Thursday, November 10, 2016

The Colours of the Sky

For the unknown is an intriguing terror, he sought
The hues of the dispassionate sky.
And he, a blind man, 
Sought to hear what sight had denied.
He asked a man, and he asked a dozen,
And he heard sapphires and ceruleans and cobalts aplenty,
But what were colours, to he?
Hollow, hollow words that they were,
They cloaked his sky in blankness.
Yet, curiosity grew, as curiosity did.
A matter of circumstance then led
The man to an artistic soul.
The painter, with pride, proclaimed,
That he, indeed, was the master of hues.
The blind man wondered out aloud-
'Pray, what was the humble sky to him?'
With a trill, the artist replied-
"For men such as I, it is but a conflation
of all the colours of the world.
For men of science, perhaps, it holds much more worth."
Deflated, and yet with purpose aroused once more,
The blind man addressed a man
Who claimed that he knew what colours were.
The wizened old man cleared his throat,
And with emphasis, spoke-
"Why, the sky is but an instance of light."
Unfeeling, unfeeling was that bespectacled man,
For what was light to the blind?
The shades of the heavens above remained
As unattainable as before.
Until, one day, the blind man erroneously asked
A weathered seafarer the worth of the sky.
The sailor, with blasphemies a-many, muttered
"The sky is a godforsaken tumult of emotions, it is."
Intrigued, the man pondered
'What could an amalgamation of expressions mean?'
Curiosity wreathed a merry string of musings
That wove across his thoughts.
Inquisitiveness nagged the blind man, until
His wanderings led him to a humble philosopher,
Who, with shining eyes, spoke-
"Oh, the sky; 'Tis the face of the Almighty.
Waves of serene passion, of calm exuberance
coalesce within it.
It is a tempest; it is a storm of emotions.
It is inspiration embodied; it murmurs tales of victory.
It is painted with satisfaction; it beams with joyous contentment.
It is riddled with passion; it glows with fiery courage.
And, although it is streaked with despondence
Never does the sky simper of monotony,
For even the darkest nights are bejeweled with hope,
The gloomiest days optimistic behind the pall."
Understanding lit within the blind man, and he
With awed mind, realized
That somehow, somewhere, the hues of the sky
Were a similitude to the many emotions of life.

Saturday, June 25, 2016

The Songs Of The Dead

The songs of the Dead
Are the hardest ones to hear,
They resonate with the voices
Of the unseen and the unsaid.
They carry the timbre of futures not lived,
They are heavy with the baritones
Of memories not made.
The songs of the Dead
Are sorrowful to hear,
They are burdened by secrets unknown
and are weighed by words left unspoken.
They are riddled with puzzles not unravelled
And with hopes never fulfilled.
The songs of the Dead
Are the cruellest ones to hear,
They are embittered by hard circumstances,
And are forced by events unforeseen,
They are played to the tunes of injustice,
And are written by the hands of the undeserving.
The songs of the Dead
Are melancholic to hear,
They reverberate with the aspirations
Of men no more.
They speak of lost love, of lost hearts,
Of lost lives.
The songs of the Dead
Hurt the most,
For they remind
Of what has been lost
Forevermore.

(Thoughts after the June 12, 2016 Orlando Shooting.)

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Mock Not A Woman

Mock not the pride of a woman,
For she struggled hard to claim it.
Mock not her meekness,
For she always had the courage to stand with, and against, man.
Mock not the serenity of a woman,
For it bore her company, where men failed.
Mock not her confidence,
For it was the only commodity that she could afford.
Mock not a woman's weakness,
For her resilience lent her strength.
Mock not her determination,
For it gave her hope when times were bleak.
Mock not a woman's embellishments,
For she was seldom credited for her wit.
Mock not her emotions,
For words were never hers to speak.
Mock not a woman's silence,
For it was society that robbed her of speech.
Mock not her willingness to fight,
For equality was never hers for the bidding.

Friday, January 29, 2016

A Clockwork World

PART 1

The World once ran on clockwork,
Each human akin to a toy,
Which, when its key was wound,
Would begin its daily ploy.
Each day was perfection,
Each morning crowned by the same dewy glory,
Each night a starry calm,
With nary a long face, or a sad story.
Every life was the same,
The same routine,
There was the security of a life of repetition,
The safety of monotony.
The sun was just as bright each day,
as it was the day before.
The clouds merely repeated,
Their dull encounters from afore.
The people found comfort within it,
For they knew what was in store
Beforehand. After all,
Each day was merely
A mirror of yesterday,
And an image of tomorrow.


