Guest Post #3. Home

Everybody who leaves home takes a bit of that home in them, in their heart and their memories and then there’s the ever-present longing. This is something about that, that tangible feeling, the almost there touch of home in a new strange that comforts and saddens you at the same time. 

Kasturee, a girl who comes from the land where the land beats with the Pepa and Taal, and the fields are washed by the waters of Brahmaputra to Delhi. And in her new journey, this is a small part of her home she brings to you. 

What does home smell like?

Does it smell like the mango trees

Behind my childhood house?

Or like the plaster of Paris-

One of my first memories of my then new house?
Instead, does home smell like the silk Mekhela Saador [1]

Which Maa wears on rare occasions? 

Is it the smell of gakhir sewai Dia used to make [2]

Or maybe her suji that was my favourite. 
Does home smell like Jasmine?

For that is the shampoo my best friend uses.

Or if Home might also smell like my books,

Where I often run to in search of solitude.
I wonder if home smells
Like an amalgamation of all these smells

Or maybe none of them at all.

If it isn’t home that smells like them

But they smell like home?

[1] Mekhala Saador- An assamese attire.

[2] Dia- the name by which I used to call my grandmother.

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Guest Post #2. She spoke, no more.  

Here is the second Guest Post on the blog by Mohammed Asif Khan. A poem on the silence of women and their struggle to speak; the struggle to express. And, how when and if they want to, they are not allowed, their fires are doused. 

Asif, is a friend whom I have known for three years and I am in awe of his thoughts, his words and his art and the things they bring to you. I hope you love this piece as much as I do. 

​Yesterday,

My sister shrieked loudly

And everyone felt silent

Like she was, 

Before.


She erupted,

A volcano filled to brim

In tears, did her memory flow

Minute hands of the clock,

Stopped.


Out of her mouth

Embers gushed

Like blood,

Out of a wound

Scratched often.


Through words

Her angst flowed

Burning the ground

Beneath her feet.


The air around her

Tense, 

Like the body of that 

First women in history

Who said  

Don’t! 


On seeing this

My father, 

Calm as he was

Went to the bathroom 

To bring a bucket 

Full of water

And splashed it on the fire.


I saw my sister

Heaving through the smoke,

The clock’s minute hand moved

She ruptured, 

Only to fall silent 

Once again.

Guest post #1 – Orlando Mass Shooting, 2016.

#OrlandoShootout #Pulse #Loveagainsthate #LGBT #Hatecrime


I think we all remember the tragedy of Last year’s Mass shooting at the Gay Nightclub, ‘Pulse’, in Orlando. It was one such incident that shook the world, and the whole LGBTQ community at large; who were the intended victims of the Hate-crime.  

This post is a short poem written by a Dear friend of mine, Abhishek Chakraborty, on the same incident and how much it affected everyone. It will be followed by a short write-up by me on the incident, stating my own opinion. 

A gun,  a man, a hateful dawn

And 50 dead before the night was gone. 

I wonder what went through their head

As they saw bodies falling dead 

One after another. 

As their stories ended 

One after another. 


And what stories must they have been

Killed by a man who didn’t even

Know their names. 

Lovers perhaps,  celebrating, 

Or friends together,  partying. 

Or a scared young guy, 

Enjoying the only place 

Where there were no haters staring. 

The long struggles of yesterday 

And the hopes and dreams of late 

All gone in a flash of mindless hate. 


When loving is so hard and hate comes so easily, 

What can we do? 


‘Tis said that we mourn not for the dead

As much as we mourn for the living left behind

I think about the mothers who had

Just accepted their gay sons

And the mothers who had not yet, 

But thought they had time. 

And I think of the many lovers and friends 

– our chosen queer families,  grieving in darkened rooms. 

When loving is so hard and hate comes so easily,  what do we do? 


They dance on the bodies of our brothers 

These  bible bigots and priests,  who forget

Their own history of homophobia and hate

Where schools burned and churches dimmed-

They gleefully point that the shooter was Muslim. 


They dance on the bodies of our brothers, 

The apologists and mullahs,  who shamelessly 

Scurry to fit,  that Islam has nothing to do with it. 

Syria,  Bangladesh, Iran,  Iraq,  Arabia-

Islam has nothing to do with it. 

When loving is so hard  and hate comes so easily,  what do we do? 


They dance on the bodies of our brothers. 

The haters prop the dead against us, 

Pointing their cold fingers,  instructing us

Who to hate,  as they keep screeching out their lungs 

“Ban the Muslims,  but don’t ban our guns”


They dance on the bodies of our brothers

These sympathy brigade, expressing their gritty

Condolences,  but are too afraid to say LGBT

They are humans first,  gays second they say,

Condolences are condolences anyway. 

You are scared,  scared of the word

Because it is easier to hate Muslims than love gays,

Because it is easier to condemn Islamic terrorism than to condemn homophobia. 

How can you condemn something 

You yourself are guilty of? 


And even in this chaos and anguish,  

There are people celebrating 

Faggots die everyday

A bunch died today. 


When loving is so hard and

Hate comes so easily,  what do we do? 


– We love a little more. 


We burn our friends,  we bury our brothers 

We weep on their shrouds,  carry their coffins

And we love a little more. 


We scream,  we cry, 

We rage,  we despair. 

We break down and rise

To rage and cry again. 


And when all that is said and done, 

We live. 

And we love a little more.

