un•tether

In a time of great vulnerability and feeling exposed to the dangers of the darkness seeping into my uncorked brain;
I tethered my psyche to her through a non existent umbilical cord.
A weak tether for our age, I misjudged the strength. I needed it more than her, thus titling the balance to my disadvantage.
I had assimilated all aspects of my existence and my raison d’être and tightly anchored it to the spiral cage of her hair.

We wrote a manifesto of false promises, agendas of fulfilling unreal expectations, and plans to execute shortsighted pleasure and childish trifle.

Suffice it to say that I was nearly killed.

One shouldn’t be this exposed in the first place. Tender and raw like a newborn, I was visible,
my long face in the periphery of every set of eye balls with a glean of concern over corneas like dripping butter on steel plates- they’d come up to me and say “it’ll be alright.”

-Tanmay

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The unfailing genius of Murakami to draw me back

I spent over four months reading 1Q84 and while the journey was magical and intriguing, the conclusion was undramatic and predictable. I was broken, for this was the first time in over a year of continuously reading him that I’d been disappointed with Murakami. There were scathing reviews of 1Q84 that bashed him and his motifs and in particular his treatment of women.

I had absolutely fallen in love with his writing in The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle and Men without Women in 2019, and none other has come close to the pure magic in exhibited in The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle.

But I still picked Kafka on the Shore having heard so much about it, and it was a better experience, although the conclusion can be accused of being highly abstract. However Murakami employed quite cleverly the usage of metaphors, and declared so beforehand via philosophical discussions between characters (a signature of Murakami), thereby equipping us with the right tool to analyse the chapters which took place in the most random of settings with no particular link to the story. These Metaphors are symbolic of the trial of man (and woman), resulting in definite actions taken to resolve conflicts, depicted in the book as stationary places affording time to the character to make a definite choice. The apparent abstraction of those chapters concentrated at the end of the novel are perhaps one of the most elaborate and long metaphors to be employed in works of literary fiction.

In an interview in The Paris Review, Murakami quotes John Irving and says that a writer must make addicts our of his/her readers. I for one am said addict.

Tanmay

one face; many souls

Freedom of thoughts- your thoughts are your assets. Even the private ones. In fact it is our completely private and secret thoughts that keep us sane. Appropriate behaviour, subscription to certain morals in public for the society, appropriate language etc. are often argued to be nothing more than methods of controlling people in a manner that is soft and subtle but has far reaching consequences in actual social life.

One of the most common conundrums: How many times do you feel like you shouldn’t say something humorous because it may be grossly misunderstood to an extreme?

There’s no hard and fast rule to that. You could say something reckless and not in tune with modern social sensibilities- (said with the purest of intents)- and then face rebuke but as long as your own head space is fortified there’s a high chance your mental health won’t be affected.

How do you take responsibility though? What you say is an extension of yourself, and that “image” of yours can be crafted by you and then becomes open to the public to be scrutinised and painted upon. Responsible behaviour is part self-awareness and part knowledge of sensibilities. Both these fronts will never be a 100% correct for any individual.

Responsible behaviour would involve an adherence to not inflicting on others what you would never want inflicted upon yourself. Personal sensibilities vary with time and thus self-awareness kicks in. What you said in the past is not necessarily a true reflection of your present. But you don’t have to “delete” those expressions. Time and context.

So I revert back to the privacy of thoughts. To maintain your peace you may project an image but in the privacy of your thoughts you may choose to live completely contrary to what you said. And that is allowed. Your private thoughts aren’t policed yet and you should use them to their maximum potential for mental comfort, peace and learning.

This is a short summary of my thoughts on the matter. There are more facets involved to thoughts and thinking. We shall explore them slowly as we go along.

-Tanmay

absentia

I’m sorry for not writing here. To be honest it became mundane. This kind of mundane that is not easy to spin around and cloak under a bag of confetti. Screens always limit imagination. However I’ll keep up a schedule to put up stuff here.

The good thing is that I’ve been writing a lot in my diary. Pen and paper. Feel like flying in the air whilst writing.

