Them yum moments

Brownies set in order. Photo for the weekly photo challenge: order.

 

You won’t believe if I tell you just how many times I have tried to post for these weekly challenges like I used to before, but it would take me an entire week of procrastinating which, of course, left them useless. This one however, sounded too tempting to resist. Objects in order, actions in order, click click click thud – patternized repetition – check, sit, check, sit, check… and other things I have been thinking about lately to write.

So hello, chocolate no-chaos! Even though its arrangement speaks of neatness, something about chocolate says more craving. I got these made from Fresh Oven Bites* and honestly, they were the best I’ve had. Very inspired to bake with the same perfection one day inshaAllah!

(*wish they sent us boxes for free publicity…?..)

Diary 474

About a day or two before it happened, I was thinking how Inaya and Abdur Rehman have shaped the meaning of love for me, or how, because of them, I have come to know this particular aspect of love, which includes selflessness as well as a very personal and real attachment. I was also missing her – more than I missed AbdurRehman this time – and had put a very cute photo of her on my phone’s lock screen so I could keep seeing her, though that made me want to pull her cheeks, and somehow, to pull her out of screen too. Her mom, my sister, hadn’t visited in a few days as Ramadan has started and it’s a pretty busy month for most, but then her husband dropped her and the kids one night so they could spend time here. Before that, they checked into a hospital for Inaya wasn’t feeling very well.

Over here they had dinner, we talked and laughed; I took my niece in my arms and she got really playful which was delighting, as it typically is with babies. Then, to cut it short, when bro-in-law left we started preparing for sleep. In our room, the lights were off, my sister tucked Abdur Rehman into bed and stood up for Taraweeh prayers, giving Inaya to us to put her to sleep. As it happened, Abdur Rehman refused to visit his dreamland without her even though he was quite tired. I was really really tired myself, so I sat on the vinyl floor and putting my head on its frame, closed my eyes while also running my fingers through his hair. You get the picture? It was all very normal and relaxed… when suddenly Inaya got a serious coughing thing, and her mom quickly held her, trying methods to heal. She was having trouble breathing and her mom was screaming and running now, I ran quicker to my parents’ room to call them and they came rushing frantically. We were all shaking and crying ourselves, completely in chaos, helplessly praying, watching, being. Please breathe, Inaya, breathe Inaya. Baba held my sister while my mom held the baby, trying to get her to breathe. She did, eventually, and they ran to a nearby hospital where her heartbeat was monitored then she was treated with a nebulizer. Before Sehri (late, late at night), all of them returned to their respective homes: kids and parents.

At Fajar, though, Inaya’s parents rushed her to a hospital again and this time her condition was more serious. Finally she was admitted into an ICU and there she stayed for two days (stretching to third) which was really tough. I don’t think I can rightly put in words the events or emotions of this phase.

When I went to visit her, through large glass windows I saw three beds, three babies, and with them, three moms in a room. On the middle one was Inaya, she had a drip attached to her, and breathing tubes, plus a monitor, and it was a poor sight – seeing her like that. She is hardly two months old. Her dadi and nano stood beside me and then just before us, she had another intense attack. The doctor and nurses hurried into action, a mask was put, prayers and tears were spent, heard, and she came back once again. This happened a lot of times in total though I only witnessed it twice – then, and another which was thankfully shorter. But the thing about each of them was that it shook us to the core. Every single time, it was a miracle to see life again when it had almost stopped.

AbdurRehman is a little more than three. The most heart-wrenching was hearing his voice break, and his eyes teary as he asked Allah taala for her. Indeed His rehmat is immense.

Inaya got discharged from hospital last night. She is  doing a lot better now infinite Alhamdulillah for that.

Without actually wanting to, some events leave with different understandings of things, people, and feelings. This was one of those.

Ex- Best Friends

He said I couldn’t tell him which color the skies were anymore, that it doesn’t bother him what I presented in class today or what my teacher commented, and it doesn’t matter at all if we never wish each other sweet – or spooky – dreams.

