Capable Shadows

The door opened

A shadow appeared on the floor

Shadow is always on a surface

Like a wall or ground

It stayed there for a bit

That shadow

Then gingerly shuffled a little

Went to another room

And stopped there

Somewhere in the middle

Both arms of the shadow started shaking

Then started swinging all around

Initially calmly, then strongly

Finally arms activity stopped

Next up

Shadow turned its head to one side

Then to the other

Now this new activity started

Right left, right left

Up down, up down and then round and round

Round and round all around

Then everything stopped

Perhaps shadow had done its part

Shadow placed its hands on the waist

All became calm

Shadow turned to a side and checked something

Then turned to other side checked that side also

It made note if there were any other shadows

It noted shadow of a table

There were also individual shadows of two chairs

Shadow judged the gap between those shadows

The shadow slowly started walking between the shadows

Initially carefully, little slowly

Soon faster and faster

After walking for a few minutes

Something strange happened

… Very strange actually

Few drops of water fell on the shadow!

On the floor

But the drops did not have shadows

Maybe their shadows on shadow couldn’t be seen

Can shadows think?

Can a shadow sweat on its forehead?

Human have very deep and strong capabilities

How many arduous and formidable goals they have achieved

Even then why so many of us

Are able to progress only as much as their shadow

That ‘he’

He walks very fast. It has been his natural instinct. As soon as he is out, he shoots off. It has happened in the past that he shot off in a wrong direction and when he realized it he shot in reverse with the same speed without feeling sorry or stupid.

That day he walked towards the station to go home. Half way down he realized his left shoulder did not have the usual strap of his bag. Oh no! He turned back swiftly and headed towards the studio he had been. Due to walking with the bag his left shoulder sometime gets a bit sore. He then shifts the bag to the other side. He had gone quite a distance without bag. But there was no alternate. He had do this. He walked even faster. As the door of the studio appeared in vision, it wasn’t looking right. It was locked. They had told that, that was the last job for the day for them. He asked the adjoining shop but was told they all left 10 min back in a cab. You could have met them at the station. He said actually he wanted to walk, so…

So much confusion! Disappointed he looked around, as though trying to find as solution. A man was looking at him quizzically. What! He thought, what is he gaping at me for. He realized he was wearing worn out shorts, a faded t-shirt and a pair of house slippers. How! He wouldn’t step out of his house in such attire. And he is here at the other end of town. So shabbily? No way! He has always been well dressed if not one of the best dressed. This is not him. But; there he was.

He sat down on step outside the locked door. He had to figure his next move. Since his bag is safely kept in the space behind that securely locked door; so is his wallet, phone, house keys and other smaller stuff. Main problem was phone and wallet. He couldn’t figure a plan was feasible. It wasn’t appearing in his mind. Not even a foggy or rough one.

He cannot go to a bus stop or train station because they invariably sell tickets at a price, right now unaffordable. He decided that he need to move from there. A solution if any isn’t here. He started walking yet again in a direction but without intent. Maybe he felt should he walk home, that was nearly 35 km. He was confused and foggy. There was metro tunneling job being done. Huge number of workers were milling around carrying things. He did not realize that he had walked into a non-pedestrian area. No one noticed that. He was in ‘no entry’ zone and was wondering why suddenly walking had become so difficult. Path was full of iron rods, wood planks, bags of cement, bricks and the related things. Somehow he could not realize that he was on the wrong side. Many workers passed by him but did not care as they too busy themselves. Only a security or some engineer could have stopped and guided him what to do. His slippers were soiled and rest of him had splashes of wetness. Finally someone perhaps thinking he had ‘lost it’ guided him out of the mess and he found himself at the Marine Drive. Here he knew which way to head.

