Have some faith.

I don’t find answers in your faith,

But you do.

And maybe we can go on living like that.

Maybe I can stop sneering at your traditional ways

 and you can keep from the thought that I worship the devil.

I don’t.

For I’ll need faith for that.
Carry on,

If you find peace,

You head bent over in front of idols,

And deities.

Books and shrines.

Mountains and rivers.

Fire and the sun.

I am but a blot on another dot,

In a cosmic space that boggles my mind,

And I tried faith to give me the hope that

There still was some hope left for us.

I am but moving towards death like you,

Trying to avoid the inevitability,

Trying to make sense in the truth that,

I am not worse off than you.
I have seen you shrug and brush off a tragedy as

The will of the Lord,

And resign to the cajoling that,

In the end,

The faithful ones shall attain redemption,

While I’ll be queueing up at the gates of hell.
I,

The faithless,

And yet neither you nor I are saved from the end.

Regret

Tell me feelings are,

Made of lumps in my throat.

Made of an uneasiness that springs around my heart,

When you go on,

Unstoppable,

On about what I do,

How I hurt you,

How I never listen,

And all of this in a spiteful breakdown.

On about what I think,

And everything I have ever chosen when I could.

Why should I speak at all,

Everything I say will be used against me;

so I don’t.

Unusual

This week’s photo challenge is about anything that derived from the theme ‘unusual’ .

Lignum Draco shares his brilliant photographs of monks in bright attire as opposed to the surroundings that are in start contrast. 
I am often captivated by the wrath of time on living beings and structures alike. Sends the message that nothing is immune to rot and destruction. When I look at this flight of stairs drenched in rain, the decay makes me think of all the times I have climbed them, during the twenty seven years of my existence. And that makes me realise how I am losing myself to the years too.

Photo by Aparajita

To those who know someone who gave up.

We should not claim to understand what goes on in the mind of a person who has given up on life.

Have you been there?

Have you been there, teetering at the edge of despair when death seems like a better option than survival?

Most probably, you shake your head vehemently in the negative.
How can you judge, then?
I know, it is better to live a long, full life. Someone who chooses death must have nothing to look forward to. NOTHING. When they put their heads to rest, they don’t lie dormant staring at the ceiling until they fall asleep.

When we look at their lives, we find it going so good for them.

What was the need?

But no, in the mind of someone pulling the trigger, she’s caught between the dilemma of jumping from the building or getting burnt along with it. When I watch from afar, I want her to stay put because it is not me faced with a choice between the devil and the sea.
So in the comfort of your friends and family, it is easy to miss what ghosts wreck the psychological defense of someone suicidal.
We have been talking about recognizing depression as a real threat to a person but we miss the signs that someone might be in the pits and we go on pretending that he’s seeking attention or just throwing tantrums.

Our answers to helplessness and desperation have set in stone.

You should go out.

You should think positive.

You shouldn’t watch such depressing stuff.

You should stop thinking.
You should stop existing.
As my bus approaches the bridge,I look down and see murky muddy water in a rage.

And I can feel myself drowning already. And I know, not one amongst the 50 people on the bus is looking at that possibility. They’re looking ahead, because this journey ends. And that is the purpose at hand. I look at the dilapidated structure as we cross it and wonder,

This bridge is in such a bad condition. It’s going to fall any day now. Will it be the day I make the return trip? And again,

I am sinking, trying to breathe, unable to see anything, the weight of things crushing on me. How much longer will I be able to hold on? I don’t want to feel death just yet. But I AM staring at it.

We have crossed the slight momentary trepidation but I am still there, I am still sinking to the bottom. Can no one see it at all?
No.
Someone who knows me, might.
So the only people who can save others from drowning in despair are the ones that truly know how the mind of that person works.

As friends, it is our responsibility to at least try. To talk and listen. To stall.
As friends, we distance ourselves from the ‘negativity’ and start telling them to not post depressing shit on social media. We ask them to not constantly seek attention because for us, the range of emotions contains only two:

You’re either happy.
Or Sad.

And nothing comes in between.
They’re not seeking attention.

It’s like a ‘save our souls’ message. Will you respond?

Will you be first responders?

What will you say?

And what a life it is.

This is your life
If I could read a book about me, I would. And it will be one ride of sorts. With painstakingly detail I read about trying to keep myself from drowning when my bus falls off the road into a raging river. Next minute, I’d be sitting at my desk, trying to sell a mutual fund to a potential customer.

I close my eyes at night and what is it that I think of?

I think it will make for a controversy if we could know what goes on in someone’s mind. We could write about something in different ways.

I watched him as he went on reading, oblivious to me.

This is pretty straightforward.

I watched him as he went on reading, oblivious to me. Barely did I know that he was distraught, thinking about his life over and over again in a playback. I could hardly fathom that the next day I’d find him bent on his desk, overdosed, wondering what could have ever provoked this.
So yes, a book about me would make for an interesting read. I want to remember what transpired to make me the person I am. I want to remember what of this life I have already forgotten. I want to know when was the last time I felt joy, the last time I fell in love and if I am capable of all these emotions that others so evidently feel.

