Tuesday, September 12, 2017

To Durga

This earth is you, maa,
  and all that it builds.
My mute flesh, pierced by your veins
  and watered by your blood,
dares to say, I am!

You pulsating in my nerves
  are my emotions,
Making the world stand up,
  as my eyes, unfeeling lenses,
cast images in my brain.

You are not a goddess
  locked inside a temple.
Nor an abstract metaphor.
    But the meaning in every definition.
Insufficient prayers of insufficient words
  mean nothing to you.

Only actions build your form;
  and my ten fingers are your ten hands.
Make them muddy with your earth.
For this earth is you, maa,
  and all that it builds.

#durga #durgapuja #mothergoddess #mother

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Impossible flowers

Impossible flowers grow in impossible places
And they're conjured up on paper.
I make impossible demands to the gatekeeper
to let me into the guarded towers
of impossibly marvellous flowers
and the mystery of their split faces.

"Impossible", says he and looks away.
I turn to leave, but then I stay.


Friday, April 6, 2012

Cherry Blossoms On April First

The white cherry tree
sheds its blossoms with the sun's late rays,
carelessly on the neat lawn, all about the place.
I lie with my head in the grass;
White petals settle near my face.
White petals whisper behind my ear.
They wake me from my daze.

Its twisted trunk is heavy and tired
Of Spring's budding burden.
Its bark is dry with loose folded skin
with curses in creases hidden.
The bark cracks and the curses rise and wait
Slyly in lithe branches with blossoms ridden.

It creates an illusion of Spring.
April's first embrace of white...
Its blossoms creep upwards in tangles
into Jupiter's serene blue sky,
Shameless in their insidious ways...
They weave hopes of love in thin air.
Sending the heart on a wild goose chase,
they play hide and seek with the Easter hare.

Oh! The tree plays tricks!
under the the white mask
of a clever clown:
Poker faced it deals its cards
The deceitful Jack of Hearts.

Just a week's surfeit of white,
And then the flowers fall
As suddenly as they came.
Oh! The flowers cheat!
It's not really Spring...
They bring dark clouds of rain!

Axe the Cherry Tree!
By George! It tells lies!
It bears no fruit, its flowers decay...
It's tripped me on a treacherous root.
It's fooled me on April's first day.  

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

If Clouds were Waiters

That's not what I ordered.
I've repeated myself thrice.
I've been waiting quite a while now,
and all you've got me is water with some ice.
I asked for snow, rather politely, if I remember.
And sometime this winter would be nice!

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

White Collared Austerity

And eyebrows will be raised,
Thick and thin,
Blond and black,
Done or not.
Eyebrows will be raised
At all the rot.

Sadly, only eyebrows will be raised:
But not a fist
from a cuff-linked wrist
Nor a cry
from a collared tie.

Only eyebrows will be raised
with frowning fraught.

Monday, February 21, 2011

Lightbulbs in Euston Square

A heavy evening hung,
hung in Euston Square.
A dull and heavy evening.
a February affair.

Grey and black overcoats
sailed with little heed.
Grey and black and grey again,
overcoats, gaining speed.

In grey and black pentagons,
the sky was wrapped up well.
Yet in all the dullness there,
Lightbulbs cast a spell:

Cheerful chains of lightbulbs
like dewdrops on a branch,
hung above his head and asked,
"Ever seen words dance?"

He sipped his coffee and said, "No!"
"That of course cannot be!".
He blinked and saw indeed it's true,
His words he could see!

In tufts of mist his breath did prance,
Every tuft did waves advance,
And every word was plain in glance,
Below the bulbs his voice did dance:

He softly laughed, it fanned apart;
He said "Go!", and saw it flow;
Screamed a "Hey!", it did a sway!
He smiled and the mist shied away :)

Among long overcoats he found
A silver cast to mould his sound,
Under lightbulbs on a barren tree,
Speech as silver as can be.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

A Thought Beyond Your Dot

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Annoying glitch,
A pestering itch,
the one that spreads - that sort,
Was your secret lie,
That did not die
in walls your mind had wrought.

Ignorant waste,
Spilled in haste,
On your fabric made a blot.
But one mistake
Could not so break
your threads of sincere thought:

You caught yourself
And brought yourself
Confessed yourself distraught.
But I wish
you had once taught yourself
To think beyond your dot...

In your selfish guilt
you walked away
When I forgave - forgot.
You hid yourself
You slid yourself
When your voice I sought.