PART 2

Until one dawn,
Hours before the clockwork day,
A mischievous child,
Stole out, and away,
And pocketed the shiny little key,
That ordained the smooth functioning,
Of the puppet-like world.
The town awoke, to a certain missing something,
The sun was bright, ayy,
But it wasn’t quite as lustrous as the day before,
And the cloud, quite abnormal,
Darkened and murmured low grumbles and rumbles,
And everything was quite, quite awry.
The folk were clearly surprised,
Puzzled and bewildered and befuddled.
Never in a thousand years could the have surmised,
That their picture perfect land,
Could stumble, and teeter, and crumble.
There was panic, there was chaos,
Their was uncertainty amidst the worries and fumbles.
The kid, meanwhile, welcomed the change,
He skipped along to the brook nearby,
And while he whiled away the hours,
The golden key mumbled its farewell and goodbye,
And slipped into the bubbling stream,
Where by and by, it was searched for,
But never found, much to the people’s disappointment.
It had far to travel, to meet the golden shore.


PART 3

Months passed, yet the key was lost forever,
The world was upside down,
The weather, the day, the sun,
Unpredictable, And many a frown,
Dampened the world, those few months,
And many a conflicts,
Shattered hearts across.
Yet, one day the sun dawned bright,
Brighter than it had ever before,
Awe stuck the citizens, was their golden land,
To return again, so that they could relive,
The harmony from before?
However, there at least, they were met with disappointment,
For the sun shone, not on a bygone time,
But on the future that lay ahead. 
There was violence, perhaps, there was disquiet,
Yet there was a break from monotony,
From the repetition.
There was independence, freedom,
The lustrous glory of adventures,
A land of unpredictability.
And while, the men and women alike,
Mourned the loss of the security of the clockwork world,
They rejoiced
In the uncertainty, and the opportunity,
Of their reformed little world.
And so, once upon a time,
A naughty kid lost a golden key,
And reformed the world,

To a land of mystery.

Friday, January 8, 2016

The Window

The room was hers, hers to paint.

It was all for herself, each wall, each shelf,

Was hers, and hers alone.

She lit it with her own sunshine,

She stuffed it with her own joys.

It was a medley, but it was full of her, 
Of who she was.

Each smile was a trophy within it,

Each tear, a crack in its toughened walls.

The ceiling was a riot of colors,

Each hue a representation,

Of what lay within her heart.

The walls were embroidered

By the grubby prints of muddy hands,

With the mindless squiggles of an artistic hand.

They were the canvas

Of her vibrant memories.

She was satisfied within her room,

Within the littered floor of a childhood

Spent dreaming of the sun and the stars.

She was satisfied within her room,
 
Within the ornaments of her mind.

She was satisfied, until

Her eyes landed on the little ray of sunshine

That peeked through the curtains.

It unsettled her, it piqued her,

It made her wish to look afar.

It scared her, it intimidated her,

For she could not imagine

Pulling the curtains apart.

The outside was scary,
 
She was safer within her chambers.

Yet curiosity, curiosity beckoned her

Until, she found herself fingering

The hems of the smooth fabric
 
That separated her from what was on

The other side.

She pulled it back at last.
What lay behing, left her agape.

At first, it seemed but a mere reflection,

Of her own little haven full of fantasies,

Yet, the more she looked, the more she saw,

The little touches, the subtleties, that made it

Far, far more dearer to see.

The window showed her, not just

Yet another room,

But rather, yet another part of her.

She had found a room to share,

And a person, to share it with.

Monday, July 27, 2015

Not Just The Former President


In a time when all causes felt lost,
He was a beacon of inspiration.
A fire, a powehouse, a man with a mission,
A man with a vision, a man of action.
He was a father to millions,
A dependable, reliable personality.
A workaholic, a role model, a man of research,
A man who'd always stick to his word.
Innovative and creative, he was the perfect leader,
Frail, yet bursting with energy,
He was a man of humility.
A man, who deserved immortality.

RIP APJ Abdul Kalam. You'll always be remembered.

