Saturday, 29 November 2014

You and Me.

I fall a little in love with everyone I meet
I fall in love with everything that humanity is and can be
The imperfections and rounded edges draw me in
I want to know your story
Will you tell me?
Will you tell me why you hate that Beatles song
Or why peanut butter with bread is just so wrong .
Will you tell me of your biggest dreams and all that made you.
Of the books you took to bed 
The days when too many thoughts filled your head
Of the time you held your brother’s finger and followed him around
The times the bully put you down

I fall a little in love with everyone I meet
Someone that hands me a piece of their soul 
Trusting me to keep it
I'm mind blown
You trust me? To keep it.
So safely tucked away
All the things you say
Of the times you had a broken bone
The pages of your diary that you think are just a drone
Of the love you thought was yours 
Are just a few
Of the stories I want to hear
From you

I fall in love a little with everyone I meet 
When you tell me 
Of the day you cried yourself to sleep
When you realized that there is only so much you can do
That the burden of privilege is not yours alone
That we are all just turning into each other's clones
When the truth was too much to take
When choices took the name of mistakes
And then when you say, but I moved passed it
I fall in love with you a little. 
It overwhelms me how easy it is to love
To trust and be trusted too
That we are not alone
believe me, you

That all we are looking for is 
a connection
Some common ground to anchor on
To build a bridge
To catch a train
To something, to someone
Who is never too far away
All we need is to not feel so alone
So I look,
I look for stories. I look for people with their hearts on their sleeve.
Because I fall in love a little with everyone I meet.
I want to know your story.
Will you tell me?
Cause I have them too.
Not so different me and you.

Tuesday, 7 October 2014

Letter to "The One" You, 

I've sat with a pen in my hand writing this letter to you on so many occasions that I almost don't remember what I want to say anymore. I thought I had found you on more than one instance. All the signs were there the violins, the wind in my hair and the sudden pull of it all leading me to an illusion I thought was you. We need to work on the signs this time. Let's have a code word, like when you run into me you say that magical word or perhaps break into a Yo Yo Honey Singh song so that this time, I make no mistake. I know you are somewhere making some mistakes of your own, singing songs, buying flowers, having beer with a girl I will come to hate for breaking your heart. Think you are in love, don't you? Hah, bubble. You need it perhaps, to be able to find me. Let's call her Cruella, okay fine Cranberry? This Cranberry that you are with is going to turn pretty sour very soon. See what I did there?

You are from somewhere in the mountains aren't you? Don't get me wrong, I love the sea. But I hope to be able to share it with you without you knowing any of it. Like I could tell the story in any way I liked and it would be your truth. I would miss the feeling of standing on firm ground, solid and safe but the snow melting under your feet in an attempt to make you trip doesn't sound as scary with you around. I could learn to love it and besides how would I miss the sea, I'd always have your eyes with me. I imagine you to be everything I am not or everything I am but just so different.

I'm still figuring life out, and in all probability will still be figuring it out when I meet you. Don't be afraid, I dream new dreams everyday and I hope you can live them with me. Sometimes they end up crushed but mostly unfold into something magical like it was the final piece of the puzzle all along only till the next one came by. I hope you like music, the kind that lifts your soul - the one with words or the one which needs none at all. And I really hope that you can play some of your own for me, and if you can't I promise to show you my futile attempts at mastering the guitar. I promise to laugh at all your silly jokes and learn to smile at your mistakes. I could be impatient and impulsive and you might think Cranberry was better but I promise to love you with all I have and sometimes more.  And I hope I hear you say at the end of each day that it couldn't be better.

I don't know how I'll finally meet you. Maybe at a bookstore when you bend over to pick the book I dropped. Or maybe at a coffee shop where I sat waiting for someone who never turned up. In the midst of the sea of pretentious marriage profiles - yours would say just the right things. At the beach while I made a sandcastle that you made fun off and showed me how it's done so arrogantly. At a party where you couldn't stop dancing and I could not stop looking at you. Or maybe I've walked past you so many times that destiny is tired of its own cruelty but the stars were just not aligned yet.

