The I of the Storm

13.10.2012

I have a confession to make.
Yes, I’m afraid there is just the one;
You see, I’ve run out of time,
I’m afraid of the morning, afraid of the sun.

You must understand the urgency,
it keeps me from rhyming;
but, as you would know, best of all,
It really is all in the timing.

I think I have a penchant for being distressed;
It seems as if I thrive in chaos, relish in the pain;
On good days, it seems like a clever battle plan,
Oh, Hide in the sunlight, only to fight in the rain?

After all, I am no girl; only a storm wearing skin,
and you were just the only place that i had left to go;
but you are always found out by your sins,
and, on your door, i shall cast a shadow nevermore.

But as i leave, i would just say one thing?
and i hope that you will understand my turning,
Is it such a crime to welcome the rain
when you find your world just won’t stop burning?

Leave Me Alone

6th October 2008

Leave me alone…

Were those not your last words to me, dear Sayuri?

They must have been.

I still remember that night you know…

It was really cold, and I could tell you had been crying.

I could have asked.

I should have said something.

Asked how you were doing, whether you needed anything, if everything was okay, anything!

Instead, I tilted my new hat at you and nodded.

And you smiled back.

Just a tiny little smile, but it made me really happy, you know?

That you cared enough to try and smile for me even though you were sad…

Though, I know you would have done the same for anyone who smiled at you…

Still, as you walked away in that light rain

with the shadows growing behind you as you walked further into the dark night in your inky black dress…

I thought that there was still a chance that we could fix the mess we had made.

Thought things were finally getting better…

I didn’t say a word.

And the next morning they told me you were dead.

Wait a minute Sayuri darling.

Let me pour myself a drink. It’s been too long.

And where did I keep that damned matchbox?!

Sorry, where was I?

I remember the day we spent at the beach

It seems like such a long long time ago

Akane was there too, along with him.

That was nice.

We laughed a lot, all of us.

Sang silly songs all the way there and back.

And you spoke to me as if everything was fine.

As if nothing had been broken.

Like you could not see the past anymore.

And I don’t know if that hurt or helped.

But, I do know that I liked the way your dark hair flew about your pale face

and I liked the black dress you wore…

like the one you were wearing the last time I saw you...

Another drink, Sayuri.

Just hold on.

No, I’m not drinking too much.

Just another shot…

You know what?

I wish I knew you before…

Before all the pills, and the drinking…

I know you’d be mad at me for saying this

I know you would say it would have been the same…

But would it have?

Maybe then you would have said you loved me

Maybe then I would have said the same…

Maybe I would have stopped by that night.

We wouldn’t have had that stupid argument…

Do you remember that night?

I do.

I wish I didn’t.

But now, I realize that it was the last time I ever heard your voice…

And so, I don’t think I’ll ever be able to forget.

I won’t be able to forget the screaming

the thunder

the shattering of the vase (the crystal one Inari gave you for your b’day)

the yelling

the tears that filled up in your eyes – the ones you rubbed away before they ever had a chance to fall…

I’ll never forget the way you looked at me that night

The anger

the disbelief

and the pain…

‘Just leave me alone.’

Want to know a secret?

It wasn’t the screaming that made me leave…

It was that look.

Your words.

I couldn’t bear the thought of hurting you…

and I realized I had.

Over and over,

So, I packed up my bags and left.

Didn’t even kiss you goodbye.

Left you alone, with only your “substances” for company.

Left a shaky you trying to pour a drink into a glass.

Didn’t even offer to help.

Didn’t call.

Didn’t bat an eyelid when that other guy moved in.

Didn’t say a word to you when I ever ran into you anywhere.

Didn’t say anything when I saw the first bruise.

Didn’t listen to the rumors…

I didn’t know.

I didn’t know he hurt you.

I didn’t want to know.

So… I didn’t.

I don’t know why I smiled at you last night, Sayuri.

Perhaps I thought it was finally time.

Maybe it was the fact that it was raining, and I always love you more when it rains.

But I didn’t say a word…

Would things be different if I had spoken to you?

Would it have changed anything?

Would they still find your body in that bathtub?

I wonder what the last thing you thought of was…

Were you scared?

Did you close your eyes when you drew that line?

Did it hurt?

Leave me alone…

Those were your last words to me…

and I wish I had never listened…

Semi-precious

Autumn 2014

Their rarity made them precious
because they would not sing for me
for all that I begged and pleaded
My thoughts were always free.

I always looked at letters and words
as thoughts that you could bleed
But, no matter how long I called to them
they would never answer to me.

But warm Winters came to my scattered head
where there was light, and shades of sound
while I grieved for the words, silenced and dead
yet thanked the Stars I had been found.

