Sonnet: Twenty days.

Twenty days you said it will take, twenty days for you to return
Twenty days of strife and wait, but never again, you swore
Twenty days and more have passed, since months I do now yearn
Flowers on the table set, I keep ajar my door.

It will get better, I tell myself, though future haunts me like a ghost,
Like a ghost does future haunt me now as I struggle to make past here.
No tiding came, no key, no hint; could you send a letter at most?
It is not just painful, devastating it is— to see a loved one disappear.

Practiced I have all words to say, prepared I am to forgive,
When you come you will find in spirits good, me offering all I may.
But it’s not a matter as simple as that, for I worry now where you live…
It’s a dark dark world of gloomy nights– sun brings forth a woeful day.

I hope you come and I hope you are well, hoping I fear I will die
For twenty days and more have passed, and I see no sign nigh.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

P/N: Today is the last day of the writing 201 poetry challenge and I have really, really enjoyed doing this course.

That thing above is my first try at a sonnet and it follows the ABAB CDCD EFEF GG rhyme format, consists of 14 verses, an example of Chiasmus and well, some emotions. The prompt we were given to use was “future” and yes, I’d love to know what you think of it. :)

(Image via artgallery.com.ua)

Ode.

To pencils,
who have always stayed by man’s side
enabling expression of emotions
and their extermination.

The pencils which,
whine not whence you need them at two
in the morning or say four, sleep not without you
safely tucked in bed.

Pencils that die inch by inch,
tending an artist’s turmoil or a writer’s ruckus
with a smoke of grey or graphite crushed,
and designs– oh such!

Pencils. Do you see not how they aid
an ailing heart, a studious kid, a busy clerk?
Out on paper, they run until you’re tired
resting only in your nearest drawer after work.

 

Written in response to today’s poetry challenge which asked us to write an ode to something in our “drawer”.

Those with wings…

Like her, the park is lonely and the air is sick. It smells of stale roses and untreated promises; and the swing on which she sits squeaks a song so pathetically sad it almost makes time stop– and time, like some humans, knows less when it’s better to instead tread quickly.

The grass below is wet with dew, as are her fingers which she continually bring to her face to wipe away the watery signs of fragility and brokenness. From somewhere far, a beautiful sparrow descends and stops right where she is, to fly to and fro. Distracted by the sudden chirrup, she looks at her new companion and smiles.

“Will you stay, birdie?” she asks– only to remember that wings always fly…

 

Written in response to today’s prose-poetry prompt: “fingers” (also goes for “cut off“)

fireworks.

it happened slow. the stars like lamps flickered out and their shine was faded off. non-white as they were– now black– you couldn’t locate them anywhere, except that in a while the one farthest from the satellite started to collect red from god knows where and in some more time it was blazing and hysterical, spinning to keep sane. full of secrets it couldn’t hold, light started to shoot uncontrolled, in all directions left and right and soon, each one of the million stars was bursting fires bright.

The Centipede Effect.

CentipedeAndFrog_

The centipede effect, or the centipede dilemma, is a psychological effect which occurs when “a normally automatic or unconscious activity is disrupted by consciousness of it or reflection on it.”

Here, I have arranged the story of a philosopher frog and the centipede in 100 (and 15) letters to denote  the 100-footed’s effect. The form I have tried to follow is that of concrete/visual poetry which was today’s task under the theme of ‘Animal’.

Related links:

Of distances and voids.

 

(1)

Last time when you came,
asking me if ’twas okay
smilingly, I had lied
tis alright!

Let me tell you now
every time you come and go,
tis not alright!
today I miss you as I do
every single day and night!
remember that.

(2)

Do you know what’s the most a person can give you?– His trust.
It is when he tells you about his little joys and simpler things that matter;
Simple sorrows, acts, and fears that him do shatter
That you know he is trying, and it’s not so easy
Unfurling his soul he could slowly be dying, you see.

Really, read him not a dream now if you dare not make it
Bear in mind: The cruelest way to kill is to fake it.
Especially so, when he hopes you could mend holes in his soul
Destroy him not. Leave if you may, but let it be when he is whole.

(3)

I trusted you with
Myself.
I told you things which
Should have otherwise been
Secrets.
You fed me lies. Failing me
Once, and twice, and then
Uncountable times.

