She made her with a glow of silk, Of honey and chocolate milk, Ten little fingers and ten little toes, With cheeky eyes and a crimped nose, Miriam sits on her mothers lap like a rose. Mother O' Mother chants little Miriam, Two little dimples light at the right place, Mother O' Mother chant the devotees, With laughing eyes and bouncing curls, Sweet little Miriam swirls and whirls. Bright as the morning sun, Calm as the evening sky, With ruffled frills and pinkish lace, Little Miriam caresses those marigolds like lilies of the nile. "Mother O' Mother" they say, "Keep her heart, keep her healthy, Give her strength, give her knowledge, Teach her failure, teach her success, Teach her to have sublime faith in herself, Teach her life, And to be just like you."
Inhaling the beauty of morning dew, Flesh intertwined in silky smooth, I let my body slip through, From the tip of the tiny toe To the sinewy thighs And the muscles of the brawny arms, Gracefully tracing my veins Like a dainty necklace swinging From collarbone to the other. My hair is crisp, black and long Face is like the tan Brow is wet with honest sweat, "Hello gorgeous", you say And kiss me light I just simper and let the day pass by. One day I met ugliness, Disrobed we swim in the blue paint Ugliness comes back and wears my garment, Tears like diamond, roll, scraping against the paint. "Hello gorgeous", you say Gives me warmth and affection. To shy to be naked, I dress with the raiment of ugliness. And to this very day men and women mistake one for the other. Yet some behold the face of beauty And know, not withstanding the garment. Yet some know the face of ugliness And the cloth conceals, not from their eyes.
I see Green, I see Blue, A warm crisp breeze sends me through An old island, a forgotten coast A wild forest with a single rose. I hear a distant laughter, Laughter so true, sends a wrinkle in time. I see myself, in flesh Not a garment I cast off this day, But a skin I tear with my own hands. The wind speaks not more sweetly to the giant oaks, Than to the least of all the blades of grass. I see black, I see White A thousand splendid souls watching from high. A chill, clay-cold breeze sends me through A dim lit street, an abandoned house An empty town with a single clock. I see a shadow around the block A shadow so neat, sends the clock tick, Tick-tock-tick, I get on my high horse. Then the shadow fades and is no more, And the light that lingers becomes a shadow to another light. Thus freedom, when it loses its fetters, Becomes itself the fetter for a greater freedom. With no beginning and no end, The thoughts spin with the rotation of the clock. I close my eyes. I am silent. I see you. I see through the windows of your soul, You are the star fallen, From the blue tent upon the green carpet. You are the nightingale's song, I hear myself to sleep. I sense a gaze, I pant. A gaze so strong, I can drink it like the Red's and White's. Yet though it's splendor swoon, In the silence languidly, As a tune into tune.
Trapped! I yearn for light, Suffocated! I yearn for space, Layered! I yearn for bare skin, Pristine! I yearn for touch, Folded! I yearn to rise, Shattered! I yearn to be fixed, Forgotten! I yearn to live, Shunned! I yearn to be accepted. The Madman. The Outlier. In my madness, I found Freedom! freedom of loneliness. Safety! safety from being understood. For those who understand us, enslave something in us. Once I met a scarecrow. Said he, 'The joy of scaring is deep and everlasting.' Said I, 'It is true, for I know that joy.' To which the scarecrow replied, 'Only those who are stuffed with straw can know it.' Years passed and the scarecrow became a philosopher. And when I met him again, Saw two crows and a nest under his hat. Once I lived in the heart of a pomegranate. I heard a seed say, 'Someday I shall become a tree, And the wind will sing in my branches, And the sun will dance on my leaves, And I shall be strong and beautiful throughout the season.' Then another seed spoke, 'When young as you, I too held such views. But now that I can weigh and measure things, I see that my hopes were vain.' And the third seed spoke, 'I see nothing in us, Promising any future for us.' And the fourth said, 'Why dispute what we shall be, When we know not what we are.' And the fifth replied, 'Whatever we are, that we shall continue to be.' Then the sixth spoke- And the seventh- the eighth- the ninth- the tenth- And many- until we all were speaking. With no beginning and no end, The thoughts were spinning, with the rotation of the clock. And that very day I moved. Moved to the heart of a quince, where the seeds are silent and few. Night, O, Night, I am like you! I think your untamed thoughts, I speak your vast language. We are twin brothers; For you reveal space, And I reveal my soul. God, O, God of lost souls, who is lost amongst Gods, I dwell in the midst of a perfect race, I the most imperfect. I, a human chaos, move among things; Conceived with forethought, Born with determination, Nursed with exactness, Governed by rules, Directed by reason. God, O, God of lost souls, who is lost amongst Gods, hear me: A green seed with unfulfilled passion, A bewildered fragment from a burnt planet, The Madman. The Outlier.