I wish
you had once taught yourself
To think beyond your dot.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Leaves in Autumn

frangipanis, chalk and charcoal on handmade paper, sujaandas

It's time to cut off a branch - along with its many leaves - young purple ones that have just started growing, some dark green firmly attached ones, and others that are brown and yellow and would fall off anyway. All of them add colour to my life. Attachments, weak and strong, that on the whole bind me so strongly to Bombay. Some ties that have names and ties that often were hard to categorize. It's struck me suddenly that my life will change: I will no longer live with the P. Lewises of Walton Road. I will no longer climb the wooden staircase carefully so that I do not step on the cat that sleeps on the landing. I will no longer take bus number 3 to Navy Nagar. I will no longer show the hideous pink ID card at the TIFR gate. And the shopkeeper near Electric House, who gives the customary smile of recognition, will soon have new customers to attend to.

There's so much unfinished, there's so much that needs closure, and this abruptness makes me uneasy. There have been relationships that have grown, many that have not grown, and many more that could have grown. Many, that have been stifled at the inception. Many for which distance made conversation impossible, and many for which conversation made closeness impossible...and a few for which I'm ready to cover any distance for a conversation. It's time to leave all of it and go. The strongest leaf must wither and eventually fall. It's time to cut off a chunk of me, with the hope that it would grow back soon... it always does. Though this time it'll be hard, it'll be hard to accept that I will not see many that I love so dearly for a long, long time.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

The Ego of Wisdom

(written in a nursery rhyme kind of a way coz i'm suddenly getting drawn to the simplicity of rhythm)

The fairy swamp had an eerie feel,
With clover carpets by the ocean teal,
With firefly lamps and musky mud,
With succulent slugs and a lily-bud.
Fresh sea-salt and marsh gas in air
and mangroves lifting their skirts with care.
Curtains drawn of silken spider thread,
Mushrooms breathe with gills they spread.

Immersed neck deep in clover quartets,
a lone frog croaked with a pair of crickets...
...a symphony of sorts as they did prance;
While an owl on a branch looked askance,
and frowned, is this some dance by any chance?
Look at thee, the two of three! Humouring a frog!
Piercing the peace, in our beautiful bog!

The crickets gathered their violin strings,
The frog, his drum and feet on springs,

and the trio sang in a triple beat,
and they jumped on alternate feet:

Two plus one they say is three,
an odd number we must agree,
A little less than pi and almost e,

The first prime on the number tree,
Three bears did Goldilocks behold,
To Macbeth
spoke three witches old,
Milford has over it three moons,
and Aladdin was given three boons,

In three base pairs is DNA read.
Three are worlds we shall tread.

Plato split the soul in three,
In three colours the world we see,
Chimera and Cerberus have three heads each,
Three are notes in every chord we screech.
Even thy name, Owl, has letters three
Then why can this trio not sing as free?

The wise owl raised a keen eyebrow,
His voice was low and he spoke just as slow...
I am the Owl, with a three letter name,
I'll beat you at your silly rhyming game,

I shall part your souls in three times three,

Under the three armed branch of this tree.
Badluck comes in threes, they say,
To your three Gods you may now pray,
I love three course meals perched on a log,
especially crickets and a rebellious frog!

So dived the owl and ate the three of them ,
The frog and crickets, with bones and stem.
Others thence came out in two and four
And they questioned not the owl anymore.

Monday, January 18, 2010

futility on a lazy afternoon

Off his feet,
a crow takes off,
perhaps a little clumsily,
frowning with a scoff
at the static rocks at the sea-face.
Eccentric winds from the bay
lift his form with ease;
Black, strong, and sly,
in the sunny winter sea breeze,
sending him off on an elliptical trace.

A lazy wave
tumbles in, breaks and ebbs,
The wind leaves white messages
in curious cirrus-cloud webs...
Who reads them this winter afternoon?
The ponderous Gulmohur
has caught yet another plastic kite;
Yet another leaf twirls down,
Down an invisible helix in flight
to meet his comrades soon.

An obese bumblebee
weighs down a proud marigold deposed...
And the crow eventually returns,
his claws carefully, tightly closed,
holding onto nothing from a pointless trip.
The static rocks welcome him back.
The sea gapes in dull silence.
On this lazy afternoon that's been so slack,
he clambers on the rocks and gets a grip.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

The Nose Knows

"sinuous smells"

Evolution has given us five senses to perceive an internally consistent 'reality' of the world around us. Yet we somehow neglect the sense of smell and give it little importance. I agree it's a base sense, perhaps not half as sophisticated as vision, for the processing of which we devote a lot more brain space. We give so much importance (and rightly so) to seeing, that experiencing the world around us is mostly visual. And since language mirrors ours experiences, we have invented several dramatic verbs for the act of seeing. We can look, behold, observe, witness, perceive, spot or simply eye. Yet to experience a fragrance, we can only smell it, or perhaps at most sniff it (and even that makes us look like a dog).

