The last few passengers hopped on catching their breaths with a huff and a puff and taking the remaining seats where they could, while handling their bags in one hand and their mufflers and hats with the other. It was just an ordinary day for them. A day when work and reaching their office on time was the only thing they could think about. A day when half their time on the launch was spent worrying if the Tiffin box packed so lovingly by their wives toppled over to create a mess. A day when they couldn't stop and stare. A day when materialism came before appreciating nature’s beauty.
Kolkata woke up one fine chilly morning to a sky set ablaze. There was always something about Kolkata and its lights that intrigued me. The perfection with which every corner was lit just as much as it should be, the hidden eye candy which could only be seen if you look into your soul to appreciate. Worshipers from all over flocked to the ghats to offer their prayers. And with the mindless honking of the city behind them and the open river in front, they dipped themselves in continuously to be forgiven of their sins. As they lifted their folded hands above their heads to pray and dipped themselves, they made the water all around them make huge ripples which were lost in the vastness of the mighty river. And with that, they were forgiven of their wrong doings, or at least that’s what they believed.
The engines roared to life as one of the crew, miserably opened the ropes and threw them on board after ringing a bell. I stood in one corner of the launch eyeing Kolkata, taking every bit of it in - its morning awakening, its old red bricked buildings, or at least the ones which still stood straight, its ghats green with moss and over crowded with devotees, its icy cold winter morning, and the current of the river beneath the launch floor. Kolkata had woken up to one of the coldest days in recent history. 9 degrees and the wind was up. On the Ganga it felt as if I had come away to some faraway land, away from the hustle and bustle of the city, to find peace. Silence surrounded me and the only sound faintly audible was the low whistle of the breeze brushing past my cheeks kissing them which felt like tiny needles poking me all at once.
The water looked like liquid glass, floating away to infinity and beyond, as far as my eyes took my vision. As the launch turned to face its destination the Howrah Bridge came into view. Standing tall with its two gigantic pillars the sun peeped from between the cables to shine on the water creating a river of gold while the sun’s reflection seemed a ball of fire just within our reach. The bridge cast huge shadows causing a sudden darkness to arise in the water which otherwise seemed ablaze.
Across the river the world waiting for me felt distant. Was civilization actually that beautiful? Or did nature just wrap its covers around to hide the flaws of mankind, his ruthlessness, his ignorance towards other beings and its lack of humanity? The dashes of green popped out of the corners of towering buildings, as sun cast its golden rays on them creating shadows on the opposite side.
The small boats sailed on as the launch took me from bank to bank. The rowers sat at the back on the edge with their rows half immersed in the water. And as the currents made them flow by, the ripples came and hit our launch and travelled back into the vastness and disappeared. They sailed through the disturbed water, and its shadows sailed alongside. The rivers serenity was contrasted with the blobs of weed floating by, entangled with driftwood and mixed with shiny cloths, probably the leftovers of the previous durga puja celebrations.
The sky was a game of colors by now. The sun, still a ball of fire, was slowly creeping upwards, the light grey clouds just behind it shot rays of gold down through the gaps they found on the world below, the sky otherwise was a play of grey, blue, red and orange set in order from the ground upwards without a definite point of distinction. A group of three birds, crows most probably, flew overhead enjoying the sun’s late arrival to the cold morning.
My hands reached for the railing. I gripped the rods tightly looking for security. I looked around me to spot the different lives sailing with me. Some on their phones, some sat with their eyes glued to the cold blank floor, as if they didn’t deserve to be uplifted by nature’s display of her beauty, some staring down at their watches to scrutinize each second to realize how late there were while others stood with a blank expression staring out onto the river, probably going over what they did wrong, playing the images on repeat, making themselves miserable. Me? I stood leaning on the railing looking out also. But I wasn’t in my misery. My misery was behind me. I looked forward to life. And for now I looked forward to my destination. And amongst the crowd I was alone. This was my moment and mine alone. No one could have robbed me of this moment, and no one can make me forget.
The river gave me peace of mind. Its tranquility and its continuity made an energy of constancy flow within me. A belief that this too shall pass, that every moment shall pass. Never ending was its path. A path which life had chosen. Who are we to disrupt it? Who are we to stop? Life flowed on. And times were not always smooth sailing. There will be waves rocking you, making you lose your balance, there will be rocks at the bottom, sometimes holding you together while other times damaging your base. With time and distance the river will get polluted, but it all depends on what you want to show and what you choose to see. It will be used, to its maximum capacity, with only a handful of souls to stop and think about it and do something about it to the best of their abilities. Things varying in all sizes will cross it, sail by without paying any heed to the water beneath it making them sail smoothly, never appreciating it, and soon it becomes a part of them which they pay no attention to it. It will always be there though. Its existence will always prevail over it being ignored. And when you stop to think, it’ll be there pushing you along the way, to your destination, where you will have to say goodbye to the picture perfect moments, the soul touching feelings and the voice within you which screams in its silence to set yourself free.
