Friday, July 29, 2011

In Im Perfection

"The public works" by Neha

My country
Like life

So imperfect
So beautiful

Perfect in imperfection
Imperfect in perfection

-Neha

An observation

"Text" by Neha

If you are not an observation
You are a reaction
What would you be ?

-Neha

Baat Shanasai ki

" A wish" by Neha

kubaku phail gayee baat shanasai ki
us ne khushboo ki tarah meri pazirai ki

kaise kah dun k mujhe chor diya hai us ne
bat to sach hai magar bat hai ruswai ki

wo kahin bhi gaya lauta to mere paas aaya
bas yahi baat hai achee merey harjai ki

tera pahlu tere dil ki tarah abad rahe
tujh pe guzre na qayamat shab-e-tanhai ki

us ne jaltee hui peshani pe jo hath rakha
rooh tak a gai tasir masihai ki

- Parveen Shakir

Listen to this ghazal on YouTube by Abida Parveen and Mehdi Hassan

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Nostalgic

You make me nostalgic
for a place I've never known

To miss someone
you have never met

To hear the tune of a song
you have never heard

You make me nostalgic
as the world (re)turning upside down.

- Neha

Thanks Amanda Jiron-Murphy for the nostalgia

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Apni Parwaaz

Apni Parwaaz-e-Takhayyull Hain Zamane Se Juda
Jiss Jagah Koyi Na Pahuncha Wahaan Tak Pahunche
Main Samajhta Huun Harr Dil Mein Khuda Rehta Hain
Mera Paigam Mohabbat Hain Jaahan Tak Pahunche

- Ahsan Sherazi

Ab ke hum

ab ke hum bichDe to shaayad kabhi khwaaboN meiN mile
jis tarah sookhe huye phool kitaaboN meiN mile

dhoonD uJde huye logon meiN wafa ke moti
ye khazane tuJhe mumkin hai kharaboN meiN mile

tu khuda hai na mera ishq faristoN jaisa
dono insaaN haiN to inum itne hijaaboN mein mile

gham-e-duniya bhi gham-e-yaar meiN shaamil kar lo
nasha behta hai sharaaboN meiN to sharaboN meiN mile

ab laboN meiN hooN na tu hai na wo maaji hai faraaq
jaise do saaye tamaana ke saraabOn meiN mile

Writer: Ahmed Faraz
Singer: Mehdi Hassan

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Life and Airline booking

The Lipstick Flight by Pleasant Plaines Workshop


It is more than the distance
between departure and arrival

It is more than the speed which says
that you have finally arrived

Do you want a non-stop journey
or the most adventurous one?

Do you want the shortest time
or the lowest price?

Will economy class do or will
you keep dreaming of an upgrade?

Will you check and recheck all reviews
or make that reservation on pure instinct?

Will you need an agent in person or
will an online booking do?

Will you negotiate your way through a dozen
pricelines or will you pay whatever you can?

Will you knowingly choose to arrive after the sun
goes down or run to catch sunshine?

Will you take the cheapest fare if you'd
know the airline name only once you book?
(Somewhat like a blind date...)

Will you be fine if no one is waiting at
the airport with a sign that has your name?

Life is an airline booking
Surprise yourself !

-Neha

Monday, July 18, 2011

Le chala jaan meri

le chala jaan meri rooth ke jana tera
aise aanay se to behtar tha na aana tera

tu jo ay zulf pareshaan raha karti hai
kis ke ujre howay dil mein hai thikana tera

aarzu he na rahi subh e watan ki mujh ko
shaam e ghurbat hai ajab waqt sunhana ter

apni aankhon mein abhi kond gayi bijli si
hum na samjhe ke yeh aana hai ke jaana tera

tu khuda to nahi, ae naaseh naadaan mera
kya khata ki jo kaha maine na maana tera

le chala jaan meri rooth ke jana tera
aise aanay se to behtar tha na aana tera

-Daag Dehlvi

Note:

1) See performance by Abida Parveen here

2) For complete translation see Ek Fankar's Blog

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Weighing Machine

If thoughts were flying by © alles-schlumpf


Dear Weighing Machine,

What you don't know about me
is that even though you say it has been
over twenty pounds since ten years back,
I actually feel very light. L-i-g-h-t-n-e-s-s.

L-i-g-h-t-n-e-s-s. Not the one that you can weigh really.
The one which just has no weight.
For you don't weigh a heavy heart - the one
I carried for many years but which magically
became light as a feather because I no
longer care for the weight and the heaviness
I carried - but accept it with open arms.

I weigh in your eyes weighing machine :
NO I am not telling you how much - for you
already know that in your own binary way-
but I am telling you that
in my heart and soul I have become after all
these years weightless like a feather-
a feather which flies higher and higher with
winds both cold and hot.

What you don't know weighing machine is
that there isn't just the cumulative weight-
the body mass index
the body fat percentage
the muscles, the clothes,
the hairband, the earrings
the bangles, the ring with big stone
this silver watch....
There is the spirit
How do you weigh the spirit?

-Neha

Dedicated to Kelly Zen-Yie Tsai for the light-ness!

