Sunday, 30 April 2017

T - TIPTOE


She Tiptoed Into My Life...

Like A Billow Of Fresh Air
Like An Answer To A Prayer
Like Music In A Lair

She Tiptoed Into My Heart...

Like A Gemstone That Is Rare
Like A Square That Fits A Square
Like A Clandestine Affair

She Tiptoed Into My Soul...

Like A Promise In Despair
Like A Mystery Laid Bare
She Was Simply Everywhere...

...And Then She Tiptoed Out.


Please feel free to leave comments, whether or not you liked what you read. It's a great way to start a conversation or a dialogue. I might be pretty boring in real life, but I promise I'm a lot more fun in this avatar.

Today's post took a long time coming. I had this idea for a long time, and finally I managed to put it into words. A big thank you to Swati Nain for making an effort to understand the context of my poem before clicking the picture. Swati lives in the city of Sonipat in Haryana, India. She has a degree in History and is keenly interested in Indian colonial history and the European Renaissance. Swati also loves reading and multidisciplinary learning. A poet and blogger herself, she describes herself as someone who is both caged and free, and who is broken and building herself with the same scars that tore her apart. She maintains two distinct blogs. You can find her blog posts on www.justthoughtsnotpoetry.blogspot.in and www.mystictotheroot.blogspot.in. Her Instagram URL is www.instagram.com/swatinain

Previous posts in the A to Z Challenge - April 2017:-

A - All Apologies (Poem)
B - Baptism (Poem)
C - Chains (Short Story)
D - Door To My House (Short Story / Sentimental / Philosophy / Wisdom)
E - Evil Eye Deliverance (Short Story)
F - Flight of the Lonely Raven (Poem)
G - Girl With The Rings (Weird Story)
H - Hills Beckon (Poem)
I - Idyllic Sky (Short Story)
J - Judging Yasmin (Short Story)
K - Kiss of Death (Poem)
L - Lady of a Perpetual Sucker (Poem)
M - Mosaic You (Poem)
N - Nevermind (Weird Story / Short Story)
O - Office-ial Stance (Short Story)
P - Pretender (Poem)
Q - Queen (Poem)
R - Ramparts (Poem)
S - Standing In The Midst Of Clouds (Short Story) 

Saturday, 29 April 2017

S - STANDING IN THE MIDST OF CLOUDS

Midnight was long gone; 'it was probably 02:00 a.m. now' Subodh thought to himself, too tired to bother using his flashlight to illuminate his wristwatch. Besides, he had to make sure the batteries were fully charged for the rest of the journey. As expected, this had been a cold winter night; not the kind ordinary citizens would encounter in the comfort of their homes. The location and terrain was very different here, somewhere high up the Western Ghats in the Ahmednagar district of Maharashtra. Up here, winters usually mean layers of thermal wear, monkey-caps and gloves to beat the bone-chilling winds blowing across the landscape, and very often, even these don't yield satisfactory results.

But the cold was the last thing on Subodh's mind. After all, a long-cherished dream was about to come true in a few hours from now. And he had everything he needed to make this dream happen - his camera, and his knack of getting the perfect shot.

Subodh had heard about Harishchandragad many many years ago, probably when he was still a college going teenager. He hadn't given it much thought then. But then, one day, about five years ago, his friend Tej had shown him a photograph that had suddenly given him a new-found passion...nay...an obsession. It was the photograph of a grassy cliff, engulfed in what looked like a mile-wide carpet of white and fluffy clouds. "Taramati Peak", Tej had said excitedly, "Isn't it amazing? It's the third highest peak in Maharashtra. I was there last week". Subodh remembered he had gone completely mute for almost a minute then, lost in amazement.

And ever since then, Subodh had wanted to be there and capture the surreal scene for eternity...on his camera. In the past five years, he had gone on various trips across the 'countless' forts dotting the state of Maharashtra. With every successive trek, he had built up both his climbing skills as well as his collection of amazing clicks. He become so good that his friends and family swore by he had made plans a number of times to make this trip, but somehow, work and the pressures of daily life always played spoilsport.

Today, however, nothing was going to stop him.

It had been a tiring 5 hour climb for Subodh and his friends Mandar and Reuben to get to Konkan Kada. Konkan Kada itself had been a marvel to watch and experience for the group -  the overhang cliff is concave and almost looks like the hood of a cobra. You could also imagine a slab of icecream that has been scooped at the longer edge with a round spoon - that's how the cliff would look like from a distance. The sights from the cliff were both enthralling and scary at the same time. After soaking in the visuals and daring to go closer to the edge of the cliff to get pictures of the topography below, the group moved a little ahead to set up camp for the night. This was necessary so that they would be able to get to the Taramati peak at the right time - just before sun rise. So they had pitched their tents at a decent spot around 7 pm, and decided to wake up around 4 a.m. to resume the final 1.5 hour trek towards the summit. As planned, Mandar and Reuben were making best use of the time to rest their weary bodies and wake up refreshed for the final lap.

