Firdaus

Where footsteps have never yet made sound,
And yet everybody is forever on moving ground,
Where hands have never yet known the meaning of touch,
And yet reality is the only thing completely out of touch.

Where every word has its own independent voice,
And yet every interpretation is spoiled by lack of choice,
Where every thought feeds on the fruits of liberation,
And yet every deed suffers from the absence of deliberation.

Where truth can hold its head forever high,
And yet doubt is forcibly pushed to fly,
Where fear is flushed out from every corner,
And yet courage found no votes it could garner.

Where nobody cared whether the time went slow,
And yet limited each day, by the amount they could flow,
Where distance was a measure of where rather than far,
And yet they needed to only think, not wish, upon a star.

Where death is a term coined only for the dictionary,
And yet eternity never seems out of the ordinary,
Where life is a term that signifies mere existence,
And yet living is an appropriate measure of its distance.

Where every feeling is worth more than its meaning,
And yet they possess no emotion capable of revealing,
Where every end is only the means to a new beginning,
And yet they never remember ever winning or losing.

Where the mind has wings, and the heart has a voice,
And yet they cannot find a single reason to rejoice,
There, consciousness is something they would gladly miss,
So that they can spend another moment, in this eternal bliss.

This one was destined for the Beacons, being my tribute to Gulzar. This person has single-handedly change the course of my feelings more times than anyone can imagine. (imagine a multiplication factor of 50 times per day)

Strangers Again

Not long after monsoon bid its last droplet goodbye,
Uninvited, unexpectedly, you happened to come by,
Looking out for someone, who definitely wasn’t me,
Politely reminding me, to not bother, just let you be.

But time is a trickster, so it decided not to wait,
And hooked us together, with a common bait,
Coming together seemed so much of our own accord,
That we never wondered, on when time had played its card.

They say time flies swifter when it is least observed,
Specially, times when life seems not, the least bit reserved,
So too were we, drawn together, like sparks from a flint,
Warming up into a flame, without the slightest hint.

Every time I believed there was something more than I knew,
You made it appear that there was a lot more still due,
And every time I believed that it was finally over,
You teased me into reconsidering what I meant by over.

That was a long time ago, a time when you were here,
Now all I can do, is to imagine, you are still near,
The ensuing years have dried out the last tear,
Making me believe life never took away anything too dear.

Even today I wonder, if it was all a game, merely a test,
Whose result I know nobody who will truly attest,
For, everybody has their own journey of no return,
And along the way, they have their own bridges to burn.

Our time is now gone, like it will be for all some day,
The day when each of us must inevitably go our own way,
Strangers we had met, and strangers we shall remain,
Until fate decides, to bring us together again.

This one is a continuation of a previous post Strangers. While that was an abstract one on the relation between love and life, this one is more grounded, and is about people. That pushes it into Gazebo.

Sunset

For that moment, I really believed everything fell silent,
Or maybe, the engrossing moment made my ears feel absent,
Because, once the spell broke, the world echoed with its sound,
As if in celebration, of this fantasy that came to ground.

Going back to when we came, to sit at the end of land,
Watching little shells emerge, and disappear into the sand,
As one wave competed with another, in a desperate bid to stand,
But forced to fall on their knees, as if by the flick of a wand.

Teasing you, tempting you, you know not, but they beckon,
Always watching out, for someone to embrace, you reckon,
Atleast to humour them, you decide to wade, a few feet in,
Hoping to see their quenched desire, turn into a grin.

But time wasn’t shy, to drag you a few more feet,
It had decided it was high time, you two did meet,
And there I stood, following footsteps that led nowhere,
Knowing that yours had stopped right now, right here.

The sun begins to go down, on another day so grand,
As I watch, the finality of it all, failing to understand,
The quest of the sun for another world, a new found land,
Abandoning this world, to darkness’s ever-forgiving hand.

But the waves can’t wait, to wash them away,
To cover up the fact, that someone came their way,
Helpless, I sit down, staring, trying to rearrange the sand,
Oblivious to the fact, that things are already out of hand.

The emptiness beside me, is only on the sand,
For, are you not there, forever holding my hand,
Looking into my eyes, while our feet get wet,
Pleading with us, to stay, until after sunset.