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Journey of the Magi

Journey by Neha

A cold coming we had of it,
Just the worst time of the year
For a journey, and such a long journey:
The ways deep and the weather sharp,
The very dead of winter.
And the camels galled, sore-footed, refractory,
Lying down in the melting snow.
There were times when we regretted
The summer palaces on slopes, the terraces,
And the silken girls bringing sherbet.
Then the camel men cursing and grumbling
And running away, and wanting their liquor and women,
And the night-fires going out, and the lack of shelters,
And the cities dirty and the towns unfriendly
And the villages dirty and charging high prices:
A hard time we had of it.
At the end we preferred to travel all night,
Sleeping in snatches,
With the voices singing in our ears, saying
That this was all folly.

Then at dawn we came down to a temperate valley,
Wet, below the snow line, smelling of vegetation;
With a running stream and a water mill beating the darkness,
And three trees on the low sky,
And an old white horse galloped away in the meadow.
Then we came to a tavern with vine-leaves over the lintel,
Six hands at an open door dicing for pieces of silver,
And feet kicking the empty wineskins.
But there was no information, and so we continued
And arrived at evening, not a moment too soon
Finding the place; it was (you may say) satisfactory.

All this was a long time ago, I remember,
And I would do it again, but set down
This set down
This: were we led all that way for
Birth or Death? There was a Birth, certainly,
We had evidence and no doubt. I had seen birth and death,
But had thought they were different; this Birth was
Hard and bitter agony for us, like Death, our death.
We returned to our places, these Kingdoms,
But no longer at ease here, in the old dispensation,
With an alien people clutching their gods.
I should be glad of another death.

- T S Eliot

The Ages

"Fallen" by Neha

WHEN, to the common rest that crowns our days,
Called in the noon of life, the good man goes,
Or full of years, and ripe in wisdom, lays
His silver temples in their last repose;
When, o’er the buds of youth, the death-wind blows,
And blights the fairest; when our bitterest tears
Stream, as the eyes of those that love us close,
We think on what they were, with many fears
Lest Goodness die with them, and leave the coming years.

- William Cullen Bryant (1794–1878)

Certain

She didn't prepare for the only thing certain in life, death.

-Neha

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Crossing Over

You can't make a plant grow by pulling at it
You can't make water boil by putting a burning matchstick in it
You can't climb a mountain by looking at it
The only way through is the way through
You can't cross over before building a bridge

- Neha

Thursday, July 07, 2011

Watering the grass

She said "If the grass is greener on
the other side, you need to water yours"
I said "Or maybe water less-
depending on the state of the grass.
Too much water too often can do
much damage too - 'tis the lesson
from gardening"

-Neha

Wednesday, July 06, 2011

Unsettled Revelry

"Hay" by Neha

Like a tiny speck of dust in
moving water -
an atom forever and ever in motion

Drifted by this gush, that breath.
Not settling at the bottom of a glass.

But dancing its delirious dance
Agitated again and again

Not a balanced equilibrium
No perfect bell shaped curve

But Heisenberg's uncertainty principle
An unbalanced equilibrium

Not a poorna viram (a full stop)
No hence proved

But unfathomable question
An ardha viram (comma)

A blessed unrest in
reverence of unsettled revelry

-Neha

Trivia:
1) Read about Heisenberg's uncertainty principle here
2) In Devnagari script a poorna viram (literally meaning eternal rest) is full stop ( represented by a verticle line ) and ardha viram (literally meaning half rest) is a comma.

A Visiting Pass

"Station" by Neha

"When will we come here?", she says.
He says ,"we are here"
She says,"but we are only passing through,
when will we visit here?"
He says ,"you can't visit without passing through.
so we have visited here.
We have a visiting pass."

-Neha

Knots

Circles by Neha


All in all
Each man in all men
All men in each man

All being in each being
Each being in all being

All in each
Each in all

All distinctions are mind, by mind, in mind, of mind
No distinctions no mind to distinguish

-From Knots by R.D.Laing

Tuesday, July 05, 2011

Song with no title Acoustic # 6

"Cinderella Dreams" by Neha


I don't have the words to explain
the look in your eyes
I don't have the words to explain
how you move
I don't have the words to explain
the touch of everything you touch
I don't have the words to explain
the hum of your silence
I don't have the words to sense the senses
with some sense and some sensibility
when I am around you.

So I wrote this song.

But I don't have the words.
So this song is called
Song with no title Acoustic #6

-Neha

Dedicated to the guitar player who played Song with no title Acoustic #6


If you lived here you'd be home now

"Wheatpasting the Moon" by Neha

If you lived here you'd be home now -
Says the highway sign
I know -
if I lived here I'd be home now
But I don't live here. I could.
But I don't want to live here.
Not now at least.
My home is far
My journey long
I'm not home now but consider
this road as much my companion
as the other travelers - Some my own
Some unknown.
If I lived here I'd be home now.
But I don't.
Home is far
This road is here
And I roll on like the treads of tire.
Tired.Tried.Again and Again.
..Da capo sine fine
And it is fine.

- Neha

Note: Da capo sine fine is a term in music meaning "repeat from the beginning to end". Learn more here.