Subodh, however, found himself unable to sleep. 'Perhaps that's what accomplishments that are just around the corner do to us', he thought to himself.

At 3:45 am, he woke his friends up. It was finally time to begin the final phase of their trip.

Here's a thing about the Taramati peak though. If you check out the distance between Konkan Kada and Taramati Peak on Google Maps, you will see that it is a 2.6 kilometre stretch that would take around 45 minutes to traverse. The images will also tell you that the terrain is tricky and requires you to walk through rocky and inclined terrain, and also through thick forest cover. What the map will not tell you is that since the place is more than 4,600 feet above sea level, there is thick fog and cloud cover, and therefore it is very easy to get diverted from the path. Also, certain stretches of the path comprise nothing but a 10-foot wide rock-laden paths, with only the wind and free falls to offer cover on either side.


Walking in such tough terrain would be a great challenge, especially in the wee hours. Nevertheless, Subodh and his friends were aware of the risks and had done a lot of research about the route. Confident and armed with their flashlights, and assured that they had the luxury of 2 hours to sun rise, set out slowly and steadily on their sojourn.

The first half of the journey was pretty simple, thanks to tracks (and trash) left behind by trekkers over the years. The latter half, however, was extremely difficult. One a couple of occasions, the sight of the seemingly endless forest cover made them think they were on the wrong path. Fortunately, however, they encountered another group of hikers who guided them. They decided to be wise and hang around the senior-looking group.

As luck would have it, about an hour and many tricky climbs later, they reached the final rocky patch before the peak. The challenge at this juncture was that the patch was steeply inclined - 50 or 60 degrees, they couldn't tell. The patch had a few crevices and grooves that could serve as footholds, Subodh and his friends had read that this stretch was only 600 metres long, but would take at least 45 minutes to traverse. Although the strong winds made the weather beautiful, they also made the climb even more difficult. True to their expectations, the trio took about 55 minutes to complete this final stretch. The sun had by now just begun to rise in the cloud-filled sky.

And when the patch was traversed, the trio stood on the expansive plateau that formed part of the peak. The sun was now high enough to illuminate the entire landscape. It was time.

Mandar had almost immediately forgotten that he was in a group and had gone into selfie mode. Subodh took his back-pack off of his back and yanked out his Sony A7M2 DSLR camera. Then he turned towards Reuben and handed the camera to him. Both of them exchanged a knowing nod and Subodh dashed off towards the farthest point of the cliff, while Reuben stood his ground.

A blanket of clouds floated along the hemline of the cliff, looking like waves of snow lashing against a shoreline. Although the sun was now shining bright, the cloud cover made it impossible to see the valleys below the cliff.

Subodh looked down at the clouds with tears in his eyes. This was a dream come true.

He didn't even need to ask Reuben to click. Reuben took just one shot.

And it was PERFECT.



Please feel free to leave comments, whether or not you liked what you read. It's a great way to start a conversation or a dialogue. I might be pretty boring in real life, but I promise I'm a lot more fun in this avatar.

Today's image is almost surreal. It is the pic of the Taramati peak, which is the third highest point in the Indian state of Maharashtra. It happens to be one of the two peaks in the area surrounding the Harshchandragad fort in the Ahmednagar district of Maharashtra, at around 4,695 feet above sea level. The sheer beauty of the place offers a great trekking experience for amateurs and experts alike. A big thank you to Subodh Panchal for the amazing pics. Subodh is a professional photographer based in Mumbai. He and a friend of his came together to start a photography studio named 'Life on Pics'. You can have a look at their amazing work on www.lifeonpics.com. Subodh's Instagram URL is www.instagram.com/subodh_panchal

Previous posts in the A to Z Challenge - April 2017:-

A - All Apologies (Poem)
B - Baptism (Poem)
C - Chains (Short Story)
D - Door To My House (Short Story / Sentimental / Philosophy / Wisdom)
E - Evil Eye Deliverance (Short Story)
F - Flight of the Lonely Raven (Poem)
G - Girl With The Rings (Weird Story)
H - Hills Beckon (Poem)
I - Idyllic Sky (Short Story)
J - Judging Yasmin (Short Story)
K - Kiss of Death (Poem)
L - Lady of a Perpetual Sucker (Poem)
M - Mosaic You (Poem)
N - Nevermind (Weird Story / Short Story)
O - Office-ial Stance (Short Story)
P - Pretender (Poem)
Q - Queen (Poem)
R - Ramparts (Poem)

Wednesday, 26 April 2017

R - RAMPARTS


Stone By Stone...Rock By Rock
Boulder By Humongous Boulder
The Fortress Was Built On Hills Up High
To Challenge The Audacity Of Every Invader

Under The Watchful Eye
Of Clear And Open, Desolate Skies
The Fort, Flanked By Strong And Gusty Winds
Takes Invaders And Their Horses By Surprise

O'er Time Many Raiders Tried in Vain
To Tear Down And Ruin Its Ramparts
But They Knew Not That The Strength Of These Rocky Walls
Really Lay In The Valour Of Brave-hearts...


