Burglars rant

knock knock, knock knock

all dead asleep

or no one’s home

a pin, click click click clock

doors open

and shut quietly

a quick once over

tv, camera, xbox

laptop, tablet , half a stiff pizza, some cigarettes,

a bit of jewellery

some nice lingerie too but pity that won’t fetch

a nice umbrella a belt a watch

possibly some loose cash

a goodnight’s haul

now for home, but sudden need for a smoke

sat on the bed, sparked her up

nice coupla satisfying drags before the

smoke alarm started wailing, I was like wtf.

anyway

sonofabitch gave me 5 without parole

food is shit and so’s the company

3 done 2 to go

– raghu

At the Art of the festival

Autumn arrives in its own special way, leaves that held fast onto the branches finally let go, only to be swished away by the wind . The sun starts getting lazy, rising late and calling it a day by mid evening. The nip in the air getting more prominent as the days go by. For me as well as the whole of Kolkata , autumn also brings with it  the whiff of incense and the golden glow of light bulbs decorating  the streets of the city. It’s the time when Durga comes visiting her maternal home with her daughters Lakshmi and Saraswati and her sons Ganesha and Karthik after killing the demon Mahishasura. It is  the celebration of the age-old triumph of good over evil. For the people of Bengal, Durga  is more than a Goddess,she is the  mother most affectionately called “Maa”.The most awaited festival of the city, and Kolkata leaves  no stone unturned  to please their beloved mother. The preparations begin from early July and slowly as the days become shorter the Pandals get ready to house the Goddess.The people making sure that they go to see their “Maa” wearing clothes specially bought for the Pujas. Cameras fly off the shelves as everybody gets ready to capture the festive spirit. The Goddess herself  transforms from a model of  hay and clay to her divine feminine form.

Its on the  four main days of festivity that the city becomes a big fair ground where art, talent and beauty are found  in abundance and every soul is one with the Puja spirit. With the traditional Puja Pandals and idols giving way to new ideas, the themes and layouts go from beautiful to bizarre. Its a tough competition, with each committee vying for the crowds.The festival changes the city into a world of surrealism, something that makes everyone an Alice in wonderland.You see a T-Rex here,a  Buddha temple there, a weaver bird’s nest a few feet away. The city never fails to surprise you and you keep wondering how these themes were thought of, processed and brought to life.

It is a Festival like no other ,where art is worshipped and object of worship is art in itself.


 



Shweta 🙂

Constant Change

“Weekdays revolved on a sameness wheel. They turned into themselves so steadily and inevitably that each seemed to be the original of yesterday’s rough draft” – Maya Angelou .There is no better way i could describe how most of my days went by. Waking up at the same time, sitting the same classes, and doing the same things at home. i so wanted some change and by the end of the week i had my pocket full.

If one is what one eats then i’d surely be an oil tanker. The sweltering heat and my diet of all things fried brought in change in the form of a mini rebellion in my stomach. The days of decadence had to end, my stomach made it clear that it had the Fundamental Right to be treated with respect .The revolt came in the form of cramps and the utter feeling of nausea which made sure i repented my sinful diet. Having tasted the frying pan and the fire i decided to keep it cool for a bit. Three days after my come back i’m pretty happy with my “all things sweet diet”.

“All you need is love” sang the Beatles but my tune went “All you need is an android phone”. When i got it, i realised it was worth the wait .The next two days it seemed the earth would stop spinning if i let go of my new phone. With a whole range of Apps to download i was like a kid in a candy shop, downloading apps like a maniac, getting a dozen games and trying them all out. i even tried to Google map my way home. i’d always wanted an e-book reader, and was overjoyed to have it in the phone. i downloaded a couple of books and tried to struggle through them. It was a huge effort and i really did not enjoy it. Old fashioned i maybe, but reading a book is not a treat for the eye alone. The smell of the pages, each different from the other, each having a unique smell depending on the paper, the bookstore and also the place where it was kept. Sometimes the smell is also a memory stamp of what you munched on while reading, i often smell  bits of chocolate or biscuit that hide in the folds of the pages. Secondly the feel of the paper, the new ones sharp at the edges , the old ones a bit limp and dog eared. Lastly the sound the pages make when you turn them, this too depending on the newness of the book. Having downloaded a few titles in eBooks i trashed  them all and turned to my paperbacks with good ol’ Jeeves. The surging sea of aunts, butlers and pigs ( in no particular order ) kept me in high spirits.

Sadly college life was still in a rut, it was as if all the teachers had conspired to bore us with lectures on the greyest topics, each class being one-up on the other in boredom quotient. After being pulled up for fiddling with my phone i decided to slip into lie-low mode. To keep my superactive self occupied i began doodling randomly. With plenty of lectures to sit through, i had enough time to hone my artistic skills. i realised that i was not as artistically impaired as i thought, for once my stick figures didn’t look like sorry lines. i’d discovered a practical way to develop my artistic aspirations. The teachers thought i was diligently taking notes, whilst the class was mostly getting some shut eye or twittering away. For a change i was doing neither. i doodled away with the new found hopes of making inroads into the exciting world of cartoons. Suddenly the classes didn’t seem so monotonous any more.

In the days that followed my friends saw me coming to class with a spring in my step and a tune on my lips

‘wassup?’ they asked

‘oh, just change’ I grinned 😉

Shweta

Wedge of Orange

Another hot afternoon finds me waiting at the bus stop looking up at the hot sky with not a cloud in sight. The simple joys of my school days come back to me as i try to make the most of my melting orange popsicle – my frail solace against the blazing sun. Orange against orange, the smaller one melting its way to defeat but not without giving me cool respite. Like most children i used to wait for the school bell to ring, so that i could go and get one. The ice candy man became our pit stop, for last minute chit-chat on the way home after school. Life has changed a lot from those carefree days, but some things stick with you – my love for orange ices being one of them.

One cold morning about a hundred and seven years ago, 11 year old Frank Epperson woke up to find that he had invented the Popsicle. Forgetful Frank had left his fruit flavoured soda outside on the porch with a stir stick in it. Overnight, the drink froze to the stick and Voilà! the Popsicle was born.

It’s a paradox that while the orange is a winter fruit, its this tangy burst of flavour and colour that you thirst for on a hot summers day. Take a thick bite of the ice (only the very brave can do that) and an electric sensation creeps up from your jaw to the temple – that’s the numbing pain of the “brain freeze”. Drawing from a wealth of personal experience, i’d say that this is the mind forgetting all else and focusing its attention on getting the most of Vitamin O. As the coolness spreads,you feel the oppressive heat of the day melting away.

As i board the bus juggling popsicle, mobile, purse and person – a golden trickle drips on to my shirt. As i knit my brows, a small voice inside me pipes up ‘what would life be without orange popsicles?’

and i think to myself ‘blue..very blue…’

Shweta 🙂