Diary of a 3:12 AM-er

Bohat arsay baad aik nazm likhnay lagi thi. Balkay likhnay kia lagi thi, wo nazm hi mujhay likh rahi thi. Unwaan tha ‘be-dili’. Aur phir pehla misra tumhe be-dili se sochnay par tha. Uskay bad aik khayal ata lekin shaam ke dhal janay aur khuwab ke ban janay ka darr… agay aik lafz kam reh gaya. Jo cigarette ka sar hota hai na? Usay masalna tha. Lekin na lafz aya na baat bani. Hath jo kehtay kehtay uper utha tha phir hawa me hi reh gaya. Bhai ne dekh kar poocha, “you are in love, right?” Mai munh bana ke reh gai.

I am in love, right? Duh I’m in love. With what, I don’t know. I am so disconnected from myself, or maybe I’m just so connected with myself that I’ve lost the ability to touch on the surface of things (or thoughts?) and say this is this and that is that. I can’t say these words are true. I can’t say they are not. I don’t know.

Kuch zamana beeta hai mai araam se nazmen likh sakti thi. Araam se tou nahi khair, jahan shairi hai wahan aaraam kahan. Magar phir bhi kabhi na kabhi. Aik khaas kefiyat hoti thi. Aisay tou mai pehlay kitabain bhi bohat parh leti thi ab arsa hua.

I just cannot. I haven’t read a proper book in a proper sitting like a proper reader since ages. The last was All the light we cannot see which is now in my taaaaaall pile of unfinished ones. I did translate a huge chapter though. It was on Islam and science and reason and modernism and everything like that. A good experience – both in terms of subject and skill.

It’s gonna be sehri time here. I made a fruit-oatmeal smoothie yesterday jiska oatmeal part no one liked and smoothie they all did. Lol. I heard it was healthy like that but I guess I’ll omit the oatmeal now.

Nah, I’m not much of a kitchen person. But it’s Ramadan, so… oh, happy Ramadan to you!

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Letting go

Hello, you.

My friend texted me to say she saw me in a dream and misses me. I couldn’t help but feel awfully helpless remembering I saw you in a dream too. How I wish I could tell you.

I want you to know that it’s been immensely long but I am going strong, and yep, it’s because I crafted another challenge for myself of which already a large part has been spent but still, still your name comes up everyday in my mind, and though I’m trying, I cannot forget you enough because I heard enough means letting go.

Letting go means cutting open and slicing out a part I’ve kept so close.

It’s amazing how this is! Because there’s no real string (like a real tangible truth) binding these. These, as in, this thing in the heart and your place in the…heart? and the future that holds neither. Wow, what a thing to bear.

Hello, you.

The only way this can really reach you is when you claim it yourself. Which is another way of saying: agar wo pooch len hum se kaho kis baat ka gham hai// tou phir kis baat ka gham hai agar wo pooch lain hum se. Oh okay, I just added this one because it wouldn’t leave me otherwise. You get the point.

I sometimes search for you amid crowds When I write again it won’t be about you.

#490

It’s night and still hot. I am sitting cross-legged on the balcony’s floor, this black diary on my lap, and vibrant blues, orange and yellow underneath it: the colors of my shirt. Before me is a silent city even though it’s only after-dinner time. It’s only too soon to be writing this.

Or is it?

I am almost tired of using different words to say the same thing: I miss you. Here, take it from me. Jaan jati hai jab uth ke jatay ho tum. 

ache

 
You know the sea and the desert. The strong and the still, the deep and the numb. You know the spaces between a set jigsaw puzzle, and say you created it with a lot of love. But it was only a part of your drawing, and hell emanates from each of those spaces, and the distance is too much to bear. For everyone. And for me.

Midnight call.

Hello. I need help again today.

How many people ask you for help on this very day?

Well, hey, don’t put down the phone during any minute. I have so much to say.

I feel like crying today. I feel like crying a lot. I don’t know. Remember that person?

You know, I was very happy today. I was very happy until later when this started. You know, I would have closed everything down, shut myself to the sweet escape but right now, I am talking to you. Because I’m so done with running away. I run to reach the same place every freaking time. I am so done.