I think I could do without you for a while but I would like to know of your existence. It would be comforting to know my soulmate was not hit by a car or something before I could even meet him. But you are "THE ONE" so I'm sure a grand entrance is in order, it would be a story we would repeat several times to the same people at dinners and anniversary parties. No pressure, I was just sharing. I don't know what you look like and I don't know what you sound like but I know your smile reaches your eyes. That your voice is going to be the only thing that can put me to sleep on a bad day and I know that once I've known you I wouldn't need to know anyone else. I would have added a picture but I wouldn't want some creep seeing it lest it lands in the wrong place. Besides you wouldn't need it, I'm sure you'll be able to tell its me with your eyes closed.

So here it is my message in a bottle that I am going to fling into the universe and hope it hits you on the head and you can come find me. But I hope against hope more than anything that I haven't missed you already.


Thursday, 11 September 2014

This Time

This time I grew up.
Didn't delete a single picture or message,
Didn't burn down memories, Didn't cloud my mind.
This time I didn't cry.
But next time around, I'll be ruthless.
I'll judge you for your queer smile.
I'll mock your accent and stare at your scars
I'll stop to breathe before I let your scent into my lungs
This time I'll not make you my comfort. 
I won't let you become the essence of my being 
I won't let you touch my soul
No, not this time
Because this time I won't love you.

As is amply clear, I'm trying to write more and more poetry. I have been a regular at The Poetry Club, Mumbai for the past year and its unbelievable. So if you are in Mumbai and would like to read out your poems in the midst of fellow poets write to them at

Monday, 8 September 2014

Forty Two

So, what is the point of it all anyway?
Life, universe and everything?
Why do I wake up each day and go to work
Tired even before I'm started.
Fixated on goals I don't remember setting
Working for people I don't like
Why? Such an earthling question to ask.

When all I want to do is write.
I want to write about honey filled buttercups     
And sun kissed peaches   
Of curly hair that just won’t be tamed 
About kindled spirits and broken dreams
I want to write about values and cultural extremes
I want to write about frail eyes but strong hopes
And about sunlight that creeps in from between thin leaves
About raindrops that tap on my window, hoping to be let in
About myths and prophecies 
And about rivers that always meet the vast seas

But all I do is shake my pillow violently each morning.
Hoping that the dreams I lost that night would tumble out
So I read, about others that let go.
In between scandals and violence
Are dreams coming true, silently breeding hope
Like the wind knocking on your heart for a chance to blow away misery.
Like living each day with the wonderment of the child 
that saw his first magic trick
And there are those many pages later
In between real estate and oddly shaped classifieds
A lost soul, a mourning, a life
With incomplete dreams? Perhaps
Or maybe a lifelong of happiness and contentment

And here I am at an age of misconstrued ideas and confused ambitions
At crossroads that lead nowhere or everywhere.
And I hear myself whisper "It's always a choice."

(For those who didn't get the reference in the title. Douglas Adams in his book the Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy, writes about a computer called Deep Thought that takes 7 million years to find the answer to Life, Universe and Everything and the answer is 42. So yeah, this is my Life Universe and Everything poem or something like that.)

Thursday, 3 July 2014

Startling Clarity

Because when you stumbled into my life
My heart sighed so deeply and said "What took you so long?"

In a moment of startling clarity I knew. 
I live for these moments. 
I wait for them. 
Almost grabbing in the darkness of a deliciously ambiguous life. 
I search for an absolute in the otherwise blurry lines.
In a time when I thought love was something I didn't want anymore. 
Love I didn't deserve. Love I didn't receive. Love that didn't make it. 
You gave it a new meaning. 
And suddenly all those love songs,
The heart breaking movies and everything I've ever written 
Were all about you. 
I fell in love. Again. And again. 
Everyday like it was new. 
Like everyday was a fresh start. 
Everyday the Sun would come back brighter and tell me that Love was on its way.

Love told me that the distance was all in my head.
That you lay beside me, every time I turned in my sleep
And you held me tight each morning,
Not wanting me to leave
That we were out on the street all night, 
Your hand in mine.
We were like clockwork
Like a sky burst into light 
From a million shooting stars all at once
Like the inside of my stomach that flipped
Every time I heard your voice
Like the rush of a waterslide
You made me want to come up and breathe. Everyday.

