College

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"Dreams come true, just we are just too blind to see them do."

“Dreams come true, just we are just too blind to see them do.”

It’s been almost three years, since the first time my feet touched these peripheries, and it came to own me, even though to be bluntly honest, that first time, I didn’t dream I would be spending all this time here, in Kamala Nehru College. First off, I was so far off from home, and all this while I’ve had just so much going on, on my mind, that inadvertently I ended up not wholly appreciating the privilege I had been goaded with, to be forever, a part of and be one with all the past of KNC, my college, and its future as well.

To the common man or woman it’s just a college, another building in a lush sub-urban neighborhood, but for me, it’s my identity, my bridge towards reality. Every morning, walking through the front gate, out of time and breath, I step in and rush around the front porch and conveniently dash up the stairs in the search for my class. Well, it’s my fault, that I lead two very disjointed lives, that I appear like a lost lampoon at the beginning of every class, but then, that’s my story, and it’s entirely irrelevant here. This is the story of my college. So breathe, I’m almost there.

But I am an observer, I am at one with the human spirit as well as the spirit of all things on the earth and over my time at KNC, I’ve grown closer to nature than to my classmates. The lush campus of my college provided a very good setting for me to explore the minute things of life. The bustle that thrived all around the big college building, always instilled a kind of unusual feeling in my heart, that first year, that coming home for the vacations, I learnt was “homesickness” and my own house, seeming to feel smaller because unknowingly the place had come to own me, made me acknowledge it as my home. I knew I could never be at peace for the months I was away from college.

I am not a very studious person, but I read, oh I read…and reading I’ve spent hours reading, just curling up under the big willowy trees in the fields with yellowed collections of old, very old poetry, and lose track of time entirely. I, who’s usually very concerned about a low battery on my phone, could forget about my dead phone, and let it stay dead for forever, while I lay down on the soft greens of our playground and feel the sun warm my closed lids on a wintry afternoon. I admit it, I am lazy, and I love to waste time – specially, when I am witnessing, or while being a part of, something that with my soul, I wouldn’t hesitate calling beautiful.

The college grounds proved to be a great place for me to practise photography as well, since it was very convenient to carry along my camera for beginners. It was just ridiculous thought that I was found by people to be looking into every crevice, searching for treasure. Haha, that’s just me saying, because with every good shot, I’d be up there, beaming like Napoleon Bonaparte, as if I’d conquered a nation, bursting with glee. Even though I wasn’t really expecting a round of applause from people around, me, I was still a small town girl. But it didn’t take me long to realize there was no one with me in my bubble and I walk around, learning more with every step that took me away…

The canteen was where I always went in search for comfort. People have this strong notion that I eat a lot, and why shouldn’t that notion exist, I am a foodie, and I love good food. And especially it was the aroma circulating around our college canteen that drew me on like a moonstruck vagabond follows the moon goddess. My classmates would testify to the fact that I’m wholly addicted to our canteen, my favourite momos with the red sauce with the lemon iced tea, the chicken tikka rolls of the Coke Studio, the rajma rice, and the perfect combo of the samosa and coffee from the Nescafe stall, that we get after we exact it with the coins – those twelve, well spent rupees, are all the fuel we need to sit through the tiresome back-to-back classes on the late autumn afternoons when the rest of the world is cosily taking a nap in their warm beds…

Now my college days are drawing to a close, and it’s like a cold, harsh gust of wind whipping across my face. I would miss my college and I will miss the people of my class. But then life goes on…like time and tide waits for none. KNC will forever be the longest chapter in my life, my hard earned prized that I forgot to cherish while I had it… But then that’s my story, which is an entirely different one. KNC, will always stand, and I’ve loved it in so many other ways, it’ll always make me speechless; like right now, I don’t know how to conclude this…since the story hasn’t ended, nor, it ever will…

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First Book Published

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It’s been great, after all these months of painstaking juggling between college life and the hassles of getting published, that finally it’s all over and I’m past the phase I used to be a closet poet and novelist. The journey though has been filled with difficulties, I have no regrets, and it adds a little more credit to my patience that I didn’t give up halfway and back out of the deal I signed when I had dared to dream of reaching out to the masses with my thoughts, ideals, dreams and words in print. It makes me immensely happy that finally I’m almost there where I had envisioned myself to be, and exactly at the right time I had wished it to be.

