Size of a man’s imagination

Freshly ejected from a sea of body fluid,
Becoming undetached umbilically,
When it’s the size of a button mushroom,
He’ll look at all of you as his mother.
Give him some time to learn.
Learn language from sounds,
Feelings from touch.

In his third multiple of five,
When puberty begins to confront,
From places hitherto Sun hidden,
He would’nt look at all of you as his mother.
When it’s about the size of a puppy’s tail.
Give him some time to learn.
Learn expletives from language,
Female from male.

In his fourth multiple of five,
When it’s about the length of his palm,
Disobedient like a boisterous labrador,
He would look at all of you as his lovers.
The Sun rises from his navel,
And sets between his legs.
Give him some time to learn,
Learn to lech from look,
Stimulate from touch.

Between the fifth and eighth mutliple of five,
When it’s become a domestic appliance,
From the cool gadget it once you used to be,
Fatigued from myriad experiences,
He would look at only one of you as his wife.

Batting is still fun, but the strike rate isn’t there.
He now knows love from lust,
Insecurities from trust.

After his thirteenth multiple of five,
That is if he’s still around.
When it’s hung, shrunk and vestigial almost,
He would look at all of you as his daughter.
The game has become passe,
His upkeep has watered his impulses.
He’s collecting epiphanies from experiences,
Nostalgia from memories.

From a button mushroom,
To a puppy’s tail,
To palm length,
To a docile appliance
And being hung and shrunk,
It’s after all, not that hard to size up-
A man’s imagination.




Something like true love

Who am I to describe love? A better question would be from where do I describe it?As an originator of my own stories or from the standpoint of a recipient or just as an undeserving person who’s hair was tousled by its zephyr. For so much has been told by so many, so many times in so many different ways. Like stories about encounters with God, there are a million first person accounts of how it felt to be hit by it, but very few have actually come eye to eye. Yet so many talk about having fallen under its endless wings, to put a halo around their togetherness. Every myth solidifies in stature to become a thing of faith with anecdotes and accounts woven . Love is no different.It finds its eternity in such fascinating stories. One such story came to my mind, that inspired me to yearn for this enigmatic emotion.

Twenty years earlier…

So she was a little short of twenty when her solicitous dad got her married off. Twenty wasn’t the only thing she was short of. She was yet to experience the feelings that came along with travel, relationships and work pressure; yet here she was, already staring at the threshold of matrimony on fast forward mode, thanks to a swift push of a button by her father.
Fair skinned, pleasant faced and well endowed- she was a single point leakage to the collective efficiency of her neighborhood men. Her husband was an average looking man; brown skinned with not a single striking feature. He was one of those generic people who could easily be lost in a crowded street.
As a very young kid, I didn’t make much of the marriage than the food that was served on the wedding night or the lopsidedness of their pairing.

Sixteen years earlier…

They begot a daughter, who was as respectable as adorable.A rare quality for a child of an impressionable age in our family, given the carefree(less) parenting style that usually prevailed. She no more looked like a pencil wrapped in a saree, maternity had made her a tad cherubic, but she was quite the looker still. By now, I was old enough to understand gentleman beyond their faces, her husband was one such person. He was no more the generic person from the wedding altar, he was a friendly man who I had grown up to become fond of.

Twelve years earlier…

They had moved into a new place when I saw them next. Their house felt like home; held together by something beyond brick and mortar in one congenial bond. Their daughter was old enough to understand stuff beyond arithmetics and alphabets. They now had a son who was yet to step out of from the clutches of gravity or gibberish. They were warm hosts, wonderful parents and a great couple. They couldn’t take their eyes of each other and I couldn’t off them. My relationship benchmark was forged back then, with their molds.

Five years earlier…

The next time when I visited them, she greeted me- her eyes incongruent to mine. Didn’t know till then that diabetes was capable of causing blindness . She used to write accounts for a handful of clients back then,she still does just like her dad. The vulnerability of blindness barely sunk into her, for he became her ersatz eyes and hands during that time. They worked together like one person, with him reading out from the bills and she reciting the accounting entries. The children had grown up into responsible adults, who took care of themselves and their parents with little fuss. Together they resembled a well oiled machine, with each of them dovetailing their needs to the larger cause of their family.

A few months earlier…

One afternoon, we got a call from her mom. She had met with a cardiac attack. Some thing cryptic about the way life operates; giving us more than we deserve, to only take more than it gave.
She had come out of her temporary blindness to resiliently firm up her family’s financial status, something that had eluded her father forever. She had made her children independent individuals who could take care of themselves, emotionally and financially. All of this, amidst the chaos from the periphery, provided by her folks and her pungent in-laws and her own dwindling health condition.

As I walked into her ward I saw him seated beside her. He was holding a magazine upside down, musing on her, as she lay asleep, pale and weak. Unperturbed by the raucous of the general ward or the gravitas of the circumstance, his face was the picture of calm in a storm.Over the years, She had lost her good looks, her youth, her father recently and yet he never left her side, through the thick and thin of life. I stood there embarrassed about claiming to have been in love a few times in my life. I still didn’t know what love was. But it definitely was a lot more deeper than a space created to decorate egos, held together by impressions made from first sight, coffee shop camaraderie and finding body warmth together under the fallacy of “making love”. Maybe it was about the inconvenient things that often go un-merchandised, like being unconditional, understanding and accomodative of each other like the two of them were.

It is surprising that the stories of eternal love,sacrifice and hope that we so often seek from the chapters of bestsellers,movies and history to stitch our torn souls, lie scattered around our own lives, waiting to be acknowledged.This is one such story from mine.