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A collaboration over too much coffee.
coffee and pen

29 November, 2006

Mack English

This is what I heard while travelling to Kurla from Andheri on bus. A perfect example of Bombay's Mack English (Mack English is the one spoken by Goans, East Indians and Anglo Indians in Bombay. Parsis speak a variation of Mack English which should probably, hm, be called Pack English).

"Then whaddappen, no?, I told him not to do this that, and he says, it's all urgent, no?, like that, like that."

"Yeah, I told him only, don't do it, but he wont' listen only, no?"

When I am with Macks I do talk their English, I do confess. Now, some people mistake Mack English for the real English English and sometimes go to ridiculous extents to copy the style and intonation.

"What men [don't say man, it's always "men"], not to be seen only these days, no?"

"What men, you are the big man, carrying big bag, executive-bixicutive, forgetting poor, khadka, single phasli, like myself, no?"

"Hey what men, khali fokat, don't take panga with me, eh?"

"What you will do? This your dada's property, or what? Big man, coming, coming."

"Hey men, joking only, men."

"I know men."

Both laugh.

"I know your are good at making fun of myself, no?, too bad men."

"Whaaat men? simply teasing, teasing."

"Arre, I went to ask that bar fellow no? that baldy, he won't give me quarter only, men. He *$#@ said he wants fifty rupees, no? I say mother******* devil, the satan from hell."

"Then what he did?"

"Silent, men. Like that only. Shut him up only."

So went the conversation. Most of the above is my own invention, but serves to illustrate the way Mack English is spoken. Here's a song I have written to Mack English:

Mack English

Mack English is spoken,
Though at times it's broken,
In Bombay and in Girgaon,
In Goa and in Konkan.

Grammar we know none,
Speaking Mack is fun,
We talk like this only,
For we are like this only.

Father forgive don't hate,
Mass and confession can wait,
It's feni and fish we crave,
Before the call of the grave.

Johnny play the bongo,
Michael sing the Fado,
Together we will dance,
And Rosy we will romance.

Fado is a Portuguese song.

28 November, 2006

Soul Search Engine

Soul Search Engine
( by abhigyan & mrinal jha, extracted from the book of the same name, copyright 1995.registered with WGA, west, California)

It's early morning -
I've brought my tea
To the table
And am waiting - to
Discover the burdens of the day.

There's something
In the air
Today, I feel
I can catch the
Whiff of it -
If I try
And strain my blocked nose.

Haven't put
The lenses
On, so I can be sure
Of undivided attention,
For once I wouldn't want
My senses
To let the scent down -
For it seems to
Tingle at the base
Of my memories -
Trying to pry open the blocks
In the nose,
Forming images
The eye will never need
Contacts to recognize.

It's a junction.
Where the tracks are
Never ending
And the signals
Switch from red to green
To red to green
In isolation -
Yet in tandem,
Bringing motion
To rest
And rest to motion.

But what stuck then -
In the mind
And what's stirring
In the soul
That the smell is catching,
Up with the slowing speed
Of the smoking chimney,
On the two
Finite parallel lines -
Is the lone
Silhouette, as it
Brought the carriage
To stop on the platform
Number nine.

Was the name
Of the game
People played in my
And then it was time
For the whistle to blow -
Flags to wave
And take the story forward.

It's a special thing,
This our memory -
It remembers - only
That which carves
A niche and discards
All that's worth its place
On the side of the way.

And so I saw the engine
Detach from it's bogey
And strike out a lone furrow
With the simmer
Of fire inside the steel -
As the dark coal burned
And spread its flavor -
The ashen steam, searched
And found its outlet
Driving the pistons to speed -

The engine hammered along
Now as if on a mission -
Along - the same two
'Twain shall never meet'
Lines, that somehow
Seemed now -
To stretch and join
At the horizon -

I took a deep breath
And internalized
The aroma in the air,
The same breath that's
Come to haunt me
Years later this morning,
Seeking to burn the blocks
Of darkness, within
And force the gray doubts
Without -
Surge the self beyond being
And steer the wheels
Of my Soul Search Engine.


