Monday, September 30, 2013

Haiku: Messenger



Duty summons
The sailor for ages
Tears embark

Sailor’s wife scribbles
Tragic notions on the wet sand
Buoyant waves hark

A Promise, the waves bring back
Sailor’s epistle in a glass bottle,
An omen in the ocean’s dark


***

Written Under 'The Nine Flavors'
Flavor: Wonder/Amazement (Adbhuta Rasa)

Your Entries are Welcomed






-Ashish

Sunday, September 29, 2013

Fiction-55: Twinkle



“Twinkle, Twinkle.”
“Yes, Uncle?”

“Missing Papa?”
“Yes, uncle.”

“Don’t fear; now, I’m here”
“Thank you, uncle.”

“Want to go out?”
“Ok, Uncle.”

“You must be tired. Want to sleep?”
“Yes, uncle”

“Come closer; I will tell you a bedtime story.”
“Ok, uncle.”

“Now, let me kiss you a sweet goodnight”


“NO, uncle...

Please, uncle…

STOP!”

***


Posted under 'The Nine Flavors'
Flavor: Disgust (Bhibatsa) 

Your entries are welcomed:





-Ashish

Saturday, September 28, 2013

In the Meanwhile: At News Hour


Fiction 55: Two Shades

David’s paintings and his charisma seduced Lisa on her very first visit to his exhibition. After the event, she couldn’t stop herself from inviting him over a supper and put before him a wedding proposal, which he couldn’t refuse.

On their wedding night, he buried her alive. 
Her rich, dead father’s property was now his. 

***

Malhar dropped his daughter, Meera, to the new school. He saw her walk towards her classroom and remembering the first time he held her in his arms made him smile. 
“Goodbye, David.” She waved and entered the class. 
Malhar’s heart skipped a beat.

“What’s you name, little girl?” The teacher asked.
“Lisa” She grinned.

***

Written under 'The Nine Flavors'
Flavor: Thrill/horror (Bhayanak Rasa)

Your entries are welcomed:








-Ashish

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Poem: Mother's Wrath



Oh! Egotistic, brutal creature
Will you ever return my green saplings
who faced your tyranny and torture
and those, which were killed?

Or should I call it a sacrifice 
on which your tears are forging 
behind the concrete pillars and edifice 
and in our souvenir, the graves you build.

You squandered all my waters,
 
choked the pure with chemicals and cadavers 
and now you rely on these self-made gutters.
How can you be proud of your guild?

Smoked toxicants through gigantic canals,
Pierced my lungs and left me unfit for breathing
I say, cure the reeks from those pipes and funnels
And count for me, the countless holes you drilled.

Or should I call it a war 
and awaken another cataclysmic uproar,
which the raging earth and furious seas shall avenge
for the man-made void, too costly to be filled.   

Oh! Egotistic, brutal creature
Will you ever return my green saplings?


Written Under 'The Nine Flavors'
Flavor: Anger/fury (Raudra Rasa)

Your entries are welcomed:







-Ashish

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Fiction-55: Crush



She kept speaking for an hour. He kept gazing at her.
Her intoxicating allurement walked him into mystical reverie where he was the protagonist and she was his muse. A distant voice was calling out his name.

 “Malhar.

 MALHAR!”

“Wha- pa- present ma’am” 
he returned back from the cloud cuckoo land. 

The school bell tolled. 

***
Posted Under 'The Nine Flavors'
Flavor: Love/attraction (Shringar Rasa)


Your entries are welcomed.


-Ashish

Monday, September 23, 2013

And the Award goes to



Hello Readers, 

First of all, I thank you all very much for reading and giving so much love to my blog. I know I haven’t been very frequent in posting from past few days. And I hate that. Student life has been successful in keeping me busy with my books.

But, nevertheless, I hope to be more frequent from today and share with you the ‘umpteen’ posts that are in my draft.

Now, coming to the Creative Blogger award, I thank Meera Rat for sharing this award with me.
And now, continuing the same, I have nominated nine bloggers, new and old. And the names are (in no order):

1. Jiggyasa (Shrimaan Shrimati

2. Sakshi Nanda (Between Write and Wrong)

3. Sreedev Soman (KookyDom)

4 Sugandha (Shades of Life)

5 Prachie Gohil (Simply Prachieee)


7 Purba Ray (A-musing)

8 C. Suresh (Life is Like This)

9 Ritesh Agrawal (Some Bedtime Stories)

Congratulations, everyone. Keep inspiring.