I want to remember my nightmares, know my dreams and try to interpret them, however ambiguous. 

My life on the outside seems drab, viciously pulled into a Whirlpool of monotony.

It is the mind that’s interesting.

What makes me want to write?

The important question is this: Why do I write?
I have found entire worlds form around me as I turned page after page, reading what someone else had written. I find that words comfort me and can explain what I feel. 
When I read a sentence that goes:

The forest filled with the sound of birds chirping, as if it celebrated the birth of the boy.

As I read that, I have a picture in front of my eyes. And anyone who loves reading does so because the image the same sentence creates for him can be entirely different from mine.
Isn’t that wonderful?
I think I want to write because I love reading and I know what words can do to you.

Writers inspire me.

Poets create magic with their distorted perception of this world.

Novelists create entire universes full of unique characters between the yellow pages of an ageing book.
I write because I know, palaces will be razed to the ground but words will never die. And it is my shot at avoiding Oblivion.

Writing helps me cope with the dilemma of existing in the absurd. I place my life before anyone else and yet fail to find it’s purpose.

I write because it is much like talking to myself: unraveling the innermost thoughts of this mind and putting it out to censure.

Wake me up

Wake me up,

When the sun isn’t so brutal outside,

And I don’t feel it burning a hole in my skin as I walk.

Wake me up when they have stopped looking for me.

When it’s dark outside for as far as you can see,

And you will know not a soul cares for where I have been,

When their gazes savor of a hungry voyeur,

Wake me up from eternal sleep.

Us

Women.
Women who are mothers to us, worrying how we’re making it. What we have had for lunch and just when are we going to marry. Those who became mothers recently and are basking in it’s glory, even those who don’t think they’re carved for the task. Single mothers being a set of parents to their kid. He is going to ask you someday who his father was. I don’t know what you’re going to say.

He didn’t want you, dear.
She stands outside the obscure clinic, her face covered, awaiting her turn. They’re going to extract a part of her and set her free. Free of this judgemental world.
Women who love their husbands and women who are loved. She wakes up to snuggle up to him and he wraps an arm around her. Life’s good.
Women stuck in a loveless marriage, unable to get out. Where will I take my kids? What will people say? My parents will not take me back.

Women who go to sleep, cuddled next to their pets.

And then those who finish a sandwich on their way to office, tackling casual sexism as they drive. Women who are bosses and those who are subordinates. 
Women that bleed every month and yet try to pretend they never have it. They can climb mountains on their periods. Why should people get to know they’re having those days of the month. The shopkeeper discreetly wraps napkins in newspaper and then puts it into a black plastic bag. She feels like an undercover agent delivering a package to Matt Damon.
She watches him do that and wonders if she should be as ashamed of menstruation as he is.

Women who shout slogans and those who rather post a status update. Hashtag outrage.

Women who stand tall in the face of obstacles.

You will not go outside to work.

You will not apply for a job.

You will not drive.

You will not go to school anymore.

You will not talk to boys.
Women who carry on their heads bricks to construction sites and lament the builder’s cut in their pay.

Women, truckloads of them trafficked across states to be used as maids in upscale residential localities. 

Listen, you will take care of my kid and manage the chores while I go to work. Memsaab I don’t like your husband touching me. 

How dare you say such a thing?

 To be sold to pimps. To enter a vicious never ending cycle of exploitation. Women who deal in these women without hesitation.
Women sweeping our corridors so that they can pay for the education of their children. Those of them beaten black and blue by their men.

Women motivating other women and those that pull them down.

We are friends.

Sisters.

Our own enemies.

Women who work and those that don’t. The ones creating magic out of words. 
Women who are looking for love and those that have given up on it. 

Women who are achieving milestones. Women witnessing these women and wondering what they are doing with their lives.
Then there is a tribe of those that find recluse in gossip because that’s their escape.

Women adhering to stereotypes and those challenging it.
I know We are the same, all of us. Our stories make us different, have us grasping at reality differently.

Some of us affixed like rubber stamps into categories.

Good

Bad

Beautiful

Fat

Bitch

Cunt

Whore

I don’t understand how we make that distinction. We are misfits.  We love our men. We fall in love with other women. We are survivors.
Impossible that every woman finds a mention here but those that I have seen and those I know of, do.

Distance

I know we are miles apart: you and I. Yet I’ve been thinking about us. Distance does nothing to lessen what I feel for you and that is what I am concerned about.

What if, when twenty or thirty years later, we do not even know where the other one is and I am still stuck in time, thinking about you?

This is a trying time when we exist after having said our goodbyes because we have so little a chance of meeting again, though that is as good a chance as me wearing my favorite shirt tomorrow. And yet, if years later, when we’ve forgotten all about what brewed between us and you have forgotten I exist, 

If years later, I am still trying to extricate your name out of my memories, wouldn’t that be sad?

Because it will remind me how lonely I have been all these years.