In spite of how much we take our sense of smell for granted, or not give it the respect that's due to it, the truth remains that our most basic behaviours are driven by it. Sexual arousal is governed directly by the sense of smell, whether one is consciously aware of it or not. Doesn't taking a deep breath near your lover's hair give you a rush through your carotid arteries, and you feel the blood gushing through your neck? And although there's a lot of debate about it, I'm almost certain that humans do detect sex-pheromones and use it to judge sexual attractiveness. You can google the sweaty t-shirt experiment for more on this. Not just sex, also to enjoy a meal, and to fully appreciate it, tastebuds must be aided by the aroma of the food to let us experience the full flavour of the cinnamon or the garlic in it. You know how drab foods taste when you have a cold and your sense of smell is down. Aversive responses are also strongly determined by smell. If a place has dangerous fumes, or if food-stuff has gone bad (and you should avoid eating it) the nose is what you should trust first.

In our evolutionary past, we must have used the nose a lot more than today. Every breath would tell us about our surroundings, whether a predator is approaching, whether the air is polluted or whether food is around. Smell filled in for what was not visible. Today, if we could (and I'm sure we still can), we should be consciously receptive to our sense of smell. As soon as one gets out of home, one should take a deep breath and experience the multitude of smells around. You would be surprised at the insight about your surroundings that it would give you. Try consciously taking a deep long breath to smell the air around and you would immediately know what's cooking. The nose knows way more than you give it credit for. Let's try not losing it in evolution.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Loquacity, in poster colour

Why must we speak
to tell of thought?
The silliest joke,
our mind hath wrought?

Monday, August 31, 2009

Highly pretentious thoughts on knowledge, science and religion

Science may set limits to knowledge,
but should not set limits to imagination.

- Bertrand Russell (1872 - 1970)

Whenever one observes anything happening around us and asks how, one is essentially prodding a question in science. Perhaps that is how religion came into being (particularly religions that were not created by one man, but evolved over time, like Hinduism). Man observed the stars and planets and their movement in the sky, and first tried to understand their trajectory. On having discovered a regularity in their appearance and disappearance, he would have asked more fundamental questions like how they are traversing the heavens, and what their trajectories mean. On a more fundamental note, he might have wondered how it all began, how the universe came into being. Obviously answers to these were not trivial (and still are not), and there was no way hard knowledge (or even derivative logic) could resolve these questions. Science did set a limit to knowledge there, but did not set a limit to imagination. Without violating hard knowledge (i.e. what they knew were evidently true), they added layers of what they thought could be, to make sense of what is. The Vedas were born, which were perhaps not religious, but were aimed at understanding the universe and existence better.

With time, this imagination evolved and became religion that people started doggedly believing in. It became blasphemous to doubt the sacred texts. Knowledge (from experimental sciences) has also evolved along with this imagination, and instead of redefining this imagination (now religion) so as to fit it into the framework of hard knowledge, somewhere in history, they got divorced. Doubt and skepticism that were an integral part of our philosophical thought process, gave way to blind faith in a fantastic version of knowledge-derived imagination. People started taking religion too literally.

But if one goes back to the roots of Hinduism, the Rig Veda, we see insightful examples of the skepticism and rational thought that went into understanding the world around us. Let us take the Nasadiya Sukta (The Hymn of Creation) as an example. Every supposition that the poet makes here is doubted by the poet himself (perhaps he was a scientist of that era). Even the all-powerful being is hinted to have not been conscious of himself (or herself or itself) until the moment of creation and might even have been ignorant of the process of Creation. The last two stanzas as translated by Griffith, are as follows:

Who verily knows and who can here declare it, whence it was born and whence comes this creation? The Gods are later than this world's production. Who knows then whence it first came into being?

He, the first origin of this creation, whether he formed it all or did not form it,Whose eye controls this world in highest heaven, he verily knows it, or perhaps he knows not.

(the entire poem and the translation can be found here. )

Imagination, the consequence of hard knowledge had not become religion then. If only we could go back to the era where "the clear stream of reason had not lost its way into the dreary desert sand of dead habit" , our lives would possibly be much richer and more meaningful.

Monday, August 3, 2009

An Apology For A Chain Reaction

A pause in our conversation,

You look into my eyes
You don't see much,
You look for traces of concern,
You don't really find much,
My eyes, do they look blank?

The supposed windows to my heart,
are open, yet inadvertently shut.

For my eyes have drawn a screen so sheer,
impenetrable by your piercing gaze;
My thoughts, they zoom past the moment,
they go into recursive loops in a maze,
fall back upon themselves,
tie knots and tangles,
and then open up again...

