Call to Freedom!

FotorCreated-9I have seen dreams die
Youth crying, panicked
“I cannot see a thing
What happened to my eye”

I have seen sleep stab
Flashes, nightmares
Face in palms, crying
“Where did my peace go”

I have seen mournful weddings
No songs of joy being sung
Groom was shot on the way
“Where did his promise go”

I have heard kids wonder
“Everyone comes with parents
I go alone, with my mother
Where did my father go”

I have seen women
Half widows
Not even a grave to cry
“Where did my husband go”

I hear a mother lament
“He was all I had
Peace to my heart, light to my eyes
Where did my son go!”

I see a procession, a funeral
children mourning
I hear people sloganeering
“Azaadi, Azaadi, Azaadi, Azaadi!”

 

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He is a Human Too!

tufail-mattoo3

Talking of home, peace
the beauty of my place
the calm,
Paradise

We somehow reach conflict
the tug-of-war
nobody ready to give in
the dilemma of rope!

I narrate how, every year
we lose sons to bullets
how, abruptly
our streets are painted red

How, out of blues
a pellet hits your eye
How, in an instant
the world turns black!

I explain the mass graves
AFSPA, PSA
Tufail, Zahid, Wamiq Farooq
their graves asking for crimes

Fake encounters, promotions
disappearances
Half-widows, orphans, posthumous
Machil!

Crackdowns, rapes, torture
Papa II, Mama II
Bullets, pellets
Teargas shells!

He asks, “Why are you silent
how can you bear someone
barging doors
killing beloved

Why don’t you retaliate
fight back
serve them as deserved
An eye for an eye!

How could talks help
why yearn for justice
why empty handed
missing rifle…

How could you just sit around
mumb over blood bath
does your blood not boil
Are you so weak at heart?”

How could I explain
I have closely seen pain, death
and when I kill
does his family not die like mine?

Desires

I was listening to someone
talking change
How your dreams, your why matters
How it all falls in place

I look around
people with money on mind
how they desire
banknotes!

I wonder, WHY?
was this motivation?
A session for searching self?
I find myself crying!

My heart is somewhere else
Somewhere weaving verses
listening to dreams
A literary paradise

I peek at this sea of people
craving security, finances
I feel lost
I belong elsewhere

I crave that music, verses
delicate, woven intricately
piercing one through and through
An aura of peace.

I want to cry my heart out
the devastation, heartbreak
I sit silent, pretending
lowered head, dilated eyes

A mere physical presence
My soul, peace somewhere else
The inability to freeze time
insanity of desiring forever!

 

Come Over

 

Look at the war, the turmoil
The way it affects you
A future awaits
Come over

What are you holding onto
Fear? Trauma
A bullet with your name on it?
Come over!

Tranquility awaits you
The grass is greener
Paradise,
Come over

I wondered if it was true
Far away, in exile
And yet paradise
The insistence, come over

Why quit for peace
And justice?
who would ensure that?
Bring back the golden days, come over

I stay back
Work, where others quit
Ensuring justice, brick by brick
I act rather than being a spectator
I won’t come over!

Pay Back

Whenever we see an unhappy couple, or a couple facing some problems, we hear them blaming their partner for this. “It was he who caused this”. “She is to be blamed”. Blah Blah Blah …

When we are in love, we tend to idealise the person, overlooking their negatives. But when we go on to long term commitment, their negatives start to appear prominently. They are no longer ignored but fought over. “Why are you like this?” ” Why do you do that?” “Why can’t you change?”

In such situations we tend to forget that only the other person can’t be at fault. A person has been like this for some 20-25 years and you suddenly expect them to change for you, just because you don’t like something. Why can’t we simply accept each other? The way we are?

The other thing wrong about our relations is blaming and then seeking revenge. “He did this to me, so I would act this way to repay him.” “She did such a thing. I will make her repent. She deserves it.”

Why can’t we treat our mistakes better? Why hold grudges? Why can’t we simplify things? Instead of repaying each other or making the other person regret their doings, why can’t we forget and move on? Why cause each other pain? Or are we all sadists, deriving pleasure of the pain of our loved ones? Of our partners?

The next time you think of punishing you partner in any way, think how many times you have been wrong and they simply let go, never making a fuss. Think of why you love them before thinking what they deserve.

Hearts are fragile and anger only hurts your own self!

Harboured Love

When we love someone, we tend to think of them as close to us. And if possible, we tend to keep them physically close. Within eyesight. Separation and distance seem some kind of a barrier. As if the distance were going to decrease the love, or have an impact on it in some way.

But do we ever consider that the one whom we love might be happier somewhere else? Maybe his desires, dreams where not the proximity we usually tend to maintain? Maybe they have different goals for themselves than what we assume.

When we love someone we do not merely love them for our own sake. We can’t be happy by merely the physical proximity if they aren’t equally happy about it. For love doesn’t captivate it lets you free, happy.

And yet, when someone tries to do something which might take them farther from us, we resist. Even though we know how important or crucial it may be for them, or how much they desire this, we resist. In love, we tend to be selfish.

And as such when someone says that want to die, end their life we resist. We tend to show them the brighter side and convince them to change their mind. We tend to tell them how beautiful life can be or what miracles future may reveal. But in order to save our love we tend to overlook their ordeal.