Another one for the Gazebo, about the days that are lost. when lost ones are found again, in another form.

Cannibal

For a second, all seems quiet in this primeval forest,
But only a second, silence is something they all detest,
Each to itself, noise is their only music, their only protest,
For, asking for understanding, is too formidable a request.

Above the saplings, beneath the vines, I finally reach a clearing,
Only to comprehend, it is the end of the jungle I am nearing,
There was once a time, when it stretched to the ends of land,
Ages ago, before it was within grasp of man’s lusty hand.

But things have changed, and so have the times,
All that persists, is the pungence of its ripe limes,
The grandeur only remains in the great oak’s tale,
As a witness to a relationship now nearly stale.

Gone are the days when the flora swayed in the breeze,
To the tune of young birds celebrating their release,
Days when the daisies couldn’t wait for the sunshine of spring,
Nights when cuckoos shivered, at what the winter would bring.

But the birds, grow tired soon, and shall no longer sing,
They find the tree too stuffy, to  even rest their wing,
Deafened by time, the trees too are now beyond caring,
Although they admit, the separation is beyond bearing.

The squirrel meekly watches, as the birds go their way,
Leaving the old peepul behind, for people to log away,
It looks up one last time, at the slowly receding pack,
Now more than sure, nothing will make them come back.

One such a ground I stand, a slave without a conscience,
Greedy, slogging for the greedy, who demand obedience,
Sweating, I continue, hacking away at the roots that feed humanity,
So that my children’s dream can soon turn into a concrete reality.

Although any reader would surely put this under Gazebo, the place it rightly belongs is Mirror, because not only is this about the environment, it is more about my own life than anything else. The message and the rest of the stuff is merely camouflage over a more sinister story of my own life. It is as much about an educated woodcutter and the ecological balance, as it is about two people whom I value more than my life fighting with each other, unable to bear each other. There’s a lot more to say, but that will have to wait till I get some comments :).

Threshold

The morning breaks out into a clear blue sky,
And you decide, today is the day, to give it a try,
So you begin, to prepare a schedule, fix the time,
By the time it’s done, the clock strikes noontime.

So busy, engaged in imitating yesterday’s work,
That you forgot, to try and make this schedule work,
Perhaps a little later, maybe the evening you decide,
Another of those opportunities that chance was denied.

Soon the sun too begins to get rid of its glow,
And you’re still busy, catching up with the flow,
When the strength gets weak, and the morale is low,
You coax the schedule to make its clock go more slow.

The sun is unwilling, but the moon cannot wait,
That’s when you realise, that things aren’t right,
You and chance part ways, hopefully only for the night,
Hoping tomorrow would show it in a much better light.

Just close your eyes, and think of the day goneby,
Look at the roads not taken, and ask yourself why,
Then open your eyes, an look above at any star,
And learn to ask how near, instead of how far.

Make sure atleast tomorrow takes you forward,
And doubt not, if progress can only mean onward,
Just because something seems to snap every time you try,
Doesn’t mean there is reason enough to stop and cry.

Because there is always hope, and abundance of it,
Awaiting to be useful, whenever you deem it fit,
There’s always sunrise tomorrow, to emerge from this darkness,
Because every morning you stand, on the threshold of greatness.

This one was a close contest, but I guess the universality was what pushed it into Gazebo from Mirror. This happened to be another of those ways life wakes you up, when you are sleeping at the wheel. In this case it was in the form of my employer. I was happy that I got into a nice comfy job, and had started to neglect my research, justifing it to myself with some or the other excuse. When all of a sudden, when I was almost asleep during an Induction Programme(why do things always strike me in sleep?), I half-heard the word ‘Threshold’.

At that instant, all my sleep vanished aand thoughts suddenly started flowing. In 15 minutes, the whole poem was ready, and once I read it I couldn’t help but agree that it really reflected the sad state of affairs that I could call my present life. The reason I am posting this today, is that I have finally climbed the first step to greatness called ‘effort’. Today morning I finally acheived the breakthrough, I got myself the schematics to the circuit board that I was searching for more than a year. They say life is what happens when everybody is sleeping, so too it did, today morning at 3AM, I finally got the schematics.

