Wednesday, 26 December 2012

A Strange Encounter

Travelling by train is a miniature of our life-journey. We arrive at the station, board a train to our destination, meet so many strangers, interact with them, and finally depart waving good-bye to them. Sometimes, a brief encounter leaves us with a strange yet sweet remembrance now and then to be renewed at every journey we make.
My train to Bangalore 'Sanghamitra' was running 6 hrs. behind its scheduled time because of the intense fog, a regular feature in Winter, and had reached Allahabad at 7.30 in the morning.
She was a woman of approaching forty-five, clad in plain clothes - a woolen scarf, blue shawl, floral printed saree paired with a handbag with its seams open and a gaping zip showing the bulge of clumsy tits and bits. She clambered onto the foot rails of the train which had just started  gathering up its momentum. Somebody acted wisely pulling the chain to save her faltering steps. The next moment she was inside the A.C.II compartment gasping and panting with an embarrassed smile on her lips, which usually comes when one is caught red handed in the middle of an unapproved act.
Recovering from that initial unnerving jolt, she said,"Can I sit here for a while?" A few nods of approval enabled her to sit by my side.
She started mumbling to overcome her embarrassment " This is how one falls from a running train while trying to board...legs slip from the foot dangerous! What can I do...all the trains are running so late...not a single train has arrived today since morning and I have to be in time to join my duty."
I asked,"Where do you work?"
"I'm in the Force posted at Mirzapur."
Just then the pantry car vendor arrived with his tray of breakfast in his sing-song voice,"Bread-Cutlet, Bread-Omelette..Sir!"
I ordered only for omelette and asked him how much I'd have to pay for it. "Twenty-seven Rupees, auntie."
Not having enough change, I handed him a fifty rupee note. He took it and started foraging his pocket hanging out from his soiled apron. "Ma'm, Why don't you have a full b'fast of bread and butter? I don't have loose change to return you."
Meanwhile, the stranger woman had been contemplating over the entire situation. "Do you have bread with butter? How much will I have to pay for it?"
Distracted by the wistful look in her eyes for bread and butter, I asked the vendor to keep back the change of three Rupees and give the bread and butter to her.The vendor readily obliged me  with a sweet smile.
She hesitatingly said that she would pay for it. "It's so rushy and hectic in the morning, preparing b'fast and sending my three children to school that I hardly get time to have a cup of tea for myself. Then this rush to catch a train to reach on!"
Remembering my early days of commuting to Patna for B.Ed. classes, gulping down just a few bites in order to catch the Shuttle train, I insisted expressing how much pleasure it would give me sharing the b'fast with her. Some deep urge in me derived satisfaction from the whole situation; the woman, relishing the b'fast of bread and butter who had to be on her job empty stomach for earning bread and butter for her family.
I kept talking to her about her children and her work while she ate. The train had started moving again but had changed its track. I expressed my doubt. "Are you sure that this train is to stop at Mirzapur?" 
"Yes, day before yesterday, I boarded this train and it stopped at Mirzapur station."
"But I doubt it as it has changed its route" I said.
She made a call to get it confirmed and then alighted as the train had started catching on the speed. From the window, I saw her asking some G.R.P.F. men who pointed to the other side of the platform. Till then the train had gathered its full momentum and the sight of the stranger woman was lost in the fleeting views of the platform leaving me to marvel at that strange encounter.

Tuesday, 25 December 2012

मोमबतियां जला लो

जला लो, जला लो 
और जला लो 
आज और
मोमबतियां जला लो
गूंगी जुबां औ
लकवे भरे इन हाथों से
दम तोडती
इंसानियत पे
एक और मोमबत्ती
जला लो। 

सुंदर दिखती हैं 
मोम्बतियों की
ये जगमगाती पंक्तियाँ 
पर तले सिमटे
उस अँधेरे को 
मत भूलना
बुझने से पहले 
उसे भी जला दो
खुद भी पिधल जाओ
पिघल, पिघल बह जाओ
उस सिमटे अँधेरे को भी
पिघला, बहा ले जाओ।

