Thursday, January 21, 2016


We build walls around us
Put doors in it to escape out
Windows to let the air in
And ventilators to let out ill winds, sins
We make noises inside
Suppress laughter and tear alike
In maelstroms of electric wind;
We settle down and take rest
Some of us, lucky, dwell in homes
Which hold fast; together
The denizens take meals together
Around a common table, in silence or mirth
Some, unlucky, have the meals
Taken to groaning rooms
Consumed piecemeal, all sense of family lost
Life trickles to a stop

In fragments of apology
And concealed bitterness
Which reveal the 'home'
As a sanctuary
A place where we invest
All we have; and all we could
So that we can sign out
And have the people assemble
On mourning day.

Jan 21, 2016

Friday, August 30, 2013

Before the Pictures

Before the Pictures

A distinct feeling
As if legs going weak
An urge to meet
…talk things when

There’s nothing
To talk about
All these burgeoning
Like a pressed throat
Or a suffocating mouse

Waiting to let out
Æons of tremors
Crash out in whispered nothings
Or wasted words

In arches, in cool shade
Canopied by dress and leather
Silence meets waiting
Take your pick: it's one
Dizzy thing after another chore.

(28 Aug, 2013)

Thursday, June 06, 2013

Cat's Way

She gave me a searching look.
I noticed not the sparkle
In her eye but her belly's curvature:
The rains had come a week before.

I was wrong: she simply crossed
The walkway, jumped up the concrete
Open tank; paused; then
Looked up the wall (heavy, might fall).

She had the safety of others to think of.
She looked back to make sure: I suggested
A light projectile, smooth; she turned once more
And sprung herself on oft-repeated flight.

It's a pain though
To wait through the weeks
And never confirming
Whether she gave birth, or died.

PS. A distended belly is often a sign of Cardiomyopathy in cats. 

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Italia Della

Italia Della

[Crescent.  An inner edge
               that bled rust
               into adjacent cloud-smog.
Gut.         Connecting to thorns
               a pulsing sliver, pressing
               until it burst.
Eyes.       Flitting: hither, thither
               left, right and everywhere
               —wake of a cutting swallow.
Engulf.     Cut to ribbons
               by a fleeting look
               that raged as it rummaged.
Inflict.       Look back to affix
               Stare to find a still well
               To park a weary apparatus.
Invent.      She found herself
like a long-lost crochet-book
whilst he stopped to miss everything

But then—she was a woman shrunk to girl, and he was a man robbed of reserve.

(May 16, 2013
To a fine writing instrument, costing a few dimes
Presented in hopes, or nonchalance (who knows?), by the one and only
And to a bright Crescent that still thrills my spine
If it does not still my senses.
The rest is…haiku, I believe.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013



Stuck fast on erect chairs
Pulling reins on galloping wisps
Time flies, or it sits still
Scent disintegrating on dried pollen

Primeval egg splintered
Smashed to poles drawn apart
By force; horses fail to quarter
Bonds sucked dry of life, air, tedium

Beads slither down stubborn throats
Unbent; impossible trunks coated with grime
Thick paste of scales, sweat, cheap fragrance
—Musty wages of hourly toil

5:30. 6:00. 6:17.
(A weary bus winds up the hill
You marvel at its willpower.)
At nightfall you stay back
Alone; punch-drunk mosquitoes gather
Breeze slips in waves over open wounds
Solace, and then, the logjam of the morrow’s loaves

(15 May 2013
Vatakara; February, 2001; Recollection)

Saturday, November 03, 2012


By her admission, the difference had simply been just retaliation. Earlier, she used to keep silent of his transgressions, his exquisite demonstrations of male superiority, and his summary drubbing of whatever childlike or experimental she ventured in the way of a new beginning. This had shut her out of all new endeavour, and simultaneously supplied a convenient excuse (in his reckoning at least) for continuing her turpitude. This last failing she did not register as such, for she was alone in his house, and they were many, all training their eyes and ears and senses and intellects upon her, who had her own business to conduct, her own life to push forward.