You're still looking,
I can see you are...
Yet I endlessly spin a warped web of thoughts...
Not of introspection or self assessment,
Only an absurd chain reaction that starts so easily,
Perhaps it was the last word you said,
Or the pattern of the froth in my coffee,
They fill my mind with associations
which often even I dont understand.
Just random inconsequential images,
but colourful and abstract.

The eyes can't help but doodle thoughts in the head
Tedious, annoying, often incomprehensible scribbles.

And finally you give up and sip your coffee...

And so do I...

And resume conversation.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Seek Not

A translation of a song by Tagore

When you don't seek Him, shall He emerge;

When you let go of Him, He walks up to you;
His light I thought I'd lost in day,
In the dark of night its presence I knew.

You won't see Him, you can't touch Him;
Yet, liberate your spirit towards Him and Awake!
In the patterns of the stars shall He voice Himself,
With the flower bud shall He blossom at daybreak!

When you don't seek Him, shall He emerge;

All the tears that once I had shed for Him in pain,
on white lotuses as dewdrops now they shimmer, wax and wane;

To my song, the dewdrops flash and shine,
and dance in concerted consonance,
And to my tranquil eyelashes, they,
return as tears of exuberance.

"Na Chahile Jaare Paawa Jaae"

One of Tagore's numerous profoundly abstruse compositions came to my mind a few days back, and I've been trying to understand the intended meaning in it. The song seems to imply that fervently pursuing a goal (be it God, love or anything else) often makes the goal elude us. Whereas dispassionately letting it go can unite us with the very thing that we now no longer doggedly seek. The song is wonderful and I attempted to translate it without colouring it with my interpretation, and I must flash a disclaimer that (like any other translation) I have not been able to retain all the subtle nuances of the song, especially the alliterative wordplay.

Since genders need not be explicitly stated in Bengali grammar, we do not know whether the 3rd person reference in this song is towards a man, woman, God, or a personified object. Hence 'He' is not necessarily God.

Friday, May 8, 2009

To Kalboishakhi*

(as experienced on May 3rd in Kolkata)

Impulsive summer rain
ushered in by gypsy winds!
You are by no means modest;
You enjoyed a theatrical entry that day:

When first with curtains of grey you hid the sky,
Then with a clangor of thunder you walked in.
A cool zephyr whispered your name
in all our ears.

You demanded an audience that day;
Little boys abandoned their summer games and watched!
Lovers let go of clasped hands and watched!
Crowds rushed out of shopping-malls and watched!

all eyes fixated towards your North Western drama;

The zephyr soon grew into a gale
and you impaled the grey curtains
with your brilliant thunderbolt
and ripped them open;

a zillion silver arrows rained towards us.

And we rejoiced intoxicated,
Indulging every sense organ.

But you left without a spectacle;
Or did we miss it in our rapture?

*Kalboishakhi - Nor'westers; local winds that bring relief in summer in East India

Thursday, April 9, 2009


Love is not dead;
It only hangs directionless
in the night's thick air;
It hangs low with the mist
lazily touching sidewalks,
looking for company in the empty streets
in diffident cats.

Love is not dead;
It only looks around for answers
in the haze of the cold misty air,
where clarity has been deliberately blurred.
It questioningly gazes at the lonely moon,
who herself knows not for whom she shines,
while dogs howl in protest.

Love is still alive
As a lump in the throat,
As a sudden gush in the neck
And in the emptiness of the heart;
It blocks conduits in the body,
which beg for catharsis.
I plead with Cupid to remove the dart.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Painting Life with Water

I took a paintbrush
And dabbed it in water,
With mild brushstrokes
I trailed it on paper;
And I drew a story
with Lines of water,
For more than colour
ethereal water feels safer;

Trails fade quickly
as water dries:
The patterns vanished
before my helpless eyes.
I stared at the paper;
it looked white for sure,
I searched for traces of lines
which could time endure;
A few wet trails
glistened in view,
Seen only from
skewed angles few.

If I let these lines fade in vain
An untold story would die in pain.

So I dashed in bold strokes of Red
And Through the water veins it spread...

A story with water cautiously made,
Red filled with life before it could fade
From a metaphor subtle and unsaid
It robustly radiated in red.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Hallowed Hyderabad

Hyderabad as seen from Golconda

The Buddha Statue at Husainsagar Lake

It was at least 4 feet long

Sridhar, proud of the age of the lake

My trip to Hyderabad made me miss two much awaited things in TIFR* – The terrace party and Republic Day. Yet I have no regrets that I chose a Biophysics symposium over a week that I would never get back.

My train arrived exactly on time at Hyderabad Station. A very jovial driver stood outside the station with a placard proudly proclaiming CCMB (Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biophysics). He said that we were waiting for more delegates arriving by the same train, and after some time I was quite happy to see a known face walking towards the car. Another student from TIFR, and I didn’t even know that he was coming as well! The Bong connection immediately worked with Shashwat and we yapped away to glory the entire week, at least for the time I spent at the accommodation CCMB provided.