Saturday, 1 December 2012

The Pink fluffy Cotton Candies

Book Fair was there in the town and excitement was at fever pitch among the book lovers.
The car raced past Gandhi Maidan and my eyes caught hold of the sight of a hawker surrounded by little children. The man kept ringing the bell he was carrying along with the bamboo pole of pink coloured fluffy cotton candies. It brought back many past memories of childhood days when after cleaning the house of all the waste materials as like, read newspapers, old copies, books etc., we waited eagerly for that Tunnnnn tunnnnn...sound followed by the cacophonous voice of the candy man. Out we spilled of the door into the street carrying the sack of the unwanted, unusable things, And what could be a better reuse of those unusable things than selling them to the kabadiwala (the scrap dealer) who just be-fooled us giving only a small lump of the fluffy cotton candy on a piece of paper in return for that whole sack of wasteful things.
We asked for more," Why are you giving us so little? We gave you that whole sack of variety of  things." But, in vain.Our hungry and desperate gaze kept following him till he vanished round the curved lane.

It was the same look in the eyes of that little boy who had come to visit the book fair with his school mates escorted by two teachers. He was rather the youngest in that group. My husband, son and I had taken a whole round of the book-stalls, browsing the pages, reading the reviews and selecting them to buy. Finally we were so tired and exhausted that we dropped down on the grass listlessly with the load of  books in our carry bags. My son went to get a bottle of mineral water for us. People around us just ambled, mostly thronged at the food stalls or the coffee stall. Some young couples were enjoying themselves being a part of that milling crowd with no one to identify them. A platform was raised in the middle of the ground for some plays to be staged and from there someone was announcing the names of the winners of the Lucky Draw. A slight chill had crept in the air. The slanting rays of the sun falling on the grass and the thin film of dust mingled with the crowd lent a sort of detached look to the whole scene. The little boy stood there with his hands in the pockets and legs placed slightly apart. Near to him, were two boys with pink cotton candies. I saw the boy moving in the direction of those two boys. I thought he would ask for that candy but he didn't do anything like that. He simply stood there with his face drawn, mouth slightly open gazing intently at those candies. His school teacher saw him and asked him to join the line, rather took him by his shoulder. Though the boy obeyed his teacher but, unwillingly, his gaze never for once veering off from those fluffy cotton candies. He was too young to prefer books to those candies. Those fat, leather covered books with gold binding meant nothing to him but boring bricks before those tempting mouth-watering candies..
Something churned and created a tumult of feelings inside me. My heart went out for that child, one in the rambling crowd.  It felt to me as if I was seeing my own child craving for those pink candies. I couldn't take it any more " Just look at that child...the looks in his he is craving for those candies!" I said to my husband (who himself was a great child-lover) who had also been looking at that child for sometime. As if waiting for this,he readily got up and bought a whole bunch of those pink fluffy cotton candies and placed them in the child's hand. I can never forget that confused yet contended look in the boy's eyes. The teacher came to his help because till then he had become an object of envy for his group mates. She distributed those candies among them letting the boy have two of them for himself.
My son had come back till then with the bottle of mineral water and we took our leave from there carrying a part of the book Fair in our mind and heart never to be erased-"The Boy and the Pink Cotton Fluffy Candies."

Thursday, 8 November 2012

Rickshaw Rides (Chirai)