Please feel free to leave comments, whether or not you liked what you read. It's a great way to start a conversation or a dialogue. I might be pretty boring in real life, but I promise I'm a lot more fun in this avatar.

Today's image is that of the Visapur Fort in the Pune district of Maharashtra, India. The fort was built by circa 1713 - 1720, by the first Peshwa of the Maratha empire, Balaji Vishwanath. I thank Gaurang Kelkar immensely for allowing me to use this image. Mumbai-based Gaurang is a twenty-something Software Developer by vocation, and a biker, trekker, nature-lover and photographer by passion. Every now and then, he hops onto his bike (with friends) and embarks on adventures to scale some fort among the many that are scattered across Maharashtra, His Instagram URL is www.instagram.com/imgaurangkelkar

Previous posts in the A to Z Challenge - April 2017:-

A - All Apologies (Poem)
B - Baptism (Poem)
C - Chains (Short Story)
D - Door To My House (Short Story / Sentimental / Philosophy / Wisdom)
E - Evil Eye Deliverance (Short Story)
F - Flight of the Lonely Raven (Poem)
G - Girl With The Rings (Weird Story)
H - Hills Beckon (Poem)
I - Idyllic Sky (Short Story)
J - Judging Yasmin (Short Story)
K - Kiss of Death (Poem)
L - Lady of a Perpetual Sucker (Poem)
M - Mosaic You (Poem)
N - Nevermind (Weird Story / Short Story)
O - Office-ial Stance (Short Story)
P - Pretender (Poem)
Q - Queen (Poem)

Tuesday, 25 April 2017

Q - QUEEN


She Lays Siege
To My Lonesome Heart At Will
Overrunning Dreams
An Invader of Unfathomable Skill


She Runs Amok
O'er Vast Expanses Of My Mind
And By Design
Leaves A Million Footprints Behind


With Angelic Glow
She Lights Up The Lifeless Dark
Dazed And Stupefied
I Crave For Her Brilliant Spark


Laying My Armour Down
I Meekly Drink From Her Chalice
And Undisputed, Crown Her
Queen Of My Desolate Palace


Please feel free to leave comments, whether or not you liked what you read. It's a great way to start a conversation or a dialogue. I might be pretty boring in real life, but I promise I'm a lot more fun in this avatar.

For today's images, I am extremely grateful to the pretty and immensely talented Azeema Ilyas aka Zeemee. Azeema is 23 years old and lives in the Peshawar district of the Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa province of Pakistan. She is a student of Defense and Diplomatic Studies. She considers photography as her passion (she takes up photography assignments). She also loves to travel. In her words, she loves her beauty sleep and would have loved to laze around doing nothing when she wasn't clicking stuff. Her Instagram URL is www.instagram.com/_zeemee

Previous posts in the A to Z Challenge - April 2017:-

A - All Apologies (Poem)
B - Baptism (Poem)
C - Chains (Short Story)
D - Door To My House (Short Story / Sentimental / Philosophy / Wisdom)
E - Evil Eye Deliverance (Short Story)
F - Flight of the Lonely Raven (Poem)
G - Girl With The Rings (Weird Story)
H - Hills Beckon (Poem)
I - Idyllic Sky (Short Story)
J - Judging Yasmin (Short Story)
K - Kiss of Death (Poem)
L - Lady of a Perpetual Sucker (Poem)
M - Mosaic You (Poem)
N - Nevermind (Weird Story / Short Story)
O - Office-ial Stance (Short Story)
P - Pretender (Poem)

Saturday, 22 April 2017

P - PRETENDER


When You Look Away You Hide
Teardrops That Have Dried
The Void You Left Behind
Your Yearning To Confide

When You Look Away You Hide
Your Prayers That Got Denied
Aspirations That Have Died
A Trail of Swallowed Pride

When You Look Away You Hide
Your Ostentatious Smile
The Scars And Wounds Inside
You're The Mistress Of Disguise...

...Or So You Think!


Please feel free to leave comments, whether or not you liked what you read. It's a great way to start a conversation or a dialogue. I might be pretty boring in real life, but I promise I'm a lot more fun in this avatar.

