Death Of A Bookstore
The room is cold and sterile,
Bereft of sensations.
The walls exude a chill,
As a thin light through the window spills.
Casting pale shadows on racks,
Dry yet musty,
Where the tomes rest, in slothful idleness,
And volumes of tales, lost in translation,
Spineless and desiccated,
Paper backs and hard backs, in desolation,
Their timeworn leaves rasping sad stories of estrangement-
None to take, none to hold, none to own.
Saunters in the empty aisles,
A loner, looking at
Dissociated and distanced by brackets.
Foggy titles on dusty covers and dusty jackets.
This world is spookish,
And anything but bookish.
Oh for that waft of warm scent!
Of bounded leather and printed paper,
Of steaming mugs and rustling leaves,
Of hushed tones and sunny spirits.
Alas! The bewitching hour is spent.
The bookworm’s beating heart stills.
The truth unveils,
Like an anticlimactic ending of a chapter,
It is now a local lore,
‘Death of a Bookstore’
Electronic earthworms can now chomp ‘n slurp away million bytes a minute to flashy pen drives as we relax getting a caffeine refill or hairdo.
Whether we get it all into our grey cells is another matter!
Era of the on demand literati has arrived.
When book stores die let electronic stores sprout!
More money in the latter if you ask me!
Come unannounced sometimes
When you are like free rhymes,
That comes creeping anytime.
Come and remind me of my existence
Call me by my name with persistence
Flying like a broken kite in daylight
Bring in smiling happiness bright.
Chirps in dawn with sweet melody
Like the cold breeze kisses my cheek
When I feel exhausted and weak.
Crossing through meshes of metals
Drown me in your tender presence
I long for those liberated moments.
Come like a child without inhibition
Who comes to play pranks forbidden
I need playful gestures of innocence
When nothing matters but sensations.
Come with the gift of your vacant mind
Stealing some mischief of sunshine
Under the tree our hearts will swing
We will fly together on unseen wings.
Come to spend the day at leisure
When our company is the only pleasure
Don’t bring a watch for time to measure
When I wear the wings of my dreams,
Then I sing the song of my life,
When I hum the tune of my wishes,
Then I write the enchanting words of delight.
Golden hair strands, roll over my forehead,
I carefully put them aside,
This is when, I look into my own dreamy eyes,
I turn to the keyboard, I smile and I write.
Flowers of ecstacy, spreads their fragrance in the air,
I look at the thorns, that pricked me, once in disguise,
Suddenly I realize, What I have inside,
The most valuable possession is life…
The curls of my hair, flutter in the air,
The lashes of my eye, blink and I sigh,
Looking at the past is a long lost lane,
I wandered here and there, never wanting to be sane…
Raindrops asked me to sit and introspect,
I love rains, I finally have to give them respect,
The winds moved and then took a new way,
I realized my life was simple, yet on a highway…
I look out of my long –glass-window pane,
I see someone running to me, I realize its rain!
I stepped in my own shows, removing the mask over me,
The shining face beneath was making a plea,
Then I realized…
Colors of mist may mock in pride,
Devils of past may ridicule in every premise,
But I look into the mirror,this is when I smile,
I know, I haven’t lost myself, I am a true being inside.
My sadness is small ;
As small as a teardrop rolling down my cheek.
And on the others,
It’s too huge to fit into my hands.
It stretches, it expands
And becomes a giant monster.
It visits me on lonely nights
With lilies and chocolates.
It slits my skin
And pulls out my veins
Like guitar strings
And plays a strange rhythm.
It sings gloomy songs to me
And makes me eat bitter memories for dinner.
On some days,
It hides inside my pocket like a baby bird;
And on others,
It holds my hand
Like my lover
And we go out for a walk.
It makes love to me every night
We blend into each other;
So perfectly that
We become indistinguishable.
But when I try to leave,
Howls like a wolf.
It throws the crockery at me
And cuts my skin with a knife.
It bites me
And strangles me until I’m out of breath.
I cried when I had to take my first step towards you.
That building of the school, those benches and the atmosphere – everything was new.
I had a way of speaking which was hard to understand,
I had to muster all my courage to even properly stand.
Days passed, that building grew familiar;
Now I didn’t cry,
Instead, in our uniforms, all we could do is fly.
I loved the blackness of the board and whiteness of chalk,
I loved being with my ‘folks’.