It had always been a cherished childhood desire to be like my grandfather, Tarini Kanta Bhattacharya, one of the most revered men in my life, a noted figure in the literary scene in Assam, where I come from. In my teenage and late adolescence I took up the pen to experiment with poetry, and failed a lot many times. And this year, 2013 being his 100th birth anniversary, I’m overjoyed to dedicate my book to the beloved legend, who never got to see the garden he had planted so long ago, flourishing so late, as me, a granddaughter he never got to lay eyes on, lives her life on principles he had once taught to his little children, which he himself believed in.

My wish to have a successful career in the world of science was in shatters, when I realized more than anything I’m an artist at heart. I was born to write, and I don’t know from where it just came to me, the desire to write about beauty, and love and anything that draws the soul to question monotony. Dreams, that’s where it all began. And harshness of the world, and still beauty that tore through all that. The complexities of human life, and the organism, that can think and yet with unthinking brutality, like just an animal indulges in savagery in the name of civility and all things holy.

By the time I reached my teenage, I’d seen enough, even at my home, the presence of a different kind of love other than the kind commercial Indian movies portray, but quite understandable by now, and petty squabbles. Even reading different story books and observing fellow friends in my school, made this desire grow, and gave me a silent voice that could be recorded only on paper. I wasn’t very good in my English lessons in school, and used to be despised by my teachers for tormenting them with my dullness and non-responsive behavior, and as you probably guessed, I was never a bright student; always average, at the corner, like a spectator than a participant.

In the romance department, I was worse than the advanced kind of disappointing. My fellow friends would be talking of their boyfriends and I would be pathetically eavesdropping on their chatter, creating in my mind, judging, contrasting, modifying on the basis of the existing kind, a new kind human being, who, as a lover would make up for anything anyone has suffered in their lives, the lack of adventure, the monotony of always doing the same thing, and following the same roads that lead to the grave, having no newness to the institution, and that guy, that kind of guy, I had in my mind, that I wanted for myself, actually never existed.

Then there’s a very famous writer, my idol, Joanne K. Rowling, who spoke through the fictitious Professor Albus Dumbledore, in her book, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, “Of course it is happening inside your head, Harry, but why on earth should that mean that it is not real?” and that just changed my life towards the path I finally decided to take. This moment that I took up writing seriously, the year, 2007 also being very significantly important in my life.

Fanciful were those days, and also so memorable!!! Naive as I was, and pure of my unadulterated heart, foolishly I happened to stumble into the student activity room in my new school, my eyes opened to a sight like I’d never seen in my life so far… In the far corner of the room there sat this young boy with funny hair and the most carefree laughter scribbling on a desk with a couple of his friends and that sight, and with a glimpse of his eyes and smile, and my heart hasn’t been whole ever since. He fitted the mental image of my perfect lover, that I’d had so early in my head, with whom I’d begun writing my first story…the image of Dusk, and ever since I’ve never seen any other sight lovelier than that stranger boy sitting there laughing off with his friends, his entire guard down.

I wished to know him better, but then I wan’t very good at making friends, and retaining them. Especially people, I’m drawn to so fatally. IT didn’t last, but over these past six years, I’d had enough, to know he wasn’t at all that much the hero I had in mind, because I wasn’t that image, he had in his. Nevertheless, that love in return blossomed me into a woman, enabling me to write of my passions, and desires, and of love, to the closest degree I can mimic. My book is complete, the first one that I wrote to describe that ideal boy and introduce the chief character of my very first story, that is still under construction.