27 November, 2006

Villanelle: A writer's rant

Why am I a writer?
Why bother pentameter?
Why must ink stain paper?

Why have I nought better?
Than be a story-teller;
Why am I a writer?

While men earn and prosper,
I am just a word-monger;
Why must ink stain paper?

I may be a great master
Or just a poetaster
Why am I a writer?

Why mess with rhyme and meter,
With plotline and character?
Why must ink stain paper?

Why not live a quieter
Life of peace that's better?
Why must ink stain paper?
Why am I a writer?


23 November, 2006

Celebration (short story read at Oct Bombay read Meet)

CELEBRATION of celebrities
A SHORT STORY by abhigyan jha. copyright oct 2006

This is not a work of narrative non-fiction. Any resemblance to real life actors, characters (especially from Bombay literary circuit) living dead or as yet unborn is completely coincidental and of course unintentional. Ditto for any hurt or heartburn.


He prepared himself well whenever he decided to meet her here. She was not his girlfriend and gods forbid she wasn't his wife either. Though he saw the merit in meeting one's wife in a secret rendezvous. Adds spice. He liked spice. As opposed to spice girls. What rubbish we spawned in the dying years of the 20th. He poured himself a sherry as he stopped the thought about spice girls. It is not appropriate to be judgmental. He liked Christ. He was specific about this modern commandment. Who are we to judge? Who is ever going to cast the first stone?

He smiled as the warm sherry hit his having quit smoking a year ago throat. He really liked Christ. Not because he was into religion. god knew that wouldn't do. A modern writer of pretentious prose and hooked on religion? No sir. That simply wouldn't do. He was too cool to be that dumb. Christ himself was cool though. it helped that his publishers in NY were raised Christians. But the truth was he liked Christ independent of any ulterior motives. He loved him for he promised to forgive. God knew one needed forgiveness.

the world had moved past capitalism, communism, nonalignment and such intellectually challenging theorems to a simpler platform. A basic stratagem really. he had to admire the unspoken arrangement his world had arrived at.
Might is right. Only might was no longer to be confused with muscles, machine gun or even intelligence of the mind. The mind was involved but the power it wielded was not derived say from the intelligence that made Edison invent approximately 1000 patents. It was common. It was like the rule of thumb.
Smartness! Clever.

Common enough for everyone to feel comfortable with this new currency of power and vote for it eagerly for who didn't fancy outsmarting the rest in a free equal society? There lay the catch. He smiled. Fortunately the catch was there. Imagine the horror of living in a world which was truly equal. It would be unbearable. Almost as unbearable as a world which craved of genius. That would be too much inequality. Brazen. He wouldn't want to feel complexed.

This was where he belonged. The visible relaxed present. Where the explicit and implicit were as different as the dictionary promised. Here he was assured of a higher plane of existence, the cheapest wine he drank was 2 oceans, though seemingly he had no apparent genius that stood him out of the common and in a different era wouldn't have deserved a special treatment.

He was fashionably common yet very very smart. He was the kind of clever man who could sell a 914 page novel to an American publisher for a million dollars which had already been written as a 550 page bestseller by an ex convict only a few years earlier. And so he did.

Being clever is not a 9 to five job. It is 24x7. He was at least as good as the Gujju guy who sold Bombay in narrative nonfiction to an ill informed America and definitely a worthy successor to the lady who sold in celluloid the slumkids and streetfilth in salutation of his native byelanes. They both had maximized the city. And now it was his turn.

His book was out. A 10 city international tour was to begin tomorrow. And he was flying business class. But that wasn't the only reason he was out here at the secret hideout. His sister's new movie was premiering next Friday. He would miss that but there is always a way to make up for lost opportunities. He loved meeting his sister here. She was the only woman who had set foot here. Oh well except the prostitutes. But that was research. Good research. Some of them were so good; he was finally convinced of the fallacy of marriage. What couldn't be bought? Whatever it was, it would have to be boring or dumb or god forbid. Both! He chuckled. Sherry was good for his digestion.