I spent quite a bit of time away from the symposium, and Sridhar made my visit absolutely worth it. Sridhar is a friend from Stephen’s, who after returning from Oxford, is now waiting to choose between the top schools in the world for a PhD. But people who know him know that that’s not what makes him special. His spontaneity (which some mistake for rudeness), his characteristic demeanor (which some call clumsiness) and his hair (which he thinks is a fashion statement) are some of the things that make him Sridhar. He must drop the samosa once before eating it, drop the cigarette on the road twice before smoking it, and must spill tea on his pants in the middle of a seminar and then elegantly sit with one leg neatly covering the stain, as if nothing at all has happened. I met him almost everyday I was in Hyderabad, and along with extensive touristy sightseeing, Go-Karting and snow-ball fighting (yes one can do that in Hyderabad), we relived those wonderful days of the not so distant past in Delhi.

There was a lot to learn in Hyderabad. I learnt that one plate is NEVER for one person. A plate of biriyani would serve at least five and one paper masala dosa is not less than four feet long. I also have been able to conclude why so many people make it to the U.S. from Andhra Pradesh: It’s the magic of The Visa Temple (less popularly known as the Chilukur Balaji Temple). One must make 8 rounds of the temple before and 108 rounds after one receives the transcendental permission to leave. Sridhar also learnt a few things: his life is no longer restricted to the area of influence of the 113M Bus Route (he would even follow the bus in his car lest he would get lost); he realized that the laser show at Lumbini Gardens is not really a must watch; and he now knows that he could “lose” the clutch if he laughed too much while driving and the car would violently shake in protest.

And yes, the symposium was rewarding as well (in parts at least). I presented my work to a large audience from different fields in science, I interacted with a lot of people from all over the country and I learnt how to switch off in a talk while staring blankly at the screen. It’s more practical and less shameless than closing your eyes and switching off.

*TIFR - Tata Institute of Fundamental Research, Mumbai

Friday, December 12, 2008

The Fireflies and Night

Photo credit: Vishal Chaudhari

Playful fireflies under the fir,
flirt with Night's darkness;
Night's stillness insults them,
Being aloof and utterly cold.

Flashy display of love,
trying to get her attention!
And Night couldn't care less;
For her taste is grave and sombre...
For Night is of the pristine moon,
Of dark clouds, of soft shadows,
Her fancy captured by Serenity
As Silence on her froze.

Fireflies distract her calm,
Silly jarring distasteful lights!

Yet the fireflies pine for Night:
They burn themselves
trying to reach out to her,
Igniting themselves
with tacky green lights,
crying out, Let me close!
They fly about madly
for a moment of Night's attention.
The flies have their hearts on fire,
And their fault is that it shows.
And Night chooses to look through them,
Yet through Night their love glows.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

The Balancing Act

Ideal and resolved
Principled and uninvolved;
A sudden skewed stroke
All resolve at once broke

Isn’t Reason supreme?
Not now anymore…
And isn’t Logic God?
Perhaps once before.

Unchained, life’s become free
The excitement of novelty!
Ecstasy on a starlit night
But scorned by broad daylight...

Something did not feel right,
Uneasy somewhere deep inside
There was no wrong or a lie
Yet conscience heaved a sigh…

Turned and looked back
On Principle’s dusty track,
Where Logic reigns,
And the Self refrains.

Slowly walked back
On the same old track,
Where Logic rules,
On righteous fools!

Monday, October 6, 2008


pic: Senthil

Water's spirit, resurrected by the sun,
He rises to the heavens to gather into clouds:
white and grey ghosts of nothingness,
they float, soar and sketch the horizon...
Flooding the imagination with dragons and ships
that don't exist.

He envelops disreputed places with mist,
deepening the impenetrable darkness on cold mysterious nights...
Suddenly reborn on an unsuspecting drowsy leaf,
he trickles down slowly, running a shiver down her spine,
making her toes curl.

Riding the Trade Winds,
He gallops in as the Monsoons,
stripping the earth nude of her cover
filling green paddy fields to excess
ripening mangoes until they burst
of sickening extravagance.

