Friday, January 29, 2010

For my readers...

The words are pale
Sans a reader.

The notes are ghostly
Sans a listener.

The silence speaks
For a soul.

The air sweetens
For a flower.

(c) hp.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Khaamoshi

I wrote this long back around 25 Jan 2010. Feeling too lazy to type it in hindi in my snail pace internet so here it is in english script.

Rehte hain hum khaamosh
Ke yeh mehsoos kar paaye,
Jo jazbaat the chhupe nigaahon mein,
Unhe jataa paaye, nahi paaye.

Rehte hain hum khaamosh
Ke yeh tay ho jaaye,
Jo kaante the chubhe dil mein,
Unhe seh paaye, nahi paaye.

Tarika ban gayi hai adaa-ae-khaamoshi,
Dard mein hi jeete hai; ashk aaye, nahi aaye.

(c) hp.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Surrenders to Violin of the Master



It was an era of Mughal emperors, she curled her hair unconsciously while waiting on a river side for her lover - who is escaping the orthodoxes of village rebuking his love for a non-islamic girl.


The far away sounds gain intensity with each thud-applause of the horses' hooves. She takes a refuge behind thick woods, and stares into the sandy clearing with river flowing behind her and the crows fleeing above. Two veiled men are following her man, both on dusty stallions while he rode a black mare.


In a sweeping move, that brought an 'aahh!' on her face, that fanned his robe, he turns around, whips his sword and a bleeding head rolls behind as the stallion races ahead with the torso still hanging on saddle. While the other villain still carries on with ferocity, red eyes, coarse scream, following her man and she's shedding tear brooks without a sob, without a blink in her eyes. Her feeble feminine mind absorbed the scene like the unwilling clouds glowing with sun behind them. Her heart had hardly clotted the blood from the first visual wound and another bloody head topples off the dusty stallions running in opposite directions with hanging bodies drawing a bloody trail behind.


The scene remained paused for a while, for the while it took for the dust to settle down, for the while it took for her to succumb to ground with silent stomach retractions, for the while he took to breathe out fire in roars and tears. The scene remained paused till sun descended from zenith to horizon, till birds settled back on trees, till crows and dogs made a ruckus over scavenging supper. The scene remained paused.







Recently, I have taken to jumping into unknown waters after a long period of lame,
uninspiring and adventure free decisions. One such jump I took today was to go for the Violin Concert by
Prof. T. N. Krishnan due to my friend Chaithra's insistence. The institute which hosted the concert, National Chemical Laboratory, Pune was an old building given a fresh spring touch with so many flowering plants arranged in and out of building. Somewhere I could 'dream' of my Care4Nature office with clay walls and flowers spreading a fire of colours. The step back into the arena of dreams made the visit a bliss to me even before I actually experienced the enthralling Violin.


I was to loose all the sense of chemical smells emanating from laboratories soon with growth of thick woods around me, canopies eclipsing the glowing Sun, a river flowing with rhythm of 'Mrudangam' and giggling over rocks with trebles of 'Ghatam' . I was to receive a gift of another medium of expression, another medium of empathizing expressions. When T. N. Krishna started playing, the sound of violin overwhelmed me so much that my senses floated above the notes. The music spilled stories inside my closed eyelids, spilled emotions, induced contemplation, induced aroma. The piece of fiction I have written above, I witnessed it with vigour that almost splashed the blood-spill on my face.


Hats off to the master of Violin & thanks to Chaithra. Though I doubt she will accept this violent foreground to Carnatic Raaga of Hamswadhvani's background.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Alice Richman


I have gone to the Pune University Garden many a times in daytime but did not see this spot somehow - though I knew about it. The garden is known as 'Alice Garden'. I took this photo from someone else's blog and its taken in the day time. If its this shady in daytime, imagine at night! :) It is a nicely wooded place.

Today before an hour at 1.30 am of 12th of January, me and my roommate Abhijit went to Alice's grave. It was a cool experience to go to a place of where I have heard spooky stories. I had heard that Alice's ghost is seen riding a white horse, wearing a white gown in the morning at 5.00 from my old place's roommate Prakash Ratan to whom it was told by a lady in English Dept.

Quotes from my mail to Aanchal: We jumped over the garden gate... saved our sight from the watchmen and went to the alice's grave...we once felt scared that something was coming from the bushes, the branches creaked and owls squeaked... there was a brook right behind the bushes which made all sort of noises..
Though I did not see any ghost but I felt spooky because of the place being dark and branches creaking at the middle of night. And we were not supposed to be seen as well so hiding behind bushes whenever a vehicle would pass. May be some fool would see us roaming in night in white light of the lamp and pee in his pants or the watchman would catch us and thrash :) .

The grave had this written on it:
BORN MELROSE SOUTH AUSTRALIA NOVEMBER 13 1856
AND DIED AT THIS SPOT OF CHOLERA AT THIS VERY SPOT JANUARY 1886
It was a unique experience to chronicle in my life at Pune. I am feeling sad that its coming to an end in a few months now.

Here's an extract from an Indian Express article I found online. Enjoy:

At day time it is the most frequented place by students, but come nightfall, no one wants to be around this solitary grave. With no street lamps, the tall tamarind and neem trees seem more daunting than ever.

It is a story that has its origins in the days of the Raj. One version has it that Alice Richman, daughter of a prominent British official, committed suicide post an unfulfilled love story, and now roams the graves at night in a translucent white fabric. According to the PRO of the university, Gangadhar Jangamwal, who rubbishes all the rumours, the story traces back to Jan 14, 1882. He says, “26-year-old Alice, daughter of former British governor Richman was horse riding in the garden, when she fell down and died.”

But the inscription on the grave tells another story — Born at Melrose, 14 January 1856 , South Australia, Died here of cholera - 13 November, 1882.

“I have been studying here for four years but I have never seen or heard anything. Though I will not deny the fact that I have heard tales from people about the place being haunted,” says Sudhakar Jadhav, a PhD student.


I tried looking online for names of Governors but did not do extensive research. Will buy Pune Uni History booklet from the publication dept soon. Its for 150 bucks but I guess a nice souvenir. Then may be add to this blog entry in a comment or something. :)