Today's image is thanks to the naturally beautiful and talented Sana Fatima. The one thing in her that I instantly found adorable were her extremely expressive eyes. 28-year old Sana lives in New Delhi and is a dentist by profession (it's true!). She is keen on pursuing a Masters' in the near future. Here's the best part - she's a writer herself, and owns a blog. She calls herself a proud Capricorn (like me :p) Sana Fatima blogs at www.thesubtlesword.wordpress.com and her Instagram URL is www.instagram.com/sana_fatty

Previous posts in the A to Z Challenge - April 2017:-

A - All Apologies (Poem)
B - Baptism (Poem)
C - Chains (Short Story)
D - Door To My House (Short Story / Sentimental / Philosophy / Wisdom)
E - Evil Eye Deliverance (Short Story)
F - Flight of the Lonely Raven (Poem)
G - Girl With The Rings (Weird Story)
H - Hills Beckon (Poem)
I - Idyllic Sky (Short Story)
J - Judging Yasmin (Short Story)
K - Kiss of Death (Poem)
L - Lady of a Perpetual Sucker (Poem)
M - Mosaic You (Poem)
N - Nevermind (Weird Story / Short Story)
O - Office-ial Stance (Short Story)

O - OFFICE-IAL STANCE

He sat on his seat, anxious like everyone else. Since the past week or so, the hard workers had been quieter than usual. Over the same time, chronic ass-kissers had been stuffing their noses deeper than usual.

It was D-Day today - the day everyone's increments would be announced. Punit was among the quieter lot. He had always been a diligent and reliable employee. Working for a few extra hours and chipping in to help colleagues. He was a natural team player, and was sought after by team mates for his opinions - both work-related and otherwise. His commitment to work, however, meant that he had very little time for family. There were a zillion occasions when he had to slay family commitments at the sacrificial altar of work.

Very soon he was going to find out how he was going to be rewarded for his hard work and foregoing of the mythical 'work-life balance'. He was anxious, yet hopeful of a decent hike,,,and maybe a promotion.

He saw his colleagues being called into the boss' cabin. To his surprise, only a few stayed in for more than 10 minutes. The rest of them came back in just 5-10 minutes. Not the kind to be nosy, he didn't think of enquiring with them,

It was finally his turn. He adjusted his shirt and walked towards the glass door of his boss' cabin. He knocked twice before opening the door and peeping in.

"May I come in, Sir?"

"Punit, Punit...come in my friend."

"Thank you Sir."

The boss signalled for him to sit down. He did.

"My boy. I won't waste time telling you how much of a valuable asset you've been to the company. Everyone swears by your work rate and ethics. You've made so many sacrifices for the company my friend. But..."

"But what Sir?"

"You know the industry is not in great shape. It's getting increasingly harder to do business these days...ask the sales guys and they'll tell you."

Punit looked at him blankly, trying to make sense of what was being conveyed to him.

"Well, to cut a long story short Punit...here's your increment letter."

Punit trembled a bit while opening the envelope. He read it. But he couldn't digest what he had read.

"Seven percent?"

"That's what everyone else is getting. The company has decided to link the increments with the forecast inflation rate."

"Who came up wit this forecast Sir? And assuming it turns out to be true, what about savings? The common man's needs have been increasing over the years Sir."

"There's no point arguing Punit. I would suggest you work harder this year. All of us working harder could help the company do better the next year, and that would mean more profits in the company's hands to share with its employees. We all need to roll up our sleeves Punit. You know how this works, don't you?"

Punit nodded, having given up.

"I'm sorry my friend. I'm getting the same hike as you are", Punit noticed him sheepishly look away as he said this.

Punit nodded. He stood up and shook his boss' hand.

"Thank you Sir."

"Continue the good work", his boss said, giving him a wink. "And remember...we all need to roll up our sleeves."

Punit stepped out of the cabin. He went to his seat and plonked himself on his chair. He lay his forehead down on the desk and began to think.

He thought of the long hours he spent at work, and the negligible time he spent at home.

He thought of the events he attended at work, and the festivals he had to forego at home.

He thought of the meals he had to skip while being busy at work, and the monthly grocery bills he had to regularly pay for.

But right then he remembered his boss' words.

"...we all need o roll up our sleeves."

He knew this was truly the need of the hour.

He sat up at his desk with a renewed vigour and belief.

Then he rolled up his sleeves.

And then he packed up his stuff and went home.


Please feel free to leave comments, whether or not you liked what you read. It's a great way to start a conversation or a dialogue. I might be pretty boring in real life, but I promise I'm a lot more fun in this avatar.

Previous posts in the A to Z Challenge - April 2017:-

A - All Apologies (Poem)
B - Baptism (Poem)
C - Chains (Short Story)
D - Door To My House (Short Story / Sentimental / Philosophy / Wisdom)
E - Evil Eye Deliverance (Short Story)
F - Flight of the Lonely Raven (Poem)
G - Girl With The Rings (Weird Story)
H - Hills Beckon (Poem)
I - Idyllic Sky (Short Story)
J - Judging Yasmin (Short Story)
K - Kiss of Death (Poem)
L - Lady of a Perpetual Sucker (Poem)
M - Mosaic You (Poem)
N - Nevermind (Weird Story / Short Story)

N - NEVERMIND

Incident #85

Sudhir quickly alighted the bus. The three hour journey that was otherwise supposed to be one hour long (thanks to the legendary Mumbai traffic) had sapped his energy and gutted his composure. More than half of the public transport bus drivers were on strike that day; no wonder then that the bus had been unusually crowded today. As luck would have it, he had spent more than two-thirds of the journey standing, which was painful considering the fact that he was carrying a heavy backpack, loaded with a laptop, documents from work and a three-tier stainless steel tiffin box.