I loved playing hopscotch, drawing square boxes and jumping around.
I loved playing with stones;
I loved every bit of those days, I was never alone.
Though home works were scary,
But, I managed, at times just barely.
More days passed, that building became my identity;
Hopes rose high and so did our stupidity.
We had small dreams, just finish ‘boards’ and life would be easy.
In midst of all this we had our first crush, one look enough to make us dizzy.
Love at first sight mixed with innocence;
Love letters were transferred in teachers presence.
Some got caught, some escaped,
But the naughtiness of innocuous days continued.
‘Reproduction’ was to be taught and exams were near,
The attendance reached the summit because of the chapter.
We enjoyed every bit of it, without a doubt,
In that moment we did feel mischievously proud.
More days passed and we had to take that last step out of that building,
I cried – we all cried.
Heart felt heavy, mind was numb,
‘Never say goodbye’, we all decided to play dumb.
Those days, we just wanted to grow, run away, to be in college soon,
We didn’t realise then that school was a boon.
We had to grow only to realise that growing is a mistake,
Not something but everything now seems of distaste.
We have cried for years,
remembering every memory that is dear-
That building in which we lost ourselves,
Those walls that confided in us.
Now that building is memory, that uniform torn, and we are in search of an identity that would last.
Now, we realise, melody was in ‘good morning’ song;
The curves of the six letters is where we did actually belong.
Sweetness was in teachers stick;
True were those bunks, with an application, “with due respect, I am sick”.
I pine, I crave, I long,
For those days that are now long gone.
If it were only memory of those days I wouldn’t mind,
However it’s me whom I lost and am yearning to find.
Maybe I will find her maybe I will not,
But those days I can never forget.
Tears along with a smile will always roll,
Whenever I look back and think of my school.
I weaved a world,
From twigs and feathers,
Hewn from my beak,
Twined with leaves,
To cocoon you from wind and weather.
A tiny world it was.
It bestowed you with wings,
And voice and spirit,
Songs of seasons, for you to sing,
With harmony sans lyric.
Flown you have,
Made your choice.
Your new world,
And I rejoice.
From your worldly sojourn,
I espy this small nest,
In my big world,
Tucked among leaves,
Under the eaves.
A tiny world it was not.
It told tales of Wings,
With voice and spirit,
Songs of seasons that I hear you sing,
With harmony sans lyric.
The vagaries of this world you will withstand,
For your world,
In my hand,
It is your hearth,
It is my heart.
LAMP OF HOPE
Let us kindle the lamp of hope
As echelons of zillion lights adorn,
Pearls of gleams in these autumn nights
To bless us all and rid us of sufferings
Humble thanks to God to give us prosperity
Let’s share love and delight
People get a chance to express their thoughts
And reminisces of this festival of lights
Triumph of good over evil it shows,
Making the less fortunate smile,
Effusing joys to all abound
Where everyone enjoys a royal feast
It seems to be a happy day on Earth
Because I have lit the Lamp of Hope,
This gives me light
Spread this light, there is love for all
True light gives joy in heavenly style
And I wish we feel this way
I will shine for you like a lamp
For the early dawn and the birth of humanity
It provides hope and light for the new beginning.
Shirish asked me if I could write about him and I didn’t say a word.
I remember back in 10 th grade how Shirish wrote a poem and left it on my desk just before the morning assembly.
It was royal blue ink on ruled lines and it smelled like the deodorant he used to wear.
Whats me without you?
I have found my world
There is only you in it
What is me without you?
Just like night with out its moon
Summer without its sun
Stopping a flower from blooming when its almost done
It is like Dalmatians without spots
A piglet with out pooh
It is like Dori not being in Nemo
That is me with out you
You are my sun,
My moon shining on me
No matter what I am going through.
I wasn’t sure if the girl in the poem was me because I wasn’t the most beautiful girl in the entire school. I couldn’t possibly take his breath away.
I had never thought about it that time.
Showing this to my class teacher and my friends would create more issues and would disturb him as well as me.
I remained passive not reacting even a bit. I was more focused on my target of getting above 90 percent in Secondary School Certificate exams and achieved it too getting 93.
He fell for another classmate three months later.
I tossed the paper away. The last time I saw him was in the Eichsttat Hall on the School Send off Day . It has been six years but I still carry the poem with me.