Cloudburst

Growing up in the dry swelter of Austin, Texas, I should have developed some form of resistance against hot weather. I had my fair share of melanin too, so pulling through the heat should have been a breeze. Except it wasn’t. Ugh. I loathed high temperatures so much that we eventually resorted to camping out in California every summer. And when the time came for us to relocate to Hamburg, Germany, I was the happiest little five-year-old on the face of the Earth.

But two and a half years in nice, cool Hamburg only further spoiled me. The subsequent relocation — from Germany to India — was preceded by a long string of tantrums and numerous violent attempts to emancipate myself from the barbarity of moving closer to the equator. But I was quick to discover that I had been blessed yet again — the particular city I was moving to, Bangalore, had a climate that was thankfully pleasant year-round.

Nine years later, I was still the same no-tolerance-for-heat kid you knew back in elementary school. So with all that melanin, which, for the most part, was entirely worthless, I found myself in the middle of a major cringefest this summer when Bangalore fell victim to a scorching hot spell. This spell sent Bangalore’s temperatures soaring well above even Cairo’s, and with fans that were about as effective as potatoes when it came to lowering temperatures, I had to find some other form of ventilation. So I decided to write another poem, because that would totally set things straight again. The initial plan was to write a desperate plea to the gods for rain, but two words into the poem, I got sidetracked as usual. So much for that. I began blathering about lies and betrayal and generally dark, dystopian shit, which, by the way, is completely irrelevant to this introduction. But it sounds poetic and makes half an ounce of sense, so you might as well give it a read all the same. And about the weather, FML.

Cloudburst

Thunder crack.
Veins light up from a sea of black.
Nervous drips, a faith attacked,
As we plunge into this sea of black;

The hand in the hearth
Meets not warmth, but frigid discomfort;
Now skies once warm, calm, inert
Send their wet leaking through the earth;

No cleft, no vent, no light of day,
Nothing left, save delirium, decay;
For truths were distorted to disarray,
And contorted till they disgorged dismay;

What remains of our kingdom of lies?
What remains of our dulcet disguise?
Gone with the wind, with impotent cries,
With disfigured names and bloodshot eyes;

‘To what end?’ Wearied, we ask,
Though we know all hope has passed,
That this day might just be our last,
Because none forget the faults of our past…

‘To what end?’
‘Our own.’

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B.R.O.

Yo, so this is me returning after a not-so-well-deserved break from writing. After, what, one month of miserably fumbling about in class and gallivanting across Japan and Greece, I’ve reluctantly come back to the blog. And it’s no heroic return either.

In my boarding school, we have to put up with a certain atrocity called ‘Golden Hour’ every evening. There’s absolutely nothing whatsoever that’s ‘golden’ about it, unless you really do dream of being locked up in a room for (ahem) more than an hour and forced to study in complete silence with no laptops. Not my flight of fancy, mate.

But time to time, textbooks threaten to bore stiff, and it so happened that yesterday, I found myself sitting next to the most vexatious of dunderheads. I have this one diminutive, wiry creature for a classmate, and by this point almost everyone in the grade has likened his appearance to that of a reptile. A reptile whose forked tongue is forever lashing out scatterbrained claims of muscles we know don’t exist. A reptile whose entire life is spent scurrying around our dorm and bringing terror and misery to humans who bear some trace of relevance. A reptile whose… Anyhow, back to Golden Hour. For some wicked reason, I ended up sitting next to this royal pea-brain, and gouging my eyeballs out didn’t seem particularly wise. But then again, neither did Chemistry or Physics, and so I whipped out a pen and set about writing. A twenty-line punch in the face. Because ain’t got no time for you, bro.

B.R.O.

Lights, camera,
No action for you, bro.

First, second, third base;
Just strikeouts for you, bro.

No Game, No Life;
Were you born dead, bro?

You make girls sweat;
But they sweat in fear, bro.

I cry in the dark;
Eyes can’t open to you, bro.

Censorship no more?
Watch me turn away from you, bro.

Finish line at infinity;
Watch me race away from you, bro.

Rainbows in the sky;
But just red from your neck, bro.

Now go buy yourself some doughnuts,
And reach home plate at last, bro.

So just get out of my face, yo;
I’ll get out of your… where’s the face, bro?

Nowhere Else

A blog with only two half-assed poems for company is a lonely one. So I decided to write a third. Not because I wanted to, not because I needed to, but simply because I took pity on the poor, desolate website that I so grudgingly call my blog. But what was I to do in the face of the universe’s perpetual dearth of inspiration? Honor my self-centeredness and write about my own life, of course!

Anyway, three years of my childhood were spent in the erratic, tumbledown city of Istanbul, Turkey. If you’ve even heard the rumors, you’ll know that this meant spending only 10% of my time out of traffic jams, and that even this time was spent breathing air that was only 10% oxygen (*cough* cigarette smoke *cough*). But hellish nightmares aside, those three years really weren’t all that bad, as awful as I’d thought they’d be.