I would like all the readers and the winners to have a look and be a part of the Nine Senses series.


Click to know more.

The Nine Flavors



Hello readers,

In Hindi Literature, if you might have studied in your school, we were taught about the 'Nav-rasa' or the nine states of mind or emotions or flavors, as I like to call it. Each 'rasa' leaves behind a different taste. After reading a poem or a story, the reader has the same sense of savor that the author wants to make them feel through his work. Building of an emotion in the reader's mind is the author's talent.

Recalling what my teacher had taught me, the nine 'rasas' are:

1. Shringar Rasa: Feeling of Love and attraction. Lets go for a Coffee?

2. Raudra Rasa: Feeling of Anger and fury. Kill that bastard.

3. Karunya Rasa: Feeling Pity and Compassion. Aww! poor thing.

4. Bhibhatsa Rasa: Disgusting! Feels like Yuck!

5. Bhayanak Rasa: Horror. No, don't turn back.

6. Adbhuta Rasa: Amazement. Yay! I won the lottery.

7. Shanta Rasa: Peace.

8. Veera Rasa: In Heroic mood. THIS IS SPARTA!

9. Hasya Rasa: Comedy. Fall off the terrace, laughing.

So, these are the nine primary Rasas.

I will be posting poems, short stories, haikus and 55s in the coming days under these aesthetics and try to give you the taste of each.

And I invite you all to submit your entries under 'The Nine Flavors'.

Write up stories, poems or whatever that comes in your mind but just remember to mention which Rasa or flavor(s) you have used in your entry(s) at the bottom of your post.

So, now that you have the prompt with you, You can submit your links here or in the comment section below.



Thank You. I hope too see a decent participation.

P.S. This is no contest.
But, the best entries will be given a mention and a Grand Salute by Mithun Da.
Go Blog! 

Thursday, September 5, 2013

In the Meanwhile: Last telegram to Rahul Gandhi

Poem: Musical Chair



My morning marathon begins in a crowded bus
to carve a niche, like the fellow-fanatic hoi-polloi, I rush
balancing on the footboard, showing my skills of equilibrium
I compete, dangling to the belt of optimism
Exhausting game of musical chair which, to play, I retreat
and for the fairer, antique and challenged, I give up my seat.

Somehow, I reach the venue of a bigger battle
to carve a niche, in the myriad of cattle
struggling to make a mark, sweating blood and ink
I compete, envisaging a yielding spring, without a blink
Discovering my chair been already labelled, I face deceit
and for the undeserved, majority and affluent, I give up my seat.

Now, I stand in a deep dark tunnel
to carve a niche, in the regal panel
advocating a better tomorrow, keeping my collar white
I compete, to the ones placed on self-made lofty pedestals, I fight
an unethical game of biased ballot, I taste defeat
and for the powerful, brown-nose and immoral, I give up my seat.

-Ashish

Short Story: A lesson in disguise

“Oh! Mom! Not Roti again?” Malhar scoffed on looking at the lunchbox his mother had packed for him. “Can’t you prepare something good?”
His mother silently listened to him. Cursing his mother, Malhar left for school. 

During Recess, he bought snacks from the canteen. 
“Hey Malhar, did you not bring your lunchbox?” his friend asked. 
“Uh no, not today” Malhar lied. 
Dissatisfied, he had thrown the contents of his lunchbox in a dust-bin. 

“Mom, please don’t embarrass me in front of my friends tomorrow on my birthday treat” Malhar chided his mother that evening.

Next day, for his birthday treat, his mother cooked his favourite dishes including a big chocolate cake for him and his friends. After, Malhar blew the candles and the usual birthday rituals took place, everybody got a big chunk of the chocolate cake. “Umm… this is yummy, aunty!” one of his friends with a fat tummy praised, nibbling onto his piece. His mother smiled. 