Today’s poetry prompt is ‘trust’. These three that you read above are not really linked, but they follow the same theme. They also follow the acrostic form, in which the first letters of each verse (as highlighted) together make unique words.

This one was quite challenging for me, and though this isn’t my best, I have thoroughly enjoyed experimenting. :)

 

Image via chrisspagani.com.

Voyage.

Supreme sovereign, save me! save me!

From hither I pray leave to come to thee!

This journey has me tired.

It ruined me what I desired.

Now I only ask you to set me free.

This is my first attempt at writing a limerick, and it’s only the very basic form of it. The rhyming scheme is a a b b a, and the theme followed is that of a “journey“.

Thomas Cole (American, 1801 - 1848 ), The Voyage of Life: Manhood, 1842, oil on canvas, Ailsa Mellon Bruce Fund.

Thomas Cole (American, 1801 – 1848 ), The Voyage of Life: Manhood, 1842, oil on canvas, Ailsa Mellon Bruce Fund.

 

پت جھڑ

تم بےعزتی کے اس احساس کو نہیں سمجھ سکتے جس کے زیرِبار میںروز حصہ حصہ ٹوٹ رہی ہوں۔ میرا حرف حرف متاثر ہے چوٹ کھائے اس پرندے کی طرح جو اپنے صاف سفید پروں پر خون کی باریک لکیریں کھنچتے تو دیکھتا ہے مگر بےبسی سے اپنے پَر پھڑپھڑاتے دم توڑ دینے ہی کو آخری آزادی کی صورت سمجھتا ہے۔ اس کے آنسو میرے دل کی دیوار پہ گرتے ہیں، تکلیف ہوتی ہے مجھے جب یہ دیواریں کمزور ہو کر کِر کِر چٹخنے لگتی ہیں۔

تمہاری بےاعتنائی ایک سِل کی مانند میرے وجود پہ رکھی ہے اور مجھے محسوس ہوتا ہے کہ جیسے میں اپنی ہی قبر میں دھنسی چلے جا رہی ہوں۔ آواز دینے کو کوئی یار نہیں ملتا لیکن تمہیں فرق بھی نہیں پڑتا کیونکہ تم صرف کھیلنا جانتے ہو۔ کھیلنا صرف، اور جیتنے سے تمہیں سروکار نہیں ہوتا لیکن شکست دینے سے تمہاری انا کو تسکین ملتی ہے۔ اس کے لئے تم کسی بھی حد سے گذر سکتے ہوکیونکہ تم ایک مرد ہو! آزاد، خودمختار، بیباک۔۔۔ میں عورت ہوں اپنے جزبات کی غلام، تمہیں جتاتی ہوں تو جَتاتی نہیں۔ نہ کوئی جشن ہوتا ہے نہ ماتم، دونوں ہی مسکرا کر اپنے اپنے راستے چل دیتے ہیں۔ پھر کون صدیوں روئے کسے معلوم!۔۔

12:55— 25/1/15.

PJ

Sauces. #1

What is meant to happen, happens. Had it not rained quite so heavily this morning, you could still have gotten late for the meeting. Had it not been that one wrong course you took back in college, you would still have sat here tonight under the only star’s shade lamenting other decisions. Life is unsatisfactory, and knowing this only is satisfying enough at times.

You don’t need to be thankful for whatever happens around you every minute. This is not necessary. Though you do need to be at peace with things inside and out so you are not just existing but living–and you need this why? –because this is the pendulum’s last swing. You don’t want to ask yourself, “why did I not live?” after all of this is over. Instead, you have to make it more worthwhile than creating black out of your red.

If two beings are destined to meet, they will. The world cannot question it. But if your heart was meant to be broken, darling, it had to be so by him.

Destined.

“Abba ki death ke baad ziada sukoon hae, nae?”
(This place looks calmer now that dad is gone, no?)

“You think so?”

“Yes.” she nodded.

They were older now. Older and distanced by a time so long and tough that it had practically torn apart any chances of reconciling. Standing by the giant glass window, she looked out at the world outside which had now accepted peace. The world which had decided to move on, as it always does. Where ever she looked there was peace, except in her home: her heart.

“Look here at me. You think life is better now? Show me if your eyes match that statement.”

“No,” she silently whispered. She clutched the silver pane with both her hands so he won’t see they were trembling. Stupid fingers! Stupid eyes! How they reveal your weaknesses to wrong people at wrong times…

He stepped forward. “Aena! This is not good. You have to talk to me. I have come to take you. I am going to make things right like we want!”