I wished to do a lot of things, and I’ve tried a little bit of everything. And I have no regrets. I’ve got a life ahead and I will live it as long as my time permits, and will do everything that I’ve ever had a wish in my mind (well, not everything…specially not those which are illegal, haha) to do. Beauty has always been my companion and my strong belief is that it’ll always continue to be for me who is one Libra born, and I believe in myself above all else, that I’ll never change for me, for the world, maybe yes, I might seem, but for me, it’ll be just choices that I made, which in my heart I’ll always remember, what I went through to decide standing on a crossroad.

It will rain and it will rain ♥

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The air simmers, blisters. Induced hallucinations.

The cracked open mouth of wounded earth,

Seeped with blood red and covered with rust.

Centuries and eons of memories clouded by dust.

 

The fragile lines were breached once long ago,

The tempest had once rushed into my shore.

It’s been long and time has swept away the resort

The floods and waves of tide haunted me to drown.

 

Then the sea is just a embittered memory,

And it was a heap of sand I’d leapt into. Not death.

See, the passion had been sung well to drone.

To arise and laugh back, when mirages mock.

 

It’s been long I’ve lived scared to scraps and bolts.

It, the post traumatic stress disorder in me craving blood.

But I’m ready to go all out again, for surfing in the sea of love.

And she has to come out too, the madwoman locked in my head…

 

The fighter in me. The rebel. The poet. The lover.

The unchained philosopher, her storm unleashed.

Night has finally settled bets with daylight

There right there, fate’s let my midnight sun dawn.

 

Now again the tempest blows ashore, from the east.

The distant roars of the hungry cranky clouds resound

After flashes of desire reflecting his heart and mine.

After a long time I know, it will rain and it will rain.

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PROLOGUE : Dusk’s Diary

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My wife has always insisted that I should write about my life, the time I have had to spend without her, about the numerous adventures and misadventures I’ve had. She herself is an amazing writer, but she says she gets bored with her writing and that I leave her alone a lot, which indeed is true, and I am really busy at my work. But right now, since I have decided to follow her advice and take up the pen, I am coming up blank. I mean there isn’t really much I can come up, because when I wasn’t with her, I wasn’t exactly living.

Right now, she’s exaggerating the non-truth, like, I write really well, but then I have to tell her, flattery really isn’t going to be of much help.

But you, know, she’s as persistent as a Virgo. She tells me artfully, as if it was nothing but the truth, “Even now, you know, I have the only letter you wrote me, preserved. The reason is – it was really beautiful. Your fans would swoon over it and you know it. It’s an art you have – your writing.”

I tell her, “I know how I write, okay? Now…urgh, seriously, stop it. All the blushing isn’t helping my nerves, and I haven’t been in touch with a pen for more than seventeen years! Now, I might even drop the thought of giving in to your wish, and pull you right back into my arms and make you forget what you wanted me to do with the pen in the first place.”

“Oh, really?” she teases me from our bed, smiling wickedly, her deep blue eyes crinkling like they used to when she was a little girl. For a moment I thought she was going to extend her hand for me to take it and…no more talk about pen and paper for the night. But she surprised me again, “Now, you know you won’t think about it. Besides, you know, I know how to resist your charms, Mr. Scott.”

“Since when?” I asked trying to sound confident and flashed the kind of smile I knew she liked the most about me.

“Oh, you know since when… You’re married to me and fathered my three little children! That fact’s got to make you a more sensible man…” she was smiling. Such nerve!

“Well, if I’m insensible, I have to be something… I mean, you did marry me… So, a person, as sensible and wise as you must have found some likeable quality in me…”

“You just had to say you don’t want to tell me your story. I’ll assume, you didn’t even miss me, when I wasn’t with you… I thought you loved me!”

“I love you, I do. I just don’t understand, why I can’t just tell you. Why this sudden need to sit stiff and write? You already know the only reason I disliked school was because of the exams, they made us write. It was a different thing that I fared well through it. But I disliked it.”

