On life and its vagaries

Posts Tagged ‘hurt

To An Unknown Friend

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To An Unknown Friend

Stay a while, my friend and stranger
The day is still meandering, and there’s still time
Those drinks you had, how are they faring
Does the mind tell you where I am now, near or far
The disheveled hair on your head, is it painted
Or are you yet young at heart to outgrow the Time
The way you walk, never steady and in control,
Does that affect you in what you see
How does the world look, flat or round
Does it look twisted or covered in glamour
When do you sleep my friend, or do you not
Is there a sleep that helps you dream

The world is passing us, the children laughing
Horns honking, footwear grazing the side walks
There isn’t a thing still, all are moving

While we sit here, on this lonely bench
By the side of this antediluvian road
There are flowers blooming, lots emptying
Pans frying, fans whirling and some even hooting
Things are ever frantic, let us be not like that
Let us sit here, till the close of day
Why are you drooping, hold your head steady
We aren’t done talking, my man, you and I
That stain on your shirt, does that sting friend
Did the potion spill into your soul
Is that why you are looking at me fearfully
Don’t be frightened, I am not your darkness
I can be the light you were seeking in your nights

This drizzle, it isn’t from heaven, it’s the tears
That you and I shed together, may be not here
Nor anywhere, but still we shed them together
For we aren’t divided, we, you and I, are ever together
That sagging chest holds a thousand terrors
The drinks can’t still them, they garrote the drink
Don’t get up, you can’t yet walk, I am here my man
Though I don’t even lift a hand to make you steady
I am here still, with you all the way

Stop looking at those happy faces, embraces, and kisses
They aren’t real friend; they are off a passing show
You had partaken in that show once, as I had
They are bland, at least to us sitting here
You are now muttering assent, I see your lips move
Don’t wipe those dribbles off; they are droplets of your pain
You aren’t wagging your head to the music now
Are you, the music stall across is what this is all about
Noise, more noise, there isn’t a lapse to the noise
It blares day and night, winter and summer, burial and birth

She could be your girl, the one approaching
I see I was right, she isn’t happy with me
And is abusive towards you, you are doing great, old girl
He is drowning in your love; we were having a nice talk
About just that and he was doing good
Now you cart him away, with bitter looks at me

Fare thee well my friend, you can’t drink
This sorrow away, for it has claws of steel.


Ideas and Crimes

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Ideas and Crimes


As I feel  it

The dented wood of the desk seems to tremble

The stains and odor have long left its surface

Leaving  deep sword strokes of memory

To  gape their wounds wide

Every day at school

Baby hands would trace

Those outwardly blunted creases

Familiar with their

Deepest  grooves

Yet those cuts run deeper than they know

And are made by ideas

With razors sharp, hacking through

Soft flesh, cutting it

Into disfigurement

Annulling something alive and

Enacting a spectacle of dread for

The children to see


As I watch , I now see

An ancient procession still wending its brutal way

The faces grim, eyes hard

Muscle bound, crazed and angry

And still carrying stone clubs

To crack open naked skulls


……….As if the past is ever extant !


The Night of Music

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The Night of Music


Keys-sharp strum a threnody dark

Smash the pale of content mine

Brash lights swell the girdled node

Of core human, whispering alien chants

Glass prisms sliver, nailing gods to

Deadened and wooden conjoined bonds

Conjures fail, dances break, metallic

Wails shiver through the niche of night

A desert spreads its ugly maw, gulping

Galactic residue the like of stars

Feel’s congeal, leprous turn, the hroom

Trebles, ominous to rupture drums

Figures writhe with chasms within

The night revolts, shredding ataraxis

The Mirages We Investigate in Life

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While a little kid,

 In the hard blaze  of a summer noon,

I had crossed this river bed

On my bare feet,

All alone.


I came on it, then,

From the opposite end-

Where there is water yet.


An ancient boatman

Had deposited me safely

On this side  and left.

After all, there was only a thin stripe

Of water to cross.

And if  I were a bit tall

I could have waded across.


I was not worried about the rest of the river

Though it appeared like a vast and gleaming desert.

And there were mirages around too

Very cool and inviting

 I was confident.

It was solid ground wasn’t it?


Though very young, I had sturdy legs

And a fighting temper.


I began walking towards this end-

Through the shimmering expanse of sand.

My  foot sank in the squishy carpet,

That glittered with minute mica chips.

The sand had only felt slightly  warm then……

Then things changed.


 I had walked only for a bit,

A couple of furlongs, maybe, I don’t know,

When the sands turned violent on me.

It  metamorphosed  into

 a sizzling  plate of hellish fire in a moment.

It fried my soul through the thin sandals

I wore.

I couldn’t move

Walk , faint

Or go back

I was trapped.


No one had taught me how to

Navigate the  burning sands of  a river bed-

In the middle of a hellish  summer noon.

No one was even within earshot

To howl  a call of distress across.

I was all alone


The sights swam before me


I stripped to my shorts and tried

Stepping on my cloths to cool my heels

But the sands became  angrier then,

Getting through the thin veil of the flimsy garments –

And scorching every part they touched


In the next few (seemingly) millennia

I would run a bit and jump on my cloths

I would run a bit, jump on my cloths

I would run…………..

It was the longest span of terror

I ever endured.