Hello? Please say something else. I know you get me. I know you understand. I am already breathing, I am not dying. And by the way, I can never actually commit suicide, like ever. Inshaa Allah as well but like never.

Okay, I am listening. But I am not done yet?

You listen to me. I wrote my first poem today. It was so painful it was exhilarating. 

You listen to me. I wrote my last poem today. It was only painful.

You listen to me. I never intended to take it all so seriously.

You listen to me. I miss every dead person on earth tonight. I can feel the graveyard wind inside me. The sad laughter of the sister killed for honor. The sad laughter of the struggling maid. The sad laughter of the parents of the raped child. The sad laughter of the fallen bird. The hollow dread of a Justin Cronin novel.

I haven’t read in ages. I have a viva tomorrow. Remember I told you I loved exams for their distracting power? I don’t right now because it’s not working.

I can hear his chair creaking. I know he is sitting in the last room by the staircase with a pack of cigarettes. You know I hate cigarettes. But how would you know? You’re just a therapist. A listener, that’s all. A dead phone line.

Khatam Shudd

Darwaza khula chora tha meny. Chahtay na chahtay nazar uth uth ke jati thi, wehem ne dil ko yun muthi me jakarr rakha tha ke sirf takleef milti thi aur us se bhagnay ka koi tareeqa samajh hi nahi ata tha. Tum se bhagnay ka koi tareeqa samajh nahi ata tha.

Mujhay lagta tha tum aogay.

Jantay ho, har ahat par chonk jati thi. Har shor pe tufaan uthta tha. Sab bikhar jata tha, mai samait’ti thi aur phir bikhar jata tha. Maine bohat koshish ki ke jo umeed phool nahi kaanta ho, usay zabardasti hi sahi kheench kar bahar nikal dun. Apnay aap ko bacha lun. Lekin mujhay darr lagta tha ke aisay zakham gehra hojayega. Aur ab nazar ata hai ke khula chornay se tou ye naasoor banjaega.

Click clack

Just thinking about each letter and writing either the first thought or some important/unique memory associated with anything starting from it. You can do it too 🙂

A. You might rot in hell.

B. Weird memory just made me laugh. You were annoying and someone else noticed too. Even teased me about it.

C. In my first school ever. Probably one of my earliest memories. There’s a corridor type thing. There’s your name. There’s your embarrassment.

D. You and your brother. How old were we? Five? Climbing the gate to the garden after school. My sister and I were afraid we would get caught. You two were so used to it. It was amazing in the end.

E. The phone call. The news of death and not knowing quite well how to be dramatic enough to express that it mattered a lot.

F. Letters. I didn’t know I could do the letters thing with you but it was kinda supportive.

G. A flashback, a horrible cry like in the book. It was a little bit of enormous back then.

H. The walks, the talks. One casual debate when a stranger passed a hilarious comment causing us to stop in our tracks. Your death glare. Then that time a cat popped up beside you out of nowhere. I remember fun and warmth.

I.I felt safest here. More than I do in my own city.

J. It’s always hurtful when someone you’re so close to cannot be happy about your success, and cannot hide it as well. I know it wasn’t your fault but it wasn’t mine.

K. When we were vulnerably honest about some ideas, emotions, and even public issues.

L. Trying not to. It’s hard because somethings we just have no control over. Like can you decide what to or what not to see in your dream?

M. Helps me draw. Sometimes needed to shut out every other voice.

N. Senior ex-friend lol

O. Someone else’s hell perhaps

P. Most things I’m passionate about

Q. Respect. Admiration. Aur afsos.

R. Wonder how moms mostly just know which friendships are unhealthy. You are good but as I grew up, I understood what I got saved from.

S. I spent a good time to end up with a no-line

T. Player

U. Physics and Chemistry classes, sharing a hands-free and listening to one of our favorite songs that I can’t recall now. We were so close. But we’re all also so temporary.

V. Last year, so typical. This year a joke

W. Thank you for lending me your watch during exam!

X. Where we get stuck in name-place-animal-thing game?

Y. The Kashmiri poem you sang. I shared an Arabic/Persian mix.

Z. The most special meet-up in a city that was neither mine nor yours. From this place right here to several memes, poems, problems, and some promises.