'Rickshaw rides ' is just a halt in the driveway of memory lane where the train of flashbacks pulls in and I, the sole  passenger alight, enter a gateway behind which is a doorway leading to a long passage ...I walk past many a door and suddenly one door flings open. A face peers at me stirring the folds of my mind.....'CHIRAI' and I am lost in a torrent of fire flies..." Bahuji sabji lena hai na...laiye thaila mujhe dijiye....babu log aap yahin rickshe pe hi rahiye...hum abhi aate hain sabji liwa ke.."
It was when I joined DAV Public School, Ara as a teacher in 1993. The school was approx. 6-7 Kilometers away from my place and punctuality was in my veins (still it is). So, reaching in time was a matter of 'doing or dying'. This problem was easily sorted out by my husband who was then posted at S.B.I. Ara. Chirai lived in the same muhalla of ours and used to pull a hired rickshaw. He always kept coaxing my husband for sanctioning a loan for a new rickshaw. Then and there, the loan was sanctioned, the rickshaw was purchased and Chirai became a rickshaw-owner from simply a rickshaw-driver.
This new 'Chirai' was not only a rickshaw owner but also our 'Djinn', always there at our beck and call.The route which meandered through Pakri lane by Ramna Maidan, Gopali Chowk, Dharman Chowk to Ramgarhia where the school was located in an old building, became the toy train route of a hill station but for the garbage filled pavements and crowded bazar with mixed traffic. We became tired but Chirai never.
 His name 'Chirai' seemed to match his face with small eyes and pointed nose like a sparrow's beak. There never was a frown seen on his forehead and there always was a foolish sort of broad grin showing his tobacco used discolored gaping teeth.A childless man he was but had no dearth of love and kindness for anyone, no grudge for his fate against the Lord. Right from carrying the school bags of Mani and Shami (my sons)to the grocer's bag, he showed unusual zeal and interest in getting the right and the cheaper purchasing done.
Every year, Vijayadashmi reminds me of 'Chirai' who would carry us to 'Aranya Devi Temple' and from there to all the idols and pandals in his rickshaw, now and then commenting on the grandeur of the pandals and the money spent on their decoration. The only return he expected from us for this rickshaw-ride was 'Parvi' and this was fulfilled more than his expectation by my husband like Danvir Karn. His face would lit up with a broad smile and mine hearing the rain of blessings which he showered on my sons. Next day, he would be nowhere to be seen. After 3-4 days, he would come and when asked about his sudden disappearance, would shamefacedly admit that he had become ill (due to liquor) but the next moment, he proudly described how he had tried to please his wife by buying her a few pieces of trinkets.
Then I left D.A.V. and joined Kendriya Vidyalaya Sanghthan in 1995. I had to move from Ara as my first posting was at HFC, Barauni. The Rickshaw ride was cut short but not his visits to see us whenever we visited Ara in the holidays. The loan had been paid off but not the loan of emotional bonding.
Nothing can wipe off the memory of the last meeting. After 4-5 months of my husband's death, I had been to Ara on some important errand. I was about to leave when I saw him coming- bent back, tear filled eyes. I switched off the engine and we remained there, silent for some time just feeling one another's loss and pain. When finally, I took hold of myself, I heard him murmuring "babu log sab thik-thak rahenge, bade aadmi banenge" bidding goodbye waving his thin hands at us. The rickshaw ride had really been cut short.....

Saturday, 6 October 2012


The Rickshaw Rides

Rickshaw must really occupy a very cozy place in the memoirs of one's life if not one born with a silver spoon in one's mouth. Though it would be grossly unfair labeling it as 'Garib Rath' or 'Garibon ki Sawari'. I bet even Queen Victoria would have taken fancy for this ageless sawari and a drive in it for its leisurely royal ride.
It has been ages having a rickshaw ride through the town. Sometimes I am forced to reflect on the side-effects of car- driving. It was then I had to bid farewell to rickshaw. With wistful and envious eyes I watch little school going children with their dangling feet, huddled together in the rickshaw seat enjoying the carefree ride to the learning gate. I desperately remember that little boy in Rabindra Nath Tagore's poem 'Vocation' and want to add there a few wishes of my own- "I wish I were a rickshaw-puller...riding through the curvy lanes of the town../There is nothing to hurry him on..."
Such scenes are now becoming a thing of past as auto rickshaws have replaced the rickshaw like small fish eaten away by big ones. At times I want to curse the inventor of auto rickshaws like Antony had  cursed the conspirators and assassins of Julius Caesar-"O mighty Rickshaw of 'Naya Daur'!Dost thou so low?...Are all thy rides, triumphs, spoils,/ Shrunk to this little measure....That I love thee, rickshaw,'tis true.....Woe to the hand that made auto rickshaws! Over thy neglect now do I prophesy- .....A curse shall light upon the limb of aoutmobiles...."
"Jane kahan gaye wo din.....My two brothers and I used to go to school by rickshaw at Digwadih in Dhanbad. I still have a vivid memory of the rickshaw puller 'Khoka' in ganji, gamchi and half folded lungi who started ringing 'trin-trin-trin' right from the gate and all the way through the driveway to the porch. We never spared him if ever he was late...greeted him with this chorus-"Khoka ne khaya tha kal chokha...tabhi aaj hamen diya isne dhokha."And, he kept on pulling the rickshaw nonchalantly occasionally making a remark here or there on our gibberish talks and giggles.
Once, I had a nasty fall from the seat when all of a sudden he had to apply brakes in order to save a hen... How ungracious he seemed to me then...I had fell down with a thud and landed on all fours...had cuts and bruises on knees and hands,...felt so peevish but even the little cry seemed to have betrayed  my lips then like that false friend who comes to you only when the problem has been sorted out..My tears, like true friends had stayed in my eyes and remained there till I reached home and amid sobs narrated the tale of Khoka's careless driving(skilfully leaving that part of rescue in which Khoka had picked me up like a ragged doll and firmly placed me on my seat) to my mother who, to my dismay, said nothing to khoka and instead asked me to sit carefully holding the side handles tightly which to this very day I remember whenever I have a chance to have a rickshaw ride...But, to that little girl, Khoka had become unforgivable and untrustworthy.

