her own little galaxy
She sits in the old blue velvet rocking chair, the one that tips over too easily. Her hair is wet from the shower and it seeps into the chair's back, jasmine and mint stains. The room is a bright yellow and the fan is on, chasing away the haze from the rickety oven as it cooks chicken. The darkness presses against the windows but fails to sneak into the warm interior. The small, squatted house perches on Rose Lane, amongst a cluster of other houses, smooth white sidewalks and newly paved roads. The suburbs are quiet at night but the lights never go out. They only dim, enough so that shadows roam free but shrink away from golden doorways. You can barely see the stars, but looking down from the gray clouds above the sprawling towns, the lights form their own galaxy. Fly even farther and twinkling lights blink from the rolling hills, earthly stars in the night.
the ink may be smeared,
but to whoever it may concern:
please let me in.
i've been hiding
i need to
of fake smiles
and platisicine words
let me be
Here comes Rani
Look at the palace,
O look at the tomb
Look at its pillars,
O look at its dome!
Don’t you be surprised,
For this isn’t all;
Just wait for our Rani
To enter the hall.
With mehandi filled hands
And with a face of a teen,
Wearing a hundred bangles,
In walks our queen.
Look at her emerald eyes,
For they are very rare
But not more than a moment,
For she isn’t a toy to stare!
Amidst the thousand girls,
Her anklets sound like a song
And if you think she is just a beauty,
You are totally wrong.
In our kingdom,
Not a beggar is seen
All are rich and happy,
And the reason is our queen.
Today in this saree,
She looks like a fairy
And her long black hair,
Is her crowning glory.
She is our Rani,
She is our queen
And she is the best one,
I have ever seen.
Holding her hands tight, he went running into the moor. A hail of a thousand bullets whistled above their heads, but he let nothing harm her. Asking her to hide under a tree, he took a few steps forward to make sure she was safe. And a bullet came piercing his heart, a bullet she had aimed.
The Man in The Train
Just like how it happens every year, she came clattering along the railway line. Hapa Superfast express, how can I forget her? She was the one who took me all these years to Kerala, God’s own country. With the ticket checker whistling behind, she stopped slowly with a sound of whoosh, letting out a large puff of smoke. I was gazing at my old mate when my father shook me.
“Hurry, let’s find our compartment!” he said. Pulling my hand, he zipped off leaving the crowd in a stare. It is always funny to see a jaw dropped crowd with all eyes on you. With my mother and brother running behind, we entered the train like a movie’s entry scene.
“Where’s my seat?” I asked dad.
“Ha, its not in here. I think you have to share it with another passenger,” he grinned. I grabbed the ticket and went looking for my seat. Forty two, where are you? Ah, here you are. Thank goodness, there was no one in forty one. So I jumped into forty one, the window seat. Then slowly, with frequent halts, our train chugged, leaving Tamilnadu and heading Kerala... Choo choo... Choo choo...
I opened my travel bag and what do you think I would have taken? A camera? Nope, you are wrong. I had actually taken a cutlet which I bought from the station. I know, fast food is bad, but great! And food should always have the first preference, right?
Then I took a book called “Lost in a fair” by Arjun Sinha, who is a great Indian writer. I was enjoying my cutlet when this guy came.
“Excuse me,” he asked, uh oh, now don’t tell me you need my cutlet. And so I stuffed it in my mouth and devoured it.
“I think its my seat,” he said. So this is the guy.
“Is it?” I replied back in a question.
“I think it is,” he smiled and I moved to my seat. Now, where have I seen him? He seems to be more familiar. When he was caressing his bag with his ticket between his fingers, I slowly looked out from the corner of my eye. What’s his name?
“Arrrrrrjuuuu... Arjun Sinha!” I yelped in disbelief.
“Yeah, that’s my name,” he laughed.
“Oh my God! Arjun sir, is this you? I am a great fan of yours!”I gasped and he smiled showing all his thirty two teeth; Well, thirty one actually, with the last being a caries tooth.
“Sir, can I have a selfie? Pleeeeeeaaaasssssee..,” I was going out of control.
“Ummm okay,” he agreed. And yes, it was a picture to be treasured.
“Aaannddd... can you sign my autograph note?” I was already holding it in my hands.
“Sure!” he said. I wish I could write like him, I thought. So should I inform my parents? No, I would rather not. I can’t have my brother taking pictures with him and posting on social media.
“Sir, so why have you come all the way alone from Bombay to Tamilnadu?” I tried to make a conversation.
“Did you hear about my next book?” he asked.
“Of course! ‘Somewhere in South’, that’s the title, right? You are planning to release it by the thirtieth of December, right?” I burst into words.
“Wow, so accurate!” he exclaimed “and that’s why I have come to visit Tamilnadu and Kerala, just to make sure my plans go right.”
