screwed (iii)

reverie

pulling and pushing
into each other,
apart from each other,

the red becomes mellow, and
pink dreams arrive in a wave
of a desert storm,

i remember my home
through your tongue,

i remember my death
at your teeth’s artistry.

like a fly, i wait at the doorstep
before seeking to enter
at the exit.

.
© Anmol Arora

Read screwed and screwed (ii)
Image source (Reverie by Richard Taddei)

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on self-sabotaging

rene-milot-fall-of-icarus-illustration-painting-art-rene-milot


your voice carried the weight of your histories,
like those block prints on a century-old manuscript
that you cherish,

you seem to have lived multiple lifetimes
in a span of one (not singular),
as people often do, like a bejeweled carving
on an empty palm,

you set the reel rolling from the desolation of Mongolia
to the ruins of Pompeii, in quest of an experience
of its own volition, of its own existence,

as i recovered from the resting thought
of my own creation, the progeny of woe,
the offspring of caged freedoms (self-imposed)—

ash and want strewn between the feet (four and many)
i, a moon-monstrosity, of a magician’s curse
ignorant in my limited imagination,

and all of a sudden, i wanted to see a sunrise
unfold in its innocence of birth, and hold
my own body aloft, at the cliff of longing,
and plunge into the cold-bitter sea of despair,
with another cutting-off, of ties, with Elpis —

a ritual closing off in its burning delight,

like the Icarian wing, with its abrupt necessity
to rebel against the desire of life.

.
© Anmol Arora

Image source (The fall of Icarus by René Milot)

Perhaps a category of confessional verses, accompanied with on loneliness.
Linking it up with the Poetry Pantry at PU

on loneliness

depression-5859313455e7e__700
can i believe my own empty sighs
when they appear too far and too little
between my symptomatic need for
despair and disrepair?

“be strong,” they say, “exercise your
agency over your adust remains,”

i wonder if wisdom lies in being aware
or being a practitioner of that awareness —

i, for one, seek redemption in verifying and living
the knowledge of destruction, holding it like
a cosseted corolla of memory,
that is becoming of me — a spoiled sepia-
sequestered detail in the possibility of
existence — a fierce idea without a fulcrum
to safeguard harmony.

“you are not lonely,” i say to myself,
but i do not know where it becomes me
and when i become an evidence to
breaking, and a splintered sensation
of nothing.

i am the last inhalation of smoke,
a testament to the fallacy
of my name.

after all,
where did loneliness surge & stage its act
if not at the juncture where my words trigger
an acid reflux, and transmogrify into aphanitic ash?

.

© Anmol Arora 2018

Image source (Falling by Clara Lieu)
For “How Does the Story End?” at With Real Toads.

 

the thing about beautiful worlds

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~
an unwarranted gloom sets in —

i tried to find a rug for my infantile,
bare room. my accessories include
doubly-pasted post-its, a yoga mat
unused for months, coffee-colored,
chocolate-textured curtains, and books
stowed in a cupboard atop each other
in prayer. i wanted something new
to add, to subtract despair from
this unmatched permanence.

i am emboldened by the monsoon
drains, how everything has peaked
into a kind of a nuisance, habituating
all my vices and sins — my world
is a beautiful place of longing, of
plastered cacophonies, of free agents
who take away from these chipping
walls, a piece of my unpleasant candor.

and all it takes to remind me of ugly
fantasies are the red lines that want to
restore my british spellings to american
ones — a hegemonic control over my
bearings. when did i start becoming
a product of capitalism? one too many
copies of me carried by bored crowds,
flipping through my innards, spitting
in my eyes to reach the end (for fuck’s
sake) already, of this half-way written
carrion story.

oblique — i resort to a redundancy of
words, and rusted thoughts — my world
is a beautiful place — vapid, stringent,
liquified to its last remains of nothing.

~

 

For Midweek Motif at PU.
Edit: Linking it up with dVerse OLN.

Image source: at the horizon of the strange world by Katja Reetz

***

I have been working on a new Insta handle for over a month now, for literary and creative posts: @anmol.ha.
For contact, you can reach out to me through my multiple profiles, enlisted here.

playhouse

a day is a playhouse of wonders
and nights, the plunder of a thief –
with stars and a sliver of a moon,
and glimpses of an unseen Neptune
bundled up, in a napkin,
out of proportion –

the paradox of understanding is that
it’s not deserved to be understood,

its smooth transitions from a muse
into a stalemate, never available
for scrutiny or viable visibility
makes it an easy target for this tense
turpitude.

we look at each other, hold hands, caress the ticking seconds
of the clock, this story doesn’t beget a climax of any sort –
semaphorism – as they call it –

of minds and hearts and innards that wobble
with the unprecedented movements of a distorted image,

a reflection is decomposing on the wall, a self is dis-
-integrating into half-bitten morsels of truth.

be it so – let the lights extinguish themselves into shadows.

.