He was exhausted, but thanked his stars that home was just a couple of minutes from the bus stop. He attempted to walk as briskly as he could - his wife had asked him to be home by 7:45, but it was already 9 pm. Hardly had he reached the gate of his residential complex, when he suddenly remembered his wife's message asking him to buy 2 litres of milk and a packet of brown bread. He slapped his forehead and dragged his weary body back outside the gates. The kirana shop was about 400 metres away, and it took him about 10 minutes to fetch the stuff and drag his fatigued body up the staircase of his building. He stood in front of the doorstep of his second floor apartment and rang the doorbell, 

His wife took about 30 seconds to open the door. The door opened, and they both stared at each other. For about 10 seconds, no words were exchanged.

"Did you get the milk?", Shobha broke the silence.

"Yeah...here it is."

"The bread?"

"Here."

"Is that all?", she looked at him with a cold stare.

"Wha...what? Did I forget something?"

"Hmm."

"What?"

"...Nevermind."

The pistol had been purchased.

Incident #93

Shobha was busy wearing her saree. Sudhir was still shaving, but he had kept his linen pressed and ready. He knew he'd be done shaving in about five minutes, and that he'd only need another 15 minutes to get into his shirt, to button up and to slip on his trousers and loafers. The party was supposed to start in another 45 minutes. But he was certain Shobha would take another hour or so to get ready.

As expected, he was ready in twenty minutes. He waited patiently for her outside her room. She was done in an additional forty minutes. She walked out in panic.

"You ready?"

"Of course."

"So let's go. What are we waiting for?"

"Nothing. Let's go."

"Wait...What are you wearing?"

"Why? What's wrong?"

"You wore this last week as well, didn't you?"

"Maybe...so what?"

"I'm not leaving if you're gonna wear that."

"But why?"

"...Nevermind"

The bullets came as well.

Incident #137

The bed was rocking in harmony with the motion of their bodies. With every thrust of his organ, she let out a moan that sounded like sweet music. She grabbed him by his buttocks and pulled him closer. His eager mouth moved from one breast to the other, attempting to take in more than it could accommodate. Then he moved his mouth back and used his fingers to twirl the nipples. She contorted her body into shapes that suggested that she was going to explode. Not for a second though did the pummelling down below stop.

When he finally came, he slowed down to look at her.Assuming that she was done as well, he rolled over next to her bare body and let out a sigh of satisfaction.

"That's it?", she asked in a tone that suggested irritation.

"Oh, I'm sorry...I thought you...."

"Yeah, of course you did."

"I'm really sorry.", he whispered gently into her ears as he proceeded to finger her.

She pulled away. "It's alright. I'm sleepy now. I never knew that...", she mumbled and stopped abruptly, without ending the sentence.

"Never knew what?", he asked, understandably angry.

".Hmm..nevermind."

He opened the drawer adjacent to the bedpost, pulled out the loaded pistol and pulled the trigger.

EPILOGUE

Did someone die or get injured or get killed?

Which one of the two was it then?

Well....it was....

Hmm..

...NEVERMIND!


Please feel free to leave comments, whether or not you liked what you read. It's a great way to start a conversation or a dialogue. I might be pretty boring in real life, but I promise I'm a lot more fun in this avatar.

Previous posts in the A to Z Challenge - April 2017:-

A - All Apologies (Poem)
B - Baptism (Poem)
C - Chains (Short Story)
D - Door To My House (Short Story / Sentimental / Philosophy / Wisdom)
E - Evil Eye Deliverance (Short Story)
F - Flight of the Lonely Raven (Poem)
G - Girl With The Rings (Weird Story)
H - Hills Beckon (Poem)
I - Idyllic Sky (Short Story)
J - Judging Yasmin (Short Story)
K - Kiss of Death (Poem)
L - Lady of a Perpetual Sucker (Poem)
M - Mosaic You (Poem)

Wednesday, 19 April 2017

M - MOSAIC YOU


In Every Nook And Corner
I Find Splinters And Shards
And Before We Could Realise
You Lay Down All Your Cards
Not In My Wildest Dreams

Did I Ever Think I'd Find
A Shattered And Scattered
Mosaic YOU

We Both Begin To Gather
The Pieces, Small And Large
I Help, But Think It's Best 
That You Assumed Full Charge
But Then You Break Again

'Tis A Challenge To Concede
A Flustered And Bewildered
Mosaic YOU

I Let You Rest Awhile
And Shards Begin To Trace
In Some Scattered Pieces Of Mirror
I See A Broken Face

It's True, I'm Bruised Too 
Distraught And Impotent
Mosaic ME


Please feel free to leave comments, whether or not you liked what you read. It's a great way to start a conversation or a dialogue. I might be pretty boring in real life, but I promise I'm a lot more fun in this avatar.