Through veins he carves he flows restlessly
and as his vigour is slowly spent in his own maze,
he lies undead in the sea with tranquility,
To be resurrected on sunnier days.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Rescuing Yeast

(based on an experiment i recently did...it's an ode to my beloved enzyme, and has been written in the traditional epic format, the heroic couplet, with ten syllables in every line...please excuse my nerdiness for this one)

A eukaryote, enolase devoid,
Her elegant budding with craft destroyed,
Well repress'd with doxycycline was she,
Saccharomyces cerevisiae.
Essential enolase are you gone?
In-gene-iously before you could be born?
Even with glucose everywhere around
Energy to divide could not be found!
Finally help arrived with craft, at last,
From an unlikely cousin from the past.
'Twas the terrible curse, Plasmodium,
Protozoan, not a bacterium!
The pest also had an enolase gene
But could the gene help yeast was to be seen...
Plasmodium enolase put in yeast,
On glucose Saccharomyces did feast.
With contentment did the yeast grow galore
Budding, flourishing like never before;
P. f. enolase did the job with flair
O' wondrous enzyme extraordinaire!

Thursday, July 3, 2008

On The Move

Strange Beings, we are,
Constantly shaped by moulds of situation,
Transforming the alien into home...
And homes that we have left behind,
Become alien?

We incessantly forge new homes,
Conquering inhibitions and rigidity,
Opening a door where there wasn't one,
Surprising ourselves with our fluidity.

And once a home is made,
Time cruelly commands us forth,
Turning a blind eye
To all the struggle that made
An alien place home;
All of it dissolves,
And crystallizes into experience;
And past homes in memories roam.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

A shot of Tequila!

"A Shot at Love with Tila Tequila" - This is what reality shows have matured to in the United States while we still rot in the Roadies era. This is a show about finding true love with Tila who has the most intoxicating last name, Tequila.

Tila, a bisexual pornstar, starts with 15 boys and 15 girls, who all want their "shot at love" with her. She gives them tasks to do, like eat a pig's vagina, walk on glass (which incidentally was fake), get a tatoo on your back and other such deep heart-touching challenges. Based on their performances, which obviously reflect how much they care for her, she falls in and out of love with them, goes on dates with them, or makes out with them. In one show she was so fine with the balance of justice about grading her lovers' performances that she devised three categories of dates to reward them -the "sexy date", the "romantic date", and the "dirty date", all of which involved making out with her.

But Tila cannot keep loving all 30 of them! That would be too taxing on her! Hence lovers are eliminated in every episode, and they bid teary good-byes to their ultimate love in life. To quote one of the "jilted" lovers, "I was the one who truly loved her, she will know what she's missing, and this time I won't take her call".

In today's show, Tila brought down the number of contestants to 4, 2 guys and 2 girls. Things have started becoming serious. Now she must choose a partner for life soon. So she went and met their parents, in their hometowns, and I must say American parents are too cool: Tila dirty danced with one of their dads, made passes at another dad by sucking on a big juicy pickle and made one of their mom's show her breasts. The parents were very concerned about their children's decisions. "I am happy for them", said one teary eyed proud mom, "they look just perfect together. I hope the very best for their future".

This show shows us there is no limit to how much love an individual can have in his/her heart. It teaches us the real virtues of loving, caring and sharing. Tila is the goddess of love, the passion in her voice and the justice with which she deals with all her "lovers" would even put Aphrodite to shame.

And yes, Americans love this show so much that this is actually A Shot of Love with Tila Tequila -II

Monday, May 26, 2008

America, The First Impressions of

It's been about ten days I've been here and I think I am now eligible to write about my first impressions of the place and of course the people *grin*. Americans come in all shapes and sizes, but the mode of the distribution happens to be large, round and reddish, much like turnips. They're friendly and as you enter any store they heartily ask, "How you doin' today?" to which they even expect a reply. and just to clarify, I'm NOT being sarcastic.

I received a very warm greeting as I landed in Chicago from my dad's friend Tuli Kaku, very loving Kakima and Bittu-dada. I spent my first two days in America in a posh suburb close to Chicago. Naperville was the most manicured place I've ever seen: all the lawns of all the houses looked exactly the same, all the streets were identical, even the trees were barred from growing beyond a height. The pinnacle of this artificial beauty (I have to admit the place was pretty) was the Dupage Riverwalk: a cemented walkway through the "wilderness", with the river flowing by, geese hobbling around, and even a cut down trunk designedly placed in the frothing waters of the river, to give it the wild look.

Chicago was a much more real place. The cluster of parked sailboats in Lake Michigan was a spectacle. At the centre of the city was the Millenium Park, and what amazed me most was "The Bean": a large metallic bean shaped thing which mirrors the Chicago skyline. The city was alive with people and it being a weekend, with families and kids.

Then I came to Purdue, the home of the Boilermakers, as their football team is lovingly called. As I was approaching the place I realized the consul-officer who interviewed me for my US visa wasn't joking; the place IS in the middle of cornfields. Acres and acres of cornfields. The country amazes me with it's proportions. Nothing is small here: their Macdonald's burgers, their CocaCola glasses, vast croplands, the people, all are big.