Abyss

The day was quiet, very much like the silence it brought,
Soaking in the serenity that my existence has long sought,
I wished music would beat noise to be today’s first sound,
As I compel myself to fight back and win lost ground.

Forgiveness is alien, something I feel ashamed to ask,
Surprising, how speaking suddenly seems a difficult task,
When the reluctant words are forced to hide,
The mind has no choice but to dumbly abide.

The shame gets me thinking, “why this reluctance”,
Why do feelings and words maintain their distance,
Some times I feel the feelings are ready for a confession,
But most often it turns out, they stop short of expression.

Everyday I am aware that the remorse does exist,
Yet I choose to ignore it, as if shrouded by a mist,
And I probably have the willingness, but not enough courage,
After all, I cannot guarantee my future relapse into rage,

When the doubt creeps in, it throws me into two minds,
Making me question, “is it the act, or the guilt, that binds”,
Leading me to think of the repercussions, if you choose, not to affirm,
And thus I languish, neither able to deny, nor able to confirm.

I notice you searching for that regret in my eyes,
You see it, but lying or not, you cannot surmise,
Because it is was true, they could surely have been spoken,
Instead of hiding behind an apparition, that was already broken.

All said and done, the fact remains that it is still left unsaid,
And that’s what bothers me every night when I go to bed,
About never having a chance, by the time I get the courage,
And whether I want to stall, till things reach such a stage.

This one is again dedicated to Divya. A continuation of what started with Chasm. So I guess that makes it one more for the Beacons. Many times after words escape our mouth, we wish we could do something about it. Maybe get back to the person and apologise, explain your side of the story. Somehow in most such cases we never get around to doing it. Atleast not until it is too late. And then we wish we could have done so, one day before, one hour before, one moment before. But that moment is gone and will never come back. So I guess if you want to say something to somebody, there’s no time like NOW.

Nightfalls

Nobody seems to understand, though it is a simple fact,
It seems they believe you’re a party to this daily pact,
Going it appears, into nothingness at the hint of dawn,
Happy that the sun is breaking out on another morn.

They know not, that you neither come nor go,
For, aren’t you the companion they don’t know,
Although always around, they never observe you stay,
Likely too busy to notice being abandoned by the day.

Left to yourself, you wouldn’t even talk of the day,
So I decide to let you for this once, have your say,
Everytime I think of my meeting with you tonight,
Visible yet shrouded, the possibilities taunt my sight.

Every dialogue in our conversation remains etched on my mind,
Realistic, believable, unlike the path to you that I had to find,
The yearning was probably what made every step seem new,
Directing me through an unfamiliarity I thought was you.

All the while thinking of questioning a reputation you deserved,
Yet, upon seeing you, my speech suddenly becomes reserved,
Ever expecting the ordinary, I stumble upon your surprise,
Vacant in expression, I could scarcely believe my eyes.

Each time you reluctantly reveal to this world your heart,
Reaffirmedly they wait, for morning, to see you depart,
Yielding your identity, for those that condemn you,
Never once bothered, that the same ones despise you.

I now understand how it must feel, to be hated for the light,
Glad though, that I made an everlasting friendship tonight,
Happily in the company of your blindness I shall soak,
Till I find truth, the one hidden beneath your cloak.

This ones is dedicated to two Beacons, Chint2(for the content-inspiration based on his poem Talk to Darkness which affected my life in a way I cannot even describe[the kind of stuff that should be made compulsory reading]) and Meghna(for her acrostic poem ‘Nightfalls‘ that was so simple and sweet, that it made me revisit the times when I used to write simple little poems in school).

This one describes my “one night with the night”, but being a very abstract one, you will find multiple points of reference for it, the night as a person, as a state of day, as a manner of living, as an object of fear, etc. What made the most impact on me was the way I thought about night previously, and the way I do about it now, such a contrast, and I guess I have ‘the day’ to thank for such a drastic change in outlook.

For those who have been wondering where I have vanished, musst confess, the writing never stopped, only the posting did, so get ready for a small deluge(couldn’t post what I had written due to many consistent technical and other glitches).

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