Sunday, July 26, 2015

Woolgathering

It's like we're running endlessly.
Moving across a loop, moving,
But getting nowhere.
Wondering out aloud, chit-chatting with our conscience,
Talking, yet not speaking, breathlessly.
Hearing but not listening,
Connected to reality, but oh so vaguely.
Chasing after thoughts, rambling
Through the meadows of our ideas,
Living in our own mind,
In a world of our own making.
Thinking, but not registering, endlessly
Moving, just moving,
On a path called nothing,
To a place called nowhere.
Perhaps, we're just woolgathering.

Mother

Her hands caress,
Her hands soothe,
Her hands heal,
Every wound.
Her hands guide,
Her hands fight
Every battle of mine.
Her hands shape,
Her hands mold,
Her hands hold me close.
her hands have calluses,
Yet they are soft.
Her hands are ever so gentle,
As they help me grow.

Monday, July 13, 2015

When my heart takes the pen.

Biting my lips, I try scribbling furiously,
Searching, seeking, the right words.
Emotions weigh me down, but not my pen.
It finds no words to write.
Tearing yet another sheet,
I scramble towards the next in the pile,
I see blankness again.
No words, this time either.
Slowly, I let my pen drop,
And hide my face within my cupped hands.
Defeated.
The paper conquers over the writer.
I look up when the numbness in my body 
Overwhelms me.
Another cold night without fire.
And yet I waste these pages, with words
Unwritten, untold.
It's as if the paper taunts me, 
So I pick the pen up again,
Grimace, at the blot of ink, now adorning the carpet.
The page before me stares rudely,
In answer, I stare back.
For a second, only.
I assault the paper this time.
Hours later, I finally eye the rectangular sheet,
And marvel, for I won this time.
I understand now,
The page remains wordless when I search my head,
But words flow freely,
When my heart takes the pen.

A Fire

A spark, it fascinated me,
Zest -the zest for something bigger,
Burnt within it.
It was a start, a beginning.
A prologue to something brighter.
A flame.
It intrigued me. It was a rebel,
From crimson hues to deep blues,
It burnt. It enveloped. It grew.
But something changed.
It consumed now,
It hissed and it spat,
It devastated.
It became something worse. Fire.
It burnt me. Within.

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Home

From the outside, it's rather drab and dull
Like a cold winter morning in the dead of December.
Nothing in the building's appearance suggests frivolity,
And the most that can be said is that those within live sensibly.
Yet, within the walls, is something different.
Even though the neatness of the ground carries within,
And the curtains are pristine and white,
And the floors well swept,
The place carries an air of well loved use,
An air of fun and delight and friendship.
The kids who've made this place their home,
Live with those who they love most,
Are together with the best of friends,
And this small orphanage with dull and dreary walls,
Houses the kindest spirits, the liveliest souls,
And shelters the most precious jewels of life-children.
The people that live within, the house itself is a gem.
And all those children are stars on earth, which is why
Whenever anybody mentions the drab and dull building, I think,
My god, it's full of stars!

Birthday Celebrations

Happy birthday, happy birthday,
We're so joyous,
Wavoom-wavay!
Bless you, may you be prosperous,
May your day be meritorious,
And may your joy be tremendous.
We're not a hint pretentious,
When we sing along and say,
Hey, its your Birthday!!!
Take a holiday,
Be happy always,
For though not the pay day,
It is your birthday!
Pamper and indulge,
Eat till you explode,
Laugh till your cheeks hurt,
Dance till you can't lift a foot,
And don't worry at all.
Wavoom-wavay,
Be happy, and gay,
Lets celebrate,
Your birthday!