ओ मनुपुत्र -

किस सीमा के अंत की बात कर रहा तू,
वह जो तुमने ही बनाई औ तुमने ही तोड़ी?

लक्ष्मण-रेखा तो तुमने ही खीची,
,और सीता हरण कर उसे ही दिया तोड़।

लाइन ऑफ़ कण्ट्रोल तो तुमने ही बनाई,
औ घुसपैठिये बन उस पे ही की चढ़ाई।

चहारदिवारी तो तुमने ही खड़ी की,
औ तुमने ही उसमें की सेंधमारी।

कहीं उस क्षितिज को तो नहीं देख रहा
जिसने मनु और श्रधा को दिया जोड़?

ओ मनु पुत्र-
उठ जाग और देख

सीमांत पार है असीम गगन
उड़ और जा उसे भेद।

इस पार है अथाह सागर
आ और ले इसकी थाह।

Sunday, 23 September 2012


Visit to Dargah e Maner Sharif

 When it comes to choose between mind and heart, most often it is better to follow your heart or else with the fleeting time, you're left with that vague sense of uneasiness, restlessness that you risked nothing and so risked everything. Generally we are seen waiting for the opportune time to arrive and they never.....
 For the past 2-3 years there had been that persistent urge in me to visit this site 'The Dargah of Makdum Shah, at Maner Sharif  approx. 24 kms from Patna. I have some nostalgia for this oft visited place while posted at HFC, Barauni. So, packed my water colour kit, camera, sketch pencils etc. and left at 6.10AM this morning. After a bumpy ride here and there, reached at 7.00, parked my car under a shady tree and scanned the whole place at a glance....the place was as green, quiet and unspoiled as it had been... in the last summer 6 years before.and this morning again The Dargah across the pond from the resort looked like The Sleeping Beauty holding back some unshared mystery, a kept out passage to me. Good monsoon rain had added to its lush greenery making the place all the more serene.

The place brought back a flood of memories...those oft and on visits as a break, a detour... from Ara to Barauni. It was a sort of outing, a picnic for us but somehow I had missed entering the Dargah. So, this time I strengthened the bonding with this place by not only visiting the tomb but also water colouring its beauty.
Earlier the place was looked after directly by the Bihar Tourism Department. Later on, it was handed over to some private agency for its proper upkeep by Bihar Tourism. The place is well maintained from inside and this morning it looked so dreamy with its properly mowed lawn still wet with dew drops gleaming and glistening in the morning sun. I could not resist the urge of walking barefooted on the wet grass that gave me a tingling sensation. The intricate designs, the arched doorways are worth seeing. Dust has not gathered over the place. However, the roads need repairing. Took a few snaps of the Dargah but shooting is prohibited inside the tomb wherein lie buried Makdum Shah, his wife and his disciple who built it.

Came back to the Resort and found that the cafeteria was still closed. So, settled down on the upper step of the stairs leading to the pond and started with water colour .An old tree was lying uprooted by the stairs side and the black ants were crawling on the stairs wondering at my trespassing. Some folk, gentry were having a meeting under the tree shade after their morning stroll. They came, stood there  peeping over my shoulder at my unfinished work for some time and then left. A few school going boys   joined as onlookers who sat around me on the steps. I kept on working while talking to them. The manager of the cafeteria arrived but I had finished my water coloured by then . It was 9.50. I collected my things and left the place with a mute promise to keep on renewing the bonding every season esp. the winter.

