Tuesday, May 17, 2016

freedom is an illusion


no its really not
within whatever structure
I currently live in
I must seek to change
life for the better
time for small and large
happinesses
I must seek to understand
then work around
the various chains of being
life and time have one direction
and the gatelets in our brain
orientation to circle
to progress
we have to choose direction
and meander around it
as humans know how
as do I, with a delightful
habit of emitting direction
no no no, thataway

Monday, May 02, 2016

carbon dating of hollywood heroines


im not sure whats up with the movie industry, but past year or so, I have become extremely reluctant to invest money to go and watch a movie. the oddest sort of non-stories are becoming 3 hour sagas. even the dick flicks are all getting overrun with crazy robot dramas.

the human interest stories are acquiring a certain satyajit ray-e quality - she walks into the room. thinks for a moment, then closes the door. screeeee. she turns around and leans on the door for a few minutes. she is upset. she feels her feelings. the fishtank in right changes color. a cellphone beeps. she slowly peels herself off the door and walks in a dejected sort of way to bathroom. opens the door. screeeee. she walks to the washbasin. opens tap. wastes some water as she stares at herself in mirror. splashes water on her face. stares some more. turns and pulls a bright orange towel off the rack. its mega hd so we can see all individual towel molecules. wipes her face in some detail. wipes her neck. places towel back. walks meditatively out of bathroom. screeeee.

and the darwin award nominees, my top 5 favorites

5. the gone girl chick - ok everyone who claims to have never entertained kind euthanasia for their loving spouse is lying. this chick kills random exes for her loving spouse, sure, of course, it could happen

4. the da vinci code chick - there is a severely biblical scene where tom hanks is carefully propelling her across a busy intersection. the lame leading the blind

3. the hunger games chick - barbie doll in chain mail who spends a lot of time in costume change, and uses bow and arrow in a melee battle

2. the fifty shades chick - who can never get anything done ever cause shes just tied up all the time. no no REALLY. clearly the first runner up

1. the vampire saga chick - sorry babe, you won't do, you're just too, i dont know, whats the word, too HUMAN. screeeee.

Monday, March 28, 2016

Clay



I was trapped in Swargam, the exotic spa. Mom was looking critically at me, her soft hair blowing delightfully across her features. She looked like a golden fairy tale princess of twenty five. She was forty two.

"Put some more bleach on her cheeks, the layer is a little thin" her voice cut across my thoughts as I lay there invisible, choking in ammonia fumes. The spa attendant slapped more bleach on me. I concentrated hard on not letting the tears fall, they mixed with the bleach and made my skin streaky.

My hands shook, as the potter's wheel spun with a crazy piece of clay on it. In mom’s magic hands this would have been a masterpiece of containment, in mine, it was mangled and fast spinning out of control. The tears fell freely now blending with the clay. I looked down. Surprising that the grotesque pot didn't dissolve, but clung on grimly to some kind of form on the wheel.

In a perfect family, born of wealth looks and ability, I was the black sheep. Literally. I had neither my dad's tanned elegance, nor my mom's fair perfection, neither daring nor talent. I was dark as night, small and comfortably proportioned. Ordinary.

I loved pottery, the feel of dark clay sliding against my fingers, clay that matched the shade of my skin.

Have you tried Fair and Lovely dear? Yes I had.

I loved watching my mom's hand against the wheel, so fair against the clay, long and slender, deft and beautiful,

Just lose some weight and you will look like a dusky model

I loved contrasting my own hand with hers, blunt and camouflaged perfectly in clay. It was a form of pain that was always in my heart.

You have really pretty features, you know, despite being so dark

At the potter's wheel, my pain took form, and I could see it. I made pottery whenever I needed to see my pain, watch it mangle itself in my hands.

Are you adopted?

The clay in my hands finally caved in to utter shapelessness. I cursed and scraped it off the wheel.

Today I was going to be somebody. At a small art gallery, Handscapes, an exhibition including twelve of my paintings was to be held. My paintings, mine! It was like a frightening dream come true.

In a way, my first real painting that I called mine was of an orchard. Coconut and papaya trees arranged in perfectly symmetric lines. I saw it daily on my way to college. One day I just walked into it. I didn't think about trespassing or earthworms. It was beautiful and I wanted to stand in it for a while.