For today's image, I was looking for someone who had an innocent face and whose picture conveyed a certain degree of sadness. A big thank you to Shinjini Dutta for sharing her pictures for the post. As you can see, she has an angelic face. No surprise then, that she has more than 4,500 followers on Instagram. Kolkata-based Shinjini is all of 21, and has a Bachelor's Degree in Mass Communication and Journalism. Interestingly, she has also completed a course in aviation from Frankfinn Institute. Her hobbies include shopping and playing the synthesizer. Her Instagram URL is www.instagram.com/shinjinidutta

Previous posts in the A to Z Challenge - April 2017:-

A - All Apologies (Poem)
B - Baptism (Poem)
C - Chains (Short Story)
D - Door To My House (Short Story / Sentimental / Philosophy / Wisdom)
E - Evil Eye Deliverance (Short Story)
F - Flight of the Lonely Raven (Poem)
G - Girl With The Rings (Weird Story)
H - Hills Beckon (Poem)
I - Idyllic Sky (Short Story)
J - Judging Yasmin (Short Story)
K - Kiss of Death (Poem)
L - Lady of a Perpetual Sucker (Poem)

Monday, 17 April 2017

L - LADY OF A PERPETUAL SUCKER

Here I Am
Numb
Smitten
Cleaving My Mind And My Heart
For You And Your Contentment

There You Are
Composed
Indifferent
Trampling On My Flesh And My Soul
And Hopping Onto Yet Another Sojourn

Here I Am
Falling
Squirming
Clutching My Scars And My Bruises
Biting The Dust

There You Are
Airborne
Zippy
Dancing With The Wind And The Stars
Oblivious To My Existence

Here I Am
Wretched
Pathetic
Seeking My Joys In Your Bliss
Using My Bloodied Robes To Catch Your Tears
There You Are
Poised
Confident
Holding Your Nose Up High
Dusting Off The Bygones And Letting Them Be

Have Mercy...


Please feel free to leave comments, whether or not you liked what you read. It's a great way to start a conversation or a dialogue. I might be pretty boring in real life, but I promise I'm a lot more fun in this avatar.

Woah boy! What a struggle it was to find today's image. For two posts in a row, I think I ended up freaking out a few ladies. I needed the image of a woman who carried a slight hint of evil in her attitude. Some ladies probably misconstrued this as asking for 'bold' pics. Amid all this struggle, Dr. Pooja Tripathi - a Doctor by profession and a Writer and an Activist against Child Sexual Abuse by passion - came to my rescue. I am extremely grateful to her, because not only did she give me a patient hearing, but she also took pains to click new photographs based on what I had visualised. Also, coming up with the required images was a huge challenge for herself, because she is inherently a sweet person who always has a genuine smile on her face, and who's features convey a child-like innocence. By her own admission, she had never done a pic like this ever before. Here's an interesting fact that I did not previously know - she's a blogger herself, and she is also participating in the A to Z Challenge herself. Dr. Pooja Tripathi is a doctor turned writer, hit by wanderlust. She believes in following her heart always because life is too short not to be happy. She works with Care India on weekdays and with her Bachpan Project against Child Sexual Abuse on weekends. She blogs at www.drpoojatripathi.com and her Instagram URL is www.instagram.com/wanderer_wordweaver

Previous posts in the A to Z Challenge - April 2017:-

A - All Apologies (Poem)
B - Baptism (Poem)
C - Chains (Short Story)
D - Door To My House (Short Story / Sentimental / Philosophy / Wisdom)
E - Evil Eye Deliverance (Short Story)
F - Flight of the Lonely Raven (Poem)
G - Girl With The Rings (Weird Story)
H - Hills Beckon (Poem)
I - Idyllic Sky (Short Story)
J - Judging Yasmin (Short Story)
K - Kiss of Death (Poem)

Saturday, 15 April 2017

K - KISS OF DEATH

Her Luscious Lips
Alluring
My Spellbound Heart
Enduring

Her Blood-Red Lips
Beguiling
They Look So
Tantalising

Her Lips She Licks
Inciting
The Prospects Seem
Exciting

She Draws Near
So Enchanting
My Demons Begin
Ranting

Our Lips They Meet
Igniting
I Put Off All The
Lighting

Soon Licking Turns To
Biting
Its Gruesome And
Uninviting

A Hiss I Hear
I'm Panting
And Suddenly
There's Chanting

I Try To Push
I'm Brawling
'Tis Too Late Though
I'm Falling

Wish I'd Held Onto
My Armour
The Kiss Of Death's
A Charmer...


Please feel free to leave comments, whether or not you liked what you read. It's a great way to start a conversation or a dialogue. I might be pretty boring in real life, but I promise I'm a lot more fun in this avatar.