We tend to forget their issues, their pain. For when a  quadriplegic asks for euthanasia or a trip to Dignitas we tend to feel offended, destroyed. We think they are being selfish. But we do not realise their situation. How they must be feeling one day walking and another day suddenly finding themselves crippled. Of being dependent on someone all the time however trivial the job. How sore they must be and how bored by being in the same place, a chair or a bed, not even able to move a muscle to bring oneself comfort.

We believe we can see them wither away in pain but not let them just die in peace. We expect them to fight their health issues and go through traumatic hospital procedures just because we cannot endure their absence in our lives. We can see them in pain, but not happily dead!

For love does not mean merely holding on and sticking together. It meaning letting go for the sake of other’s happiness. Love is selfless, and when you reject someone’s  plea to freedom, whether physical or emotional, you deny love.

For it is better to die with pride than to look into eyes full of pity.

Priorities

She cried, bewildered
where had the child gone?
But where had she been when
the soul was alone at home
trying not to be afraid
future can hold unknowns!

She looked around for her child
but it was long gone
Where was she when it cried
hungry and so tired
figuring out how to cook,
seeking mother in distress?

She asked, “Why it left early
Was it not too young to die?”
Where was she when he wanted to play
and was shooed away?
made to feel like unwanted
a burden onto the family?

She pleaded them to let it be
and not take it away from her
Where was she when it cried for her
seeking her affection and protection.
When all it desired was her
and she busy with other!

She looked around in despair
It had waited for her hopelessly
She seeks when it no more was
It sought when ignored so hard
And as it parted that fateful day
one lost life and other hope!

Living Away…

It was gonna be fun. Freedom! Going away from home. Far away to study. No one shall bother when lying around lazy. Neither would anyone taunt over everyday failures or about something that happened two years earlier. Ah! that feeling. Maybe the best to say the least.

Shopping, packing, and a tearful adieu! And then? Hostel and books. Freedom! And it was fun. New people, new place and lots to explore. Super excited. Days passed by in that initial high of being far away. Everything was gleeful, pretty. Different culture, different ways. Exploration. Adrenaline high.

And gradually, the high started disappearing. Excitement had put a blanket over flaws. Now they started peeping their heads out like one, two …! Thoughts started filling up the mind. Comparisons. Can someone really replace family? Can your freedom be worth the cost paid? Was this actually freedom? Sigh. Fooled into a mirage. What seemed an open sea was in reality a small pond filled of rain water. Some heat and everything vaporized.

Homesickness. Initial visits to home were desperate. As if trying to escape some nightmare. And the urge to not join the college back. And those tearful eyes of one’s mother silently asking not to leave. Those calls from niece asking the reason for being late. Being told that the one year old’s are crying out your name to seek you. It seems good to know that your absence is being felt but it also kills you to know what all you are missing out. Is missing out all the family fun worth the freedom?

Living away from home, kitchen gets replaced by hostel mess. And all the curses are dedicated to it, criticizing as if it were the worst food available on the whole planet! King sized beds get replaced by a small single bed. And many times you even share the room. Back home? “Don’t enter. Private territory!” Many things change, many myths bust. Living with friends seemed to be fun in thoughts but in reality, issues creep up even with the best of them. Groups emerge and some hate you for no fault of yours, and go on spreading false rumors.

“Get used to and survive”, that’s the only way out. Surviving the day seems to be the ultimate goal. And if it is summer and you live in planes, only God can protect you. The heat, scotching heat is beyond people’s patience and endurance. Most in-campus hostels do not provide AC’s or provide them at high fees and they won’t work during college timings even if you stayed back. Welcome to a living hell. Back home, either the temperatures would not soar so high, or the infrastructure would ensure you peace of mind.

Purpose of hostel: Study. Results: Being lazy. No, hostels do not ensure a student’s study. They are better equipped to ruin students than to create good ones. More often than not, join a party and celebrate. Some days it’s a birthday; on others, anniversary. Many times there are no reasons. Just to fill that emptiness. And studies? Well what is the night before exam for!

Going places, cooking in hostel room and loud music. Which hostel is spared of this noise. What what is cooked? Maggi! Nothing else fills up your tummy that fast. And no one knows how to cook anything else either. Other times, time is killed in photo sessions. Get dressed and Click. Like it were the only job left to do in the whole world. As if all other things had been achieved. Like a bird set free…

Life usually gets out of gear except for highly disciplined people. Sleeping at 6 in morning and missing out classes is just the norm. But then, one month before exams the student population surprisingly rises to full so that people do not get debarred due to attendance woes. A dreaded result.

Living away from home for some four to six years; visiting them for a month in a year. Many times the time period would extend due to the urge to earn a Masters’ or for a job. Vising home less often; many times not. Is this not something so similar to getting married? The day you leave for hostel equivalent to your valedictory ceremony! For parents, even more difficult than that. Getting married takes you to a new household only. And studies? To far off beyond places beyond one’s daily reach. Choose to study out of the station and suddenly everything good is left behind. Sometimes even life is left behind.

However happy you are, a corner of your heart would long for home. Something inside always remains empty. Something… Dad’s pat on back can’t be replaced by a friend’s kind words. Neither can mom’s kisses be replaced by group cuddles. Some things mean so special that even the best of luxuries can’t replace them.