Honestly I hated my first day at Purdue, the place grew on me slowly. There were no people around, I had no friends on campus, the weather was cold and the culture-shock: Everyone sticks to themselves and tends to themselves. To give an example, I made sandwiches and I asked one of my housemates if he wanted some. He politely refused. We in India would take a bite even if we're not hungry just for the heck of it. But here this formality when it comes to stuff like food, is something I did not understand, something I took a little while to get used to.

Bright sunny days light up spirits and soon things started looking up. I started experiments and they were working, I made friends with my labmates, and one of them drove me to Indianapolis over the weekend. I met some other Indians on campus, among them a Bengali and relished a language-treat, most fulfilling. It's amazing how a little connection with home made me real happy.

I have been missing Bombay, but I am enjoying Purdue as well. Soon I will get myself a bike and my Purdue ID card with which I can go to the Recreation Centre!!!

Wednesday, May 14, 2008


The cocoon has broken:
Drawn by an unknown urge
the moth readies its wings...
But the windchill stings!
And oh the cocoon's comfort!

Monday, March 17, 2008

Relieving Sleep

He stared at the ceiling,

as the fan went about its business

carving out circles,

One after the other,

with perfection and diligence.


The lump still in his throat,

his gaze deepened into the darkness.

Paralysed, his thoughts filled the room

with delirious silence.


"Never give all you got...",

his thoughts spoke from beside his bed,

"...in love or even in friendship!".

A few thoughts, scattered by the circling fan,

protested, "But!", and they dissipated.

Thoughts, snug under his pillow,

said, "Just forget it and move on..."

"But I did so much!", said some selfish thought,

grabbing onto his throat.

From the open window floated in a thought,

and slowly whispered,

"Expectation? Just kill it!"

"But...", said some helpless thought,

as he slowly slipped into sleep;

And troubling thoughts slowly dissolved

into the vortex of darkness, as the fan

carved out circles

with perfection and diligence.

Sunday, January 6, 2008


Shimmering silver,
Coins in my pocket,
my thigh they sting...

Feeling wretchedly rich
I walk the street,
Thinking candyfloss
would be such a treat...

Crafting large pink clouds
The large old man,
Stands with a grin
at the candyfloss-van...

. . .

My coins are gone,
in exchange that morn
for that fluffy pink thing
that can't jing-a-ling!

Coins we fling,
Evening and dawn;
Would we value anything
If coins were gone?

Sunday, October 21, 2007

The Ding Dongs and Tick Tocks of my new Life

Old creaking doors,
In old Walton street,
The old wooden staircase,
With a knock-a-knock-a beat.

That's where I live,
By the old Gateway ground,
Where the Arab-Sea grooves
With a whoosh whoosh sound.

Neat cobbled roads
Of Colaba Causeway,
Where BEST buses speed
and go honk-a-honk-away.

That's my hang-out spot,
By the old Sassoon Dock,
I hear the horses' hooves,
go rickety-tock-a-tock.

Life's become a clock,
And I hear the seconds roll,
And I hear all sounds,
But I can't hear my soul.

Friday, September 7, 2007

To Sony

It hurts that I coudn't hug you
when you needed it the most,
But my love's the same for you,
be you in body or in ghost.

Saturday, June 30, 2007

Monsoony Mumbai

finally i'm here! mumbai!!! pretty evident that i'm excited, huh? i'm trying to keep my spirits high but the rains are a real dampener...for those who haven't really been in bombay, it's terrible...it simply pours pauselessly! the longest time interval between showers is 3 min 30 sec...even in the rain, i've been out...

i'm living in colaba, quite a neat place, with the Gateway of India right around the corner! last night after dinner i went out for a walk with my roommate and there stood the magnificent structure and beyond it the Arabian Sea. Beyond the sea the indian coastline was visible as countless dots of sodium-vapour lamps...The Taj's also right there, and fuck! the cars which i saw!!! three mercedes parked one after the other...

generally i've just been trying to settle in, buying stuff and getting wet unnecessarily in the rain..thats about it...

Monday, May 28, 2007

Random Pic

This is when my classmates and I went to Himachal...The mist on the Ravi near Chamba was captivating

Friday, May 18, 2007


Parched and cracked and grey,
Land looked up at Sky,
His gaping mouth hopeful...
Smooth and majestic and blue,
Sky looked away in scorn,
As if she didn't care a bit.

Land heaved a deep warm breath,
as if to ask,
"Don't you love me anymore?"

Sky could not but be moved.
Her bright face darkened.
Trembling, her cloudy eyebrows met
as she thundered with passionate rage...
"Why must you hurt me always?"

Land's throat became dry,
He just stared in silence...