It reminded him of the glib critic who had suggested his magnum opus was hard to digest. It wouldn't have done to have confronted him in a party. Too vile. Instead he had replied, he recalled with pleasure, try some sherry. It's good for digestion.

Very clever.
He wasn't gay. Just clever.
Too few left of his species if you asked his friend. A film-maker who his sister hated, one of their few disagreements, it was healthy to agree to disagree, but he simply loved the guy, if not his films, too kitschy!

This guy released his latest blockbuster as a coming of age film. No the film wasn't about coming of age; it was the maker who had finally come of age in this glittering movie resembling a glorious suiting advertisement of yore. The nation loved it. You had to dig it. The theatres were jammed. But that wasn't the end of it. He sighed, thinking of the masterstroke his friend had performed. His film was invited to the Toronto festival. Now he knew the talent scout of the Toronto film festival. A black man in search of Asian ghetto cinema. He had met him at the screening of a film one of his sister's friends had made. Awful dark, brooding, images with a deliberate attempt to make you think. But that hadn't bothered the black man from Canada. He found racial prejudice in the film! Why do you have a white cast in an Indian film? Why is the film in English? Why is Calcutta so beautiful? Where is the filth? This is too unreal!

Incredulous, he had asked the coming of age sultan of shit, how did you manage him? Your film is too plastic for his likes.
With a majesty he found irresistible, sultan confided: I always fancied sucking black cock. But I wasn't sure. God, he could have been straight!

Then there was the monologue loving modern Muslim novelist and his brother the avant-garde screenwriter, the twin savants of literature from Dongri. If Islamic terrorism didn't work, literary terrorism from these two would ensure civilization would fall, definitely.
Was he being too harsh? Perhaps it was alright to be politically incorrect in the privacy of one's own sherry? Still, he would be fair. You had to give it to them. They were playing by the same rules as him. Okay, they weren't too good with the moves but they were articulate enough to learn. Life was a learning curve.

If you were willing to practice and network, the craft was sure to be perfect someday. He burped with satisfaction, craft is an apt word. For what is achieved without a bit of craft?
Crafty is just another word for clever. Not as benign perhaps but who's to say it wouldn't be the 'in' word in 2029? After all smart wasn't the best adjective back in the 50's! Look how far we can come given the time!

That was one of his favorite lines from a poem he had written during his brief stint with the erstwhile poetry circle. He always used erstwhile for this bunch of esoteric beasts for though they hadn't become extinct like the soviet union they ran the society behind a curtain that had to be made of sterner stuff than ordinary iron. And darker. But more rusty. He took a sip of the sherry to rid him of the bitterness.
How he had loved looking down from the dais at one notorious member of the circle who was present for one of the launch vehicles for his new book.

He had seen the envy and the gloating in the man's eyes. Yes gloating - in his own self worth. The pompous pig gloated in his own failure to find an audience. True he was now published but it was difficult to tell where and who published the two volumes of unreadable gibberish. This man was born a Christian, where did he leave his bible lessons? He was ever ready to cast the first stone. At poetry circle meetings, our man would grab a copy of your poem and finish scribbling vociferous comments beside every line even as you read out the rest with a sinking heart.

But why think of such scum when he had 7 more zeroes in his HSBC account statement than the poor sod who wasn't even a successful journalist?
But he had been lucky! if the confused ex advertising man was not busy reinventing his mythological masterpiece, he would been the one with more zeroes in his bank, justifying the name his much flogged father bestowed on him carelessly.

There were those months when he thought he will never get the commission. After all the publishers wanted the grown up boy from Bombay central to write the definitive plagiarism of the ex-convicts story. With a dose of the Gujju's penchant for real life references. That a gujju can live in New York is the wonder. How can he know the taste of sausage on his Vaishnav tongue? So a man who can't even describe truthfully an American breakfast is now going to write a book about New York!

If only his last book hadn't been such a disappointment. Perhaps he would have had the chance. He had worried repeatedly when his book was due out. Cloaked in fiction his stuff mightn't rake up enough controversy! He had compared his city with the Gujju's and cursed long into the nights...but no point remembering old disappointments. Everyone has their timing. Their chance.
Take his sister for instance, she slept with a hedonistic autobiographical director when barely out of film school and never thought it would pay off so soon. Next month he announced his retirement and anointed her his protégé.
His sister was never late. She had taught him the value of turning up at the right time.

