsure. I got back to writing when a friend who means a lot to me casually commented,’ why don’t you write?’. I started off writing poems on the http://www.poemhunter.com rather secretly some time in 2008.

It was only when I started blogging that I began telling others around, ‘I write, please read my blog!’ This sounded strange even to me. I guess I was pretty ashamed of what I wrote!

I was an avid reader though and I read ‘The Citadel’ by AJ Cronin which was a prescribed text for my sister and the most interesting and intriguing Malayalam novel’ Marthandavarma’and later ‘Lord of the Flies’ by William Golding and many others for the same reason.

Sometimes browsing through others book shelves- mostly with permission, got me interesting pieces of literature sometimes even the ‘forbidden’ kind!

I grew up hoping to be a writer or a journalist and never a teacher, ironically,that is exactly what I became. I have no regrets, I enjoy being with young people immensely.

Commitment to more disciplined writing has, so far, been an unaccomplished goal. To a great extent blogging helped me shed a variety of anxieties and inhibitions and sort of freed me of many tangles.

5000 words a day is I am told, the magic formula to better and consistent writing.

Hope to reach there soon!

31, 000 hits, 200+ followers give me enough reason to hope for success. Thank you universe! Thank you dear readers!

You don’t know what you have done for me !