In fact, he said, I should talk to him as less as was possible from now on. Or don’t talk at all, if you will, please.

He stands up and leaves when he hears me bickering with my brother for not buying balloons. I turn to him and ask if he got me 21 candles and he scorns. Grow up.

Grow up? But I am growing up. And growing up, I have realized that I don’t need to say yes when I mean no. He doesn’t like it though.

When our first and only border came in between, we could not face each other for days. Because the silence in our eyes made the air sick, and our unstoppable laughter on lame-ass jokes hung behind them, hushed. It only made everything unbearably sad.

He says we cannot be friends either if we can’t be more. And I step back, back, and back. But it doesn’t seem fair that we will both disappear into a thin, black line on the horizon and never be able to see the other catching colors too. Or making them. Or breaking.

Fear, etc.

Brave was one who wouldn’t let fear get to them. But now you are trapped in your second nightmare of the season, waiting for it to end. And it’s taking your life.
Finally something worse happens in the story and you wake up with a jolt and a scream, then take long breaths. Find your phone and consider possible options – who could be awake at that hour? – because you need to text someone before you take the Walk of Valor to your parents’ room, scared and ready to cry like a five year old.
“I need support,” you say, and receive.

All day you try to forget it, and sometimes you do, but mostly it keeps coming back. It is when night returns and you lay on your bed once again that you realize what bravery actually means: It is sleeping another Night.

♫heart·strings

Another cobalt blue sky lit by innumerable stars. Tiny, bright pockets of fairy-light. We sit just by the river, taking in the fresh scent of dewy grass, soft wind, and the feeling of our togetherness.

My feet are crossed and my heart is full. We don’t have enemies anymore – neither Time, nor the World. We are doing fine.

I stand up and step into the blue river. Your hand is in the water and you are splashing at it gently. As my feet touch its cool, smooth surface, we hear a strange music start. It’s coming from a distance but it feels so very near, so very soothing. Or was it from our hearts? I imagine stars coming closer – those tiny pockets of fairy-light falling to dance with me, and I look at you. You are smiling too.

Similar posts: Skin, Wings, Sea calls, Soulburst.

a man so weak

“Don’t take me there! You can’t take me there. I will see what you can do. You can’t make me go!” (loud. shouting. red eyes. fear)

[sirens, police, hospital, rods, chains, shouting, a crying baby, a crying sister, a life fading, fading, fading]

to

“Please don’t take me there. Please, please don’t take me there. I will listen to whatever you say. I will do what you say, I will be good. I will be good. Tell them not to!” (cries, weak. tears, begging. a man so weak)

[men from the hospital. a family that cares. a wife, away. a life that can no more be claimed]

to

“Don’t take me there. I will do. You can’t mak- Please. Ammi. Abbu.” (drugged, carried away.)

Dua//Mangnay wala aur Denay wala

Dua ke maamlay me mai aam musalmanon ki tarah bohat ehmaq waqay hua hun. Na janay kyun dua maangtay waqt meray dil ki gehraiyun se ye khayal ubharta hai ke dua suntay waqt Allah taala sank baksh moulvi sahab ka roop dhaar letay hain, pehlay wo naak par romaal rakh letay hain phir hath me aik chimti pakar letay hain phir gandi, ghaleez, hawas-bhari aur na-jaaiz duaon ko is chimti se utha utha kar door phaink detay hain. Phir naak se romaal hataty hain. Chimti aik taraf rakh detay hain aur haath dho kar bachi kuchi saaf suthri duaon ka jaaiza letay hain. In me se bhi na-maaqool duain nikaal kar phaink detay hain aur phir baqya duaon ko aik taraf rakh detay hain ke fursat ke waqt in par ghor karain gay.