While  lying on fading grass

After I got across

With blisters and burn marks over my body,

A well meaning old guy said:

“Child, you should have dug yourself in,

There’s cooler sand beneath the surface”


Is there? I doubt it to this very moment.


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Hurt comes to us to stay

And no,

It never goes away “


Would wounds heal

With time?

Oh, they pretend to,

And lets us even treat them.


(They are good at


And we more so at



Yet they submerge

For a while

Slyly waiting to return

With regenerated guile.


A wound

Is a coded sign

A scar in the synapses

 It pulls the trigger

Every time the mind relapses…….


It’s an oblique hunter

Who never gives up

 It’s there to garner

And there’s no let up.



Hurt comes to us to stay

And no,

It never goes away “


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Where the road ends

There I start my journey

 I intend to begin where

Others have failed


I had toiled for days to get here

But I am disappointed

The woods are sparse, dried and stunted

Not something I had expected

They hold no secrets

That I do not know.

I had thought of something dense

Inaccessible, and intriguing

When I thought of the forest

But there wasn’t a tree, bush

Vine, sapling, and underbrush I didn’t know

I had seen all the crags, canyons

Marshes, un-flowing streams,

Dip’s, rises and dark places even before.


These woods had sprung, flailed, and spread

Like all those that I had seen in life

They had shed, torn up, broken themselves

In the manner I knew well

There were signs of past visits by

Axe-murderers; and were traces of beings

Who were abused by brutes

And were beyond recognition a sense…..


I know all this

The dripping sap, the severed limbs,

the stench of decay, the garbage of time

I had fled from these

Never to return

Never to dream, cry, hope, and be proud

Never to hurt, go to war, rile and gasp

Never ever to grasp at withering echoes



I fail again, there’s no place else to go,

But within, and

That I fear!


Touches, kind and soothing

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The  boy had been lying on the portioned-off veranda of the hospital for some time now. There was no place inside the wards for him.

The wards were full, there was an outbreak of some epidemic in the neighborhood, other patients were there long before he was brought in and they couldn’t be shifted.

The patrolmen who brought him had left after a whispered conversation with the head nurse and saying to him kindly.

Become a thug and make trouble for us when you are out of here.

He had wanted to smile at them. They had wrapped him in their towel and were careful not to hurt him all the way to the hospital.

The older of them softly patted him on the head and said brightly before leaving.

He is a strong lad, isn’t he?

There was a faint catch in the voice and the little boy had felt overwhelmed with unknown feelings at that.

It was night, someone had turned off the lights in the veranda but he was not anxious, he knew that all will be over anytime now.

He had overheard the words “critical” and “hopeless” while the doctors were talking and he knew it was about him.

But he was not afraid.

He was dreaming about something, something vast and beautiful and he was soaring, there were fleets of clouds around and there were smiling faces and encouraging looks in them, flocks of beautiful birds flew with him, all white and lovely and he had felt very happy.

Then a hand touched him. There were lights around this time. A kind face was looking down on him.

Is it painful?

It asked.

No. he said. He had difficulty in breathing. Everything had gone wrong inside him. He felt all sore and hurt inside.

Old wizened fingers caressed his thin hands and small chest.

You will get well soon, may I pray for you?

He did not know what to say. Did anyone ever pray for him? He couldn’t recall it. Did his mother pray for him, she was too worried about keeping the wolves off the door.

There was not a door even. There was nothing other than the city which had bred them.

He had seen her cry, wail and abuse god. But pray? He doesn’t know. Did his father and siblings pray for him?

But who was his father?  Mother never told him; did he have any brothers and sisters?

She used to explode at those questions.

Aren’t you a curse enough for me?

May be he had no one besides mother.

The old nun kept murmuring something, keeping her eyes shut.

He felt comforted by her nearness, her old hands were hurting him somewhat, and they were rough and hard boned. But all the same their touch felt very soothing, peaceful even.

He was drifting off to sleep.

When he again woke up a priest was leading a procession of nurses with a lamp held in front. The priest was very handsome to look at; the nurses too looked very beautiful in the rosy shade of the light. They were silently passing by.

The sight filled him with awe and a strange ache.

Everything now filled him with wonder. He felt grateful in his heart for being where he was then, in a hospital being looked after by people unknown to him and kind to him.

On occasions a yearning broke out from his heart with a sob, if he had been………then the feeling was erased by something in him.

He was unable to sleep now and lay there looking out in to the night.

He found a lonely star in the sky. May be it’s not even a star…………..he had only seen very few stars in the sky. The sky had always appeared dark to him.

They slept in the streets, he and his mother. Nights were dangerous places for them. They were always dark and terrifying……..

After a while a nurse came and gave him something to lessen the pain.

Where is your mother?

She asked.

He did not know. He tried to say something but nothing would come out of his mouth.

The nurse was kind and did not say what was in her mind. He felt thankful to her.

Was it one man or many? The nurse asked now checking his pulse. She meant his hurts.

He was overcome with feelings and tried to lift a finger in answer. There was pain all over. The young girl understood.

Did he hurt you much?

The nurse asked now looking into his eyes.

He felt drawn deep into those eyes and said.

I….I don’t know.

It’s alright.

She left, smiling at him.

He lay there with a great sadness enveloping his little soul.

He was thinking of a small coffin and of how very, very secure he would be in it, and as he lay there a great soothing hand pressed and pressed on his heart.

It pressed and pressed till he was no more.