“This is not what I want. Hessam, this isn’t it.” She shook her head.  “I have come out of it and you should too. It’s high time we start respecting each other’s independence and just let things be.”

“What do you mean by that? I am not stealing away your freedom or anything. All I want is you come and stay with me and Rebya now. I want you to be happy!”

“Why? Why live with you when I can live with myself on my own? First I had ma, then dad, now you want to be my boss? Please, no! I am happy the way I am and I am glad our ways are already parted. We can be free and drive our lives the way we want!” she said.

The color of his eyes changed. Was he hurt? Perhaps. But he shouldn’t have been… After all this time, he deserved nothing to be hurt about. All pains were hers.

“See, I understand your want for freedom.” He said after a while. “And I am not going to be an obstacle between that. You can come with me and do what you want, live it your way. It’s just that I feel you should be with me, and not alone over here. How will you deal with everything? We have both lost something precious Aena. It’s a hard time for both of us. I want you to know I am with you!”

“Precious. So precious it was for you, Hessam.” she laughed in her heart. She wanted to laugh out loud too, crazily, and laugh until her insides hurt. But she would do that once he was gone, her mind decided.

“They are both gone but we need each other, Aena. We need to gather back the moments we have lost. Sometimes I miss you so much, God, Aena, you remember when I taught you how to ride a bicycle?”

Aena looked at him surprised. Why must he bring back the memories now? Now…?

“Remember when you had finally learnt it you would keep nagging me to let you ride us both to school on that big grey one I owned? We both sat together and I was so proud, and a little embarrassed, but mostly proud (he laughed) and then I bought you a pink one on our birthday so we would both ride on our own bikes.”

“Our birthday,” she breathed.

They had birthdays on the same day. Because God-the-good had decided to hand them out their fates on the exact day and instructed their souls to go down then into their mother’s womb… But Hessam will go half an hour before you, Aena. Okay? Just thirty minutes.
Hessam had gone half an hour before Aena. Aena had waited thirty minutes after Hessam. He had left her earlier because it was destined… There was joy everywhere.

He was saying something. Probably about the bicycles or the school or their birthday. She wasn’t listening until he called out her name.

“Yes, yes. I remember. You need not use this against me now, this will not change my plans. Don’t try! You shouldn’t try!” her voice raised despite her trying to stay calm.

“I am not changing your plans, Aena. I am just surprised how much YOU have changed! You are so cold, so different, Aena. Do you not hold compassion for relations as close as blood’s anymore?”

“No.” She shook her head. “I carry no compassion whatsoever. I have a heart of stone, if asking for a right to be free makes you think of me as that. I have cared enough for everyone. I want to be my own responsibility now. Go, and let me live!” her voice was strong and came from somewhere she didn’t belong to. It was indeed different, he thought, how his sister had grown up so much and become so… brave.

“I am my own responsibility now,” she repeated– softly this time– as if trying to coax him… Hoping deep inside her heart he won’t agree. Hoping he would somehow ask her to drop the façade and end this drama so they would both cry and tell how they’ve missed each other and how it was impossible to “let go” now that they had already let go of so much. She thought of the pens and chocolates he bought for her, when they were young, and how ma would make them both parathas before school. How dad would hand them out sikkas (coins) for their daily expenditures from which they’d both buy cones.

“Yes. You are right.” he said slowly. And moving towards her he put his hand on her head. “Time has changed, my lovely twin, and it’s not your fault. You have every right now to change time as per your command.” “I am proud of you, Aena. You are one brave woman. I shouldn’t be selfish to ask you what is against your will. And I am sure you will handle your life pretty well, inshaAllah. Just know that I am always there, always a call or email away. I will come to you whenever you want, and so would Rebya. We all love you and you can come to us, too, whenever you feel like it.”

He smiled. She managed one too.

“I know that bhaiyya. Thanks.”

He kissed on her forehead, erasing for a minute whatever these years had collected between them, and whatever hardships she had bore alone.

 

After that he was gone. Gone forever to his land where he lived with his wife a happy life. Aena had apparently given him permission to be the man he was; the satisfaction seeking which he had come back. Now he was free of the burden he was carrying before, and gone because Aena was free and happy, and very settled in her ancestral home! She had peace, he thought, and now he would too.