Tuesday, 18 September 2012


When one's soul mate breathes his last,
One comes to breathe one's overweening first.
The body there burning on the pyre,
And here one is caught in an inferno of mire.
One still wants to cling hopelessly to that identity,
But one is treated as a lost, nameless property
Who just pulls on preserving the scattered remains,
Nothing but the only painful solace in her domains.

Saturday, 1 September 2012


हम सोये कहाँ
बस खोये हैं
रात-रात भर
जाग कर
जब भोर में सोये हैं
तो अपना आपा
आपके इन्तजार में
खोये हैं

क्या विस्मृत करूँ
उन स्मृतियों को
जब खुद को आप में
खो कर
सार्थकता में निरर्थकता को
खोये हैं
और पुनर्मिलन की
आस को संजोये हैं .

Saturday, 25 August 2012

Life's Canvas

                                                      A Veil Of Smile

                                                  I put on a veil of smile
                                                   To bury my anguishes.
                                                  I feigned a brave heart
                                                  To conceal my weaknesses.
                                                  I had summer dreams
                                                  To be free from the nightmares.
                                                  I embraced my solitude
                                                 To shut off the heartless masses.
                                                 But, I splashed in color
                                                To liven up the life's canvas.

To me, getting car-servicing done is an opportunity in disguise, not an ordeal. This Sunday, I packed my water colour box, sketching pencils, a bottle of water, Sunday Times and The Telegraph and reached the Hyundai Servicing Center by 10 in the morning. The center has now shifted to Digha near Bata Factory. This one is far more spacious than the previous one. It was  advantageous for me not having a TV set in the customers' lounge. Knowing that it would take not less than 2-3 hours, got settled in the sofa, went through all the news and then after water coloured the outside view. By the  time the car was serviced, my water colour was almost done.


Wednesday, 22 August 2012

कटी पतंग 

जीवन तो यूँ ही कट जायेगा,
जैसे हर सुबह की ढलती शाम.
पर संध्या की गहराती तन्हाई में
मन क्यूँ कटी पतंग सा था जा भटका?

....... आओगी का दे स्नेह निमंत्रण,
छेड़ दिया था ह्रदय में इक विकल स्पंदन.
है प्रेम पर था तुम्हारे तो पूर्ण विश्वास
पर नहीं आया विधाता को ये रास,

क्यों  विगत हो गए स्वर्णिम से वो दिन?
क्यों रुपहली रातें गयी मुझसे छिन?
तब मेरे ही स्वप्न मुझको मुझसे गए छल
प्रस्तर प्रतिमा बन कहाँ ढूढूँ इन प्रश्नों के हल ?

Saturday, 23 June 2012

A Maze of Lines

Had been to Indirapuram (Gaziabad) to meet my mother-in-law...It was so overwhelming to see her after a gap of one year. Though she has deteriorated....with so many lines on her face, sagging skin...feet swollen from long duration of sitting hours...yet retorting to my Father-in-law's taunts (on her resigned posture) in her same old strong voice...babysitting for my nieces....sometimes nagging at them on their carelessness and negligence but most of the times doting and loving them. The little wonders are her elixir now....sedative and painkiller.... .masseur and nurse. May they be the antidotes for her soul-crushing anguish....!!!

"Lines....lines....a maze of lines....!
As like destiny and age together aligned
To etch out on one's face some unreadable signs
To make one pine for no sin but let grieve to be fined
Yet the spark of love stays and outshines these freaky lines..."

Saturday, 12 May 2012

The Real Picture of these Mushrooming High Rises

I don't know why sometimes I am filled with that vague sense of void and uneasiness esp. on weekends. It being second Saturday, had prepared a to-do-list but except one errand rest fell prey to that unseen mystical force (the mischievous Ariel of Midsummer's Night Dream). So, took out my sketch book to sketch the workers busy in cooking before starting their day. 