Finding an apt image for tonight's post was a real struggle. I think I must have scandalised a few ladies tonight. Which is why I'm extremely thankful to Taniya Parihar for trusting me with her lovely picture. She was extremely patient in terms of sharing multiple options so that I could get the perfect image. Jammu-based Taniya is a housewife and the mother of a 4-year old boy. She has a background in Arts and Computer Sciences. Her Instagram URL is www.instagram.com/taniyaparihar123

Previous posts in the A to Z Challenge - April 2017:-

A - All Apologies (Poem)
B - Baptism (Poem)
C - Chains (Short Story)
D - Door To My House (Short Story / Sentimental / Philosophy / Wisdom)
E - Evil Eye Deliverance (Short Story)
F - Flight of the Lonely Raven (Poem)
G - Girl With The Rings (Weird Story)
H - Hills Beckon (Poem)
I - Idyllic Sky (Short Story)
J - Judging Yasmin (Short Story)

Friday, 14 April 2017

J - JUDGING YASMIN

Most the guests were already in. Farzan and his family were the first to come in. Junaid had promised to bring his fiancee Aneesa along, but had arrived solo. Sarah had come in with her 7 year old, Abram. Also present were a few neighbours and a whole bunch of teenage kids. With most of his friends having arrived for the house-warming party well on time. His new third floor apartment was teeming with friends and loved ones. He would occasionally regret not having a family, but he was far from feeling lonely today. Everyone could see Sadiq smiling from ear to ear.

But what Sadiq was excited about most of all was the fact that his longtime pal Yousuf  was also on his way there; they were going to meet after a couple of years. What's more, Yousuf had also decided to bring his 19 year old daughter Yasmin along. Sadiq had last seen Yasmin when she was barely a few weeks old. Yousuf would rarely take Yasmin out; she hated to be in public. Sadiq all the more happy. Yousuf rarely took his daughter anywhere; not because he didn't want to, but because she didn't. Maybe she was painfully shy, or maybe she was a social recluse; Sadiq couldn't put his finger on it. Nevertheless, he was happy that he was going to be able to see her after years.

The doorbell rang, and a couple of the neighbours' kids who were till then playing a random game of 'pakdam-pakdai' or tag, ran to open the door, with Sadiq walking behind them in excitement. As expected, it was Yousuf and his daughter. Sadiq rushed forward to hug them.

"How big you've become beta. I last saw you when you were this small."

Yasmin smiled, at first a little awkwardly, but eventually it developed into a full-blown toothy smile, the kind of smile a shy six-year old would typically give. She didn't say anything though.

"Say hello to Sadiq uncle", her father said gently.

"Huh..hello" she struggled to say. Sadiq noticed she had to make an effort to blurt out the word.

Sadiq looked at Yousuf, "Is...everything all...alright?"

"Alhamdulillah...God has been kind", Yousuf said.

Sadiq began feeling uncomfortable. He crossed his fingers and hoped everything was fine. 

The afternoon was progressing normally. The kids continued playing. Guests were now talking to fellow guests whom they had never met before. Food and beverages were being guzzled. Yasmin though, chose to sit in a corner with her glass of fruit punch while her dad engaged in small talk with the host and other guests.

All of a sudden, there were loud noises coming from below the  window.

No one needed to go take a peek outside the window to know what it was - it was a brass band playing folk and filmy tunes. Somebody from the neighbourhood was probably getting married. No one bothered to look.

But Yasmin ran towards the window and gawked in amazement. She made a clumsy attempt to hum along with the tunes being played; she even clapped her hands gingerly when she liked a particular tune. She was extremely happy, and the world knew it. But in her moment of enjoyment, she was unknowingly evoking reactions from the guests and the kids.  

Almost all the kids were giggling. Some were secretly recording her mannerism on their smartphones. An unsettling buzz began among the guests. Some were shaking their heads in pity, while some simply sat shell-shocked and stared at her. But while all of this was happening in the background, Yasmin was completely oblivious of the goings-on around her, and was having a gala time.

Her father broke the awkward moment by saying, "She's regained her hearing ability after ten long years...God is Great!"





Please feel free to leave comments, whether or not you liked what you read. It's a great way to start a conversation or a dialogue. I might be pretty boring in real life, but I promise I'm a lot more fun in this avatar.

Today's image is all thanks to another wonderful Instagrammer from Pakistan. Karachi-based Rimsha Javaid considers herself as just another average 20-year old girl. She's pursuing a Bachelor in Arts degree, with a major in Philosophy. She's a photography and literary enthusiast. She blogs at www.thefaultinourbrains.tumblr.com and her Instagram URL is www.instagram.com/_rimshaha

Previous posts in the A to Z Challenge - April 2017:-

A - All Apologies (Poem)
B - Baptism (Poem)
C - Chains (Short Story)
D - Door To My House (Short Story / Sentimental / Philosophy / Wisdom)
E - Evil Eye Deliverance (Short Story)
F - Flight of the Lonely Raven (Poem)
G - Girl With The Rings (Weird Story)
H - Hills Beckon (Poem)
I - Idyllic Sky (Short Story) 

Wednesday, 12 April 2017

I - IDYLLIC SKY

The Friday Namaaz or congregation prayer at the iconic Badshahi mosque in Lahore had finished about twenty minutes ago. But Fahad stayed back to take a walk inside the mosque to take a look at its elaborately-decorated interiors and prayer halls and to walk across the enormous courtyard that could accommodate more than 100,000 worshippers. He had done this an umpteen number of times before, but he could never get enough of the monument's marvellous sights.