Monday, August 18, 2014

Plantation Made Easy

( our school decided that they needed Guinea pigs for their experiments. Therefore, quite a few unlucky students, including me, had to go on a 14 km long trek, on the worst possible day. Monsoons, rain in the mornings, sun in the afternoons. That is how our day was. Read on to know more. )
Till now, my ideas about gardening had been limited to stepping into a garden with a khurpi and a sapling/seed and simply digging a hole, putting the plant/seed in it, filling up the pit and patting the moist soil down. I am afraid that I had to revise my concepts about planting a tree. To my amazement, it also includes a lot of stuff, which, this being the introduction of a speech, I shall explain in a moment.
Ever felt the wonderful, humid day in the middle of the monsoons when the sun beats down on your head, and thought 'ah! This is life! The best thing in this lovely weather would be a boisterous walk on a road through hot, humid woods, with no water, and no breeze.' Well, rest assured that I have not. My poor mind has different ideas of spending the perfect, humid, monsoon day. You'd think me sloppy, but I prefer the convenience of an A. C. over the conveniences offered by nature. However, I not being the decider of the fateful day that saw us doing the above mentioned(the walk, not the A.C.), I believe it wise to limit the views I have. Anyways, on 11/08/2014 many of us went to undo a thing that every human is responsible for. We became the knights that carried a shiny sword called afforestation that would slay the dragon popularly known as deforestation. What was missing, of course, was the fearless horse on which we knights usually ride.  A compromise had to be taken. Feet.
The formation our battalion took was one I would shy to tell an army official. We were in a non-strategic, highly exposed line. If someone took into their head that they had to shoot down the line, we'd be dead twice over with a mini machine gun. Fortunately, no one had a mind driven by insanity, so we were safe. However, unlike marching troops, our steps were mismatched. Therefore, what was first a uniform line turned into clusters of students with matching paces.
I shall like to ask you whether you can picture vultures preying on a corpse. They fight for food. The same can be said for thirsty students. They can do almost anything for water. We must have lowered the water table immensely, if the amount of bottles filled was an indicator. I learned a lesson there- thirst can drive you nuts, not to mention make a journey doubly fatiguing and long. However, the condition of the students is trivial, for they go on a noble cause. Nothing is too much when fame envelops it. To make our tedious journey more loathsome, we had a cameraman recording us. Trust me, the scowls of sweaty children are NOT the thing you'd like to publicize.
However, I, Avani Solanki, am here to speak a few words on the noble deed of planting trees,  I shall save you the gory details, that included moans, strange noises, oaths, swears and what not. The gardening itself included no khurpi, no pit digging, and too little of the process of planting. I believed I was meant to keep my hands clean, for I had to do nothing except hand the plant over to an Aunty who was there to 'assist' us.
But, I have not yet enlisted the method that I now know is most suitable for gardening. As you have probably not realized that I have already hinted on the modern way for efficient gardening skills, I shall now list them step-wise:
1. Get out of school in a line. Do not stay in that formation if inconvenient.
2. Walk till your legs hurt and then walk a kilometer more( that would be around 3-4 kilometers).
3. Make sure that the day you choose to do so is humid and hot.
4. Sit on the burning road when you have reached your destination and learn how the forest officials plant trees while you concentrate on the devil's fire pit in which you seem to have fallen.
5. Choose a sapling. Now descend a steep slope and find a gardener and a pit.
6. Tear off the plastic in which the plant is kept. It is of no concern as to how you dispose the plastic off.( why do I suddenly remember that areas such as we visited are plastic free hotspots? )
7. Put the plant in a pit (and remark on my alliteration).
8. Let the gardener do everything else.
9. Marvel at how you have succeeded in saving the environment with little effort.
I believe what I started must now end, and with a hope that the plant I planted lives, I must call my hopefully enlightening speech to an end.

Saturday, August 9, 2014

What if?

Imagine if you were given a choice,
To read the story of your life.
Every detail, every inevitable circumstance,
With the condition that you can't change your fate.
Would you read it, and know how life will be for you,
Would you face the monotony?
Imagine if you knew the day you'll die,
And couldn't change it, too.
Would you rather enact your life,
The way written on your chapters,
Or would you let fate decide,
And follow blindly onwards.
Would you let each moment speak for itself,
Or would you live in a predicted future?
Would you rather live in the fear of predicted death,
Or would you be glad for another day to live?

The walk

She began her life with a cry,
She had a long way to go.
There was a path waiting to be threaded on,
That bore her name.
She started off, toddling on it,
Before she was 18 months old.
She found it special, for it had its thrill,
And an unknown destination.
The lovely child, that treaded on her little feet,
Was walking on the path of life, my dear.
There was no end, just a series of beginnings.
Sometimes she went slow, in dread or joy,
Either she savored the moment,
Or let it pass by.
Sometimes she had to run,
Sometimes they were narrow escapes,
Sometimes she faltered,
Sometimes she lost her way.
But all the time, she walked on time,
She walked through her life.
Youth turned to senility,
And her steps grew infirm.
And though she knew not where she headed,
She had to walk along.
Maybe there was an end, a destination,
But her journey ended before,
And somewhere in the middle,
She rested forever more.
It was before her final step,
It was before her final breath,
That she was given the satisfaction of knowing,
That the path itself was her goal,
That the walk she savored, the walk she dreaded,
Was what was meant for her.
She realized, that this was special, unique,
The path that bore her name.
This path that had been crossed by many more,
Was her very own, never to be treaded on again.