“What’s your stop, then?” I wish he would stop at Alleppey and stay at our house.
“My station is called...” he checked his ticket ”...Aluva.”
Hmm, two stops after mine. But it’s okay, I have got six long hours to spend! Six long hours!
We talked about this, we talked about that and all kinds of stuff and never had a second thought that time was running out.
“Sanjanaaaaaaa...” there came a familiar call. A call I have been hearing for fourteen years. I checked my watch. Gosh, it’s time! Hapa slowed gradually.
“I am coming Mom!” I shouted back.
“It was a great day!” I smiled.
“Me too, kid! I never knew I had fans in South India! Thank you for everything!” he said, patting my head. I was blushing so much.
“Goodbye, then” I said and he waved back. Walking out with my family, I narrated the whole tale and posted the selfie on Facebook. Basically, I never do such things, but this was just to humiliate my brother. Then we had lunch and went to our ancestral home in Alleppey and in fact, it was the best day in my life! Thanking God for such a lovely day, I went to bed.
The next day I woke up and switched on the television, just to hear some news around the globe.
HEADLINES : CHILDREN’S WRITER ARJUN SINHA WAS FOUND DEAD IN HIS HOTEL ROOM IN BOMBAY. SINCE HE HAD NOT OPENED THE DOOR, THE HOUSEKEEPING MANAGER WAS FORCED TO BREAK IN. HIS BODY WAS FOUND FULLY DECAYED AND THE AUTOPSY REPORT SAYS THAT HE HAD BEEN DEAD FOR TWO DAYS! COPS ARE ON INVESTIGATION.
What? What’s happening? I dashed to pick my mobile. The selfie was still there. If he was found dead in Bombay, then who is this..? Who is he..?
A Bedtime Story
Once upon a time,
There lived a girl like you!
Lily was her name,
And her eyes were bright and blue!
Everyday she woke,
As early as the morning mist
And she was never in trouble,
As she was no pest.
She obeyed her parents,
And was the teacher’s pet
She was loved by every kid,
And never did she fret.
She had a thousand friends,
And read good books
Such a happy life,
Gave her good looks.
Never did she lie,
And never did she cry
And never disturbed her mommy,
In the name of a bedtime story!
Its half past nine,
Lily’s time to sleep
And every good girl like her,
Would have gone to sleep.
Tucking you in bed,
Let me leave now, my darling
Have a good night
And let us meet in the morning.
The Psycho Sings
I wanna see you cry,
I wanna see you die,
I wanna kill you in my web,
My dear fly.
I wanna cut your head,
And suck your blood
Wishing to see the colour,
The colour of red.
I wanna see you in pain,
Crying in vain
And see all your clothes,
I wanna see all your blood spilled,
And finally get you killed,
Though I know,
That this is all my guilt.
I am sorry, what?
Oh, if I had a heart?
Well, I had one, long back
And someone like you made it rot.
So, I wanna see you cry,
I wanna see you die,
I wanna kill you in my web,
My dear fly.
The Dirty Drunkard
The cold night wind had started to roar,
The rain too had started to pour
People might have started to snore,
A sudden knock came at my door.
Through my window, I peered,
I saw a hunchbacked figure
Thinking twice I rose,
On opening the door, he said, “I am Mr. Oak.”
A drunkard he was,
Too dirty and smelly he was,
And smiling, he said,
“My wife is Mrs. Red.
I have lost her somewhere,
But I don’t know where
I met her there, behind that pine tree,
And now they say, ‘there rests she.’
Sharp at nine,
I will lay there dead,
With my Red”
He started to go
Scratching my head,
I went to bed.
The next day night,
I went there with fright.
There I saw two graves, Oak and Red,
Dated a decade back.
How I met This Lady
There lives one lady, whom I had never seen,
In the second floor, where I had never been
And every morning and every evening,
I heard her beautiful voice sing.
I had always wanted to meet her, but I felt rather shy,
And all my plans to meet her, ended up in a sigh.
I wished I could hear her all day and everyday,
And days and months rolled away till it finally turned to be May.
I couldn’t wait any longer,
All I wanted was to meet her
So I climbed to the second floor, where I had never been,
Wishing to see the lady, whom I had never seen.
There I saw this woman deaf and blind,
Singing aloud those words that came out from her heart and mind
She is the lady, the lady who sings,
And that’s how I met this lady with whom I exchanged rings.
I am a loser when it comes to girls
“Hey Luke, where are you going?” asked my brother as I cat-walked down the stairs.
“None of your business,” I said and reached the door.
“What will I reply if mommy asks about you?” he asked with a curious face.
“Tell her that I went to the coffee shop to take a look at the newspaper,” I replied avoiding him.
“Haha, I have found the answer for my question from your own mouth,” he said in a surge of victory. I smiled at his innocence and marched out.
