Yellow and Blue

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Marriages are like IKEA furniture. You spend many a Saturday finding the one that’s just the right blend of character and comfort. The one that is most you. Then you take the plunge and bring it home.

After an epic bout of cussing, hammering and Twister-esque bending to make mismatched holes and poles align, you ride high on pride, accomplishment and various shades of smug. You marvel at your creation. Unique. Non-conforming (manuals are for sissies). Yours.

You have overcome the worst.

Except, you’re not in college anymore. You’re stuck with it, after finals, after the holidays, after the sexy new 2017 catalog with sleek lines and modern finishes is out. You watch as your creation disintegrates under the harshness of the sun, the monsoons and mould.

Through the years, it has become a collection of memories in the form of pee stains and wine spills — relics of failed parenting and failed escapes.

The times you spent plopped upon it, ignoring it, all the while immersed in your Facebook feed, has left a permanent impression on it. Like sagging butt-cheeks, the damage cannot be undone.

Marriages are like IKEA furniture. They are not meant to last forever.

The Old And The Wristless

Cutting, painful? Only for the tentative millisecond when the razor befriends the epidermis. Much like dipping one’s toes into a hot bath (much like sex) — once the warmth of the flowing river engulfs your naked flesh, you feel a tingling of bliss, followed by a wave of nothingness.

We are born immersed in blood, so is it not natural that our comfort lies in soaking it up, like the smell of naphthalene on an old comforter?

Cutting, birthing, getting high on naphthalene…such is the privilege of youth. The rest of us on the precipice of senility, rub cocoa butter on the zigzags of yesterday and do the most dastardly acts of all — we live.

Swim Lessons

Standing on the confluence of bravery and cowardice, I remind myself to breathe before the inevitable current drags me to my next demise.

You thought I’d be a better swimmer by now. You thought I’d doggy-crawl my way to the shore.

You should’ve known better than to expect anything but disappointment from me. And if I meet that expectation, I have failed to disappoint you. Either way, the cat dies.

A Place On Earth

This place I call home is paradise city, muse of impressionists, and darling of honeymooners. I know now the irrelevance of Heaven.

For as much as I long for my every breath to cease, I yearn not to return to this heaven.

A mirror of lake is disturbed by the swan that lets out a fart in A minor. Tchaikovsky giggles in his grave. 

Histamines battle to capture my breath. If only wars were so easy.

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Of Upma and Matzah

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The words had spilled out too quickly. Like roasted semolina dumped into a boiling pot, they had morphed into a sticky, glutinous mess. Ok fine, let us divorce.

Sandhya didn’t really mean to say those words. Not out loud anyway. Or did she? It was the asphyxiation of decision, not very different from staring at the noise on a restaurant menu. Ok fine, I’ll have the pink lemonade.

The momentary relief as the noose loosened was followed by a familiar nausea of regret and dread.

Can we not go back?
Can we not
Go back
To snuggling
Under separate blankets
Where our bodies cannot remember
Who we used to be?

Can we not
Go back
To gazing
Into our cellphones
Where our eyes cannot converse
Louder than our yelling?

Can we not
Go back
To bickering
Over salt
And pretend
That tempering
Is the only thing
Missing.

 

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My Pot Of Gold

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Mama, I remember
Your favorite part
Of the day.

What?

It’s when the sky changes
Purple, Orange, Pink —
All sorts of colors.

Abuse is not always
Black and Blue
To be sure
It turns
Burgundy to Rust
And Yellowish-Greens
And sometimes it’s just
A heavy Gray
But mostly
It is
Colorless
Like ghosts.

Mama, you remember
Your favorite day
As a child?

No. What is
Yours?

Today.

Really. Why?

Because you did not
Shout. My favorite
Days are when
Nobody…
Nobody
(( shouts ))
At me.

How do you believe
The sun will rise
Tomorrow my child
You are almost
{ S e v e n }
Like rainbows.

Surface Tension

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I notice it while applying a fresh coat of self-pity seated in the corner by the bathtub. The viscosity filling my eyes lends a Monetesque quality to the tiles, but the formation is unmistakable. Yes. A puddle of pee collecting beneath the toilet bowl in a spherical configuration reminiscent of physics lessons on surface tension. It is amazing what prolonged inhalation of commercial cleaning supplies can do to eliminate tension.

“How do you wipe the evolutionary remnants of savage that are embedded so deeply within these creatures?”, I wonder, as I prop said specimens in front of a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles playlist. No, I am not staging irony by attempting to correct violent behavior while subjecting them to violent media. That laugh is for another day. But I may have just mentioned violence.

Are pee trickles on toilet seats, dirty socks under coffee tables and half-eaten plates drying on tables artifacts of violence? Or subjective interior design choices? It is violence if I choose to play victim, but how far is the stick up my arse before I make that choice? Have not they who know it all, from The Beatles whispering Let It Be to Elsa yelling Let It Go, been hinting at the obvious all along?

Except, it is not that obvious. I mean “it” is not that obvious. What is “it” that I need to let go of? Stick up butt-hole, pride, parenting opportunities, Facebook time or the skin around my fingers? Listening closely to the lyrics of the songs, besides the chorus, might provide more insight. All of our wisdom must be hidden in song, for I have nothing left to say.