La shaoor me rachay basay huay is aitebaar ki waja se mujh aisay aam gunahgaar musalmanon ne na tou kabhi dua ke mafhoom ko samjha hai, na maangnay ke fail ko jaan hai aur na qubool karnay wali ki azmat ka raaz paya hai.

Meri apni halat ye hai ke dua ke liye hath uthanay se pehlay sochta hun ke kaheen mai itna tou maang raha ke denay walay pe bojh ho jaye? Kaheen aisi cheez tou nahi maang raha jo na-jaaiz hai, jo ghaleez hai, jis me gunaah ka ansar maujood hai. Kaheen is dua se meri taba’i hawas ka bhaid tou nahi khulta? Phir mai arz karta hun ke Ya Allah! Mai harees nahi hun, mai tujh se ziada nahi maangta. Sirf utna maang raha hun jis ki mujhay ashadd zaroorat hai aur jisay dena teray liye baar na hoga.

 

Is ke sath hi meray dil se aik halki si aawaaz aati hai. Itni halki si ke suni nahi ja sakti:

“Ya Allah! Dekh le, mai kitna acha aadmi hun. Mai ne tujh par bojh nahi daala Mai ne aisi dua nahi maangi ke tujhay naak par romaal rakhna paray, chimti uthani paray. Ya Allah dekh le aisi dua maang kar mai ne tujh par kitna ehsaan kia hai?” Continue reading

((Khamoshi))

Raasta sunsaan tha aur chaaron taraf khamoshi phaili hui thi.  Khamoshi ki bhi aik apni aawaaz hoti hai.  Aik apni kefiat hoti hai.  Aik apna hi pattern hota hai.  Mai ne aik zamanay me mukhtalif khamoshiyan record ki theen.  Raat ke aik bajay maqbara e Noor Jehan ke bahar paanch minute ki khamoshi record ki thi.  Phir adhi raat ko Samanabad ki Doonghi Ground ki khamoshi record ki thi.  Phir Cholistan me adhi raat ka sannata record kia tha.  Ye teenon recordain meray paas moujood hain aur mai ne inhain kai lougo ko sunwaya hai.  Aik jaga ki khamoshi dusri jaga se mukhtalif hai.  Jab aik nihayat hi khamosh jaga me aadmi teen ghantay tak musalsal betha rahay tou ibtida me is par barri khushgawar kefiat guzarti hain.  Phir dil dharaknay ki sada anay lagti hai. Is ke sath nabz chalnay aur ragon ke pharaknay ki aawaaz shuru ho jati hai aur ahista ahista ye sadaen itni buland ho jati hain ke “kanon” ke parday phatnay lagtay hain aur andar bahar beshumar dhol bajnay lagtay hain.  Itni oonchi aawaaz aati hai ke aadmi se bardasht nahi hoti aur wo muztarib ho ke sannatay se bahar nikalnay ki koshish karta hai aur in aawaazon me panah dhoondta hai jo uskay maamool me dakhil hoti hain.  Sannata aur khamoshi barra azab hai.

Safar dar Safar, Ashfaq Ahmed.

This book is all sorts of beautiful. I’m halfway through and can’t wait to hold it again. Another one I’m reading is Labbaik by Mumtaz Mufti. Intihai <3. #currentreads

سوئے محبت// For still remaining

mivt_randomlyabstractجب کبھی
میں ماضی کے ان پیلے اوراق کو پلٹتی ہوں
اجڑی محبت کی کسیلی بساند آتی ہے
جیسے لاش
رکھے رکھے سڑ چکی ہو
ساتھ ہی
ایک تصویر امید کی
نظروں کے سامنے ناچنے لگتی ہے
کہ جب وہ ہچکی لے کے ٹوٹی تھی
اور محبت
ان ہی تاروں، جگنووٗں، تتلیوں اور پھولوں کے درمیان
بے دردی سے چاکی تھی
ایک جنازہ دوبارہ اٹھتا ہے
ایک ماتم پھر سے ہوتا ہے


Every time
I open
This yellow book of our lost story
A funeral takes place, again
Not of hope, for it died long ago ( and nothing pierces my heart more than my brave warrior’s last breath )
But of every moment still saved from the blots

Sometimes it plays in slow motion,
Other times, happens in a blink.
Each time though, one more piece dies
Of what is left
And how I curse this mass for still remaining.