Eating the first piece of cake was a piece of cake for Malhar. He hunted for the second one and bit the soft bread slowly which was layered with chocolate sauce and cream. He closed his eyes and enjoyed each and every bit. Each bite gave him immense pleasure. He licked the chocolate sauce stuck on his fingers and slowly opened his eyes.

“Oh God! Where am I?” Malhar found himself on a strange deserted footpath. He walked forward. “Hello? Anybody, there?” he screamed. He kept walking but could find nobody which scared him. He started to shiver sensing something insidious. “Mom! Mom! Help me!” he screamed, on a verge of crying.
Suddenly, someone tapped on his back. He turned to find a girl dressed in a white gown. “Who-who are you?” Malhar questioned. 
“I am Alimah, an angel. I see you finally realize your mom’s absence”

“What do you want?”

“I don’t want anything. But you certainly need some lessons to be taught.”

“What kind of lessons?” 

“Here, hold my hand. All your questions will be answered.”

Malhar held her hand and within a blink, they reached a new location. 

“Oh! What was that? Where are we?” Malhar asked, totally astonished. 

“Not too far, we are still on the same footpath.” Alimah explained. 

“Now look carefully” Alimah pointed towards a skinny man. “You see that man? He begs all day. He collects all that money and buys food for his children. You see that packet in his hand? That paper scrap contains curd rice. Look at his smiling children, how happy they are. They have been hungry since morning. The man is somehow making an effort to keep himself and his children alive. Today, they will sleep peacefully. People like them are not lucky every day to earn food and some even die of hunger. You know why? Because it is not easy to buy the food that you eat or rather throw away.”

“I-I get your point. I am sorry f-“

“Not yet. Hold my hand, again” Alimah interrupted. Malhar followed her and held her hands. Whoosh!

Unlike the previous location, this was totally crowded and the people were rushing haphazardly towards the same direction. 

“Where are we now? Why are the people running?” Malhar asked curiously. 

“Let us follow the people and you will know” Alimah replied. Malhar followed her. 
“These people are flood victims. Their houses have been ruined and they have nowhere to go. They are being supplied with food packets and if they do not rush, they won’t get their share and they will have to starve for indefinite time. By the way, they do not have much of a choice. It’s either do or die. Also, they cannot demand for their favourite dish here, you know. They have to eat what they get.” 

“I understand now. I will never de-“

“Not yet, boy. Not yet. Hold my hand.” WHOOSH!

And they reached their third destination which Malhar understood, was clearly a village. “Follow me” Alimah ordered. Malhar followed her and they reached a small government run primary school.

“You see those children queued-up with plates in their hands? They are the children of farmers, maids, smiths and potters, almost of your age but a lot less demanding than you are. They do not get healthy, nutritious food packed with lots of mother’s love in lunch boxes from their homes. They rely on not-so-reliable mid-day meals which are funded by not-so-reliable government. You know how many children die because of that? And then there are children like you. Not fair, at all.”
“Err… I am really sorry. I understood what you wanted to teach me. I will never repeat my mistake again. Take me back to my home.” Malhar pleaded. 

“Well, kid, the only place you deserve to go is hell. You look delicious. I will enjoy nibbling you…HA HA HA!” Alimah laughed bitterly. 

“But you said you were an angel..?” Malhar cried. 

“Did I? Oh kid, you never know who is masquerading. I am a devil in disguise….HA HA HA!” Alimah opened her satanic mouth to eat him. 

And Malhar opened his eyes, sweating and screaming “Mom! Mom! I am sorry, I am sorry. I will never demand anything. I will eat whatever you cook. I am really sorry for my deeds…”

His mother smiled, ran her hand over his head and calmed him down. 



-Ashish

Written for the Nibble Promptly contest.

http://ratnibbles.blogspot.in/2013/08/nibble-promptly-fun-contest.html

Thank you Meera Rat for this opportunity. :)


Short Story: The Address

“From, 16-A, Kalkaji, Delhi-110019” was not just an address. It was similar to the transcending words written on the milestones covered by the crutches supporting a cripple on covering a thousand miles, it was appetite for the fasting clock which ticked in dearth of the absconding moon for years, it was involuntary curve of elation dawning on visage of a dispossessed farmer catching the first glimpse of an overcast, and it was musical enough for Malhar’s ears to make him dance in the crowded streets of Soormapur as if nobody is watching.

