Wednesday, March 20, 2013


कभी कुछ हिंदी में लिखा पढ़ती हूँ तो सच लिखने का दिल करता है. सिर्फ सच. मानो सब सच हिंदी में ही बसा है और लिखने की देर है. मुझ जैसे प्रायः अंग्रेजी में लिखने वाली को भी यह यह लग सकता है, कुछ बात होगी हिंदी में. तभी शायद हिंदी किताबों में बूँद भर ही सही पर रस ज़्यादा ही होता है, स्कूल-कॉलेज के दिनों में हिंदी डिबेट हमेशा से ही मुझे अंग्रेजी डिबेट से ज़्यादा प्रभावशाली लगती थी. हिंदी-उर्दू की "मिलीभगत" में लिखी गईं कविताएँ भी थोड़ी ज़्यादा पसंद आती हैं मुझे. मानो की जो सच है, सही में सच है, किसी भी उपरीय-दिखावे रहित वह ही लिखा होगा इन कविताओं में. पर यह प्रेम काफ़ी व्यक्तिगत है. मैं किसी भाषा, देश, कौम से व्यक्तिगत लगाव से ज़्यादा कम ही महसूस कर पाती हूँ. लगाव इसलिए भी की मेरी माँ की हिंदी पर खूब पकड़ है. जितना अच्छा बोलती हैं हिंदी, उतनी ही कविताएँ मूंह-ज़बानी याद हैं उन्हें. बचपन से ही उन्हें हिंदी की श्रेष्ठ कविताओं को पता नहीं कैसे आसान-सी धुनों में पिरो के गाते-गुनगुनाते सुना है. कई बार मुझे रोते से चुप भी कराया है उन्होंने राणाप्रताप या झाँसी की रानी पर लिखी कविताएँ सुना कर, और कई बार सुना है उन्हें किचन में खाना बनाते हुए, वही कविताएँ गाते हुए. यही वजह है कि कुछ छन्द मुझे भी याद हैं. सही मायनों में हिंदी मेरी 'मदर-टंग' है. शायद इसलिए अनकहा स्वाभाविक लगाव है हिंदी से. लिखने को बोलो तो प्रायः अंग्रेजी ही लिखी जाती है; किसी से मिलूं तो अंग्रेजी में बात करना ज़्यादा आसान लगता है - शायद इसलिए कि हिंदी में कुछ ज्यादा ही अपनापन है, नए लोगों से इतने अपनेपन के साथ बात नहीं होती आजकल.

Friday, March 15, 2013


Mind: Start writing, girl. Kick-start. S.t.a.r.t. Write as you read.
All that underlining is not getting you anywhere, neither is the
scribbling in the margins nor the endless pointers in that horrible
handwriting of yours.

Self: Eh?


I don't exactly want to sound that I know more. I couldn't, for reasons more than one. But mostly, because I have realized for all my wisdom, we are all creatures of our past, we are all creatures of our fears and our mistakes and our doubts. Amidst all this foliage (or rubble if you like) we grow, we cull, degenerate and grow again. All through this time I had been sailing a fictional flag, floating on a fictional boat, living my life considering my self an enlightened being. Little did I know that the same books and theories that had me congratulating myself upon as having read, having elevated myself - were also in part taking me away from simple truth, from simple happiness and everything that on a rainy romantic morning I wanted. To put it plainly, it was actually taking me away from simplicity. It was taking me away from what I actually wanted in a world of what I desired. Want is simple you see, and desires have an imaginary wings to them - which on one hand give flight to our creativity - but are useless when it comes to looking deep within ourselves. They also waste a lot of time.

To continue, in the past one month I have almost come of age again. Such coming of age is not new to me. Happens every couple of years and I have always had an acute sense when the transition was taking place. As if it was puberty all over again. And I am sure even this, what I may call my metamorphosis here (to borrow a word from someone I briefly and sporadically loved) will go through another transformation. I don't say it as a disclaimer, I am not trying to protect my credibility. I say it as a fact that I must put for you to be able to understand what I am trying to tell you. The circle has no end, as is an answer to many a riddle.

I had begun to think till sometime back that I knew who I was, I knew what I wanted, I knew what suited me and what not. The operative verb of course being 'knowing'. Riding my high horse galloping the vagabond streets of desire and the mistake of thinking I 'knew' what I sought, had actually blinded me to what I simply wanted and needed. I had actually closed doors to what I was capable of. A self-styled enlightened being closing doors to knowing oneself! Isn't that disturbing? Yet I continued to do that. Continued to tie my limbs while chanting 'I am free', continued to gag my mouth while believing me to be breathing free, continuing to hold my heart down while believing me to be loving freely. It was then it happened. The dramatic realization.