Linking it up with Wordle#159 at MLM Menagerie and Tuesday Platform at With Real Toads

a moment of detachment

i stopped having tea last month but have had
a lapse only once, I am cutting down on caffeine,
on sugar, on white carbs, on the world I see,

a capricious mood is hanging on my window,
dry flowers stuck to the shade, coloring the sun
that makes its way in, I don’t feel but smell warmth
tingling my nostrils, I sneeze out despair and
set up a guest room for the spring to rest and stay.

flames flicker on my skin, I don’t mind being burnt
by the season that lasts but as long as I close my
dry, lifeless palms, a few rhetoric seconds of delay.

i stopped being stopped for a day, and it felt strange
and yet not in a positive way, the birds shall fly
to the lands new, talk to strangers familiar, I stay.

.

For dVerse Poetics, where we are writing to the art of Danny Gregory.

I am on Instagram. You can find me at mypeculiarself.

Book Review: A Fine Balance

A Fine BalanceA Fine Balance by Rohinton Mistry My rating: 4 of 5 stars

A Fine Balance by Rohinton Mistry, takes you on a whirlwind of a ride through some of the most difficult years of independent India, portraying its four main characters and a myriad of secondary ones, who face the problems of caste and communal violence, discrimination, poverty, “gundaraj” and the dreadful Emergency.

Emergency is a controversial period of India’s history. The elected PM, Mrs. Indira Gandhi, was accused of election rigging by the Allahabad High Court, which was followed by demands for her resignation. In order to stay in power, she(with the voice of the President) declared Emergency in 1975, supposedly to protect the country from internal disturbances and thereby suspending all the Fundamental Rights of the citizens. All her rivals, including members of opposition, trade unions, student unions, etc. were put in prison.

The novel begins with a chance meeting of two tailors, Ishwar Darji and his nephew, Omprakash Darji with a student, Maneck Kohlah on the local train in an unnamed city by the sea (Mumbai), who are all going to meet the same person, Mrs. Deena Dayal. The two tailors are to be hired by Mrs. Dayal for sewing clothes for an export company, and Maneck, who is the son of Deena’s childhood friend, is going to be a paying guest at her place.

We are then made aware about the background of the four characters. Deena strives to be an independent widow, the two tailors have come from the bitter experience of losing their family to caste violence, and Maneck has been sent by his parents to study in a college to get a diploma in air conditioning and refrigeration, which they consider to be a safe choice for their son’s future in the technically growing country.

Under the period of Emergency, each faces the perils associated with life. The two tailors are once kidnapped as a member of falsely gathered crowd for PM’s speech, they become prey to the demonic beautification(losing their jhopadpatti house and condemned to forced labor) and forced sterilization programs, brought about by the dictatorial reign. Deena continues to face the possibility of losing her house and Maneck is emotionally disturbed by the horrors he see taking place around him.

At its center, this novel narrates how these people come to live under the same roof, sharing food, and constituting a family like bond. Dina slowly begins to recognize tailors as someone equal, denouncing her prejudice towards their caste.

“In the WC, the tailors’ urine smell that used to flutter like a flag in the air, and in Dina’s nose, grew unnoticeable….Then it struck her: the scent was unobtrusive now because it was the same for everyone.”

The tailors grow fond of Dina and find a haven for themselves, sleeping in her veranda. Maneck gets over his depression over the world around him and life and makes some genuine friends. But everything changes. Such few moments of high turn into the worst fates imaginable. Rohinton Mistry, propagates a creation of a fine balance in life, of despair and hope, of struggle and survival.

“You see, we cannot draw lines and compartments and refuse to budge beyond them. Sometimes you have to use your failures as stepping-stones to success. You have to maintain a fine balance between hope and despair.’ He paused, considering what he had just said. ‘Yes’, he repeated. ‘In the end, it’s all a question of balance.”

But in the end, everyone loses everything that is vital. Everything decays, the despair wins over the hope and lives are irrevocably changed.

The most striking feature about this work is its true to life scenario and the character sketch and development is impeccable. Rohinton Mistry succeeds in explaining the hardships of the common man of India, through his powerful narrative and story line.

With the tale of intertwining fates and separation, this book pictures how it was and how it still is in some parts of India. The author must further be praised for such secondary characters like the Monkey Man, the hair collector, the Beggarmaster, the Rent collector, the Inspector, etc.

I would recommend this book to anyone willing to read something of significance and something that would make you empathize with the people around you in a new way. It must be taken into account though that it is a sensitive and depressing read.

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I have been left in tears by only a few books. This is one of those books, which stirred such emotions like despair and helplessness in me. I thus wept for all that happens in the world and all that is brought forth by the interminable tide of time.

“What an unreliable thing is time–when I want it to fly, the hours stick to me like glue. And what a changeable thing, too. Time is the twine to tie our lives into parcels of years and months. Or a rubber band stretched to suit our fancy. Time can be the pretty ribbon in a little girl’s hair. Or the lines in your face, stealing your youthful colour and your hair. …. But in the end, time is a noose around the neck, strangling slowly.”