Category Archives: My Ramblings

Of a Writer’s Mind: Antipoles

for Lambros

Discovered this via Brewed at 5 am – it was so unsettling, that it compelled me to write something about it.

What most do not realize that no pull is greater than the urge to pen words on to a paper; for inspiration is a fickle thing. It comes at the most unfortunate time and sly that it is, if not penned down at that particular moment, it disappears and never comes back.

I have built empires and destroyed them in my mind; landscapes, buildings, nations, creatures, and what not has taken form in my mind and has then crumbled with time. This is how terrifying it is, so utterly scary that what you create is so simple, so easy to shatter. And even whence that particular figment of imagination has scampered away, it leaves behind a vestigial feeling of regret, that you failed to grasp the idea and put it into words. Not much is more haunting than the ghost of an old idea – always there to pester but never perceptible enough for you to get rid of it.

However, the vice versa is no less difficult. You pen down the words; but it doesn’t end there. You nitpick, you edit, you erase, you strike down. And even when it is out for the world to read, rather than triumph, dissatisfaction plagues you. For, being a writer means that you are never really satisfied with your work. There is always a better word out there that you could have used, some phrase that would have been more apt. And this rattling feeling of something just not being right always stays with you.

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A tragedy in the making

They were afraid. Frightened not of the intensity, not of the ferocity of their love, but of the massive bubble that had encapsulated their lives. The entire world could see through the bubble; a loving couple much in love. What the world could not see, however, was the consequence their otherworldly love had on their lives. They needed each other to complete one another; their individual identities had been sewn in the quilt of other great loves.

Do not mistake me. They had forsaken their precious, separate lives to spend a life together. And it was indeed a wonderful life that they spent together.

But they paid dearly for it.

In their quest to become them, they forgot what he and she symbolized.

The world called what they shared a legendary love. But all they saw was a new tragedy in the making.

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typewritten love

This is how I picture it:

He leans over a glossy, beautiful typewriter, that basks in its vintage glory. He puckers his face in concentration, as he goes over the dozens of requests made by complete strangers. He leans back. He, maybe, sways his head a bit to the left and chews at the end of the pencil he has nibbled at for the past hour, while creativity did its rounds inside his mind. He, then, maybe, just sighs a little; nay, not of exasperation, nor of boredom, but of the inability to choose one of the many requests. He finally picks one that he believes will resonate the most. He straightens up. He mounts the paper on the platen. And, then he starts pecking away at the keys.

The ambiance of the room, where he writes on his beloved typewriter, is fascinating at that moment – the moment when thak thak, the sound of the keys, impregnates the air; the moment when he pushes each key, as lovingly as an artist would paint strokes with a brush; the moment when he  types each word with the realization that somewhere, someone may get inspired by it.

And, once he finishes typing, he smiles.

He knows he has typed something meaningful.

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This is what he typed for me.

mytypes4'

Thank you for the love, Typewriter.

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Suffocation

Third Person: She

She saw them push him into the pipe: many times smaller than his size. They huffed and puffed, swore and cursed, twisted and turned him like a corkscrew, edging him inch by inch into the narrow, tunneled out prison. It seemed a tedious task, this relentless shoving, yet they persevered. With an unbridled determination, they continued their efforts, in squeezing him inside a space that was anything but spacious.

What drove them to commit such madness? to inflict such agony? She did not know.

Perhaps, they derived pleasure from tormenting him. Perhaps, they appeased some carnal impulse of brutality. Perhaps, they just wanted to gain the satisfaction of pushing someone to their limits. Perhaps they just wanted to suffocate all vigor, all vitality, all life out of his veins.

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Second Person: They

Numbness stole through their bodies, sneaking from the poisonous crevices of their hearts into their bloodstream. They did not feel his pain. They did not have the compassion to feel his pain. They had been blindfolded into doing the wrong by the sense of their right. And, so they pushed and pushed and pushed – a mantra that knew no end.

What drove them to commit such madness? to inflict such agony? They thought they knew.

A thousand excuses, they thought of. All balderdash.

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First Person:  He

He felt his bones crunch, his innards clench, as the constricting rubber of the pipe closed around him. He felt the grim material stretch across his limbs, sticking, adhering to his skin. He felt their clammy hands clawing into his shoulders with every heave, with every push. He felt his skin grow cold, his sweat vaporize. He felt his life slowly dwindle to a mere flame, stripped of all its fiery glory. He felt the wick of his life coming to a premature end.

What drove them to commit such madness? to inflict such agony?

He knew the answer.

They could not see him happy.

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Avalanche

A sieve is what he wished for – a porous membrane that would help him sift through the chaos swirling in his head.

How do you confront all heads of Hydra together? How do you choose which one to hack? How can you know for sure  that two more heads would not sprout up in the place of the one you hacked off?

He wondered how a slight inkling of trouble could have evolved into a myriad of problems: problems that had determined to consume him so utterly, so absolutely as to not even leave an iota of his will unscathed. He understood now: the hollow quotes, the vague statuses he had shared on Facebook – they did not mean anything. They did not help him unravel his problems. They did not help him find solutions. All they ever invoked was a false sense of security; that somehow, the statuses, the quotes would help him exorcise his troubles.

He understood now: how intricately his thought processes were woven with his actions. How he had to chalk deeds on his slate, to clear his mind. How taking even the smallest of steps was more important than just twiddling thumbs and doing nothing.

It takes but a little stone dislodged, to set off an avalanche. And if you find yourself in the midst of one, you do not allow it to overwhelm you.

Instead you do something: you grab a boulder and hang on.

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The Fate of the Puppeteer

PuppetMaster
He was a puppeteer and a master one at that. A tweak, a whirl, a dance – and his puppets would come to life.

Some people called him a magician, for he did create a surreal reality: a world inhabited by his obedient puppets, a farce dressed up as the truth. Some called him a mean trickster, for he deceived people with his delightful delusions: a world founded upon control and manipulation, a farce dressed up as truth. Some considered him nothing but a fraud: build as he did a world without any figment of reality.

He was a virtuoso – so he used all ten fingers.

Uno, deception.

Dos, feigned innocence.

Tres, felinity.

Cuatro, shrewdness.

Cinco, slyness.

Seis, control.

Seite, manipulation.

Ocho, intelligence.

Nueve, cold.

Deiz, malice.

His theatrics were an art, his fingers at work fascinating to watch.

He started off with the first two fingers and constructed a scenario. Third, fourth and fifth fingers soon came into action and developed the plot. Then, sixth, seventh and eighth fingers handled and maneuvered the characters. Ninth and tenth fingers completed the show with a diabolic touch.

What plots he spun! How characters he swayed! What conclusions he weaved! What menaces he brewed!

So, for many, many years, did the puppeteer spellbound audiences – until the day he lay on his death bed.

And, despite his webs, his mesmerizing illusions, none was there to hold his hand.

For his fingers worked no more.

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Inspired by Skins – Season 1, Episode 5: Sid.