Wednesday, September 21, 2011

A bowl of something sweet

Do you remember what it feels like to plonk yourself on a soft surface, squish your chest against a large purple cushion and simply eat a bowl of something sweet? I have felt that way all evening.

(mainly because it is exactly what I have been doing, still... I shall hazard a prediction and say that perhaps this feeling will continue)


I have been reading an incredible book, something that makes me laugh out loud on the tube, the silent, stiffly formal, jubilee of grey suits and crimson blusher and chanel.

Not only is it great writing, funny, poignant, memorable, but its also smart writing, its intelligent, its new and quirky. Most importantly, it fits in perfectly with the ex-read and the now-read.

I could not have asked for, and found a more perfect in-between to Neuromance/Engineman and The Stuff of Thought. It already feels exhilarating, breathless, as I am 48 pages in and I have to put it away, force myself to stop. You can't have too much of a good thing, but you can have it all too soon.

I came home, studiously put the book away and made myself some gajar ka halwa. And I eat it now, and feel like the world is bursting with wonderfulness.

I discovered a word today, and I don't know what it really means, but maybe it isnt a real word, or maybe it is a portmanteau. Either way, I love this word - monomyth. I have my own meaning for it.

And later, as I was thinking about monomyths, I came up with another word-phrase. Unilateral love. Isn't that so much better than unrequited love? And doesn't it feel right, somehow, just, right, to say, I will unilaterally love you.
(yes, I thought about the commas, deeply).

If I loved a lawyer, this is what I would say to him. I would say, let us not talk of conditions, precedent or subsequent, or signings, or commitments. Let us forget about security (and you know I must love him so, to forget about _security_). I just love you, unilaterally.

(much drafting at work. Much security documentation being read.)

Someone I know of, from someone I know, sent me a poem recommendation, but I shall say, she sent me a poem. (and how wonderful it is, when people just send you poetry, is it not?). I should like very much to be the girl-they-send-poetry-to.

It deserves a post, all of its own, but today, because it is a day of such sweetness, and because this poem is like clove honey (with a taste of butterscotch):

Under One Small Star

My apologies to chance for calling it necessity.
My apologies to necessity if I'm mistaken, after all.
Please, don't be angry, happiness, that I take you as my due.
May my dead be patient with the way my memories fade.
My apologies to time for all the world I overlook each second.
My apologies to past loves for thinking that the latest is the first.
Forgive me, distant wars, for bringing flowers home.
Forgive me, open wounds, for pricking my finger.
I apologize for my record of minuets to those who cry from the depths.
I apologize to those who wait in railway stations for being asleep today at five a.m.
Pardon me, hounded hope, for laughing from time to time.
Pardon me, deserts, that I don't rush to you bearing a spoonful of water.
And you, falcon, unchanging year after year, always in the same cage,
your gaze always fixed on the same point in space,
forgive me, even if it turns out you were stuffed.
My apologies to the felled tree for the table's four legs.
My apologies to great questions for small answers.
Truth, please don't pay me much attention.
Dignity, please be magnanimous.
Bear with me, O mystery of existence, as I pluck the occasional thread from your train.
Soul, don't take offense that I've only got you now and then.
My apologies to everything that I can't be everywhere at once.
My apologies to everyone that I can't be each woman and each man.
I know I won't be justified as long as I live,
since I myself stand in my own way.
Don't bear me ill will, speech, that I borrow weighty words,
then labor heavily so that they may seem light.

Wislawa Szymborska


S. said...

I am loving this unilateral love :) There was a fabulous essay I read sometime by someone (an Indian writer), about the different kinds of love. Like the love of Rukmini and Krishna that survives because it was fulfilled, and the love of Radha and Krishna which survives, equally, because it was not. Several years after that someone sent me this beautiful song (, which I now present to you, Oh Girl To Whom People Send Poetry *-) And all I could think of when I heard it was that essay and how the idea of love should be more pluralistic and all encompassing than the intense, desperate, sorry thing we straitjacket it into. Come hither oh nanoseconds of happiness, or lifetimes of friendship, or exchanges of glances with strangers, or unilateral love, or anything that will make the life richer in the Now :):)

Bee Wee said...

Ha! Glad to see Szymborska find new lovers. And while we are on the subject of sharing beautiful verse, please read Clenched Soul by Neruda or The Letter by Bei Dao (translated). Just simply beautiful. I found this lovely volume of Faiz Ahmed Faiz recently and it had transliterated versions of his work and i am drowning in it.

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