But only after I left Istanbul did I realize how much I actually loved the place. I missed my friends, I missed the food, I even missed my house, despite all the downright weird shit that went down in it… So, reminiscing the emotions I feel every time I revisit the city, I decided to make this poem a general ode to returning home, whatever that word may mean. Alright, I guess that’s enough emotional sap for now, so… here you are.

Nowhere Else

Clouds break into a cold sweat,
Into a rain that never dries;
But skies bask in a golden sunset,
In a light you refuse to ever let die.

You never really left, did you?
Weren’t you here all along?
Every window and wall reminds you
Of laughter, of tears, of moving on.

The warmth of the crackling fire,
The balcony, its cold blue breeze
Haven’t faded or expired;
They’re perennial, memories.

It’s odd, that restful feeling
You get when, at last, you’re back.
Nothing’s changed, not really;
This shimmering sea of black

Still lies beneath a sky of stars
Whose light floods through a dream.
A calm that spreads so wide and far,
When nostalgia finally ends its scream.

Nowhere else can you hold up despair
With just one finger of gleaming bliss;
Nowhere else can you breathe this air
A familiarity you’ve so wholly missed.

Years and years you were kept away
From here, or so you’ve thought.
But a part of you refused to stray
From here; you’re afraid to part

With this untroubled state of mind
Where rapture suffocates gloom;
It’s comfort and contentment you find
In this place, this place you call home.

Stolen Daylight

Update on Poetry Slam Fiasco — Eight hours of disturbed sleep had passed since my first disastrous attempt (Cracked) at writing something for the slam, and the bitter aftertaste still hadn’t left my mouth. Ugh. Except for it was now the day of the slam, and while everyone else had finished writing their poems and moved on to figuring out how to recite them, there I was, trying to claw my way out of a panic attack.

I needed to get something done, and fast, if I wasn’t to make a complete moron of myself that evening. So I searched far and wide for something, anything even vaguely reminiscent of inspiration. But after nearly ripping my brain to scraps trying to find something to write about, I crashed down on my bed in a bout of grief, crying imaginary tears and nearing the give-up phase. First I felt exhaustion. Then boredom. Then numbness.

Ah, but that last sensation (or a lack thereof) hit me like a bulldozer. Finally. So I decided to write about numbness itself, and explore detachment, loss of emotion, and suicide. Now I don’t know how well that came through, but when I was finally done, I was left with nearly two hundred words’ worth of pseudo-epic bullshit that sounded like something I could recite at the slam. So I did. Ha.

Stolen Daylight

Imprisoned in this crippled realm,
Bound and gagged, collapsing, numb;
Paralyzed by wasted time,
No past, no future left to climb.

The skies are gray, my spirit worn;
Day and night, a contrast torn.
Screeching, howling wounds agape;
End this curse, let me escape.

Twisted fingers, a frozen lock,
Undying time, eternal shock;
There is no life, there is no pain,
Fire and ice are all the same.

Shattered eyes, a fraying soul,
What is this place, so stoned and cold?
Strangled thoughts, it’s time to leave;
There’s nothing left here to believe.

Claws of meat and blades of steel,
The wolves dive in for their last meal;
My flesh has wept from chasms deep,
Eager for this twilight sleep.

By eventide my world has bent,
Into my depths I make descent;
And now at last I breathe again,
There is no why, there is no when.

Crimson anguish left behind,
What do I seek? What shall I find?
I race into the morning wind,
To skies azure and clouds aglint.

Forever here, I thus reside,
Screaming, broken tears have dried.
Thank you, dear, beloved knives,
For it’s in death that my life thrives.

Cracked

The first thing you need to know about me — I don’t write that much at all. Part of the reason why I even began this blog was because I needed to arrange my thoughts in a half-intelligible format. So I’ve decided to begin this epic quest with no more than a poem. An innocent, harmless, twee little poem.

Well actually, it’s not innocent at all. I wrote this poem only because I needed something to perform at a local poetry slam. So I asked my roommate for a prompt, and, lo and behold, he endows upon me ‘temptation by cocaine’. Why he thought I could relate to such a topic I do not know, but I set about trying to write something anyway. What ended up happening was that I tried to use an extended metaphor to describe cocaine. Sadly, however, I ended up using sex, out of all things, as a comparison. Stupid, yes, I know. Because the metaphor itself was, in all respects, smutty, I ended up altogether scrapping the idea of reciting the poem. Yeah. But here it is anyway.

Oh, and just to clarify, at the time of writing this, I have neither had sex (I cry) nor snorted cocaine. I wrote this poem armed only with a pen, paper, and a largely deformed imagination. Now read.

Cracked

That night I saw her
So white and fine,
I said to her, ‘No.
You’re not mine.’

But shortly after,
She called again;
Laced and ready,
I let her in.

She stole, she robbed,
But the things she gave!
Power and control;
She was my slave.

The adventures shared,
The futures forged;
I could do anything,
On her I gorged.

A rush, a thrill
Beyond compare;
But to be without her?
A bleached nightmare.

And thus I let
My soul take flight,
My body left caked,
Sprinkled with white.

But then I saw
A dawn so cold,
And she was gone;
To her I’d been sold.

Distorted, destroyed,
These cracks in my head;
Now I was empty
And the grave was my bed.