Sky's eyes filled with tears,
Till she could no longer hold them.
She wailed, she cried, she sobbed,
As Land felt her tears
run down his scorched cheeks.
And Sky cradled him in her arms;
Her breezy hair flowed over him.

When the storm had passed,
Sky said to Land,
"Let's meet at the Horizon at twilight!"

Sky wore her best black dress
jeweled with a thousand stars
and waited all night...
Land strove to reach the Horizon
but never could...
Parched and cracked and grey,
he just looked up yearningly.

Kolkata, 18.5.07,
one of those sleepless nights

Thursday, May 17, 2007

To be human...

In an effort to relieve myself
of worries, I keep aside in a shelf
my thoughts, my doubts, my relationships;
I live life stress-free, with a smile on my lips.
When I see others tensed, confused,
bothering about petty things, I feel amused,
smug about being untouched by anything.
Any bothering thoughts I can fling
onto that convenient shelf of mine, where
unattended, neglected thoughts yearn for care.
They cry, they whine, they stare at my face...
I choose to look away at a happier place.
My casual attitude and a non serious guise
are simply blatant, brazen lies;

And perhaps I have lost a part of myself
that lies hidden on that convenient shelf...

Piling on thoughts day after day,
The shelf one day might give way,
Scattered, the forgotten thoughts would lay...
And I would find the part of me gone astray,
to finish the jigsaw puzzle of myself.

Then my frozen heart could melt
touched by all the emotions felt:
Not only joy, but also to shed a tear
I could be spontaneous without fear.
Then I could worry, I could cry
My emotions could explode, as I would try
to get a grip over my emotional self
I would be happy to be human myself.

Delhi, 21.11.05

Wednesday, May 16, 2007


You are encompassing, you are true;
You exist in a single hue.
You give company when there's no light,
Stars are studded in you at night.
You are present everywhere:
In mundane coal and in the panther's stare.
In your darkness, the planets revolve,
Back to darkness, must the stars dissolve.
You are fear, the colour of death,
Poverty's dubious morrow's bread;
But O Calm and the Patient One,
You are understood by none.
Perception is only an illusion-fake:
The colours, that our senses awake,
Red, blue and green around that we find
They are but only in the mind.
You are what we cannot see,
You are the Truth, that will always be.
You are the Universe, you are all
You are God, before whom we fall.

Dying Souls

It is murder...
To sit at home in the shade
when you can go out in the sun,
To walk along the road
when you can wildly run;
To sit and listen
when you can stand and talk,
To meekly conform
when you can shock!

Yes it is murder...
Not to wonder at the cobwebs
Though you see them everyday,
Not to try to neigh
Though all you can do is bray,
Not to spike your hair
Though they're turning grey.

Do all the things you ever wanted...
Climb the neighbourhood tree!
Jump into the nearby lake!
Yes, live your life care-free!
What use is this existence fake?

In your singular journey...
Why not stop by the shacks?
Why not grab a tea to look around and relax?
Open your mind and see!
There are wondrous things that be...
'Cause if all you can see is your goal,
It is murder of your soul.

To The Burette

(this one's for all my lab-mates in college, for those who dont know what a burette is, its on top!)

O Ye Long and Slender One
Let the liquid from thee run!
In droplets fine or a single stream
In thee even acid doth gleam!

What beauty carved out of glass!
But thou dost break so easily, alas!
Wert thou in previous birth a lance,
So erect and upright is thy stance?

With an art of numbers on thee in view
Thou changeth with a drop the hue
Of methyl Orange and Phenolphthalein;
Such clever sorcery has never been!

In thy presence nimble fingers shake,
Conical flasks and beakers break;
And although one is so observant,
One never gets readings concordant.

Forever In The Waters

I was flowing
slowly and steadily;
No strong currents disturbed
my calm, deep waters.
A powerful river, I was,
journeying towards the sea;
my pace uninterrupted and uniform.

Suddenly I felt a stir,
Clear waters became a blur,
small eddies woke me from my trance.
A shiver ran down my spine,
On my waters Love began her dance.

O Rising Sun, beyond the horizon,
You were far away, out of reach;
Yet I kept flowing towards you
over frothy cascades;
The skies blushed a crimson-blue,
as I rode the waves and rippled towards you.

The end loomed in front,
from where I took the plunge.
Into a zillion drops I shattered,
touched every stone as I fell;
And your light I scattered
into dazzling pearls and a rainbow,
which found presence in my mi'st,
In an enchanted waterfall.

As I had leapt, I did see you from close...
And now I flow again, as I once did,
slowly and steadily,
Now Wider and Deeper with experience!
You are far away, but I don't look up at you,
For I have found you within me
as your Reflection on my trembling waters.