We were like two parts of the same soul
Like a dancer's feet, in sync and graceful
It all still comes back to me in flashes
So vivid and real, I almost touch you
in my dreams only to be hit so hard with reality.

But repetition manifests reality.
I remember repeating your name again and again till it became my truth.
Smiling each time I said it like the counts of prayer beads
This whole beautiful person was mine with his rough edges, sharp bends.
And tiny scars that lined his soul like little thorns on desert trees.
For protection more often than attack.
This whole person was mine to hold and comfort with the palms of my hands and my heart to wrap around him during the passing storm.
I've kissed you too many times to imagine your lips on mine even when we are miles away
Felt your warmth reach my heart enough times to know how cold it can get in there
Seen you become me and me become you so many times that I can no longer tell the difference between us

We were fighting the world and we had no honour as armour or pride as knives

Just love.
Just love? They laughed so loud that I couldn't hear you say 'whatever it takes'
I couldn't hear behind the screams of hate, the love you kept so well hidden
We prayed to the same Gods
Breathed the same air,
Laughed at the same jokes,
Spoke the same words and yet, 
Yet, we couldn't be together
Because in the fight with the world
The world always wins.

Thursday, 26 June 2014


It's important for me at this point in my life, to get back to writing. It gave meaning to my life before, a whole new meaning a whole new world. And I want that back. I want this space of my own, to dissolve into. So I am unearthing the million drafts I didn't complete. The stories I wanted to write that I didn't put down and each little thought I ever wanted to see in writing.

For the longest time 
You were the only woman in his life
For the longest time he's observed you 
Take care of the nest so meticulously each day
You do it so effortlessly
I want you to know that each time 
He says "You're just like my mother'
I feel a sense of pride
I wasn't raised in a mansion
Or fed with a silver spoon
I wasn't brought up to think money is everything
Because only fools believe that’s true
I wasn't raised to live out my parents dream
But to proudly dream my own
I wasn't raised to walk the popular path
But to strongly pave my own
I wasn't raised with material things
But something great indeed
I was raised with love
And love is all I need

He's taught me that each day is a new beginning
And mistakes are only pebbles in the way of life
He's taught me that love is everlasting
He's taught me that anything was possible
If I only believed 
He shows me that I could have everything
If I only dreamed
He's watched me grow up and stay young all at once
He tells me of you 
All the little things
What makes you happy and what
drives you mad
but most importantly he tells me its you whose made him a man
And I want to say thank you for bringing him to the world
Mother, thank you for giving me what is mine.


Customs. Traditions. Ceremonies. Dressing up and feeling festive. I love India for the sheer spirit of celebration in the smallest of things. The uncles and aunties of the world provide all the amusement the world needs, but whenever I go for any ceremony I want to know the reason behind it and inevitably everything has a solid (so, they think) reason or story behind it. 

For instance in my family on the 11th Day after the baby is born we do a little puja at home. Usually the mother's maiden house because that is where she usually stays when its closer to delivery and for a few months after that. You know practicing with nets before going into the field all by herself. So in this little event we must set a large scroll of paper and a pen and pray to the Gods of Destiny to come and write the baby's story. And then you leave Him to it alone. It is said that on that day the whole life of that baby is planned, it just got written. Fate sealed. Life decided. Bole toh done done london. Sounds absurd to the 21st century person, those that don't even believe in God or don't know which of the million to believe in. But think about it, how beautiful it sounds. If all of us, each one of us. Accepted this, that our lives are written, by a God who had our best interests at heart and spared those moments from His precious schedule to write your destiny. We must at least put up a good show, right?

All the good, the bad and the ugly. Its all there. Decided and you may fret and fight or flight but there is nothing you can do to change that. I love my God its a person I talk to like a friend. Its a part of me, My God. Its like we have a telephone line set up inside with full talk time always. Mother Mary is my guardian angel (I am a Gujarati), but Mother Mary is my God. My belief in the goodness of the world is because of Her. I have always everything without asking. When I am with Her I forget what I went for in the first place. And mumble something like "Do what is right for me" before I leave. She made sure I was happy, abundantly happy. But I lost my faith for a while, I fought, begged for what I wanted. I was being selfish. But she just smiled because a love like that doesn't let you go it holds your hand tighter still and she just said "But Darling - What is for you, will not pass you by."

