Posted in Life and After

Blood Red Moon

The moon is dripping blood tonight.

I wonder if I’ll get a drop.

I wait outside the movie hall

after the midnight show.

A huge chunk of meat whistles at me,

flexing his biceps in the red glow.

I raise an eyebrow

and walk towards the trees.

I can hear his footsteps

right behind me.

The moon is dripping blood tonight.

I’m sure to get a drop.


Photo by Vivek Doshi on Unsplash

Posted in Love

Alone

I watch the flock of cranes pass by,

and search with them for a warmer hearth

where welcoming arms may await me.

I think of you–

a life lost to ambition.

The chill of winter creeps up my spine.

No arms would welcome me

anywhere.

I am here to freeze alone

in my own company.

Posted in Nature

My Neighbours: The Peeping Jane

The Lockdown has got us better acquainted to our neighbours. A huge number of them have been knocking on our windows for various reasons. I decided to dedicate them a series.

The Peeping Jane
The Peeping Jane

A group of Sunbirds live in the neighbourhood. So far, they had been avoiding photoshoot. But the sudden disappearance of human kind got a couple of females curious (much like dear Harry’s Aunt Petunia) and they decided to check if we were extinct yet. Their eyes became large with shock when they found a whole family of survivors in our quarters.

Male Sunbird last spring when the humans roamed the planet freely
Male Sunbird last spring when the humans roamed the planet freely
Posted in Life and After, Love

Moonlit

The moon is beneath my feet

as I tread carefully

down the silver road

afraid to dispel the magical calm

that holds me together

and stops me from falling apart

from your thought.

Quietly,

I step on the stars

that fall on the way

to my place of rest,

never feeling the burn

of the amber beneath

my bare feet.

My mind’s numb

and so’s my heart

with the chill

that surrounds me.

Once the water rises

filling my emptiness…

We’ll see…

Posted in My life

The Why of the Angel

I was eight then. My mother had the dinner ready but, at around seven PM, my father suggested to eat at our favorite restaurant. I and my brother weren’t the kind to let the opportunity slide. So, we jumped around drowning away our mother’s protests about wasting home-cooked food.

Soon, we got ready and jumped on the scooter. (Yup! Two adults and two semi-grown non-adults on a scooter–that’s how the India traveled then and still does.) A few kilometres away, on a lonely dark road, we saw a car approaching. My father moved the scooter to the side of the road to give it path.

And the world went black.

I began crying with pain and fear. I could hear the voices of my family but we weren’t able to see anything. In a world devoid of mobile phones, we had no source of light. So, we had no idea of what was happening. The road was deserted at night, so no one could have heard or helped us.

But someone did. All of a sudden, we could see faint light above us. Everything after that is blurred in my memory. I remember that someone pulled us all out of the deep hole in the road and drove us all to the hospital in his car. If he hadn’t helped us in that moment, we, blinded by the darkness, could have fallen inside the sewage opening directly beneath us, and drowned.

We never heard from him again.

I don’t remember his face, but I have always remembered him as a hero. I had often thought of him as an angel helping us–only I never knew what we had done to deserve that help.

Many years later, my father, now retired from service, met someone at the railway station. The deep respect in this stranger’s voice belied the fact that he was a high-ranking officer talking to a retired person. While he chatted with my father, I asked mom who he was. She told me a story I had never heard before.

When I was five, my father had found this man on a lonely road. He was gravely wounded and bloodied from a road accident. Other vehicles had driven on, afraid of robbers or the possible blame of causing the said accident. But my father had driven him to the hospital before it was too late for him.

It was three years before our own accident.

Then, I knew why the angel chose to help us. Little acts of kindness go a long way…both ways.

Posted in Nature

At Dusk

After a long day of chores

and heartbreaks,

I look out of the window for solace.

Dusk.

The Sun, now red

like ambers close to an end,

is washed by the ocean waves

of the thin wisps of clouds.

Kissed by the sleepy Sun,

the clouds blush.

The orange Moon,

hiding all day

from the burning anger

of her father,

now comes to face.

She sings quiet songs

made of silver beams

drowning away his rage.

He sleeps at the horizon,

in the arms of dark Night

to wake the next day.

With a quietened heart,

I now seek Hope—

tomorrow

will be a new day.

Posted in Random Thoughts

The Best of Human in difficult times

The difficult times of COVID lockdown have brought out the best and worst of us. While many people have hoarded essential goods, many have come forward to give a helping hand.

  • Individuals are distributing money and food rations to those who aren’t earning anymore and do not have a ration-card.
  • Some people are running kitchens for travellers and students stuck in their cities.
  • Able-bodied people are volunteering to help the elderly.
  • Several companies, including mine, are paying full salary to employees locked in their houses.
  • Delivery guys, medical personnel and police officers are putting their own lives on the line to help us.

Most importantly, nearly 99% of people are behaving responsibly staying at home. So let’s follow the example of the best and leave the worst to deal with their own demons.

Posted in Life and After

Black

She was sitting next to where you lie, mother, all black, serious, and still.

I wanted to ask the traitor the same questions you would have–why she wasn’t around while you were still alive; when you needed to snuggle with her; when you cried for her all night?

But then, she had been out pursuing lord-knows-what.

Now, she finds the time to sit next to where you lie, mother, after you closed those beautiful eyes and left to pursue lord-knows-what; all teary-eyed and seeking forgiveness for neglecting you for all those lonely years; bringing fresh flowers; trying to take my place in your lap.

You could hardly blame me for scratching her face. I wish I had taken out her eyes…but they looked so much like your own.


Photo by Howell_eddie on Unsplash 

Posted in Life and After

Tease

The fly persisted to sit on my screen.