I am what I will become Always becoming. I am forever walking upon these shores, Between the sand and the foam. The high tide will erase my footprints, And the wind will blow away the foam. But the sea and the shore will remain Forever. Only once have I been made mute. It was when a man asked me "Who are you?" I am the infinite sea, All worlds are but grains of sand upon my shore. I am a river, Always and never the same. For life and death are one, Even as the river and sea are one. Drink from the river of silence, And you shall indeed sing. Let the earth claim your limbs, And you shall truly dance. The real in us is silent, The acquired is talkative. In silence you will hear the song, Composed by contemplation, And shunned by clamor, And folded by truth, And repeated by dreams, And understood by love, And hidden by awakening, And sung by the soul. A voice is a soul speaking in disguise, Bereft of the tongue and lips that gave it wings, Alone it must seek the ether. And alone and without his nest shall the eagle fly across the sun. Suffer not the eyes to hunger for the face, Rather let them show you that Which is between birth and death.
'It felt like a satin's touch, Our hands went in rhythm with the song, My brain began to reel as throughout every vein a burning lava coursed, A smoldering unknown fire began to kindle itself within my breast, -I panted. 'O what a lovely evening you had', said Beatrice to Virgil. 'I long to feel the mighty love which maddens one to crime, To feel the blasting lust of men who live beneath the scorching sun, And to drink down deep from the the cup of some satyrion philtre.' 'But parting for a day or two', said Virgil to Beatrice. -is the space that divides life and death. 'It is the little rift within the lute, That by and by will make the music mute, And ever widening slowly silence all, Like an ember among fallen ashes'.
“Il est, dit-on, le favori”, Could you not drink his gaze like the Reds and Whites, Yet though it’s splendor swoon, In the silence languidly, As a tune into a tune. 'O words are lightly spoken', said Beatrice to Virgil. 'Maybe a breath of passion unattended, Or maybe but a reason ruling alone, Has let clay-cold heads and lukewarm hearts Scourge him with their wrath if they will. 'For 'tis not true', Virgil replied. The deeper the sorrow craves, the more joy you can contain. I felt something struggle within its prison, Rise, open and spout some tears, But those few tears-far from being a soothing balm, Felt drops of caustic, burning me, Like a clap of thunder on a bright sunny day.
“He watched it with that strange interest in trivial things that we try to develop when things of high import make us afraid, or when we are stirred by some new emotion, for which we cannot find expression, or when some thought that terrifies us lays sudden siege to the brain and calls on us to yield. After a time the bee flew away. He saw it creeping into the stained trumpet of a Tyrian convolvulus. The flower seemed to quiver, and then swayed gently to and fro.”
That is the beauty in living in the moment and enjoying small things. And the part where the important things make us afraid, I leave it for the reader to decide. Yes, some may disagree with my line of thought and believe it to be their priority to reach at the top of everything for a happy life. But let me pause them for a moment and remind them that “Education is the manifestation of perfection already in man”, one does not need to set self oriented priorities to reach ones goal, rather try to enjoy those trivial things and small moments to stay at the top for long!
I love to sleep like a child or instead I have learnt to sleep like a child and that makes all the difference. I enjoy waking up early before my parents do, to reserve that moment to thank god for everything. Isn’t it great when you are seven seas across the world and your mom is the best in the entire universe. I say that because she takes up as a hobby to learn English in between her daily chores and greets me early morning and before bed. I love my parents unbiased for their presence in enough for me to always move in life and when I fail, I know that I have nothing to lose. We can lose things which are acquired and not a part of oneself which is build strong.
Relationships are important. Some are with our own blood and others were meant to happen. Sisters teach you the importance of love and compassion. Each moment spent with them is worth recording in the deep corners of your brain. Brothers teach you sacrifice and sportsmanship. Time spent with them is worth reliving it. Elders make you feel special and important. Their guidance is utmost necessary to succeed in life. Friends teach you to be true to yourself and when you live with them, it makes one understand oneself much better.
