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Archive for November, 2008

What does a street kid think when a photographer clicks his picture?  How do educated people with high flying lives or even other lives like you and me look at sensitive issues like poverty or child labour? Why do the mere mention of these issues bring a frown on our faces and tag our thoughts as boring? How do we allow falsified emotions to get into our heads? Like for instance, how we ‘think’ we feel bad when we see something on the road and then turn around and get back to our marry browns and pizza huts…

This is about a street kid who is getting captured by a photographer. The guy clicks and walks off thinking he has done a great job. And he brings his little trophy to our world. And we the people, we throw a varying range of emotions. We hold discussions and debates, join communities and open blogs and even write about it. But do we really get anywhere, other than to the next coffee shop or book store?

We take pride in having these emotions- that we can feel, empathise, and even make ourselves believe that we are different. Sometimes to show off, but most of the times to bury our own guilt. I call it egoic delusions. But whatever we call it, and whether or not we feel bad, what’s in it for a kid?

Here s what one such kid, a victim of a photograph thinks…..

 

Shutterbugs and willing death 

 

Can you tell me what runs through your dreams?

In the cold shutters of the bug

You capture me. And bind me

For a million eyes to gape and sigh

In their bougainvillea homes

And one two three rooms

 

Don’t look if you can’t see it

Don’t sigh if you can’t feel it

Don’t stay if you can’t stand it

Just turn around and walk away

Like you always do

 

 

Under the dim lit glow of red

In the confines of your own talent wall

You wash me. And hang me

To make prosperous your name

When people feign emotions

In their egoic delusions

 

Don’t look if you can’t see it

Don’t sigh if you can’t feel it

Don’t stay if you can’t stand it

Just turn around and walk away

Like you always do

 

 

Here under the veil of the night

I need not to close my eyes

Darkness blinds all

And the buildings have to sleep

Before we can.

Wherever I go

I see men with greedy eyes

But what I search for is

Two gleaming lights

That can walk me back home

And tell me stories of the yore

And show me if any such thing

That they call love really exists

 

 

 

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Me: So what’s it gonna be today?

Thoughton: What’s what gonna be today?

Me: You know, the post and the blog and stuff??? I’ve opened a blog for you dude, to write about you, in your name.

Thoughton: So?

Me: What so? I’ve got to write something.

Thoughton: So write

Me: Ok, don’t fool around now. You know very well I need you to tell me something to write? One of your stories, your weird thoughts, or some unwanted opinion about something. Ok, maybe not an opinion, we have enough and intelligent people in the world to opine about it, but you get my point right? It’s over a week now since we started out with the blog. Shouldn’t we be taking it forward with the ‘gory’ details, like how one of our mysterious readers had commented?

Thoughton: Yea, we should and we shall…

Me: When?

Thoughton: I don’t know.

Me: What do you mean you don’t know? People have already started asking me if the next post is in. What do I tell them? We have to stay committed here. No fooling around Thoughton, mind you…. You cannot do this to me.

Thoughton: Lady, stop panicking!!! You opened a blog, ‘To write for the love of it’. Remember?

Me: Yea… so what’s your point?

Thoughton: You humans are unbelievable!!! You all make the same mistake. Everywhere, all the time. First you start out to do something, with an intention. You’d be fully dedicated to it. But the minute other people and their opinions come into the picture, you are eager to please…. you go around trying to satisfy them, forgetting what you started out doing in the first place.

Listen girl, you wanna force a concept outta me, go ahead, I have enough and more of useless ones lying around. But then, that’s cheating. You’re not giving people what they truly deserve. You are forcing something out of you, thereby compromising with quality. Don’t you realise that’s going to be far more disappointing than a delayed blog post?

Me: But I can’t just sit here and wait for your ‘One-of-a-Thoughton-kind’ ideas to pop up?

Thoughton: ‘I’ give you ideas. ‘You’ don’t have time for it.

Me: Me? I don’t have time? You come up with your brilliant ideas in the middle of traffic jams and bumpy share auto rides, ‘genius’!!! With tempting designs and paintings at 3am, when I’m snuggling cozy in my bed, too far, and out, from pens, papers and any sign of consciousness. And I’m the one without time eh?