It made me angry.

It was free to fly away.

I wasn’t.

 

Jealous, I swatted.

It flew,

and returned to tease me—

 

I was tied

to my homestead and duties.

She wasn’t.

Posted in Life and After

The Nutcracker

v2osk-eIiz51cVAck-unsplash

She wasn’t ready to part with the nutcracker yet. Everything else was sold—the house,  furniture, expensive clothes, and shoes—the reminders of their years together.

But the nutcracker they had bought on their last Christmas together before he went to the war…and came back in a box… ‘He’ would stay and bear witness that she remarried but never moved on.


Photo by v2osk on Unsplash

Posted in Random Thoughts

150+ Followers, 250+ Stories

I just wanted to celebrate a moment of small victories. Fish in the trees now has 150+ WordPress followers! 😁

Wooohoooooo!

I also crossed the mark of 250 stories a couple of weeks back. 😎 (My ‘poetry’ is simply ‘stories with rhytm’.)

To think that I had never written stories before, except for English language assignment, I would have considered this feat impossible 10 months back when I started this blog. 😊

It calls for a celebration. In the spirit of the worldwide lockdown, I am sharing food online (Vegetarian only). 😇

Take your pick.

🧀🍔🍟🍕🌮🌯🥙🥘🍲🥗🍿🍱

🍨🍩🎂🍰🍫🍬🍭🍧🍦🍮

Enjoy!

Posted in Life and After

The Dog and His Man

alex-motoc-YzOhaPkU-E8-unsplashI take him for a walk first thing in the morning. He needs one.

He may complain about the early hours, the rainy weather and the muddy footprints on the floor but he loves them too. I’ve seen how he inhales the freshness in the air, not yet tainted by the traffic of the rush hour. I know he loves the dragonflies at the river, so I pull him there too. I splash around while he grumbles, until the old man gets his toes wet and relaxes visibly.

He sometimes protests that he is getting too old for this, but well, so am I. It is not easy to chase a deer anymore, but I do that anyway. How else will he get his exercise?

He may give me only one sausage a day and be a scrooge-ish when it comes to my biscuits. But I love him anyway, so I look out for him.


Authors note: This story is dedicated to Pete, my favorite serial-fiction writer, and Ollie, his companion and guardian angel. To know more about them or read some great crime-fiction, visit his site: beetleypete.com


Photo by Alex Motoc on Unsplash

 

Posted in Nature

The Mettle

I walk around the city

without purpose

drowning in gloom.

Long unemployment

Often does that to you.

Yellow flashes

in the corner of my vision

in a crack of the pavement

pulling me forward,

a marionette on strings.

A cluster of flowers,

smaller than my nail,

stand tall, smiling,

in a place

where stomping feet

can wipe them out

instantly.

They care not,

smiling

in the face of adversity,

unlike me.

Posted in Life and After

The Precipice

Waves race to mark the passage of time.

Crashing against the rocks, daring me.

I wait for nothing.

Looking back, I see nothing.

Looking ahead, I see the Sun close to close.

So am I.


Author’s note: For those of you wondering, I am not suicidal. But one month of being locked up with a bunch of crazies (my family) pushes you down the precipice.


Photo by Maksym Ivashchenko on Unsplash

Posted in Nature

Home

My tired mind hopes for a stroll,

but the stench of traffic assaults me

and slams back the door.

 

Sigh! How I miss home.

 

The place where I grew,

jasmine wafted through the windows,

harsingar filled the roads.

 

Frogs lured me out,

crickets sang all night, and

fireflies gilded the path with gold.

 

The moon shone brighter,

stars seemed more and merrier.

 

Woodfire and

roast potatoes called to me,

pulling me where men told stories

 

of ghosts on peepal tree,

and herds of deer.

 

I wonder where the deer are now,

for the pastures are long gone.

 

I feel sad for the Peepal tree ghosts

who lost their favorite haunts.

 

No Harsingar or Jasmine

no fireflies, owls, crickets and frogs,

dwell the unyielding cement roads.

 

No one gathers around woodfire

to share stories or lore.

 

How I miss the home

of my childhood,

for this is home no more.


This piece is inspired by Mohan, my friend and colleague, who told me about the real Bangalore, a place he lost over the past two decades of ‘development’.  

Posted in Nature

My Neighbours: The Delivery Guy

Authors note: I am trying a different genre now inspired by the Ellen’s Wonderfuss Faeries. You can visit her blog for a good laugh combined with Scottish mythology. I am fairly new at the genre though. Also, I am painting after 15 years. So, bear with me.

Bagula Saheb from his grumpy days

Meet Bagula Saheb, our resident delivery guy, He brought my daughter home three years back. For many years, he had been handling local deliveries on his own (Cranes usually manage the intercity stuff.)

But lately, he had been looking a little grumpy. I guess the constant work-related travel and the increasing pressure on his time was getting at him. I tried to talk to him but he just won’t stop, always crying “Busyyyyy! Busyyyyy!” Lately, the lockdown has locked the humans in their homes, and birds and animals have a free reign outdoors, more work seemed to be coming his way. So, I wasn’t surprised when I saw him approaching the higher-ups for help.

Bagula Saheb approaching the higher authorities
Bagula Saheb approaching the higher-ups

The result was heartening. He was instantly provided with a female colleague. Together, they were promised a brood of tiny apprentices to train in the coming months. Once ready, these apprentices will take most of the workload off his shoulders.

He seemed to be over the moon by the arrangement. I could hear him cackling with delight all night, earning him some very sleepy, grumpy and puffy-eyed neighbors. But well, who cares! Woohoo!