Monday, 31 March 2014


What is home to you?
Or you?
Is it the four walls you return to each night?
Or the edge of that cliff where you sit for hours 
watching the sky change its color
Or is it your dreams?
where you get away from the truth of reality
Is it your school?
where you return to every now and then if only to watch
the kids and the commotion
or perhaps the familiarity of the peeling paint of the classroom walls
Is it that old house where you once lived?
The one with teak wood doors, and French windows that went all the way down
or is it the park where you fell and fell again 
only to break into peals of laughter in the next second

Is it the movies you spend hours watching?
The happy or the sappy, the teenage romance and the political drama
Is it the book you picked up from the second hand bookstore?
The one you have read around 18 and a half times since
Is it the song of your favourite band? 
The one which talks of love and hate
Or is the wine you kiss with your lips before you crash into your pillow.
Must be the characters of your favourite tv shows.
The ones who are just like you or ones you want to be like.

Home? Is it your pet, the bundle of joy that leaps at you 
each time you walk through the door  
Or is it your best friend who hugs you tight every time your heart aches
Must be your mother, she listens so intently to everything you share
Or the lover in whose arms time just passes you by
Must be the neighbor next door who lends you his books
and sometimes hears you read them on his perch

Home is squishy happiness, home is the melancholic pain
Home is the outcome of years of comfort 
Or the stranger's pat in the time of need
Home is being immersed in the sea of the world 
and yet staying afloat to find yourself
For me Home, is the sound of your voice,
the husk at the end of the line. 
It is the poetry I begin to write but becomes a letter to you
Home is the warmth of your arms 
that reaches me from miles away
Its the sound of your laughter
Its the smell of your shirt that I sleep in
Its the gasp of air I fight for 
Each time you say "I love you"

Because home is you.

Wednesday, 12 March 2014


Just something I've been thinking about off late; 

You know that last moment. That one day after which you'll never see someone again, even if only from a distance. That person who was probably inconsequential to your life. Or maybe someone who was the center of it, at some point. Your friend from the library you just didn't speak to again. The best friend whose eye you can't meet anymore. The boy with those blue eyes that you'll never forget. And the girl who stood up for you when you forgot your lines on stage. 

In that moment followed by an all consuming urge to go and give them a hug you wish to just let go. Of inhibitions, of the hate and of the misunderstanding. That moment when everything in the past seems like a pointless waste of emotion. Isn't this exactly why most breakups don't happen until the point where they are totally unavoidable? The thought of never. Never again, is scary. You don't want to know what might happen if you just cut the cords, so you stick with it instead of following your sunshine. You don't want to take that chance.

You want to make that move. Make amends because you read those stories about how telling someone you love them is so important, you never know when.

So you go rather awkwardly with a speech in your head and a slow stride walk to them. Scared, of humiliation? That maybe it is just you and not them. But all it takes is 20 seconds of courage. All anything ever takes is 20 seconds of courage.

You make that speech; "You know what? I don't want to be saying 10, 15, 20 years from now. You know my best friend from 12th grade, wonder what she is upto. I want to know."

Goodbyes have a way of bringing people closer.

Wednesday, 29 January 2014


A recent forward I received about Mumbai, got me thinking how much I really love this city.

Being a Mumbaikar is way beyond all the cliques listed in the message and the city is much more than meets the eye. Someone who hasn't lived here would never understand .  

Mumbai. Only the sound of it sends tingles down my spine, like the name of an ex-lover. The summer romance you will never forget. People complain here all the time, about the traffic, the pot-holes, the rains, the pollution and the fast life. And these are the things I love most, these are the things that make this magical city a little imperfect and so absolutely perfect. 
My ever changing breathtaking city. It teaches you a lot, like a strict parent. It teaches you that dreams don't always come true, it teaches you that hearts break, it teaches you that stardom is only but an illusion and it teaches you that the waves will break your sandcastle once in a while but you need to keep trying and protect it. Keep trying one more time, differently. 