Thoughton: Yea, you are running around most of the time with your freelancing jobs, chasing money and all… You don’t take time out to sit and discuss with me. So I have to suddenly give a push from inside you at odd timings. I try to hold ‘em in for you, thinking I’ll tell you when you are finally done with your work, and free. But that you never are. And I release them at vague hours coz I cannot hold ‘em inside me for too long a time myself….

Me: But I’m NOT chasing money. I’m trying to survive here.

Thoughton: Survive? Wasn’t it what you were doing at your previous workplaces? And isn’t it what you are trying to stop doing now? Stop surviving, and start ‘living’?

Me: Yea that’s the plan. But I still haven’t figured out a way to earn a living. I need money to pay my rent and bills, to feed myself and to take care of ‘your’ unending demands. I cannot depend on my parents anymore. They’ve given me much more than I could’ve ever asked for. I refuse to beg or borrow, even from friends. I know I have a strong support system to fall back on, and I’m really happy for it. But I cannot use them. I need to be independent. So as of now, I am trying to balance both. Trying to make a living and at the same time live also. I’m slowly getting the hang of it. You know it very well. Give me sometime.

Thoughton: Yea, I know that. You hit the panic button every month end, worrying about your rent and bills. (And trying to be polite and understanding)- I’ve seen you longingly look at ‘that gorgeous dress on display and plucking your eyes and my attention away from it. Or going out with your friends and feeling bad when you are unable to make an equal contribution. (And then suddenly Shouting)- “AND THAT’S EXACTLY WHAT I’M TRYING TO TELL YOU…” To take it easy. Don’t pressurise yourself, don’t impose heavy expectations on yourself. Do your job and try to take time out when you can. And we’ll discuss and write, when we get that ‘One-of-a-Thoughton kind’ idea, or any other ordinary idea we feel strongly about…. “For the love of it”!!!!

Me: Sigh! “For the love of it”…. yes…

Well, I suppose that’s settled then. Constraints of an unemployed youngster, I hope would be understood by my dear friends and readers. Time is flying, and my life keeps changing. There have been days when I’ve walked into malls and splurged on bagful of gifts for my family and friends, and also days when I’ve walked around with sometimes as little as 30rupees in my wallet. I’m not ashamed to tell you this, no. And not for a single moment have I regretted my decision of quitting my job either. You could say I’m just being stubborn, refusing to admit to an erroneous decision. But with my hand upon my heart I can look straight into my own eyes and say, that I am living every single day of my life, as beautiful as how God would want me to!!!

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Thoughton has a million thoughts and ideas. Some surface. Others he says, he will take with him to the grave. His idea of life is to keep it simple, as simple as it can be kept. It relieves him of unnecessary tasks and painful expectations. ‘Lazy’ could be another word, but his firm belief in that one theory makes his world go round and more importantly, keeps him content. Most of the stuff that surface are just random ramblings. He hardly ever sleeps. One could very easily catch him in the middle of the night working hard to weave a flimsy thread of fantastic dreams. As a young boy, he spent many hours on treetops, contemplating and sometimes simply marveling at the beauty that surrounded him. He was a sucker for nature, her beauty drew him irresistibly! He was a loser in school, never achieving or ever wanting to achieve anything at all. For him, the greatest of lessons and all that he wanted to know were always unfolding every minute outside the confines of the classrooms. People thought he was weird and completely deranged. And until his 15th year, he believed them to be true. Rejection being too painful a price to pay, he shut himself down. Freedom lost, expression numbed, he wandered aimlessly in search of something. It cost him many years of hatred and suffering and got the worst out of him from the worst years of his life. But he was to realise soon that he was one of a kind!! The thoughts that spun inside him and the colours that spilled out onto sheets may not have found much praise, but it got him his own little space. He soon understood that everybody around him were just as unique as he was, and all that he had to do was to just let everything and everybody be…. Just as he could be, and do whatever he wanted to- write for the love of it, paint for the joy of it and sing for the beauty of it, or do whatever for the sake of it. Because after all, he says, even the most brilliant of ideas will one day only get executed, for the spirit of expression to fly out free…

“I have no choice but to live with his ideas for he lives inside me. Meet Thoughton, my brilliant brain that God half blessed me with before he threw me down to serve my term on earth for I know not how long.. Thoughton had always existed, but it was me who had ignored him all this while. But now that I have found him, I am immensely happy. Because like never before, I have a certain sense of joy and peace and also hope that I have a new companion to help me discover a great deal more about my ‘self’….

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