A boring blog about exciting new things

University starts today! And it’s my fourth year – I find that kind of unbelievable and also amazing! I mean, it almost feels like abhi ki baat that I went through this admission process and now I am writing this with so many thoughts and ideas and memories in my mind, six semesters already down.

universitydiaries_randomlyabstractThe photo above shows a path and a moment I treasure. It’s a pretty simple one actually, May 2015, around 5 pm-ish. We had evening papers and I had got done with mine, everyone I knew had already left campus so the place was mostly empty save a few strangers. And there I sat with a journal and a juice box, my back to a bricked wall, hands busy writing. Favorite kind of solitude.

My experiences here have been great — with people, places, food, friends, events, sfsadgfag. I think I will go into all that later. Right now I will keep ranting about how time slipped so fast, which is again cliched but khair. I remember when my aani was eighteen and shifted permanently to Pakistan, she took a Montessori training course. That woman in that age was my idea of cool. Eighteen was supposed to mean independent, having fun, over the world. Years and years later, on the midnight of my own eighteenth birthday, I was silently crying because I didn’t want it. Nope, skip skip. *Sigh* Now I’m freshly 21 and stepping into my FINAL university year, going to get a MASTERS degree pretty soon (inshaAllah) (not imagining how different life would be after it’s all over) and an aani to a three year old fantastic.

img_3944

So the point is I’ve lost motivation to make this post interesting but I still found a title that does justice that one of my most important years is here, like right here, and I am kinda excited, hopeful, yay and also bleh, but mostly looking forward to trying out a newer range of awesome!

*{aani means khala/aunt/mom’s sister. You didn’t know?!}
**happy new year, hi

The sea calls

The waves were full of voice unlike the world around them. Everywhere was silent, and the only other sounds were so soft you wouldn’t mind them. Like: the stars’ gentle sparkle, off on, off on, creating silver splashes in the vast water; the moon’s direct beams falling on its rubber surface like a spear cutting right through; my own breathing in harmony with each swift move of the said sea. It was only a matter of present, the moments synced to the space, emitting the same power: of might, of being the only thing that mattered.

Life is not a bed of roses. You say that like it’s a good thing. If I am not happy slash I feel really bad about something, there must be a way to make it right. You can’t shirk that responsibility and simply put it on those look-good quotes. Because first of all, I never asked for a bed of roses. And if that’s what you want to bring up, tell me why it becomes important only when I most need a rose? Life’s not fair, life’s a test, life’s a this, life’s crap. I don’t care about that, I care about now.

I walk further into the benevolent stretch and find the waves welcoming me. Singing more joyfully, as if meeting friends was a custom for them too. I look down and smile, and then half sit. My hand meets water and a shiver runs through me.

Why am I still scared? How could someone be aware of something and still be unable to get out of it? How can you not be your own magician, tricking life to set on the right zone again?

There’s no direction when you are standing between waves. There is just immensity. A compass self-connects to the tick tock of the heart, and there the music stays, for as long as the heart lives…

spīrəl

21may_mi

 Back, back, back, back. It isn’t a whisper, but the voice is low. Soothing, feminine. Coming from within a continuing, chaotic spiral. Back, back, back; it cajoles me. Where are you? What are you? Don’t you wanna remember? I see no one.

Where am I? Who am I? No, No. I resurface; I am no more sleeping. Lines form themselves on my forehead, the spiral widens and loses its end.

I get up and join it.

I·dyl·lic

img_4786_randomlyabstract

Amidst sky hues,
Setting suns, misty blues,
Silences lapsing into eternities, infinities;
Our poetry calls us to listen.