The doorbell rang.

His sister was here. He opened the door. She hadn't forgotten. She held the Dom Perignon poised at his nose. He waved it aside carefully and kissed her on the lips. He had heard once in a five-star men's room that his sister's mouth was too full. The idiot. He sucked on those lips for what seemed like ages.

This wasn't incest as you might know it. Not some ordinary fetish or obsession. The physical expression of it was only demonstrative. It had started in childhood as a way of sharing their deepest secret. They had no talent. Yet they had decided they will make it, 'together'. And tonight they were celebrating their success.

He felt the urgency build up. She pressed back, hard. They hadn't done it for ages. And it was good to find things hadn't changed. Panting, already, they separated. She smiled. He smiled back. Then almost together they exclaimed. Zindagi Rocks.

20 November, 2006

At Lili's Place

She's under the flyover every day. Bosom well-displayed. Glistening legs raised. Shiny bits of fabric. Sinful eyes. 9876454538 scrawled above her. And ‘At Lili’s Place’. Testosterone levels rise at her sight in passing bus passengers. Eyes automatically meet hers. Sore yearning grips the man.

Bus nears flyover. Red signal. Eyes turn left. Gaze touches her feet, rise. Up, up, stop. A shred of cloth breaks the continuum. Gaze paralysed. Rises again. Up, up. Stop. Signal turns green. Jerk. Glance at her face. She disappears round the bend.

Sigh. To office. Boss nags. Back home. Wife nags. Red signal: second glance. Fantasies. At Lili’s place. Manhood resurrected. Balding head, swelling paunch momentarily forgotten. Bus moves on. Sigh again. Back to real life. Balding head, swelling paunch, nagging wife.

Morning. Jump into bus. Signal, another signal. Flyover approaching. Expectant, dreamy glance to left. Reached flyover. She’s not there. Huh? Look again. Look hard. No. Cannot happen. What is a Mahatma Phule poster doing there?

162 words.

The Namesake by Jhumpa Lahiri - A Review

I have just finished wading through “The Namesake” written by Jhumpa Lahiri. “Wading” is the word I use because, though Lahiri is an engaging writer, she fills her novel with too many details, over which I stumble, ponder, wonder (hmm, now why would she have had to say that?), genuflect, and then straighten myself. Her paragraphs are uniformly half a page and in that, too, these inconsequential details of everyday life, some cultural vestiges lie around like stumbling blocks.

I am constrained to mention this here because the flow is hampered, I lose track, and finishing the book was a great effort. I don’t like to be exhausted reading a book; I like to be entertained. I guess this applies to most writers of the Diaspora and, our own homegrown variety. We are so much anxious to impress with our knowledge and our articulation that we overdo it, consistently, constantly.

Now, I may be veering into the rant mode but this is something Lahiri does through this excellent novel. If you are through the first hundred pages, it becomes a little better. You can safely ignore the details and go ahead, come what may. But getting over the first hundred pages is the toughest part. When Lahiri describes each item in a house, or, a rented hotel room, you have no alternative but to sit up and cry, “Whoa! She is so perceptive, she gives me a complex.” Yes, she does, to all pretenders, such as I, who think they can write. But one also thinks, “There she goes, why would she include all that? Is it significant, a leit motif, for the rest of the story?” But disappointingly it isn’t.

It’s the story of Ashoke and Ashima Ganguli. Ashoke is told to leave the country by a man he meets during a train journey. The train in which he is traveling is derailed in the night and the compartments are smashed and thrown off the rails. Ashoke is injured in the accident but has a providential escape because he happens to be clutching a novel written by Nikolai Gogol which he was reading at the time of the mishap. So, obviously, Nikolai Gogol has a prominent part to play in Ashoke’s survival and he names his first-born Gogol, probably to record his thanks to the Russian story teller.