Monday, 7 May 2012

A Pair of Tumblers


A pair of unbreakable melamine tumblers
Had I bought once with love,
For my friend and me-
To share the morning tea together.
One orange and the other one yellow
Both looked so good and mellow.

One day, the yellow one chinked at the bottom
The cracks sprawled like parched openings
Out run the tea through those cracks
And, alas out run our affinity, too.
I, with broken heart cleaned the mess
But the spots and indelible stains remained.

Last week, while decluttering the kitchen
I found it tucked neatly in corner of a drawer
Reminding me of its unbreakable fragility.
A lump, a bump and then a drop of tear
Were all left with the chinks, as if,
Tagged with- "Fragile- Handle with care".

The yellow one is still there
Sitting on the kitchen shelf now
And the chinks telling of its 'Frail Tale'
It was a song sung off key, off limits
So, the affinity took an off road
No reverse gear could ever revive it.

And now, the rigor mortis has set in too.

Wednesday, 2 May 2012

A Sketch Break

The increased working hours from 6hrs.10mins to 7hrs,30mins leave us exhausted with nothing else to do in that over crowded staff-room with both the shifts sitting together and shouting off their knowledge and experience......and as such,arrives this handy stress booster- 'sketching a few faces at work.'

Sunday, 15 April 2012


सपने नहीं बन सकते अपने 

आँखे खोलने को जी नहीं करता ,
कल रात देखा था इन्होने इक सपना.
ऑंखें खोलूं ....डर गयी मैं
कहीं ये उड़ न जाये
पर, तत्क्षण ही उड़ चली मैं
स्वप्न की डोर थामे
नीले अम्बर को छू लेने
और स्वप्न को हकीकत में जी लेने.

तुम तो मेरे नहीं हो सपने
फिर भी पता नहीं क्यों हो इतने अपने
जो प्रेम की तपस है फलदायी
तो मिलन की हुलस है सुखदायी
पर विरह की झुलस है बड़ी कष्टदायी
फिर भी निस दिन नित नवीन विचार
करता ह्रदय में मधुर भावों का संचार  

Silence makes you numb...Speech turns you dumb

मौन भरा संवाद 

जों ये मौन तुम्हे खल जाता है,
तो ये बकबक क्यूँ असह्य हो जाता है?

मन ही तो है- मानव मन,
कभी उद्वेलित, कभी आह्लादित,
कभी विचलित, कभी व्यथित,
बस डूबते उतराते एक किनारा तलाशता है.

क्यूँ, तुम्हारा मन कुछ अलग है क्या?
जो ये मौन और बकबक रास नहीं आता.

Saturday, 17 March 2012


गिरगिट के रंग

 बचपन में देखा करती थी गिरगिट
तब तो बैठा पाती उसे झुरमुटों बीच
गाल फुला पिचका दूर से ही निभाता प्रीत
रंग बदल बदल देखता हमें अपनी आँखें भींच
मानों झुरमुटों का वो बेताज बादशाह
औ' झुरमुट उसका खुशनुमा सैरगाह.

आज देखा फिर से एक गिरगिट
जाने कहाँ से आ गिरी पत्तों के बीच
क्या गमले के ही हरियाली पे गयी मर मिट?
या निर्जन सा ये एकाकी कोना उसे लाई खींच?
यहाँ तो उसके रंग भी हो गए हैं फीके,बेरंग
जो लोगों ने अपना लिए हैं उसके बदलते रंग .

Saturday, 3 March 2012

4 March- Happy Birthday, My Son

इक स्थिर, शांत सी रात में
मसीहे ने आ मुझ से पूछा-
बता- तुझे चाहिए क्या?

बंद आँखों से मन की गहराई में झाँका -
तो, वहाँ झिलमिलाती तारों भरी रात,
स्वर्णिम अरुणोदय का प्रखर होता तेज,
हँसता बलखाता गुनगुनाता झरना,
फूलों की निश्छल, स्निग्ध  मुस्कराहट,
तितलियों के मनमोहक सतरंगे पर,
बादलों की नित बदलती आकृतियाँ औ'
असीमित नीले नभ में स्वछंद उड़ान,
...........बावली सी चाह बैठी मैं -
प्रकृति के अनगिनत रहस्मय रंगों को...