Took this on my return route from Nathiagali, Pakistan. Got inspired by the daily post’s challenge to share it because this trip meant all sorts of magic to me.

(This week’s horizon makes me want to show it again. I feel a connection with this one.)

tsk

they are all growing old
old and apart.
none of them truly excited
about anything at all
and as they stand close,
shoulders touching,
you hear them whisper,
dewy-eyed:
happiness is not a goal.
you nod
and stifle a giggle.
they’re all the same!
all, winners in this game

My dark man. (3)

We sat there at a distance, both missing each other. We could’ve just turned to face one another and talk. We could’ve just talked.

It’s that same place again, and that same part of nighttime where everything feels stitched to something deeper and more calm. We are sitting together: he on the log, and I on a rock. Spread wide above us are the skies, innumerable stars glistening on their soft sheets. The air is cool. I can’t describe how it smells or feels, but I know. It’s the kind of moment one wants to seize, literally freeze. It’s not when you want to think about how time is passing. Because time is not passing. It shouldn’t, now, should it?

I tell myself that you won’t leave. But I know it means nothing. And it is with this thought that the weight of our silence starts becoming torturous. It feels as though someone placed a spiky wire on my bare skin, trailing it down. As it touches my chest, I draw in a quick breath: it has a connection with the void within me. I look at you and you are staring ahead somewhere, aloof, in a world that your eyes see and I cannot reach. And then I realize how you have no idea about my world either. We are equally separated.

We: You and I, the stories yet to complete. I think we are ever-living because of what we have in us. Even though we each carry Words from contrasting entities, we are still what we are for us.

“Tell me one last time, will the sun come?”

“It will,” you say. I think I will then stay for a moment. Until the sun arrives, at least. The log is empty at your side now. I will walk to it and sit there. To feel that warmth again and not shiver. I have wrapped my shoulders around myself. Perhaps the wire will forget to hurt, too. Maybe it will turn into a spring of soothing water if it hits my heart enough times.
Voids are colorless but they are vulnerable to scars that birthed them. I can still hear your footsteps from ten minutes ago. Was it ten minutes ago that you left, or has a century passed already? Oh but the sun, yes, it will come.

Our goodbye was wordless. I think we will meet again.


2014

“I did not want to be what I have become. But I like it now… It suits me. I feel I am where I belong. It is Real. It is Me.”I was sitting before him on the road and there was no one else around. When he said these words, I looked at him. I wanted more answers, and I was searching for them in his eyes. They are windows to your soul, after all, but somehow his soul was a locked corridor now– the key to which was unknown to even himself, I suppose.  Read more

2015

“You don’t know how it’s like to be what you are not.”

“I sure do. I have known you for so long and never uttered a word about you. That is the same thing in a way, if you see.”

He turned his head. I stood at a distance from his seat: a log placed in the middle of the road. An empty road– our secret place.

“No,” he whispered. “You cannot see the sea in me. You can only see the waves.”

“I can see the sea,” said I. Then taking his name, I continued: “And I can also sense a storm. Please confide in me now, let it crash me down if it so must. Break me because I need you.”  Read more


 

(Like the previous two times, this had to be the way it is, too. The first time I wrote it, I was having a problem putting words properly but hoped it would make sense.  It’s of course the same now.)

 

Sauces. #3

It’s so much more but it’s also nothing.

×

You weren’t the skin you were wearing. You were me, myself.

 

We sat there at a distance, both missing each other. We could’ve just turned to face one another and talk. We could’ve just talked.

 

Would we still put people on ventilators if we weren’t emotional?

×

If you notice, you will see what the universe does. For example, it can bring to the outer world what you have inside. It’s so much more but it’s also nothing. Sometimes it’s nothing. Maybe, eventually, it won’t even be that.