He immigrates to the United States with Ashima, gets a job raises a family of two. Gogol and Sonia are the two children he raises the Indian, sorry, Bengali way, protectively, always apprehensive, always paranoid about security. The children are happy-go-lucky American kids and they do not know from where their parents’ fear comes from. (They do not know that the fear originates from India where anything left untended is summarily snatched away, or vandalized.)

But Gogol resents being named thus, and is not flattered by his Russian name, that too of a writer thought to be a maniacal genius. He militates against his father’s choice of nomenclature. He has his name changed to Nikhil but the original name sticks to him like a ghost from the past, and haunts him. The teaching of Gogol’s writings in school is a big embarrassment to him, and he cowers from any association with Gogol, the writer.

Ashoke and Ashima does a heroic job of raising a family, protecting a culture in an alien land, in which they are recently emigrated strangers. They have a very close-knit community of Bengali friends in the US and their interaction is restricted to this group who meet for weddings, birthdays, anniversaries and other social dos. The urge is very strong among migrants to maintain their cultural identity when they are in an alien land, and Ashoke and Ashima would like to pass on their Indian-ness to their children.

But the children are drawn towards the mainstream White culture. Gogol has affairs with white girls/women and nearly marries one much against the wishes of his parents. The Indian girl he marries eventually, through the persuasion of his mother Ashima jilts him for a Russian. Sonia marries a white man, and therefore Ashoke’s and Ashima’s dream of propagating the culture they have so assiduously cultivated in an alien land collapses. So, in that sense, the emigrant’s strict phobias seems trivial and unfounded.

The most poignant part of the novel is the sudden and unannounced death of Ashoke. Now, this is the best part of the novel. It is narrated in such deadpan prose that it rings so true, so authentic and life-like. Death is the most unexpected of visitors. The reader is shocked beyond disbelief, and can understand the emotional turmoil that Ashima, and her children Gogol and Sonia go through at this juncture. It is to Lahiri’s credit that she has handled this evolving drama pretty well.

Gogol falls in love with Moushumi, the girl his mother has picked for him, and who is trying to get over a broken engagement with her White boyfriend. They marry, and for sometime all is hunky dory. This section of the novel is well handled and the reader is shocked that Moushumi would go off with another man, a Russian professor, leaving poor Gogol. But that is life, and that is literature, so authentic as to be stupefying. Lahiri handles these passages really well, one is awed how naturally it happens, and how her story lends the incident so much life-like uncertainty. This is Lahiri at her best, delivering a deadly punch in the narrative when the reader least expects it. This is as shocking, or, was as shocking to me, as was Ashoke’s death.

The novel is a chiaroscuro of images, experiences, some sad, some elevating, all written in the author’s perspicacious style, with much detailing. Much as I had enjoyed “The Interpreter of Maladies” I relished this one that promises to be a watermark in the annals of literature produced by the Diaspora.

19 November, 2006

Trading Places - an open writing exercise

As writers, we frequently use our passion for—and skill with—words in support of the causes and values we believe in strongly. We write strongly-worded essays, earnest poems, emotional protest songs, petitions to governments, sermonising emails, vituperative blog posts..

But how often do we take the time to really understand the other side of the debate? To get into the skins of those misguided souls who hold views diametrically opposed to ours?

This exercise seeks to get you to do just that. You may find that there are valid points on both sides of the line in the sand. You may find flaws in your own logic. Insh'allah, you will find a middle ground, a space where conversations can happen, not shouting matches and exchanging insults.

But that's not the only reason why you should try this exercise. It could also help you with your craft. When you write about a negative character (-: one evidently very unlike the rational, kind, sweetness-and-light-spreading person you are :-) this could help you give that character depth, it could get your reader to see that world view as valid, it could make your writing more convincing.

So here are the guidelines.

Pick a topic on which you have very strong views. Write about it. From the other side of the fence. No restictions on genre or style or subject. It could be a poem extolling child labour. A monologue from a necrophiliac. An essay in favour of stronger government controls if you're a libertarian (or a paean to free markets of you're not). A short story where the protagonist is a violent sociopath. And so on.