As he strolled across the courtyard, with the massive edifice made with red sandstone sourced from quarries in Jaipur (India), a gust of wind blew across the landscape. It dishevelled his neatly parted hair, but Fahad had no complaints. On the contrary, it only added a new dimension to the state of reverie that he currently found himself in. He smiled.

Soon, it was beginning to get dark. Fahad checked his watch - it was 6:55 pm. He remembered that he was supposed to meet his friends at Bundu Khan's at the Emporium Mall at around 8:00 pm for dinner. It would probably take him around an hour to reach there considering the usual Friday evening traffic. He decided it was best to leave right away. And so he turned towards the gate, eager to make an exit.

An then he saw it.

One of the minars of the mosque stood tall and dark, with the setting sun in the background creating hues of pink and orange in the sky. A couple of birds that were sitting on the minar decided to fly, almost as if on cue, adding magic to the show in the sky. Fahad's heart skipped a beat.

And then Fahad did what he knew he could do best.

He pulled out his camera and clicked a beautiful picture. 

Footnote: In India, Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb is renowned as a tyrant - especially during the last few years of his reign. Also, unlike his predecessors, he was not known to be a patron of art and architecture, having spent much of his reign in military conquests. However, unknown to many, he never spent a single rupee of the royal treasury on himself; he would instead earn his money by writing copies of the Koran. The Badshahi Mosque in Lahore (Pakistan) and the Bibi Ka Maqbara in Aurangabad in India are probably the grandest monuments that were built during his reign. Also, interestingly, in accordance with his wishes, he was laid to rest in an unmarked grave within the complex of the Dargah of a Sufi Saint named Sheikh Zainuddin Shirazi, in Khuldabad in Maharashtra. 


Please feel free to leave comments, whether or not you liked what you read. It's a great way to start a conversation or a dialogue. I might be pretty boring in real life, but I promise I'm a lot more fun in this avatar.

Today's fantastic image is all thanks to Lahore-based Fahad Qureshi. He is an MBA from Fast University, Lahore. He describes himself an introvert, a hobbyist and an 'amateur' photographer. A look at his Instagram feed will tell you that he's anything but amateur, this guy's got an eye for beauty and immense talent. His Instagram URL is www.instagram.com/fahadqureshi_

Previous posts in the A to Z Challenge - April 2017:-

A - All Apologies (Poem)
B - Baptism (Poem)
C - Chains (Short Story)
D - Door To My House (Short Story / Sentimental / Philosophy / Wisdom)
E - Evil Eye Deliverance (Short Story)
F - Flight of the Lonely Raven (Poem)
G - Girl With The Rings (Weird Story)
H - Hills Beckon (Poem)

Tuesday, 11 April 2017

H - HILLS BECKON


When I Look Up
From Down Below
I Am Amazed
At Their Glorious Heights
I Am Bewildered
At Their Seemingly Insurmountable Summits

But When I Begin Scaling Those Heights
I Find Myself Taken In
By The Smell Of The Earth
By The Might Of The Rocks
By The Soothing Abundance Of Greenery

The Higher I Go
The Thinner The Air Gets
Yet, The Lighter I Feel
And The Closer I Feel To A Higher Power

When The Hills Beckon
Truly, Magic Happens!

Please feel free to leave comments, whether or not you liked what you read. It's a great way to start a conversation or a dialogue. I might be pretty boring in real life, but I promise I'm a lot more fun in this avatar.

A loud and clear shoutout to to Rahul Mhatre for allowing me to use his photograph of a tea garden in Munnar (Kerala). I have been following him on Instagram since almost four months now. As his Instagram feed would suggest, Rahul loves travelling and clicking a lot of pics. In his words, his aim in life is to 'Travel and Shoot'. Like me, he is obsessed with the hills and with forts. Every now and then, he darts off to one of the many hill forts spread across the state of Maharashtra and comes back with a treasure trove of amazing pics. I would have loved to do what he does. He also has a travel blog. Rahul blogs at www.travel-n-shoot.blogspot.in and his Instagram URL is www.instagram.com/mhatre.rahul

Previous posts in the A to Z Challenge - April 2017:-

A - All Apologies (Poem)
B - Baptism (Poem)
C - Chains (Short Story)
D - Door To My House (Short Story / Sentimental / Philosophy / Wisdom)
E - Evil Eye Deliverance (Short Story)
F - Flight of the Lonely Raven (Poem)
G - Girl With The Rings (Weird Story)

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