Mumbai is not a place its a spirit.

The city that never sleeps, she is not entirely flawless. Yes I said "She" only a woman can woo like this city does.  I go to marine drive I know those rocks , the water  they'll be here for me always just so that I can look at them and feel their arms around me. People strive all their lives to make a mark be able to afford a life here. They make ends meet, live in rented apartments with ten other people. Struggle. I didn't have to. I was born here, lucky? But lovers don't just meet somewhere they are in each other all along. I was meant to be here. This city keeps you connected, in the middle of all the buzz, you can be the life of anything here. And being a Mumbaikar is special. 

Mumbai is the little things. Mumbai is the unexpected kindness from a stranger. Mumbai is the loving ear from your train friends. Mumbai is the random drive on the Sea Link. Mumbai is feeding the pigeons at Gateway of India. Mumbai is never running out of coffee shops. Mumbai is the man who selflessly stands at Juhu circle everyday with a sign that says "Apne Dharm par Chalo, Sabse Pyaar Karo". Mumbai is the quaint bookshops in the beautiful heritage buildings of town. Mumbai is the drunk nights that you will never regret. Mumbai is the stories you heard from the rickshaw driver. Mumbai is the helping hand after every setback. Mumbai is the resilience, not because we are strong but we have no choice. 

Mumbai is the safety you feel even at the latest hour on the streets. Mumbai is the cricket you play in the gullies. Mumbai is the smile that the first rains bring. Its the people that still so rebelliously but with much affection still call it Bombay. Its the same old sites which people visit with renewed enthusiasm each time. To be a part of this ethos of life you won't have to try, it will engulf you and you won't want to come out. Mumbai accepts everyone, with non-judgmental eyes and an open mind. Its the art that resides in each part of the city, the creativity that brims the already full cup and the zeal to excel that lives in every child's heart. 

Mumbai is the friendships, the romance, the laughter. The life. 

Mumbai is home and will always be. Wander I must but home is where I'll always come back. 

One of the best things about this city.. is the smell of the different air. You can smell it before you see or hear anything of the place. It's the blue skin-smell of the sea, no matter where you are in the Island City. That smell: the worst good smell in the world, above all things- that welcomes me and tells me I've come home
- Shantaram, Gregory Roberts

Thursday, 23 January 2014

Believe you.

You say you love me, but wait
I'm quite the pessimist at times
Jumping to the worst possible conclusions with assumptions on my mind
You say you love me but wait
Till you see that I don't always wear makeup and my eyes don't always shine
That I'm clumsy and messy,
I drop things a lot 
You say you love me but wait 
I'm too much of a drama queen, and that arguments will usually lead to tears 
That I get hurt too soon and frown
And I always don an invisible crown
You say you love me but wait 
Till you know that lizards creep me out
And I expect you save me from them like your life depends on it
Because in that moment I almost think mine does.
You say you love me but wait 
I don't share my food 
But I'm going to reach out for yours
You say you love me but wait
I think from my heart more often than my mind
And I'm usually mistaken but I do it wrong each time
You say you love me but wait
I'm the girl that follows an idealistic cause
My friends are books and I still believe in Santa Claus
You say you love me but just wait
I play for keeps and love without restrain
And I'll follow you whenever you need me to
But I'll get back on the last train.

You say you love me but wait
I have a fake tooth and real scars
from the times I used to go in search of the stars 
You say you love me but wait 
I love words and the light that enters through the leaves
And the sound of whistling trees 
You say you love me but wait
I hug with warmth unmatched
I must say I'm quite a catch
When you learn to love every bit of me
The heartbreaks. The let downs. The cracks in the wall.
All creating a little space that you can enter from
You say you love me but wait
I smile at sunshine while others complain
And sometimes I even chase butterflies.
You say you love me but wait
There is a part of me that I hide at all times
But I'll give that to you too if you just try
You say you love me but wait 
I'm barely done
But you say you love me and I want to believe you.