Poverty line runs a curvy path
And finally fades away
With hard work
Crushes under its weight...
Wednesday, July 29, 2009
Will you come to my pity party?
I am having it on a rooftop today.
Together we will talk
About our imperfections, and
Pity those opportunist who failed.
We will honor and tame
One ‘Ms Perfect’, then
Snub hearts that are drained
Of trying too hard,
But reaching nowhere
On a crossroad
They die of shame
We will talk and chat
With perfect friends and
Play a dirty game
With egos boosted
By rich and famous
We will pity
Our poverty stakes.
For snacks we will serve
Some shrewd cruel words
Half baked by senseless brains
When you feel hurt
We will pity you then
With a sweet desert of pain
After attending my pity party
You will never ever feel the same
Sunday, July 26, 2009
14.38 EXT – AUTO IN A CONGESTED AREA-DAY
SMITA looks worriedly at the auto driver (PAKIYA) as he drives through the congested roads of Mumbai. There is a big queue under the subway and there are lots of cars honking continuously.
Why have you taken this route?
I told you that I was in hurry.
This is the shortest route Ma’am
We will reach soon.
Soon? You really think so? Huh?
Don’t you know that the traffic
Hardly ever moves here, we can
reach soon only if the traffic
moves. Here it only crawls.
Have patience Ma’am, there is red
Signal there, as soon as the
light turns green, the traffic will ease.
I had told you that I have to reach
Goregoan early and you are delaying
me by taking me through this congested
Every darn street is crowded in
Mumbai Ma’am, What do I do?
You should have taken the express highway
Ha! And you think that express highway
is not crowded? It is more crowded
than the Link- roads. Ma’am?
Smita looks out of the auto and sees a big queue of traffic behind her. There is no space to make an U_turn. There are more cars double-parked in the lane ahead of her. People are crossing the streets and squeezing through the traffic; children are skipping and walking between the autos.
You auto-drivers are all stupid.
I wish you guys had brains and
could make proper judgments and
knew which route would be easier
The traffic begins to moves and PAKIYA rev up his auto to drive ahead. Soon, the traffic eases and he starts to drive faster and reaches the express highways.
Look! Be careful, you are driving
too fast. Why cant you drive slowly,
you could cause an accident and then
you will be sorry.
Okay, can you please shut up and
let me drive peacefully?
Shut up? Did you say ‘Shut up’?
huh? Aren’t you supposed to be
polite to your passengers?
Ha! Polite? You expect me to be
polite when you chew my brains
with your yakitti yak yak . If
you interfere and distract me
what do you expect me to do?
SMITA adjusted her purse and brings it close to her chest, staring at him through his mirror in front of his auto.
Stop the auto now, I said stop
the auto now.
Pakiya continues to drive, revving up the speed even faster, looking straight at the road ahead and honking and driving on
Are you deaf? I said stop the auto now
She looks out of auto and starts waving her hand to the passing traffic
Help! Help! Somebody help, I am getting kidnapped!!!
Monday, July 13, 2009
Mogri puts away her pile of clothes into the cupboard. It has been six moons already since she arrived in Spain. Every evening, her cousin has been taking her out, sometimes to the sea shore to watch the sunset and sometimes to the market to check the freshness of the tomatoes. Last night, her cousin took her out for dinner to a typical Spanish restaurant. They order Paella, the traditional rice dish that contained assorted sea food like clams, octopus, shells, shrimps, fish and also meat like pork and chicken. She had loved it much except that it was too bland for her taste. The food was not all that spicy and she wished she had carried her pickle bottle in her purse.
Nevertheless, Mogri is enjoying her stay in Spain. She decides to go down alone and asks her cousin to join her later after he has finished his errands. She walks down the street to get a cup of coffee. There are chairs and tables spread outside the coffee shop. Mogri is amused because she has never seen tables and chairs out side the cafe on the foot paths. In her city of Mumbai, only beggars or street hawkers are allowed to use the footpaths, sometimes, the beggars are even allowed to cook for their families who come back to that footpath after their hard days work at begging, none of pedestrians in Mumbai ever use foot paths, they always walk on the middle of the road, Mumbaikars are always dodging and tricking the traffic. Things are so different here; European countries have tables and chairs to enjoy a meal on the footpath? This is something new for Mogri. She likes this arrangement very much and decides to sit down and call for a waiter.
