Manali, We Meet Again!

Your picture from what I last remember is framed like a canvas, oils, maybe even a plain white frame with hues of bottle greens!

Surprise me this time, with something I seek from you! It feels like ages, since I met myself the last time, I look forward to finding myself in you. 

In the white sheets of the shivering nights,

maybe in the age-old rum and coke,

Maybe in the night of a crescent moon of mental sins and the thick smoke!

Or in the day dreams of my unfinished businesses, I hope I find myself in you. Manali, when I see you next, blanket me and my adrenaline rushes, my maddening spikes to have it all and nothing, at the same time.

Oh, how I have missed your snow blankets, how I have wanted to get lost in you, and so shall I.

I’ll leave the capital hopeful, and I anticipate you have waited for me like I have!

So long, Manali!

Shankar, I think-I’m in Love, In Parts!

I am, I have no doubt about it.

I hardly have ever fallen in love with humans, rather I haven’t understood completely this unpolished (forced) organic definition of love. If you cannot love one place, book, type of food, music, etc. How can you fall in love with one person and be satisfied? Confusing!

You surely can like a person enough to settle on a forever, but love? I think we just pick on people for an easy forever, conveniently adjusting to the best from the lot. No, we don’t love them entirely either. Do you really feel your parents are soulmates? I think a subway is my soulmate- beat that? Anyway, this is debatable, and the land where I come from (India), to talk like this is incessantly displeasing and sinful (which also happen to be my self assigned KRA traits).

But coming back to Shankar, I have time and again, fell in love with this guy, (innumerable times). But oh this time, he has swept me off my feet and put me in a state of trance that I don’t think I’m coming out of anytime soon. To give you a perspective – Shankar Mahadevan is a renowned Indian (also fairly international) musician, who I think has a voice that doesn’t age and keeps getting better. So when I say, I love him, I only mean his vocal cords (or wherever that voice is coming out from).

So amazon prime came up with this web series ‘Bandish Bandits’, which basically does not have much of a story, TBH, has some really nonsensical attempts of pop music, almost painful to the ears. But the Indian classical, the city, the local-regional influence on music, each bit is breathtaking (and that’s an understatement). I haven’t in a very long time gotten hooked to a ‘raag’ per say, to a certain kind of music, or even a recreated regional techno mix (I like those recreated fused versions, judge me all you want, some fusions are beautiful). But this set of a few classical numbers has legitimately made me want to put on my headphones and not take them off at all (I haven’t since I started). What a beauty!

Although, just out of curiosity, I don’t really understand the desperate need to turn everything into a love story in most of the Indian web stories, where one person is always struggling to impress the other. Why can’t people just respect each other generally as a human for their talent and grow into each other eventually, I mean, for once be normal, and not maybe show crazy royalties?

Anyway, the idea of glorifying love is never going away from the cinema. Let’s be honest, today – you cannot sell Gatsby, like you can sell Gosling!

Beirut, Stay Strong!

It’s easier said than done!

This hasn’t sounded more apt than ever, as much as it would today for Beirut. Last night men, women, other, children – have slept in shattered pieces of their homes. The one they built with affection, sweat, and some very hard-earned money.

Now I say very, because aren’t we aware of the geopolitical situation, we are. Could you, even in your wildest dreams, imagine the plight of the families who saw their world falling apart, and having no control over – even trying to fix it before it was completely broken, no you cannot! The house that carried memories of loved ones, the one someone grew up in, the one someone probably saved for their last days, the one where there was supposed to be a marriage, a death, a funeral, a birth, a date, anything, literally anything. It’s all gone.

Sit where you are, and imagine all the walls around you falling one by one, and every little thing in your house that you have put together blasting off, and even then you wouldn’t know how it feels. I don’t either, and god forbid I ever do. But it kills me to know that there are people situation-ally handicapped and the government is too busy pulling strings that haven’t been beneficial for their economy, as if it wasn’t enough that their economy was collapsing and now, they have this to take care of or say learn to live with.

And in a generic conversation with a friend today about Beirut, he mentioned how this is the call of nature and there always comes a time when earth takes it upon itself to fix things because we aren’t (Also casually mentioned Thanos).

Firstly, this was not natural it was man-made, secondly please put yourself in a barrel, cause you need maturing.

I immediately lost interest in the conversation because, how conveniently have we adjusted to the idea of death and catastrophe. And learned to make jokes about it, not because we are okay with what happened, but because we know we wouldn’t move an inch if it isn’t my house, my family, or myself.

Such people, ahh, these mothballs will shed, but only as long as it’s remote (both mentally and physically), I’ll preach but I’ll not move my ass, and be a tree and wait for the world to change on its own. And if that’s not enough, I’ll criticize the ones who try. Of all the situations in their life where they could open their mouth to freaking make a valid point, this is where they decide to exercise fundamental rights in a free democracy, at least on papers.

Beirut, I’m not sure how long will it take and how many more people have suffered and how on earth would they ever collect the courage to restart their lives, but I hope they do, I hope they have the strength to get up, collect the last few pieces, put them together and start again, even if it isn’t very swift, do it slowly, but do so!

Don’t let the aftermath devastate you mentally!

(NOTE: Pardon my careless writing errors, I was pissed!)

Whiskey Sour!

Whiskey Sour,
Among the infinite days of rain
The last few are etched in my heart
Like the brimming glasses of whiskey sour(s).
There was something that burned inside & outside
Of you, about you, & for you.
The way you reminded me of doing bad things, and doing them well.
Last few nights have been about that,
You had me then, years ago,
on those interstate calls,
Maybe also when in a parting fall.
Go, wander, suffocate yourself a little more,
Let me know when you’re done,
I’m all ears!

Memoir!

When you are in a memoir territory, emotions become dominant at large. So much so, that once while reviewing a memoir, a New York Times Editor, (also a reviewer, a playwright, a critic, etc.) Neil Genzlinger, looked at the audience and started by saying, “A moment of silence, please, for the lost art of shutting up.”

-And I feel you Neil!

Don’t Silently Bloom And Die!

I can faintly recall,
You were never like the streets we keep going back to for frequent strolls,
You were more like the chocolate brown coffee house in the misty dark woods,
As much as I loved your vibe, I’m never walking those dark roads again,
My shoes still got the stains,
You felt as fresh as season’s first peach,
Lighter than the feathers I’ve now.
The season’s towards an end,
And so is my appetite for peaches.
Find a different city, a new beginning,
In a place where peaches are welcome,
Out of scarcity or treat, whatever,
Try,
Try to become a spot to go back to,
Live, breathe, dance, drink, try new colors,
Cook, fight, love, be absurd, maddening,
But above all, be audacious.
Don’t silently bloom and die,
Walk ahead, in light or dark,
Walk without a torch,
Let uncertainty be the way of your departure,
Then & Now

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