He started walking again with same speed but with a heavy heart. He was about to ask the most asked question in such situations, “why me”. Façade of a familiar building emerged. He recognized it. It was Famous Laboratories and recording studios, Tardeo. He had been here for many song recordings of his films. But somehow everything about the building was looking very depressing. It was very shabby. It was perhaps had been painted years ago. Walls were broken in many places. In fact side wall of the building had fallen in the lane. Unknowingly he took a look at himself. Is Famous looking like him or he is matching Famous? Back of the building leading to the film laboratory also was in ramshackle condition. People had to dodge and walk between bricks and other broken parts. In such a scenario he found something weird and surreal. He saw a small group of well-dressed people organizing some kind of sale or exhibition. They had a banner in which name of a book and its author was mentioned. Copies of a rather fat book were placed around; on a soiled hanging wooden plank. They had made small platform of the bricks fallen around and placed some copies of the book on it. Just one book was placed high on front wall, where some photo frame might have existed ages ago. A man perhaps the author was signing a book. He recognized him, but couldn’t exactly place. Man looked at him and said, ‘hello here take a copy. It’s a gift’. He refused politely. He did not want it and no way could he have carried it. Author insisted, ‘please I will be happy if you took it.’

He had started walking away. Swiftly distance started growing between him and Famous. As he walked Famous was being left behind. Soon he had put a lot of distance between them. The Lab now did not look so bad. The author in the crisp white shirt seemed insistent. He held up a copy of the book looking at him as though calling him out, ‘here! Your book.’ Figure of the man in soiled clothes was fading fast. And soon it merged among others.

It was difficult to distinguish the man in soiled clothes from crisp ones.

Life is about…

Life is not about happy ending

It’s not even about ending

Or, a beginning

It is a cycle.. in fact

Of endless beginnings and ends

Beginnings and ends are like

Stations or stops

Where one can

Take a breather

Rest a while

Reschedule next leg of journey

Leave regular, beaten tracks

Go sideways or even

Visit higher planes

If you want to try a finer form

Or stay without form

Take a nirvana…

Then again at some point of time

If you think you need to work

To change the world,

The way it is

Please sow the seeds of ‘work to be done’

In your soul and inner memory

And return to earth

With all that awareness in your soul

Life, perhaps is about awareness

And about actions,

Performed with awareness

Two Flowers

World and her story

Time is passing

So is life

Cross roads, hairpin bends,

Steep climbs, landmarks

All falling behind

I can see a path winding away

Far in the distance

Dissolving into nothingness

One end of which is under my feet

The other seems to be

At the end of my vision

After that… nothing

After that… nothing,

Would be wrong to say

After all, the rest of the world

Has to be there

Somewhere,

Beyond the end of the path

Beyond the end of my vision

Yes, the world made by man

Will cease to exist

But world untouched by man

Will still be there

In its full glory

Narrating it’s amazing story.

I will pass away

You too will be gone

Our sorrows would be wiped off

Smiles will fade leaving no mark

Storytellers will not be around

Listeners also would have passed

But the world will go on

Narrating her story on her own.

Alexander, Babar, Genghis Khan

Christ, Kabir and Krshn

Winners and vanquished

Killers and the killed

All dumped randomly

Unceremoniously

In the dark silence

Of a little old box

Not moving

Not speaking

Yet wearing the crown

With a bloody sword in hand

Not knowing their story is done.

Theater of Life

What am I to say

What am I to do

Whether I am to stay

Or must I go

Is it up to me

Or is it up to you

I guess,

Nothing is up to anyone

It happens when it happens,

Till then behind the curtains

We must arrange our things

When the time comes

When the curtain opens

All will be exposed

And judged

By hundreds of gods

Sitting quietly in the dark

Watching like a hawk

The gods decide

Who was good and did well

Who was good but did not do well

Who was bad yet did well…

40 Years of Prithvi Theater

Unique World

Today may be the day, that will change everything

For me, for you and for everyone else

Be aware, be alert and be open to openings

Look deep into the eyes of new opportunities

Don’t reject anything just because you haven’t seen it

Life is not about recycling old stuff

It is about generating new ideas from that stuff

Or ideas from the newer stuff

Don’t be scared of the new

Every day the dawn is unique

This day has never been in your life before

Every moment of your life has never been around

A bird that just said something;