For Malhar, the day, when his father took him to Alimah’s home for the first time, was the most precious and memorable gift he ever received. Those memories have a special corner in his mind. He still remembers how even after refusing to accompany his father to deliver the letters on a boring Wednesday morning, his father forced him to come along and realizes that it was certainly almighty’s tactics. He remembers how sitting on the bicycle with his father, he agreed to go for the ride unknowing of what bliss he coming his way. After delivering ten odd letters they finally reached the place where he was meant to be. He remembers the hospitality of Alimah’s Abba who welcomed them inside and the taste of delicious kheer that her Ammi had prepared. It was her birthday. He remembers the first glimpse of her which made him believe that the angels from her mother’s bedtime stories were real and he remembers the first words which she spoke to him “Join us. Let us play”, and took him along to introduce him to her other friends Nishad and Marika. Unlike the bullying and insult by the street boys he faced, she made him realize he was one among them, an equal. He was totally spellbound by her innocent charm and amicable attitude. It was beginning of a new friendship, an all-new era for him. He started loving Soormapur like never before.

But, he was only a ten-year-old then. And like himself, his love too was too jejune. Little did he know that the story, in a real world, never remains the same and nothing is immortal. Six-years later, a storm of events left Malhar devastated. Alimah and her family were leaving Soormapur forever. On knowing this, he sprinted to the railway station bare-foot but he was too late. The train had already left Soormapur. With tears in his eyes and a lump in his throat, he returned home to find his father lying on the floor, paralyzed and could breathe only for the next few days. Malhar had to leave his school and take up his father’s occupation for livelihood.

He started hating everything around him. Soormapur became a curse for him. He wished to escape from the place as soon as possible. But, again, his story took another turn one day when while emptying a letter box, he found a letter addressed to him. He jumped in exhilaration on reading the address. It was Alimah’s letter. Now, he had a reason to not leave Soormapur. She had finally written to him. His faith in his love was back.
The time, he missed the most, was back. Alimah was back in his life. He replied to her letter. Every day, excitedly he would search for her letter in the letterbox. He would wait for days for one reply and Alimah didn’t disappoint him this time. She wrote about how she misses the old time, the games they played and everything about Soormapur. She also wrote that she was going to become a doctor and about her studies. The talks continued for months. Malhar was on cloud number nine.

Her birthday was near and Malhar had already planned that now he would tell her how much he loves her, how the angel from his mother’s story, who makes a boy’s life beautiful, became a reality for him and how pure his affection was since it was from the same innocent heart of a ten-year-old. He finally wrote the letter and safely put it under his pillow. He was sleepless to send it to her. It was the very first thing he was going to do the next morning. 

It was a bright morning on Malhar’s face. He merrily walked to the post office to find an unrecognizable yet familiar face. The boy was in hurry and handed Malhar a letter and asked him to deliver it as soon as possible, giving him certain instructions. He recalled the boy’s words “It is a matter of love. It is to my fiancĂ©e. Do take care.” 
Malhar flipped the envelope and read the address. 
“To,

 16-A, Kalkaji,
 Delhi-110019”


“From, Nishad…”

He clutched the letter he wrote. The world around him shattered. All that he assumed was proved wrong. He realized that the real world comes with differences of highs and lows, downs and ups, rich and poor, Hindus and Muslims and that this line cannot be crossed. His faith was lost again. The angel from the story became a fiction forever.  

Only for 18+

Hello Reader,


How easy was it to click on the link “Only for 18+” and entering this webpage. Wasn’t it? How do I know if you are really above 18 or not? There are many such websites which gives easy access to any content on the web without even checking on with the person’s eligibility. In an era where the internet is such a common tool and anyone with basic knowledge of using it can access any webpage. No barriers whatsoever. Same goes for the drinking age limit too. How many shopkeepers actually check if you really are 18 or 21 plus? Do they ask for any proof? Not many. Same stands for the movies as well. In most of the cinemas, I assure, for watching an A-rated movie, you won’t be asked for any ID proof, asking your age. So, it is very much clear that a person of age, let’s say 15, can easily access to stuff he shouldn’t be. 