Sauces. #1

Sauces. #2

Pillow houses

When we were younger, we made these play-houses out of blankets and pillows. There is this small area under a fixed computer table in one of our bedrooms where we would sit, and because it would be so hot we’d also put a portable fan to the side. Then we would close the frontal opening with stuff and take different roles.

A few days ago when my nephew was here, I fixed a pillow house for him. He was sitting by the wall where a rolled carpet stood leaning, and he was sad and angry because his uncle had refused to share the computer with him. I saw that his eyes were brimming with tears—I mean, can you visualize that? A three year old gorgeous guy who is just about to cry? So I came into action and pulled pillows from my bed. Then, with the rolled-carpet as our main pillar, we put a pillow-gate and a pillow-wall, and went inside. Excited as we now were, we played pretend, took pictures, laughed together, and once again a different world was created in our lives: awesome and away.


Just felt like writing it down here. On a side note, Eid Mubarak, you!! 🙂 Also, as 6th September marked my blog’s 6th anniversary, here’s a yayay. *passes balloons*

To be honest, I used to be very passionate about blogging before but now I’m not. I still do love this space like home but things have since then changed. My stats tell me this is only my 10th post for the present year, which, if compared to a yearly average of 80+, is of course amazingly low. HOWEVER, I do believe I will reclaim it soon enough like I want to. Not too soon but still soon inshaAllah. I hope to do that.

soft fumes/peace

A lot of peace. So much of peace.

When nothingness spreads. Takes over and fills in the empty corners inside
Cleanses nooks and corners of your body so your soul can feel holy there. Like it’s in a temple.

A sleep that isn’t your casual escape route. Where dreams don’t push each other like cars chasing in a traffic jam or kid’s throwing blocks in a basket. There’s no hurry and there is no chaos. No tiredness, just serenity. A relaxed mind. A relaxed reality.

No sharp red. No bright sun. Not the scary kind of dark. Not the scary kind of silent. The fear-free, worry-free zone. Nothing artificial nor too temporary. Nothing else. Just peace. The real, real kind of peace. (The one you write about when you want to feel a bit. Not the one we read to read.)

22-Aug-2016

22-Aug-2016

 

شورش

مجھ سے اس کا شور برداشت نہیں ہوتا۔  چھن، چھن، چھن، ڈھب ڈھب۔  زنجیروں میں جکڑا یہ پاگل آدمی نکلنے کو بےقرار رہتا ہے۔  جانتا بھی ہے باہراس کا کوئی غمخوار نیہں۔  یہاں قید ہے تو باہر کونسی آزادی ہے؟  میں اسے عموماً نیند کی گولی دے کر سُلا دیتی ہوں۔  مگر پھر بہت دفعہ یہ ضد پر اڑ جاتا ہے اور مجھ سے اس کا سنبھالنا مشکل — بلکہ بہت مشکل ہو جاتا ہے۔  دھاڑتا ہے:  شکست قبول نہ کرنے سے حقیقت ٹل نہیں جاتی!  چھپانے سے کب عذاب گھٹتا ہے، وہ تو اور بڑھ جاتا ہے!  میں آنکھیں موند کر ایسی بن جاتی ہوں جیسے سنا ہی نہ ہو۔  اور کبھی کبھار اسے چڑانے کو کانوں میں انگلیاں  بھی ٹھونس لیتی ہوں۔  مگر وہ کہاں چپ ہوتا ہے!  ہنسنے لگتا ہے۔  مجھے محسوس ہوتا ہے جیسے وہ میرا مذاق اڑا رہا ہو۔  بالآخر میں ہی ہار مانتی ہوں، پیروں میں پایل باندھ کر دوڑنے لگ جاتی ہوں۔  جلد ہی اسکی آواز میرے قہقہوں میں ملتی ہےاور ہم دونوں ایک ہی رنگ میں گُھل جاتے ہیں۔  ہم بالکل ایک سے ہو جاتے ہیں۔

(10 April 16)