It was here that I discovered that I was a child of the sun. I had been taught to fear the sun since the age of seven, I was morbidly afraid of becoming darker that I already was. Today with the rebellion of youth, I stood there among the trees as swathes of penetrating sunrays hit my hair, and danced up my skin.

Inside me, a warmth grew, my skin glowed dark gold and I leant against a tree, upturning my face to the sun, drinking in its sliding warmth. From that day on I was no longer afraid of the sun. I worshipped it, and started painting its warmth into my pictures. And its shadows

It took me a month to paint the orchard. I brushed out the trees lovingly, dabbed on grass and leaves, then added sunlight and shadow to it. Something overwhelming came over me, and I started adding shadow everywhere. At odd angles, at complete contrast to the direction of sunlight, sharp, menacing shadows. The beautiful orchard wore a look of irreparable damage with shadows crisscrossing it, and I loved it.

I went back to all my landscapes and added shadows. A man in the crowd whose shadow had horns, a shop front that had teeth in its shadow, a giant with the shadow of a small mouse. I spent hours debating on each shadow for each innocuous part of my picture, walking an odd angle between symmetry, reality and complete chaos.


I stood in a corner at Handscapes. Meet the artist! Why didn’t I feel like it? The crowd flowed around me, mostly ignoring me. Life hadn’t changed, really. Some who knew I was the artist shook my hand and said the paintings were great. I couldn’t tell if they meant it, I was too nervous to probe.

I saw a young girl enter the gallery. About sixteen, dark and slender. She was clearly playing dress up, heavy makeup, and a low cut blouse that she fidgeted with constantly. Trying to pull it back up her throat. Looking pale as delicate death, with lots of white foundation for extra-fairness. I watched her, as she walked around modeling the inner me. Self-conscious, afraid and unhappy.

Surrounded by the dense caricatures of my pain, expensive perfumes, and the babble of art talk, I looked down at my hands of clay, and realized something. I smiled, first inside my stomach, and then brightly at the girl. She smiled back tentatively, blinking in shyness and shame
"Hi, I'm Nasha, the artist" I gestured at a wall quickly as if confessing to a sin.

She smiled a genuine smile for the first time, radiant and wide, it took my breath away.

"Hi, I'm Kirti, my mom is your mom's college mate"

I nodded. I had already decided when I saw her face that I wouldn’t go to Swargam again, or inhale ammonia. It was so simple, I didn't belong in an exclusive club. No, God's place for me was more inclusive

"Hey Kirti, do you like my paintings?"

She nodded eagerly.

We walked around the crowded gallery, and I explained to her what each picture meant to me, each drawn of pain, paint and imperfect clay. I finally found the courage to agree when she said, they are beautiful


A long time ago, etc...

Sunday, March 13, 2016

terra firma



I gave up the sky today, for myself, for those around me, to lean on terra firma. To turn with my feet in four directions, to sit and stand and walk as directed, I gave up control today. Not easy not, its fearful scary. But to live in the shadow of the valley is longer and more constant as an ache, as a regret, as a douser of energy. So with the wisdom of age, the mellow strings of Puccini playing in the background, and a faint sort of hope for progress, I pad flat footed across terra carpeta, holding distrust and disdain away with considerable force, teacup close with same. I tried simultaneously to switch off the powerhouse, but it cannot be quelled, so with the best of two hands, I moved it along the paths of progress, learning, understanding, sorting, channelling. With dubious world impact, but thats sky talking. To savor the passing moments, the connections, the music, the food and drink, to me, thats a fight to the death. But I get better, I remember more of today than I would have at the end of a day two years ago. After dealing with lifes shitstorms, which by the way I thought I was done with, but apparently not, the anger, the fear, paranoia, anxiety, they are all there. They travel yet with, but im able to choose now. The wisdom of earth is peaceful and freeing, im not really made for thousand foot journeys, a random wander hop with occasional lookback to paint the most convenient picture, thats about my speed


Thursday, March 03, 2016

a parents pride


watching the tiny toddler
rush out naked from a warm bath
leap on his plastic table
and make a pee
then rush back into the bathroom
and shred the toilet paper
until he has a perfect rectangle
of 3, then gallop back
to place carefully on the pee
I can't help the pride
we made that from scratch
beat that, world