And by the way, hi, I am Luke Glover. My friends call me “NERDY” and my family calls me “COWARDY CUSTARD.”But hey, please don’t stop reading this piece after hearing about me. I have written this as my brother Alex urged me to. He told me that though I may be a nerd sometimes, I am worthy, because he loves hearing all my embarrassing situations. Okay, now let’s back off to my story.
I ran to the little hill as fast as my legs could take. You can ask a question; Why should I go to a hill ? Well, it is because the little hill is a place which attracts tourists and I thought that I can get a girl for me, since she will be new to the place and will not be aware that I am a nerd. I told you, I am a coward.
In less than three minutes I was there, lost in the crowd which stood there gazing at the little hill. And guess what, I saw a beautiful young brunette in sunglasses. I stood there staring at her beauty that I didn’t realize that I have been staring at her for ages.
“Hello sir, could you please tell me what you are doing?” said a voice behind me.
“I have no time to reply,” said I as my eyes refused to turn back.
“Hello sir, could you look at me?” said the voice again in a harsher tone.
And stupid me, I replied “No, get lost.”
Now the man who was torturing me with his grunting voice came forward, blocking my view.
“Who the hell are you? Get out of my way,” I said.
“You wanna know who I am?” he asked with his eyes bulging as if they were to pop out any second. And his dirty long beard moved here and there like a swing with flies buzzing around.
“No, you don’t have to explain, I am enjoying my day today. Look at her. Look at her hair. I would rather go and make her my soulmate than wasting my time watching your ugly face, you roly-moly fatso,” I answered.
“Forget it, she is my wife,” he said shouting like a hungry dog. His voice was loud enough for her to hear and she turned back at once.
“What? You think I am a fool? She looks like a teenage girl. You will never get her even in your dreams,” I said in a voice so stern.
“What’s up honey? Who is this guy? Your friend?” she asked in a sing-song voice.
“Nothing baby, he was asking when we were married,” he said, smirking at me.
“Four years of course and who is he?” she asked, removing her glasses.
“Well he..,” he began but I interrupted him “I was his classmate,” I said. Ugh, how can he be my classmate? Do I look that old?
“Oh, fine. It's late. Can we leave, sweetheart?” she asked and I saw them leave, holding hands together.
Though my eyes couldn’t believe this drama, I heard my mind whisper, “Stay calm, she is not the only girl. Turn left.”I obeyed the orders and to my surprise I saw a cute girl with blue eyes as dark as sapphire. I stood watching her beauty and I didn’t realize that I slipped the word, “Charming”.
And I heard a girl say, “Excuse me”. This time I turned at once and I was shocked to see the same girl standing behind me!
“A ghost!” I shouted and ran to the other side of the crowd.
“We are twins, you idiot,” she said. But my ego didn’t allow me to look back. Yet, I didn’t lose my confidence. I waited for another girl to come across and yes, I saw one in a corduroy jacket who seemed ultra-modern. I didn’t wish to waste my time, at least this time. Behind me was an old florist waiting for customers. And I bought a dark red rose and reached her.
“Uh... hey... I am Luke...You...uh...you...look good...I mean great... I...I love you..,”before I could complete, she slapped my face so hard and one of her long nails pierced through my cheek and it transformed into a ripe-red cherry matching the colour of blood that came out. Tears were waiting to roll down my cheeks, but I didn’t have the courage to stand there any longer and I had no option but to race back to home.
I cried. I yelled. I screamed. I howled. And finally, my house was there as still as it had always been. I opened the door. Alex was there, where I left him, with an angry face.
“It took you two hours and thirty two minutes to read the newspaper?” he growled. He was never wrong in calculations. Especially when it has something to do with me. I laid on my bed facing the ceiling.
He sat beside me and in no minute, he yowled, “Oh, Luke! What’s wrong with your face? You are bleeding!”
He ran to his room and came back with some cotton and a bandage. He gave me first aid and looked at me with eyes of agony.
“What happened ?” he asked.
“Nothing, I just fell on the ground,” I said.
“No, look at that; It's like a fist.” He is clever, I thought, cleverer than me.
“Okay, Noel beat me,” I replied in disgust.
“Come on, Noel’s fingers are much bigger. You’re lying.” Ah, man, let me rest for sometime.
“Okay, you win,” I said and rolled on my bed.
“Tell me, or else I will keep pestering,” he said. I knew my brother. He is the best pest in the world, so I begged him not to say this to anyone for heaven’s sake and he promised. When I narrated him this long tale of utter nonsense, he laughed and laughed and laughed till he cried. He was the one who urged me to write this, insisting that nobody will know who I am. Yeah, that’s it. That’s the end of the story. I am sorry I am not good at conclusions, well, good at nothing. So thank you for wasting your time, reading this story of a nerd. Signing off, wishing you a good day opposite to mine. Goodbye!