I still don't know if I have reached stability. It is too early to deduce that part. But the fact that I metamorphosed, challenging my conception of myself, which of course I took constructively. Once the blinkers came off, I saw better as expected, but I also am beginning to accept better. I want to tell you, that as times will pass your conception of yourself might change, you might feel you are capable of much more sacrifice (for your self) than you ever thought possible. You may let go of 'this', the cause of your trouble - but I would want you to having done it knowing that you might metamorphose too and when that happens - promise that you will love yourself double as hard as you do. But, if you decide to not let go of 'this' - then know that you are capable of much, much more than you can imagine. You are capable of accepting much more than you thought you could and there might be some simple truth for you in there.

Thursday, March 14, 2013


The day was long, I made the most of it. Wrote vigorously. I'm loving it. My work is making me look forward to life and times to come. My beliefs replenished, reaffirmed.. it is beautiful this feeling. Much like love! Everything is making sense - as if I can use each faculty within my mind, each cell in my body, each nerve is alive with charge. Just wanted to write this moment.

teri aankho ke siva duniya mein rakha kya hai!

Sunday, March 10, 2013

my pages.

Just a random thought.. after having read Faiz's letters to his Wife.. it would be so lovely to be writing to someone.. in flesh and blood.. in ink and paper.. lovely to be writing to someone because there are things you want to write ..not things you just wanna tell and be done with. I used to do it in school - write letters to my friend, during the summer holidays. :)

On a completely different note - something had been happening these past couple of weeks. I don't know where I am - but it seems that I am losing control over how I feel.. the control is getting "outsourced" should I say. I am seeing things differently yet so scared that the happiness of it all has not got a chance to sink in. Somehow I fear even this will fall apart.

I am holding on to you, my pages.

Friday, March 8, 2013


First thing first. Where I am. What I am doing today. The waywardness that has surrounded my life the past couple of days had me lose myself. Even as I traveled around Bombay  attending meets and training sessions and the like, I guess some reassessment of my self and my work is called for. Very often I find myself distanced from the areas I wanted to work in i.e. rural India. The fact that I am placed here in Bombay seems to me such a waste of time. "Things are fine here. Send me to the war-front!", say my innards. Ok but this is not the time for such commentary. There is work to be done and now. And no matter where I am situated - my work/academic research can still be done. And I can always travel 'there'. (hidden mockery in my own words.)

I love my job. I really really do. I love seeing things through the rights perspective. It is not an effort, spending hours and hours over reading and making sense of dozens of articles a day, taking notes and chalking out the contours of my own thesis. In short, I like studying and my fellowship here is giving me a lot of time to do that. But what has been bothering me? The fact that though what I am trying to say is very new in this organization,, within this set up, on the whole it is not very novel - much has already been written about it - do I really wanna give birth to a near-clone? From health perspective while I will have to explain things from the very scratch, over there i.e among people who have a human rights background I think I would only be articulating what has already been discussed, debated, agreed upon. Would it be better to instead take the discourse further or at least add something to it? I don't want to be bringing in an idea that (i fear) might be already stale. Is there something called a stale research? But then, doesn't research itself mean re-search? Phew, I don't know. The basic study is necessary for me anyway. So I should be concentrating on it.

I don't have answers but I hope I will in sometime. I also want to get my LSE assessed essays published - but somehow in the heart of my heart I tend to underestimate my work.  Within my mind it goes something like this - If I have been able to do it, then anyone can and so it is not good enough and if I face difficulties doing something - it must be wrong somewhere and so definitely not good enough. Do I leave myself with any choice here?

Saturday, March 2, 2013

The ecdysis

I am becoming your Frankenstein's monster. You wanted me like this and there, you have it. You brought about this change, cast me into a mould that was not mine from the beginning. And I, as if lying in wait for the very change – became who I was not; and never even 'wanted' to be. The shapeshifting over, I emerged anew the way you would have me be. And now you feel wronged. You resent me because you fell in love with your own creation. Why, you should have known of all people that even as I sloughed my skin, to come out puckering and ugly, like a child fresh out of its mother's womb, I had ceased to be human in the process. 

My Ecdysis has happened – spineless that I am! –  at times even spiraling out of your grasp, my creator.