“What do you want? I’ll do anything to make you write. If threatening is the only way that’s left, fine. I’ll make you sleep by the pool for a week starting from tonight. Okay with that?”

I fight back a groan. I already get to spend so little time at home with her, the idea of having to continue living away from her, yet being in the same house, was downright disagreeable. Alright. “Fine. I won’t harass you anymore by not writing. But whatever I write, you have to accept. No teasing, no funny looks or anything, later on. Agreed.”

She flashes me another one of her brilliant wicked smiles which I like so much. “Deal. Only if there is no me in your story.”

I say, “Now, that’s unfair… I don’t even know what you’re asking for.”

She sighs while I watch her flabbergasted. “I’d meant, your story mustn’t contain any exaggeration about me,” she rolls her eyes. “Since, I wanted to know what your life had been when I wasn’t there, like asking for something I don’t already know, I don’t want myself interrupting your account at the various interesting climaxes.”

“Now, that’s my story and because you wanted me to write it, dear Wife, I would write exactly what I want to write. And besides, the obvious point is, the story wouldn’t be a story if it didn’t have you, like I am incomplete without you, the story would be just as useless.”

Now, I see she’s the one blushing, the tip of her tongue pressing on her upper lip. “Oh, even after all these seventeen years, you haven’t changed a bit.”

I say, “Now, please if you keep talking like this, the night will be over, and I wouldn’t have completed half a page and I still would have an eternity to write because that’s how it was. My time without you was an abysmal sea, I couldn’t swim across, until the time I saw you again and you pulled me out.”

She pursues her lips. “Maybe, baby, you should leave the writing and come sleep. What would our children say if they heard? Or even the servants?”

I laugh. “They don’t understand English. The servants. Or did you forget it? And anyway, our kids are sleeping peacefully in their rooms. So, what do you say, love?”

She sits back against the cushions and watches me serenely her eyes full of love. “Not tonight, baby. And don’t think I don’t know what you’re trying to do, but there’s no way I’m gonna let you buy your way out of writing the story, Your Highness. You may be the king of the universe beyond these four walls, but both of us know, you are useless without me. Here I’m the boss.” She moves her slender finger in a little circle, putting me back at my place.

I take up the pen again with a groan. “But you’re not sleeping yourself!” I accuse. “Anyway what are you getting, watching me like this?”

There is a long silence. In a flat tone, she says, “I’m getting to watch you like this, Husband dear,” which undoubtedly takes me by surprise. She adds in an overindulgent tone, “Which I luuurve…about you.”

I smile shamelessly at the overdose of pride in her tone. I was surprised as it was one of the many surprises she was always full of. But I didn’t turn to look at her, because I knew I wouldn’t be able to restrain myself again this time, by what I would see. And in fact it was really only the two of us awake at this hour of the night. And both of us had everything but sleeping on our minds. Sleeping together was a different thing though. And I knew if I even so much got up from the floor, she would take an offence – again the threat of having to sleep by the pool, which I would never accept.

Finally I say, “Alright, but no more talking if you really want me to write.”

“Agreed,” this time she zips her lips as if we would be punished by some teacher if we were caught talking. I hold back my laughter at the irony. Earlier it was I who used to refuse to talk and she would always whine that I don’t talk with her. And now we had an un-expiring license to talk for all of eternity and she was acting like that.

Now, maybe it would always be like this, these mischievous adventures. I didn’t mind it so much, as her unconscious, maybe even conscious plots always end up making me livelier, leaving me with a more ambitious and zesty attitude. The challenges, the restraint and as a whole, the deviation from traditional husband-wife relations was what made the institution of marriage exciting for us.

Now, my wife had unofficially closed my access to our bed, just because she wanted me to provide reading material for her, wanting me to write and most silly was that she would be inspecting me! It’s like we never grew up. Or maybe it was because when we were growing up, we had been apart from each other.