For people may change with time, friends stay the same. They not only help me take off but when I am flying too high, they make me realize to stay within signal for a smooth ride. They help me to stay put when my ride experiences severe weather conditions and be safe. Like the ride is not just if one has any special requirements which should be brought into attention, the same holds for friendship. Many things are not required to be said out loud but are understood quite well. Some things are meant to!
Some things are meant to be said stranger. Though you might be in a different time zone,I simper when I greet you “Morning” when I am ready to go into a deep slumber and “Night” even though I know that I have a big day ahead of me. You could be anyone, maybe the guy with the dog who I met on my run in the park, or the kind owner who I hear talking to his cat, or the cab driver of whom I was the first customer. Forget not the lady who thanked me for lending her my seat or the girl who smiled me back. You could also be the person I was about to crash when I was lost in my own thoughts or even someone sitting besides the beautiful marigolds and creating an artwork. I could also hear you sing a lovely song and find calming to see you writing besides the fountain or even enjoy with you the book you are reading lying in a hammock. You could be the guy who I wished to defeat in my secret race in the pool or on the track or even the person who I wished to have a same bike as yours. Maybe you are the girl whom I greeted for a cup of coffee or the guy who looked confused when I talked in a foreign language. You could be the person whom I find solace when I talk to, or the person who does not make me feel a stranger or even the old couple who just wished me a wonderful day ahead.
Each moment counts. Make it special!
Recently I was chatting with a friend of mine after a long time, when I happen to mention what my profile would look like. It would begin as “Tarak is a great philosopher, a world renowned mathematician, an excellent artist and a cook by heart. …..And let’s not forget he won the world’s most dreaded triathlon by a huge margin….. When he is not working, he loves to play the cello and other times he spends time writing on a beautiful sunny day……”To be honest, it did not take me long to draft it, for it’s easier to express what one truly believes in.
It was not a long time ago that I came across an epigraph by Whitman in a book my James Baldwin which says “I am the man….I suffered..I was there”. Man sounds bold and strong but beyond the garment of masculinity and manliness lies the soul, the child of Love and Beauty. Each individual is born naked with sky above his head and land beneath him; and then came food, shelter and clothes, creating all world problems. The soul is as pure as an angel but it comes in raiment of varied size, texture, shape and color. These myriad beings play their part on this vast stage known as the “world”, with each character playing different roles involving pain and joy, birth and death, and a blend of various emotions which helps in building and understanding the true being of the character. There is no individual who can escape the seven stages of life, right from infancy to death. One goes through the cycle of life and that counts as a complete life worth a ride. Haha it’s amazing but I just blended Whitman with Shakespeare and Kahlil Gibran!!!
I believe Mathematics and Philosophy are a two way street. Both fields were emerged to delve in finding answers to the existence of the being. One needs to “think free, to think math”. When we combine the five basic elements with ether and open the bodily senses of touch, smell, taste, sound and vision, can one really understand the philosophy of mathematics. It allows to contemplate the underlying aesthetics, ethic, logic and other aspects which are reflected by studying both of these fields. As Vivekananda said “Education is the manifestation of perfection already in man”, it will take time to reach that level where all your senses will help one truly discover the true being and manifest itself into a new reality!
Well coming back to reality, have you tried eggnog with a splash of rum and cinnamon? If not, you need to add it to your list of things to do before you die! I am not kidding, eggnog is a festive drink circulated throughout America and Canada during the time of Christmas, though many don’t find it ” their thing”, I am mad about it. I have a passion for food, to learn about various cuisines, to try them and myself try to recreate them but with a twist! I am saying this but the ones who know me might disagree with the latter part. No offense taken, as of now I believe that to actually call oneself a chef, it requires a true understanding of taste when blended properly with the instincts from the heart then that creates MAGIC! I am still in the learning stage and getting to know the underlying taste sensation in different cuisine which will help me in producing a fine range of dishes for sophisticated palates. Like every cook has a secret diary of their own, in which lies the keys to various doors, I too have one and it’s still a work in progress.
Speaking of progress, no matter whether you reach your goal or not, trying is important. And with baby steps I always strive to reach that level of perseverance and devotion towards my dream of winning a triathlon. Sitting back home it’s easy to say many things, but actually implementing them takes the heart of a lion. I am not saying the task is impossible but if you “will”, you can do it! When I compare myself with the person i was some years back, I feel confident in the amount of stamina and determination I have developed. It did not happen overnight but after months of practice and commitment. But to win something one needs to place oneself in the real world and try to achieve that level of confidence in order to overcome the obstacles on race day. And to do that I always keep saying to myself, “One moment of pain is worth a lifetime of glory”.