     Whence we come to an important difference—‘You enjoy yourself, don’t you?’ she’d asked him a few days back, meaning, not excesses, but real moral and physical satisfaction, a feeling of self-righteousness—and he’d assented in his characteristic fly-flitting way (what did it matter, it was just words).

He counted his days in a somewhat bizarre way now. He was running away from a depression, or rather receding from one, and it was just that he had stopped feeling that somebody was watching his every action. It was not really even ‘somebody’ (meaning, her). It was like a moral check, like he had to cross-check at each instance when he felt he was slipping into something concerning the opposite sex. It was always just words, mostly harmless social chitchat, but every time he went back after having a good time something in his family life would end up badly broken. Either the kid would put him to grief over something, or his wife would wear a leathery expression and browbeat him as if she knew the reason why he had a song in his heart. Either way, it was torture and he had to learn again to disregard it.

     He thought about options. The first thought would be about [*]. But then, he’d made no attempt to call her after she’d left for her pilgrimage. Yes, he’d wished her on her birthday and his wife had looked in his mail and found. It later snowballed into something magnificently belligerent just two days after. In the ensuing fisticuffs, he’d been so enraged that he lashed out and tried to pommel her belly, which was getting ungainly fatty these days. And she’d just returned his attentions by parrying the blow, nudging close and clawing up his face nice and proper. He had to wear smidgens of sticking plaster on the side of his nose and above his upper lip to keep up with his dandy image and avert an unwelcome query into something else for which he’d a less damaging answer. He really did not care for the truth or untruth of the answer he’d give, and he had a good mind to be frank and tell the truth, but then, he liked his wife better than most he’d meet at the office and along the way. She deserved better, and he never gave her what was due her. So he stuck to his story. And in the end, at the office, when the questions inevitably came, the answer made itself evident. He’d suffered the cuts from a little play-acting with his daughter.

     He knew he wasn’t fooling anybody, but then, these questions, once asked, just need some answer and not the truthful one. It still rang in his mind though: the fiery chill at the side of his nose and her ringing swear words: ‘go to her, your [*], go, go l**k her (*)!’ and just before that he’d flexed his muscles thinking himself opening up like the Predator before the alien, and got the comment that he was Bruce Lee, a leaking, incontinent Lee strewing watery shit right behind…and that was what made him jump at her.

It wasn’t yet behind him. They’d chatted over Internet after that, small exchanges, and even made love (she was ever the rubber doll). So it was all back to business. But then again, most households conduct business this way, don’t they.

     As she’d written something which he knew and even took sides with. ‘Earlier, I was silent. I’m not, any longer. That’s the only difference.’

                                                  And how he wished it were just that.

Friday, October 05, 2012

ഭാഗം രണട്: ഐ-ടീപ്പാ൪ടി

അഥവാ, तहानी की कहानी |
പുതിയൊരു സ്ഥലതെതുന്നവര്‍ക്ക് പിടിപെടുന്ന ആ ഒരിതുണ്ടല്ലോ—അത് നമ്മെ കേറിയങ്ങ് പിടിച്ചു. വെറുതെ ചുറ്റുപാടും നോക്കി. പത്തു പതിനഞ്ചടി വീതിയുള്ള ഗേറ്റ് തുറന്നു മലര്തിയിട്ടിരിക്കയാണ്; പക്ഷെ എന്ത് ചെയ്യാം, കവാടം മാത്രം വീതിയുല്ലള്ളയാല്‍ പോരല്ലോ.  ഒരു യമണ്ടന്‍ ലോറി കൃഷ്ണശിലയും പേറി താഴേക്ക്‌ കുത്തിയൊലിച്ചു പോയി. ഡിവെലപ്മെന്റ്റ്ഡിവെലപ്മെന്റ്റ്...