मसीहे ने मुस्कुरा कर कहा-
अरी बावली- न हो तू विकल,
ले, तेरी गोद में डालता हूँ दो लाल,
जिसे पा तू हो जाएगी निहाल....

जन्म दिन की असीम शुभकामनायें ......!      

Monday, 20 February 2012

Paid Servicing Day

My car is what one defines-' A friend in need is a friend indeed'. Six months flew past after its third free servicing  and so in order to prove myself equally a caring one, drove it to the servicing center. But the 4-5 hrs wait starts getting on your nerve if you have nothing to do....idled away at Big Bazzar....had a brunch at the food court and then was back at the center but the wait was not over, got settled on the sofa in the waiting lounge and tried to capture the waiting mood on the drawing sheets with my ball point pen-

Thursday, 26 January 2012


मेरा शहर 

ये मेरा शहर ,
रैनबसेरों का शहर 
इस शहर की इक सड़क से जाती चौड़ी इक गली 
जहाँ चप्पे-चप्पे पर है हर सुबह की शाम ढली .
बसा कभी था सपनों के गाँव में इक छोटा सा घर 
आज बहुमंजिली इमारतों पर कहीं जा गया है ठहर 
उतरती प्लास्तरों से बिसूरती झांकती कुछ मूक ईटें
बयां कर जाती कैसे पल क्ष्रण आये, क्यूँ कैसे बीते .
थी उमगती सीने में धड़कन औ' सांसों में थिरकन 
पर आज जाने कहाँ जा थमा है जीवन का कम्पन .
वो सुनहली धुप का कतरा भी जा रूठा है जमीं से
आज हवा का झोंका भी जा बना है अजनबी हमीं से  
बंद दरवाजे के पीछे से झांकती गिल्लौरी आँखे
बेबस सी है बांहें थामे जंगले की तंग सलाखें    
पुराने पहचाने चेहरे आज बन चले है बेरंग लिफाफे
गंदे दिखने लगे तो एक पे एक चढ़ा डाली नयी गिलाफें  
फिर भी -
इस शहर, गली से जाने है कैसा रिश्ता-नाता 
जहाँ की हर इक ईट करती है हम से बाता
बारिश की दो बूंद ही सही,
मन के भावों को भींगा अभी भी जाती है 
धूप का वो कतरा ही सही,
मन की चाहत को कहीं सुलगा जाती है
हवा के दो झोंके ही सही,
कानो में कोई गीत गुनगुना जाते हैं
वो दूर टुकड़ा सा ही नीला आसमां
सपनों को फिर से इक उड़ान दे जाता है .

Wednesday, 25 January 2012


In the past two years I have developed a penchant for travelling and when I was asked to escort back the two girls of kho-kho team from KV Solapur, I just could not hold back my childlike excitement as for the first time I was making such a long trip by train and that too all by myself. While packing I didn't forget to keep Maugham's Cakes and Ale, drawing pencils, a notebook and my Sony digital camera. Boarded Patna-Pune Exp. at 10.45 PM on 13 Jan. I got settled in my lower side berth.

 The ragged, torn curtains seemed to have never been changed since the day the train made its maiden journey. The futile veil of secrecy provided by these curtains reminded me the life inside the refugee camp in the story 'THE ULTIMATE SAFARI' in class X by where such secrecy was feigned by sacks and card board walls but one could easily peek into other's place just by bending a little right or left. 
My co-passengers were good fellows but with their curtains pulled for most of the time, I remained as like an outcast. Well... that gave me time to revel in my solitude and do a few sketches.
Once, when I asked a vendor for a bottle of water, he failed to understand and like an expertise, commented on my speaking," Sound bahut slow hai, agar kuch saman kharidne jayengee to sound to hona chahiye, nahi to samajh mein nahi aayega, so thoda sound ucha rakhiye." was a lesson for me which left me musing at the thought of speaking to a class of 50-54 students where my voice is quite audible even to the last row. 
Reached Pune timely on15th and from there to Solapur by SUR INTERCITY. Its a nice town and the Kendriya Vidyalaya looked well maintained with children's park, basketball ground, playground, parking shed and trees planted along the boundary walls. 
The return journey was equally comfortable and enjoyable.