Jun 12,2016 was a horrifying day for the world and the LGBTQ community, as the news came of the Mass Shootout in the Gay Nightclub by the shooter Omar Mateen, during the Pride Month and ‘Latin Night’ at the club. It was reported to be the biggest shootout and the deadliest act of violence against the LGBT people in American History taking the lives of 50 people and leaving more 53, injured. 

The incident brought forward the whole world forward standing in solidarity with the victims and the LGBT people, with love and support pouring in. I remember myself standing alongside my friends in a candlelit vigil and mourning in my home city, which is where I heard the poem for the first time. But, the sad thing is that even though the whole world was standing in support, the powerholders and the supposed leaders were still silent about the issues brought forth. 

While leaders like Donald Trump and Narendra Modi both expressed their condolences about the incident, none of them were willing to actually mention how it was a gathering against the LGBT people but only chose to either ignore it or blatantly capitalising on it as is obvious by the later tweet by Donald Trump; which led to a huge backlash. Also notable is the fact that not one leader was willing to listen to the talks on ‘Gun Control’ in America even after this incident. 

Mass shootings are definifed by the Mother Jones mass shootings database as “seemingly indiscriminate rampages in public places.”, but this was clearly an act born out of discrimination against a certain group of people only owing to the hate of one person. It’s a sad realisation that clearly no one, any leader or anyone with clout thought to mention that. 

Apology Post.

When I started this blog just this month, I was planning to make it not as much of a failure as my last two blogs were, but as they say, ‘Kismet. Recently my Laptop crashed and now I can not post any of the posts, that I had planned and written to be updated. 

I know it’s just the start of this journey for me, so I don’t plan to lose hope and that is why for the next few days until I get my Laptop repaired, I will be putting up guest posts here. And I hope that the few but precious people who have decided to follow me here will still be there.  

Also. Don’t be surprised if once I return, you get to read some posts on backdated issues. I have big plans for this place here and I promise to make it worthwhile to you. 

– Until then. 

Ciao.  

​Tears of Jehlum. 

#Blog #Bloggers #Indianpoetry #Poems_of_India#Kashmir #Kashmirvalley #Kashmirsiege #Jhelum #Poetry #Poems #Azadi
The hardened calloused hands, hammer

the windows shut. 

The stalls are empty, stools overturned, broken cups

the spilled tea, mixing, churning; Today, 

the silent streets seep blood. 

There are smoking holes in the splintered wooden walls,

stooping, broken doors; Today, 

the eyes under the burqha are downcast.


The old white walls lies splattered in red, 

it’s rusty iron gate drifting in and out.

The Azadi banner, lies, half broken, half torn on the ground; Today, 

when the azaan calls noone comes to the mosque.

The laughter is distant now, the baags lie empty, the shikaras swim hollow. 

The jeeps ran through the streets last night; Today, 

when the postman calls, nobody runs to open the door. 


The hearths lie cold, clothes 

hanging on the lines,dripping with water,

stained with blood. 

The people will come out later, but now 

the village is silent, the people mourn. 

No children play in them streets now, 

and the snow slowly melts down.

The voices are quiet for now, grief whispers; Today, 

the clear blue sky is tinged with red,

and no lovers lie under it, on the soft green grass. 

Today, the Jehlum flows past, in tears.  

Shadows on a wall.  

​Suppose a man comes into a new room  and sees the top of a dome from his window, being there only for a few moments he is not aware of whether it belongs to a Temple, a Mosque or a Gurudwara; until an enquiry takes place, that is open to interpretation. 

That is Religion, it is open to interpretation and having your own interpretation should not be a subject of critique for others or shame of your own. Religion is fickle in the fact that everyone sees it differently, like ‘Shadows on a Wall.’

– Random Musings. 

My Swaying Heart. 

​As the rain slides down my Windowpane,

I sit and stare,  

At the drizzling drops.

On one hand the Warm steaming cup,

And on the other my thoughts.

My heart asks me to go out and dance,

To jump in the puddles,

To sing in the rain.

But i sit here, not going out

Enjoying the smell of the wet earth.

While i ponder on my thoughts,

Only, my heart sways!

How Imperfect is Perfection? 

​We live in a world where everyone is trying to reach perfection. And perfection is so overrated, it’s like you have to be this perfect person, this ‘something’ which you don’t even know the actual meaning of. How can people struggle and put pressure on others to achieve this something ‘good’ and ‘ perfect’, when you can’t even properly define it? 

And somewhere where everyone is trying to be perfect and do everything in just this right amount and in this right way. Have we ever wondered how underrated imperfection is? To go against the flow, and just be what you are and not the right way or ‘precise’.

While you appreciate the beauty of ice with fire. Do you stop to think where the water goes?

STRANGERS

How strange it seems, 

That we befriend strangers; 

That we rely on friends, 

Those were strangers before. 

The world goes on, on its own perfect feet 

And we go on 

Relying on others, making friends 

Bonding hearts and breaking them, and 

Then the mending again. 

Strangers are people strange, 

They don’t betray when strangers, They are; 

But, when they become friends. 

Strange to find this strange place,  

Full of strangers; Of whom we make out 

Friends, Family and love. 

Strangeness itself seems strange, 

When we are with strangers 

Who are now friends. 

Strange was the world before, 

Without strangers. 

Strange it is now too, 

When strangers are not, Strangers anymore. 

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