If you are a Caferati member, do come and leave your piece in the exercise thread, and come back here to leave a link to the post (that's the one you get when you click on the "#" symbol next to your post title) in the comments.

For those of you who are not part of Caferati (hmph): if you have your own web space, post it there, with a link to this post, and come leave a link and a small introduction to the piece here, in the comments.

And if you do not own online real estate, please feel free to post your entire contribution here in the comments.

I'll update this post with direct links as well.

Added on 20th November

The idea is to write postively about something you'd normally write negatively about.

To stretch your imagination to encompass a world view that you despise, ridicule or just don't believe in.

To write convincingly from the perspective of a person who is very unlike you.

Some examples.

Are you anti-terrorism? Then you could try writing something that glorifies it. Perhaps a story about how terrorists are created, from the point of view of a young adult who has just become one. Maybe it's a poem that invites participation in a violent revolution.

If you're in favour of a government banning XYZ television channel, then your piece could make the case against government control. It could be an essay. It could be a piece of flash fiction that dramatises the point.

Are you homophobic? Write a letter to the Prime Minister asking for legislation to legalise gay marriage.

Do you think the moderators of this forum are power-mad despots? Then your piece could be a hymn sung by a fictional - yet entirely believable - person who lights agarbattis in front of our photographs every day, thrice a day.

No, don't write both sides of the story. Write only the side that is, in your opinion, diametrically opposite to the one you'd support normally write in favour of. We will take it on trust that the point of view you espouse in this exercise is something you genuinely don't believe in, subscribe to, or endorse.

Here's an example, a love story by Pawan Sony that I'm (-: reasonably :-) sure is not a fictionalisation of his real life preferences.

Clearer now, I hope?

P.S. I'd particularly welcome feedback from those who choose to participate in this exercise. It would be interesting to hear how easy or difficult it was for you. And whether this altered your thinking in any way.

15 November, 2006

Caferati Listings Edition 2 is out

In this issue:

1. BBC World Service Radio Playwriting Competition.
2. Blabberwocky, a student magazine, invites contributions.
3. Breakaway Books Writing Contest
4. DesiLit Magazine's open call for submissions
5. Wanted: Intern for Literature, Kala Ghoda Arts Festival, 2007.
6. The Jaipur Literature Festival, Jaipur
7. The Kala Ghoda Festival, Bombay

To read go here. (You must be a subscriber to the list and logged in to Googlegroups to read. Subscription is free, and does not require moderator approval. Please see this page for more information about Caferati Listings.)


12 November, 2006

Sonnet for a Stolen Mobile Phone

You were cuddlesome and oh! so cute,
Full of lively chatter and, sometimes mute,
Hours I would spend waiting for you to ring,
You were a universe in the joys you bring.
You spoke to me in several lingos,
Mallu, Hindi, English, Bambaiya patois,
Yet you departed so abruptly, without feelings,
Nary elations, greetings, or glad tidings.

Then one evening, I know not,
Who stole you from me, my Camelot,
Are your rings dead, are you still alive?
Has he de-SIM-ed you, do you still survive?
Please come back to me, I miss you,
Without you, I am not me, nor would you be you!


08 November, 2006

Dark Places

(Originally posted here.)

We met at one of those dark places. The silence between us had stretched. She was inhaling the new liquid. I was on the one with three letters. Twice our lips touched across the divide. A bridge of tongues. A stream of saliva. The mixture of lips.

“Do you believe in coincidence?”

“Do you believe in chance?”

The music swirled and swooned. Through our levitating bodies. Our fingers touched forbidden places. A moist sensation. A fluid emotion. Sudden laughter behind our eyes. Tears carved new pathways on her cheeks. I leaned forward and licked them off.

“How weird is that?”

“Yes, a midget and a transvestite having sex on the dance floor.”

“I saw you yesterday, in my last dream before I woke up.”

People swayed around us, drunk on this and that. There was something in the air. A flash? A streak? A swoosh? I inhaled her smell. Pheromones called out in a primitive language. Glasses tinkled beside us. Multi-colored liquids sloshed in perfectly shaped receptacles.

“I see you in my eyes.”

“Perhaps we should dance in our minds?”