So basically, what is wrong is, a ‘juvenile’ is doing all those things that an adult is doing. But still only because of a number, he is called a ‘juvenile’. Similarly, like other things that are meant only for 18+, punishments too are meant for 18+ only. That’s certainly no logic. But, unfortunately, our courts think it is logical and being law-abiding citizens we have to stand by judge’s decision. Yes, we are obedient and civilized. But, is that enough? Is it really justified for the victim’s parents and the brother who waited to see that the culprit is punished? 


By the way, have you ever read or heard about the Amish people? If not, then let me tell you that they are the most peace-loving people on planet earth. It is a very small breed of people who live life in a very simple way in their own world. Residing in Pennsylvania, these people work as farmers or smiths and stay within their state. The men grow long beard and smoke pipe and women are mostly homemakers. They have no complaints with anyone. They forgive very quickly. There was an incident when a murderer allegedly shot some school children and then himself. The Amish people, though devastated about the incident, not only forgave the murderer’s deeds but also took the responsibility of the dead murderer’s wife and children. 

Well, what happened in India wasn’t very different from that. Now that the ‘juvenile’ has been sent to remand home and to be freed in three or less years is equal to forgiving the accused. Or is it that the court wants the Indian public to handle the ‘juvenile’, once he is set free, in the Arab-way? Only court knows.


And I am really happy that Asaram Bapu was not declared a ‘juvenile’. 

A Mid-day Heal


Hello Reader,

It was much before the Bihar Mid-day meal tragedy that my mother, who teaches in a government school, had told me about how unhealthy is the food that is being served in her school and how carelessly it is cooked. The amount of money spent to buy the raw cooking material is much less than that of being sanctioned to run this scheme. Certainly, there is corruption.



And the result of it, we have all witnessed, is the number of innocent deaths, children falling sick. Blaming the government will be a long process to fight this evil. Because, if we point our finger to someone, he/she shall point it to his/her rival and that will continue and in the meanwhile, more children will die. There will be no results in the end of this blame-game.
So, it is better that we stop cursing our deaf-government and rather help the NGOs to fund these schemes. Why not rely on the people who actually work for the betterment and help them.
One such NGO is The Akshaya Patra Foundation, which I am sure most of you would be aware of.

You can make donations of any amount through this link.
https://www.akshayapatra.org/onlinedonations

I request all my readers to share this and donate for this good cause. The children need your help.

You can read about the foundation here



Helping the Indian Rupee

Hello Reader, 

I have never given much thought about the economy and related stuff. Being a science student, I do not understand much of the core commercial terms. But, I somehow try to pick up while reading the newspaper articles and opinions about the economic crisis and the falling rupee. And like me, there are many who do not understand anything about it but yet find it easy to blame Dr. Manmohan Singh or P. Chidambram because it is easy to understand that it is their responsibility to look after the country’s money and they are not doing their job well. Everyone knows that they have graduated from well-known universities and hence, they are the ones to be held responsible for the crisis even though we, ourselves have no idea how things work.


But my recent readings on all of that has certainly helped me understand one simple thing. And I would like to share this to those who find it difficult to understand it. How can a common man help the falling rupee? The only way we can help the Indian economy is by buying the products being manufactured in India. In very simple words, the import should be reduced and export should be increased. Buying the items that are manufactured by foreign brands should be reduced if not stopped completely. Also, the Indian companies should make an effort to promote their brands world-wide and giving amazing offers and quality products.

We all rely on the foreign brands from the start of our day, be it brushing our teeth, we use Colgate or Close-up. For bathing, we use Dettol, lux or dove soaps and shampoos. Even most of our networks are owned by companies like Vodafone. Where is all the money you spend on these items flowing to? It is all your money which goes out to the foreign companies. And what happens if you use the Indian products like dabur, vicco and BSNL? The money remains within the Indian boundaries, helping the rupee to strengthen which will ultimately reduce the prices of all other commodities as well. 

So, the next time you go out for shopping, do think once before buying and try to go for the Indian brands and products. Help yourselves and your country in the times of economic crisis. 


Ashish