But, even safety nets tear, and the best plans fail
There’s nothing we know that shall stay the same
I know, you promised the sun amidst this gale
but my own words were drowning in the rain.

Please understand why I could not stay
Not when you’d so easily watch them bleed.
Yes, every price must be paid
But, they mean the entire world to me.

And now, they sing for you, they always do
while I stand here struck with the blues
My words are cliched and awkward, but true
And stuck in the middle with you.

Unforgiven II: Flashback

It looked like rain, Lord Stone thought distractedly, as he made his way towards the North Quadrant of the Castle grounds. He could see her at the top of the tallest tower, the deep red gown framed against the twilight sky. A familiar sight, he thought warmly, despite the cold and exhaustion seeping through his bones.

He climbed the long flight of stairs to the chamber at the top. Home, came the unbidden thought. For now, he corrected himself sternly. The war was moving North, and he would have to set off with his men, soon.

He flung off his cape as soon as he entered the room, not pausing as he moved to the balcony, where she stood leaning against the railing.

She smiled at him as he walked up to her and kissed her forehead, and somewhere in time and space, a heart shattered into pieces. But the two of them didn’t hear a thing over the thunderclouds that hung over them like carrion birds come to claim their prey.

They stood together in silence for a while, watching farmers and village folk scurry around in the distance, preparing for the incoming storm. Another familiar sight he would miss once the war began in earnest. Suppressing a sigh, he inclined his head slightly towards her, and she smiled without turning to face him.

“What?”, they said together, and her smile turned into a grin.

“Why are you sighing?” she asked, sniffing at him curiously.

“I am not,” he replied, indignant.

“Okay.. Why are you not sighing?”

He looked at her for a moment, before turning away and fixing his gaze on the horizon.

She followed his stare.

“Storm’s coming.”

“I know.”

“It’s not safe here.”

“I can look after myself.”

He shook his head, frustrated at her stubborn refusal to go back to the city, where he wouldn’t have to worry about her.

“I will leave soon”, he said, a coldness creeping into his voice that he wasn’t proud of.

She turned to face him, and he could feel her eyes searching his face for something he damn well was not going to let her find.

She closed her eyes and turned towards the setting sun again.

“I will wait for you. Here.”

I don’t want you to, he thought. I’d rather you be safe and happy. I don’t think I will return. And, I cannot take you with me. I won’t be able to protect you. I only want to protect you.

He said nothing. Only took her cold hand in his own as he watched her raise her face to catch the rain that had just begun to fall, fixing the memory of her smile in his mind and hoping she would someday forgive him for what he knew he would have to do.

She opened her eyes just as a flash of lightning illuminated the skies, and for an instant, he saw a glimpse of the path she could have taken, the severity with which she could ensure retribution. But then she turned towards him, only mercy in her eyes, and he knew he had nothing to worry about. She’d forgive him nearly anything.

Nearly.

On the Execution of Burhan M. Wani

Either he and his friends were armed and dangerous and had to be shot on the spot

OR

he was intoxicated and began to cry when surrounded.

You cannot have both. As for the people celebrating his “execution”…

A 21 year old boy issues a “challenge” to the Army of a nation. There’s a high chance he has not ever even fired a shot at anyone. He declares, on social media, that what Kashmir needs is Azadi because there is too much violence and too much impunity in the hands of the military. The army accepts the “challenge”, hunts him down and kills him. The people identifying with the State rejoice, even as his friends and neighbors love him more for having the courage to speak out and die while all they have done is avert their eyes when a mother wails for her raped and murdered daughter, for her disappeared sons, for her arrested and tortured husband.

A new line is drawn.

Who wins?

I do not know, but this does not taste like victory.

It tastes like shame.

Question for the Day: How do you define terrorists and heroes?
The answer: Depends on where you are standing.

The test remains the same though:

Terrorists terrorize _the people_.
Heroes fight back _for the people_.

Watch out, brothers and sisters. The long overdue consequences of our actions await us.

The long overdue consequence of our inaction awaits us.

Requiescat in pace, brother.

“It is very evident that there is a lot of anger and alienation as far as the ground situation is concerned, especially among the youth, and these are some of the occasions when they can actually come out on to the street and pelt stones to vent. Otherwise the way things are controlled and managed here, their emotions are suppressed. As a result, people are associating themselves with the sacrifice, commitment and ideology. More and more people feel that Government of India is not going to resolve issues related to Kashmir through dialogue or discourse. This is the reason why young boys are coming and challenging the might of the Indian government despite knowing that they may not win; and they are displaying their resistance and resilience.”

– The aftermath of the Burhan ‘Encounter’