Mogri does not notice that there are no waiters in this coffee shop. She does not see that the people go inside the café, read the graphic menu board that is displayed on the wall, place their order and bring it back to their tables. She sits relaxed, enjoying the cool weather of Spain. She watches people on the street who are dressed in stylish clothes and wishes that she could also dress up like those Spanish ladies in jeans and T-shirt, or even a long skirt would do, but this salvar-kameez is so darn cumbersome and it is attracting too much attention on her. When she had walked down the street, most of the people on the road had given her a second glance. Some of them had even stopped halfway, stepped aside to allow her to pass so that they could admire her ‘Arabic costume”. It was like walking on a ramp, only the applause was missing.
“Puedo sentar aqui?” says the white-skinned man as he stands by her table with a cup of coffee in one hand and croissant in other.
Mogri does not understand that this man is asking her permission to sit at her table. She looks at the coffee and croissant in his hands and wonders how a waiter can bring her order without consulting her but she does not want to argue with him because of her limitation of speaking the language fluently. Luckily she has memorized few phrases so she happily beams “Gracias, Si! Si” and takes the cup of coffee and croissant from his hand and keeps it on her side of the table.
The white-skinned man smiles and sits down next to her. She looks suspiciously at him. She is not used to sitting next to a stranger and never next to a waiter. She does not like it one bit. The man stretches his hand and pulls the cup of coffee and croissant plate toward him. Mogri does not understand how these waiters behave in such an odd manner in a foreign land. She stretches her hand and pulls back the coffee cup and croissant to her side.
The man smiles and says, “Vale, si tu quieres eso, voy comprar otro mas para me” he gets up and goes back into the coffee shop. Mogri does not understand when the man tells her that he was going to buy some more for himself, since she wanted to have his coffee and croissant. She just nods and says, “Si, Si, Vale.” She is so grateful that she can speak few words.
She likes the taste of the croissant and munches it slowly, savoring each bite and takes small sips of coffee between each bite. She has almost finished her share when she sees that man again with another cup of coffee and croissant.
“No! No, No!” she says shaking her head from left to right and then right to left again, several times, trying to send the message across that she is too full to have one more ration of the same stuff again.
The man sits down again, opposite her and starts to sip his coffee. Mogri wishes she knew Spanish fluently then she could have told him that in her country waiters don’t share their coffee break with their customers. They normally have it in the kitchen. Mogri is now getting used to a strange behavior of this man. She is thinking whether she should pay her bill now or wait for him to finish his coffee.
“Hola! Que tal Amigo?” she hears the familiar rumbling voice of her cousin. The loud voice of her cousin had the power of frightening a sleepy child, of defusing the traffic sounds and even for breaking the ear-drum of elite politicians. She could recognize his voice even if she were few miles away.
She looks up to see the white-skin man get up, shake hands and peck on her cousin’s both cheeks.
She knits her brow, bracing herself.
“Mogri, I am so glad to see you with my friend Pedro, did you ask him about the new schemes that his bank is offering this week?”
“New schemes at the bank? Er? This waiter? Do you know him?”
“Waiter? You mean to say that you don’t know him and you are having coffee with him? Don’t you know that he is the bank director of ‘Banko Santader.”
“Really? He is 'the' Bank Director of Banko Santader? Oh my God!!” she says stressing on the word 'the'.
She is glad that she does not know enough of Spanish, else she would have made a fool of herself.
Thursday, July 09, 2009
Came into this world
Weeping gallons of tears
In spite of being liberated
From dark confines of womb, that
I believed to be a secure place
Knowing not what freedom exists out here.
With careful steps, have trudged
This rough road of life,
Going through those dark tunnels
Of disappointments and misery
And yet, have wished to find bliss,
To earn a name of honor
Towards the end of the journey
A name, I need take it with me
Packed into my bundle of happiness
Along with the accessories
Of hope and joy
I don’t wish to go back empty-handed
For, it shall not be my turn
To weep any more tears.
Friday, July 03, 2009
From a ‘Favorite’ list of my web page
I scroll down, down the links
Selecting an oven-baked e-paper
To read the news of the day
Headlines pop up and scream
The bad news of the day
From the dais of the first page
Fresh news is in poor shape
Bandra-Worli Sea-link crowded,
Seven minutes was the game, but
The race is won by that old route again
Slow traffic blinks in shame.
Petrol prices hike, doubling
The bills of vegetables, fruits and rice
How will the common man survive?
Begging will be high on scale.
Andhara’s Mp slaps bank officer
For dragging feet in disbursing loans
Is violence a theme of the day?
Slapgate needs to be tamed
Three kids killed in bus mishap
Girls fall prey to Nigerian scam
College students held with nasty drugs
PC warns of strike again
Nothing is worth reading in papers today
Better to listen to woes of angry rain
Who this year, is already late.
Because sun played its dirty game