See you soon.

-Tanmay

red on green

pleas to sustain and spare the pain

we’re bared to you for your gain

no cloak no quilt

only a mother’s guilt,

watching the glee with which

my green roots and shoots

trembled under your creaky boots;

grumbling old men with jittery teeth

that clatter and grind over beetle leaves

and worms in gums that chatter together

leaving big stains and a cancerous pane

of crimson and brown and blood and hound.

grumbling old men that don’t hesitate

to strike check mate-

and bring my fate,

axes and picks and saws- a dozen

only to kill all millions heathens.

grumbling old men that use the knife

to kill all of their wives

it’s similar to that don’t you see?

I served them too with brilliant tea.

so life is cut and life is eased

life is cut and life is eased

for deserted plains that resemble grey

desperation and dismay

-Tanmay

cut the crap and work

we’re all grasses in a field

different shades

swaying in the wind

caressed by a dogs furs

or dumped on by his shit

and we let ants pass through

and let our earth be churned by worms

enjoying the minutest tectonic shift to the actual earth

still it’s important for our life

the adversity offered by the soil turners

helps in growth

or character

I don’t know

they say something along those lines,

but let’s go ahead swaying under

the winds of the city

carrying with them the ashes of, dreams-

fulfilled

and crushed.

we sense it all in an attempt

to make sense

and realise that

our soil is poor

we could have done more

but we were stuck with thinking

the grass is greener on the other side

the grass is greener on the other side…

-Tanmay

tsunami

I entered yesterday’s first class right at the moment I got up. It was a swift movement of the legs propelling me out of bed as a bunny would, and I jumped straight to my plywood table covered with an off white sunmica. I log in immediately for it is 2020, the year my generation is going through its first pandemic holed up in their homes, scared, bored, uncertain. Too much changed this year to make sense of. And the changes being so drastic their consequences are much more difficult to fathom. But I guess those with money are lucky. It’s not tough. Upholding the safety norms is enough. There’s enough time to indulge in myriad experiences, provided you’re in a city with low regulations. Experiences that’ll help cope with the tsunami of unknown consequences that’ll follow.

-Tanmay

part

oh how he wailed into the lacerating night

the night he lost his wife

he wailed and wailed and wailed

until the clouds parted and a concerned

moon showed its scarred face

and gave the man a shadow to pour his pain out

of course it didn’t help

what could a moon do except raise some water day in and day out

so our man howled and wailed and cursed the

silent knife of a night

the silent night that let his wife pass away

unceremoniously

-Tanmay

bathroom bedlam and drugs

leaky faucets dripping incessantly

birthing a river; home to invisible creatures

I

on the pale commode

with my feet on the cheapest tiles we could afford ten tears ago

see transparent squids through silent eyes

tentacles warping in all directions

touching toes

touching souls

to transfer a message

between species, a message from the sea

of salt and petals and sharks and seagulls

the water calls

me

and I feel it on my head

the water

“Yes! I feel it!

A few drops! Like rain!”

but it’s only my slumber

that has me forgetting that

the electric geyser up there also leaks

-Tanmay

brown

Everyday we drink tea, resting the tea cups on round jute coasters on a large brown wood coffee table with an even larger brown tinted glass surface.

The tint makes the newspapers below look 30 years old- as if they were fished out from our storage room, but of course they bear today’s day and date- neat and crisp.

The rusk often drips into the tea as we stare into our respective screens on quiet mornings of days’ that we know entail toil. The unuttered desperation for rest adds to the silence, broken periodically by the stunted cries of stunted sparrows. The sparrrows are smaller than they used to be 20 years ago. Their plumage pathetic now, dirt-like instead of the browns that we have preserved in our eyes.

A three-some of green parrots show up at the window near the dining table, overlooking the cemetery. Always in threes, and always silent for the fear of attracting a predator who’d claw them down.

Only once have I sighted a large hawk in our skies, gawking over the cemetery as if it was its land. How would I explain to it that that land is disputed property…

-Tanmay