Friday, May 25, 2012

Oulipo of memories-



(a)
Long ago I went to a desolate place in Assam called Rongpur 
during one of my whims 
the mornings were cold and damp 
and I saw the sun, waking up the clouds 
the sky was littered with clear blue trails and miniscule dotted birds 
and I thought of this girl who was so faraway 
and all her quirks 
for those moments 
I became her 
the Tanima that was inside me saw it 
like juxtaposing an alternate reality with this baffling-ly calm Rongpur shokal.

Somedays when we crisscrossed each other 
with muted breaths 
and I felt tangibiliy worthy enough 
I crawled inside you 
I saw you like the mornings of Rongpur 
with you-and without you 
sometimes the meanings do not matter. 

In the early morning toasts 
sometimes I try to hide your shadows 
while I look at you sleeping carelessly 
and that hazy toast shadows over your soft linen morning skin 
you are captured by me an almost poetry
and yet not.
I fall at your feet like bread crumbs.

(b)
Tanima who wrote things 
not poem or prose just words on a white sheet 
the girl who was never alone 
someone who would cry while reading a tender passage by Marquez 
and yet would eventually stay stoic while Opu slowly died of leukemia 
and I wandered, jostling with alcohol and failures 

Tanima the tiny droplet that caused ripples 
in the sometimes silent waters of hooghly 
where the horizon began and ended somewhere, no one could grasp
Tanima that untamed city called Calcutta
which pained, burnt, erased and metamorphosed like a Kafkaesque novel
unfathomable like Nostradamus
unflinching like the Amazon 

I held you in my hands fidgeting with your skin 
that rubbed my palms still smelling of you 
and I held you until you slowly wept 
and the tea vendor shook me, "Babu, what happened?"

And you tell me-
'How we leave so little of ourselves behind 
that we almost stay outside the periphery of each other’s memories
like a tune that you know with words forgotten yet almost there on tongue.'
I have never written you 
you are never an episode that can be chronicled 
for you know, words they give away
and I have never been adept enough to describe a picture postcard
and so, I leave it at that
and as you would say,
write a word no more
to write sometimes is to sin 
undefined I let you live.

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