The light faded. Conversation muted suddenly like a TV heard across a hotel wall. Where were we? Did you recognize us? Inside all was bright and innocent light. Outside was a kaleidoscope of sensation.

“I want to kiss your eyelids.”

“Yes, I loved her once upon a time. Now, whenever I see her, I feel sad.”

“Do you think the world cares for what happens here?”

“I wonder what she is doing right now. Is she in love again? I cannot see.”

Hands brushed aside. Clothes slowly sliding. I touched the birth mark next to her belly button. My finger slipped into her belly button.

“Umm…that reminds me of something. A photograph he took while I was sleeping naked. The birth mark was in focus.”

Elasticity of the heart. Words floated in and out. Sounds crashed together like two people having a simultaneous orgasm. I found my tongue in her mouth. We separated. She leaned over and touched my lips, tracing their outlines with the tip of her ring finger. It was as if she was applying something invisible. She shivered as that delicate touch whispered something to her.

“Where are you? Do you feel the same way?”

The night tasted like the colored liquid in my glass. Strange. This was so different. Places I had been to. Flashes of light. Nostalgia was a red pill.

“Hey, do you know your name means nothing?”

I swallowed a million letters that could have been words. Time felt like an old friend. Although all my old friends were too busy racing against time to become rich. I nodded and sucked on her middle finger. Strawberry and passion fruit. She had blue fingernails. A ring had left its mark.

“What happened to your moustache?”

“She made me shave it off. It hurt her whenever we kissed. Sensitive skin.”

A slow descent. Movements picking up momentum. The pendant between her breasts sparkled like her lips. We moved. Tomorrow was far far away. Hands linked. We walked. An empty room on the horizon. I waved across the road.

“Do you see him all dressed up? I could kick his balls without feeling guilty.”

“I could set her clothes on fire. There is a red bra. One green colored stole. One skirt made of cotton. A seductive backless gown in pitch black.”

The ride was amazing. An exhilaration of speed. The neon lights sang to the shadows. The shadows danced on her eyebrows. I smiled. It was a night worth remembering.

The worst part of the world was sleeping. We were the only good ones awake. I sucked her ear lobes. Soft like a baby’s stomach. She sighed. The room opened itself. The round bed was available. It was white. Like the skin on her shoulders. We nuzzled. My fingers played the different keys on her spine. She immersed me in her hair. Lilies in a meadow. Our tongues shot out and reached out across the little space to talk. We listened. It was magic of a different kind. The night was just beginning to shake sleep from her eyes.

Satin skin. A wine glass on the sideboard. White wine in her mouth. A gentle Riesling with quirky undertones. The blanket covered us like a warm thought.

“Tell, tell me, and do not murder the thought.”

“I want to sleep with you.”

We sunk into each other. The darkness rushed between us driven by the memory of dawn. We rose. We fell. Into each other’s arms. Our skins erupted, miniature geysers gushing with total abandon. The light burst in our pupils. We cried as the music crashed inside us. Semi colons and full stops. A full embrace. Naked skin against skin. Wet and smooth. The night was finally over. We snuggled and closed our eyes. The fan hummed pleasantly. In the distance the road whispered from time to time. All was well. All was peace.

01 November, 2006

A word in your ear

Interdoocing: Blogolepsy -

This is not about displaying our own writing. (Though, truth be told, we work hard at stringing words together. And, now and then, we admit to being pleased with the results.)

This blog will search for and promote excellent creative writing on the web, with a wee bias towards the blogosphere.

What we'll link to: poetry, fiction, graphic stories and comics, great criticism, hyperfiction, lyrics, interactive narratives. Occassionally, we may link to essays, rants and opinion pieces unconnected with writing, but only if we think they're extraordinarily good. We'll also point to opportunities for writers, as and when we hear of them.

Tip-offs welcome. Leave a comment, or mail us.
We (Uma, Falstaff, J.A.P., Megha, Krish, Neha and yours truly) haven't exactly been regular with updates there, but p'raps your patronage will prod us into some activity. :)

Do drop by and let us know what you think. And pass on to interested souls.