Poem 56#

There’a broken tap in the kitchen sink,
It keeps shredding pellets of water at night,
Many tried to fix it,
To repair the seal.
Yet it remains broken.

But doesn’t leak during morning hours,
For mum ties it with a muslin cloth.

“See now? There’s always a way to fix broken things,” Maa proudly says,

“I wish temporary solutions would work that way,”
I continue with the dishes for the day
With the soggy old sponge, I start cleaning the dishes,
It has holes now, blobs of black dots surround its core,
Yet it scrubs away the dirt and cleans the vessels perfectly fine.

Maa’s favourite steel kadhai is blackened due to overuse,
It takes me more than a couple of mins to scrub a small patch of dot,

“Ugh this won’t go away, Maa!!”

“Oh it’s an old stain, it won’t leave this quick,”
maa reckons to me,

“Then what do I do?”

“Find a way to clean the black stain, Shibu.”

“But it’ll take a lot more time, too much work.”
I sigh,

“Then what do you wish to do?
Let the stain get darker and even more difficult to get off?”

Maybe she was right,
Maybe old stains never leave their shore easily after all.
Keep getting darker by day,
And harder to forget or erase.

-Shivani Dubey.

I’m fine.



I wish I could stop using this sentence at times, but ever since I was a child, maa always told me everything is fine, it’s all in your head,my little dandelion.

She told me that as a woman I must learn to accept some hardships in life,that crying over things isn’t the solution to life.

“Then when does one cry, maa?”

People cry when someone dies, shibu” Not when they’re alive and happy”

I wonder if I am truly alive?

My heart doesn’t really beat,
it functions like my neighbor ‘s old Ben clock,
Only at night does it realise that its alive
It echoes a silent tap, those muffled voices in the background snicker and laugh,
I hear a whimper, too soft for anyone to notice around,
But it ticks too loud, but oh the silence of the night takes the credit away.


***
Go for a run or a walk, Dad orders me,
I find myself wearing those worn out converse of mine,
Where my laces have knots and are too loosely tied,
I jog for a few minutes until those thoughts feel too much for me, the same disappointment,
The same numbness, the people in my life I could never please, I run, run the way I have always liked,
The one where people disappear and my heart beat comes alive,

After 3 rounds of running, I return back home,

“You look like hellboy” dad acknowledges my presence as he opens his new bottle of whiskey, tonight.
After two 60 ml shots,
He tells me that I act like an emotional fool at times,
that I must learn to be tough, be like a rock he says, it never cries.
I wish I could tell him that oh it breaks, shatters into pieces when it can’t cry.


……

I wish I were a child right now,
atleast writing “I am fine” hundred times would let my unconscious mind accept this plight,
Alas my heart would never accept that sight.

….

Why dont you share anything with me, I am right here, my friend texts me,
But what do I tell her when I myself dont understand it,
That there are times I just wish to be left alone,
All I want is the silence around me, not questions and remarks about how I am not doing well in life.
Rather all I end up texting them is, Oh it’s nothing, I’ll be just fine. :))

The paradoxical one.

She is unsure and uncertain in life, she wants a few things, yet doesnt want them too. She would initiate the conversation then feel it losing it’s sight and in time with her lack of effort, it’ll die.

For she knows they’d have many others whom they would talk to, she’d assume small things and get nervous all the time, “why did you type the Okay ♥️ as ok, / okay / k/ this time?”The others she wonders about the tone of their text and replies, “were they in a hurry or did they wish to talk to me after a while?”

“Why didn’t they use their regular emoji, or are they done with her hopeless plight?”

She deletes messages quite often too,for her anxiety tells her it sounds too rude or maybe not right, what if they feel bad? What if they read in between the lines? They cant see her vulnerable side.

Sudden calls from strangers scare her to death,do they expect a specific reply? Is hmm and haan and okay and yeah, fine? What if they feel she is not contributing to the conversation at all,her heart comes to her mouth, she feels like 1 year old, she babbles or mumbles or at times is inaudiblely loud.

At times,she is sure of her mind, sure of the things she has to say and feels about the people around, yes doubts and fear cross her mind, but her heart comes to resuce those times.

The others, her heart plays tricks on her mind, for it doesn’t understand the difference between infatuation or lust, confuses it with love and keeps her awake all night.

Yes she overthinks, she has scales of measurement for this overthinking too, a bit done every now and then seems fine, she takes overthinking breaks in between her day, thinks about the topic from all the sides and even tho the stimulus is out of her sight it still revolves in her mind.

Is it yes or was it no?”

She dislikes the term in between and people giving her ambiguous hues. She likes weird and confusing things for sure,

The puzzle the daily crossword, the sudoku hurl, the Rubik’s cube, confusing it may be for others but she’d try all the combinations and solve it overnight, and if not, then mess up the code and add more sequences to her plight.

At times she is nervous and shy,like the naive Caterpillar that transforms into a beautiful butterfly, she is oh so cautious and alert of her moves, never to harm a soul and usually complies.

The others she is bold and scary they say, like the moth, that’s as dark as the ruinous sky, you’d shoo her off, so that she doesn’t ruin your cashmere shawl overnight,

She’s reckless and wild, is attracted to dangerous people who often hurt her or leave her in the absence of light, is attracted to the feral fire that could burn her core, yet she wishes to go near it, to warm her numb soul.

…..

Life for her is a puzzle,

one cannot fathom right away

It is never truly black nor white,

At times it’s blue and purple, red and grey,

So arrange every piece that comes your way,

And that’s how she lives her life, everyday.

One day or day one?

I’ve already drowned once, I’m scared I’ll drown again!!

Just because it happened once doesn’t mean it will happen always, just have some faith in yourself.

So will you be there to save me, just like last time?

I will,but only for this one time, you’ve gotta learn to fight your own battles Shivani.

I’ll learn it one day, okay?

One day or day One? It’s upto you, Shivani.

To the moon,

You show your true self, times very few.

And most of the times, I just see parts of you.

At times you shine very bright,

The others, you’re just surrounded by gloom.

Many adore your presence in their lives,

For the light you bring, it completes their life.

But a few wish to be with you during twilight.

Or wish to see your eclipsed side.

But I wish I could tell you, that I’ll always be here for you,

Eclipsed or not, I love all the shades of you.

But,
Although you’re always infront of me,

You’re never by my side, always so far away from me,

For you’re still a stranger and I’m no one to thee.

Ambiguous bond.

I don’t even know who you are to me,

A friend, companion or my enemy?

I don’t even know whether you like me or not,

Maybe you dislike me, hate me a lot?

But back then in the past,

We shared some beautiful memories,

I knew wouldn’t last.

But just for sometime,

I’m glad you were there for me,

And I was there for thee.