     മനസ്സിന് സമ്മതമെങ്കിലും കാലുകള്‍ക്കൊരു തളര്‍ച്ച. ലേഡീസും ജെന്റ്ലെമെന്‍-ഉം പതുക്കെ പതിനെട്ടാംപടി കയറി, അകത്തെത്തി. നടാടെ. നില്‍ക്കുനത് ഒന്നാമത്തെ നിലയിലാനെങ്ങിലും, ദൂരെയുള്ള മെയിന്‍ റോഡ്‌-നേക്കാള്‍ ഏകദേശം മൂന്നടി താഴ്ചയിലാണ് നാമിപ്പോഴും എന്നാ ബോധം നമ്മെ നമ്രശിര്സ്കരാക്കി. ചെരിയോരിളക്കം, ഒരാര്‍പ്പുവിളി. കഥാനായിക രംഗപ്രവേശം ചെയ്തതാണ്. ഏകദേശം 5'11 " പൊക്കത്തില്‍, ഗമയിലാണ്. ഉദയസൂര്യനെ വെല്ലുന്ന പിതൃവദനത്തെ നിഷ്പ്രഭമാക്കുന്ന ഒരു നോട്ടം നോക്കി, നമ്മെയെല്ലാം സൂക്ഷിച്ചുകൊണ്ട്‌, കൊച്ചു തഹാനി. 
     'ബേബീ ...'

കുഞ്ഞു നല്ല സീരിയസ് മൂഡ്‌-ലായിരുന്നു. ഇത് മനസ്സിലാക്കി ഈയുള്ളവന്‍ കാര്യത്തിലേക്ക് കടന്നു. അതായത്, 'റിഫ്രെഷ്മെ൯സ്.' നല്ലൊരിടം കണ്ടെത്തി ഇരിപ്പുറപ്പിച്ചു. 'ങാ ഹ!'

     ഈയവസരത്തില്‍ നമുക്കാ ഭവനത്തില്‍ ഒന്ന് കണ്ണ് പാറിക്കാം. എല്ലാവര്‍ക്കും സുഖമായിരുന്നു 'സൊറ' (scratch) പറയാന്‍ പറ്റിയ furniture ഉള്ള ഒരു combined ഡ്രായിംഗ്-cum-ഡൈനിങ്ങ്‌ റൂം. അതില്‍ അവിടവിടെയായി, ശ്രദ്ധയാകര്‍ഷിക്കത്തക്ക വണ്ണം, കുറെ ഛായാചിത്റങ്ങള് ('ഫോട്ടം' എന്ന് Latin —Ed.)  ബീവിയും ഇക്കയും. എടുത്തു പറയേണ്ട ഒരു കാര്യം, ബീവിയോടു ബഹുത് മുഹബ്ബത്തിലായതുകൊണ്ട്, അവരെ തണലത്താണ്  അന്‍സല്‍ സാര്‍ നിറുത്തിയിരിക്കുന്നത്‌ (എല്ലാ ഫോട്ടത്തിലും). അതിനാല്‍, നിഷാ ബീവി തെളിഞ്ഞ, തുടുത്ത മുഖശ്രീയുമായി പ്രവേശിച്ചപ്പോള്‍
ചെറിയൊരു ഞടുക്കം ഉള്ളിലോതുക്കേണ്ടി വന്നു. (ഫോട്ടോ-ജന്യമല്ലാത്ത മുഖമാണെന്ന് ഇക്കയോട് പറഞ്ഞു സമാധാനിച്ചു.) ഇക്കയുടേത് വളരെ ഫോട്ടോജന്യമാണ് താനും...ഈ മോഹബ്ബതിന്റെ ഒരു ഗുട്ടെന്‍സ്! 
ഇനിയുള്ളത് ചുരുക്കിപ്പറയാം. മേശ മേല്‍ ഭക്ഷണങ്ങളൊക്കെ നിരന്നു. കശ്മലന്‍ (മറ്റുള്ളവരും) കര്‍മനിരതനായി. കിണ്ണനപ്പം (3p), എത്തക്കാ ചിപ്സ് (ഒരു വലിയ ചട്ടി നിറയേ; നല്ല, പൊരുപൊരുത്ത സാധനം), മിക്സ്ച്ചര്‍, marble കേക്ക്, കാപ്പി (?)ആവശ്യത്തിനു.