Has never said it earlier

A leaf that just fell from the tree hasn’t ever done it

Every wave that you see on the river is unique

It has never been exactly the way it is now

Every emotion that is being expressed

Has never been expressed before

Exactly the way it is being done now

Every spoken word is unique

Every moment is unique

Every breath is unique

Every ‘she’ is unique

Every ‘he’ is unique

Everyone has to chart his own unique path

With unique routes

Unique steps

We cannot be anything

But unique

That is the only way, we all are

And always will be

Future Steps in Present

I have been noticing that my present

Seems to be reducing its presence

As though a process of fading out

Of life in the present has started

Though an impossible situation

Fading out present!?

People, situations, conversations

Seem to be gradually getting distant

If not distant, exactly

Hazy and unclear; certainly

The things that were, right in front

Started moving towards unknown

As if a curtain is falling

Between me and them

Reducing visibility and hearing

I need to figure

Why does my sight get fogged

With color of brownish earth

And why do I hear the chirping birds

A large banyan tree appears

It’s beautiful shoots eagerly stretching down

As they look towards the ground

Hidden under numerous banyan shoots

Someone sits, quiet and aloof

Long hair, long beard, chest bare

Looking somewhere with a constant stare

With his eyes half shut

It was difficult to judge

The object in his vision

But he surely looked down

At bare earth or the ground

And then with a pleasant jolt

I discovered the source

Of that nagging brown layer;

In front of his relaxed constant stare

I was seeing what he saw there

I know, it is impossible; but it is here

Guest Song

Familiar and refreshing

Yet unheard song

Sneaked into my mind-space

And started playing around

It hops on various emotions

Through black and white keys

Creating new tunes

With utmost ease

Sometime it tightens a string

To tune the black right

But soon it vanishes from sight

Only do I find it relaxing on a white

That I know has been too tight

Beauty of incompleteness

Been toying with an idea
To find a world, where…
No no, you don’t worry
Its not about your broken promises
Incomplete plans
Half hearted friendship…
I will carry them with me
To another world
I am not even sure about
After all
Is it necessary
That every wish
Of everyone
Should be fulfilled?
Incompleteness too can be beautiful
In fact it is,
Beautiful
Have you seen flowering buds?
Aren’t they better looking
Than fully bloomed flowers
What about
The new moon
Half a moon
Half naked woman or a man
Half open lips
Half shut eyes
Romance of a half nod
Committing neither yes, nor no
I wish to discover such a world
Where forgotten promises
Broken relationships
Unfulfilled dreams
Friendships left half way
In fact,
Incompleteness itself
Is celebrated,
Respected,
Even if halfheartedly…

What a Wonderful World

This world is so wonderful

Unbelievable and magical

The sun rises cool orange in morning

And sets as deep red in evening

We have dark nights and bright days

Due to hide and seek the sun plays

Sun makes it bright during day

At night darkness gets to play,

So wonderfully they share a day…

Plants too welcome and like the sun

Each day they are happy to see him

Leafs and flowers smile

Appreciate and thank him

For what they get from his light

What a wonderful site…

Birds live on the trees and shrubs

Different shapes, sizes and colors

Each bird loves to sing

They have a song, so they sing

Hundreds of them make a symphony

And for them it is never one too many

Their religion is singing

When one stops other comes on top

This wonderful symphony does not stop…

No one can find earth’s end

It is like a huge round orange

We could run around it

Without falling off the edge

Outside it is cool, crusty and welcoming

But its inside is hot, molten and forbidding

Earth rotates and revolves

It also wobbles like an unstable drunk

Nice to know that she’s having fun…

We also have seas and oceans

Their face may be noisy and violent

But deep inside is spiritual and non-violent

There is much more life in the depths of an ocean

Throbbing, growing undisturbed, quietly

With peace and zero anxiety

There is also a barter going on

Between the sun, oceans

Plains and mountains

They barter in forms of water

The sea cleans the atmosphere

And also regulates the temperature

Oh, what a wonderful nature…