For me glory lies in music and art. Music is the essence of the being and art is the food of the living. When I am not working I love to listen to cello’s play and at the same time paint some strokes. Such rich and deep is the sound that can make oceans move inside me and create a stunning artwork worth a million dollars. Having learnt some elementary Hindustani classical violin and worked on canvass back in India, I have always wanted to dabble in cello and get my paintings a recognition. And here I am on the land where dreams come true, and leaving this one behind is not happening!
I have miles to go before I sleep…miles to go before i sleep…
Big Easy, Mardi Gras, Voodoo dolls, Buggy ride, French Quarter, Bourbon street, Frenchmen street, St. Roch street, Jambalaya, Gumbo, Po-boy, Jazz, Music, Cajun cuisine, City park, carousel, Cafe du monde, Jackson Square..and the list for describing this city is definitely a long one!
Beginning of my Summer’16 here at Florida State University I got busy with school work and meetings with my professor that I was eagerly waiting for the weekend getaway. We decided to visit a place which would take us within a day to reach there and enjoy. Thus New Orleans was the ideal location and I am sure to visit it again. Well having heard of NOLA (New Orleans) before I was surprised at the number of things it has to offer. Nola is like a complete holiday package for all the age groups. It has the city park, carousel’s, the round-the-clock nightlife, spicy cajun cuisine and the vibrant and melodious music which will definitely make one tap their feet, if not dance.
Let me take you on the Bourbon street, a must visit place to experience the country nightlife. Before strolling on the street let us look at it thoroughly. Nola has many French-Canadian inhabitants which becomes quite obvious when one glances at the streets noticing the house architecture and the fresh colors on them. Though never been to France or Canada, seeing just a stroke of it here makes be add these two places on my list so as to capture the big picture. In lines with above you will be amazed at the scene when the sun goes down. On Bourbon street we have a enormous list of places to hangout, to savor the cuisine and to swing a bit with your partner. I was completely thrilled seeing the city comes to life during these hours that my feet, my hands and finally my entire body started to dance with the tune. Not only me, I was just a novice but look at the old couple dancing over there and you will stand speechless seeing true love through dance.
Oh I got a string of beads from the person standing on the balcony! Yes, Nola has this culture where people clamor for the beads from the passing crowd or the crowd enjoying in balconies with brass band playing in the vicinity. The beads come in all vibrant colors, with pink and blue and yellow and green. With sizes big and small, that wearing them gets you in the mood. The best time to experience it thoroughly is during the winter carnival called “Mardi Gras”. People dressed in elaborate costumes, with all the dancing and the glamorous parades makes you visit Nola during this time. Let us not forget the “Voodoo” dolls which came from the African origin which people believed as the “Creator” or “Great Spirit”. Mention the word Voodoo to many people people today and you will get stares and curiosity across masses due to the misconception that has caused the word to bring dread and horror.So much that this concept has led people to stuck pins in the dolls and curses as a gesture to get away with the evil. So when you visit the flea market you should definitely buy a “ex-girlfriend/boyfriend voodoo”, “bad teacher voodoo” or anything you want to get away with will have a voodoo doll for it!
Surprisingly the weekend when we visited Nola was the PRIDE weekend. I was lucky enough to see it and be a part of it. After what happened in Orlando, support is all that was asked for. Being my first time to see the parade I was completely in awe with the excitement and energy that the people showcase. People from all walks of life made a unanimous decision to support “Love Wins”. Streets were filled with merriment and clamor in support of the cause. The parade went through the entire city and not once did I see a dip in the energy. As the crowd went on increasing, it became more and more obvious that love truly won. It was definitely worth a shot!
Finally no trip is complete without trying the local food. The cuisine that this city has to offer is worth savoring. Located on the banks of the Mississippi river, getting the best quality sea food is for sure. From lobsters to crabs to sea shells to prawns. The cajun cuisine is one of the best in the world. You have the crab cakes to taste, Gumbos to eat, po-boy sandwich to snack on and praline to enjoy as a sweet.
Though the stay was not too long, I am eagerly waiting for Mardi Gras to come soon so as to revel in it. Until then I have with me the memories of Nola in the form of post cards. I will definitely post you one!