I hide in the noon-time shade
And the passing
A little cream,
And I stir it into
The steaming cup
As horns like thunder
Blast the kid with the Frisbee,
And the blue-jay
Arches its small
Watching for anything
How old is she?
Asks if I want anything else.
I suggest a life
Would be nice.
Far, far wiser than me,
And tells me,
'Those little things cost extra.'
Copyright © 2008 Richard D. Remler
"One may have a blazing hearth in
one's soul, and yet no one ever
comes to sit by it."
- Vincent van Gogh
As the iron bars that wrap the night
creep in they hold me tight
and for what delight pray tell
should I spend these tiring hours in hell?
The windows laugh at me as they see me looking through and out into the gloom
and all I smell is doom
my bedroom is small and the evening is as tall as any giant
I stay quiet and wait.
It is late and there is no rebate to come from the warmth and joy that was the Sun
and it is cold
this terror I feel is not the least
for this night's no friend to man or beast
it is the cheat that plays the cards
the feral cat that like a baby howls in the back yards and alleyways,
the night is fat with jowls that sag
and drags its feet
across this man's back who failed to meet the sandman with his bag of sleep.
how slow the second hand takes to sweep around the dial
and slower still
the night creeps up and down my spine.
the night will go
I bear this thought in mind.
if you sigh
and tell me that he doesn’t love you,
if you sigh
and say he’ll eventually forget about you,
i will remind you.
i’ll remind you
that all of those whispered
when it’s late at night
and your limbs are so
that you can’t tell whose
is whose anymore.
when there are actions to
back the sweet everything’s up,
soft temple kisses
like praying for a peaceful night,
a warm hand on the small of your back.
everything and anything sweet.
but not nothing.
I miss the look on your face when you saw me
I miss the smell on of the smoke on your skin
I miss the small, silver camera you held in your hand
I missed you the moment you'd taken me in
I miss the long drives past rolling corn feilds
I miss the tissue crumpled in my hand
I miss the trailer sat 10 feet from your porch light
I missed you the moment that I knew I can
I miss the family that I'd never known there
I miss my neices blue eyes, curly hair
I miss when Aunt Nikkie painted my nails green
It started chipping, but I didn't care
I miss the fireflies that I couldn't catch
I miss the movies you forced me to watch
I miss the ashtrays all over the house
I missed the jokes I continue to botch
I miss the grapes that you stuck by my bedside
I miss the feel of my neice on my lap
I miss my cousins attempting to drown me
I even miss Tristan, whom I wanted to slap
I miss the day that they took me out shopping
I miss watching movies with them late at night
I miss winning money on Grampa's 10 slot machines
I miss how hard those mosquitos would bite
I miss the day that you bought me a pizza
I miss the way that smoked everyday
I miss the drive to the airport that morning
I miss your face, as you drove away
A douche will only date a model, but at least he's honest.
A jerk will date anyone, but only make the models feel beautiful.
A decent guy will date the girls with a low-average bmi, say he doesn't look at size, but his actions say otherwise.
A nice guy will date a fat girl, but marry a skinny one.
A good guy will marry a fat girl, but wish, every day, that she was thinner--and she will always know.
A rare guy will date a fat girl and not realize that she's fat. She will feel beautiful and think she's a model.
But he's a minority, and non-model girls are a majority.
There's a solution:
Starve until the fat disappears.
Until every guy that has ever preferred a skinny girl over you;
over a girl that looks like you
-- or worse --
is even smaller than you, but not small enough,
would finally consider you worthy.
But don't get too thin.
Guys complain about that too.
Now you're not pretty enough,
Starve until you're just right --
and then they'll tell you how great you look;
ask you how you did it.
You'll lie, yet again, to maintain the facade.
They'll think you're disciplined --
but they don't know just how much.
You can starve so they're happy;
put on a smile to make them think you are too. Because you never will be --
they've destroyed your mind with their standards; you've destroyed it with striving to live up to them.
You'll marry a guy who tells you you're beautiful, but your eyes are broken;
an ugly, obese girl relentlessly stares back.
She tells you your husband lies.
She tells you food is bad, purging is good.
She tells you your husband would prefer someone skinnier,
You'll never be enough -- all because some teenage boy hung up a poster of a
model on his wall --
and he decided that she was the ultimate goal, and, thus, your destiny emerged.
I love you
you never noticed
I wait hoping for a smile
anything to give me hope
do you even see me ?
I smiled at you again today
a small hope to be noticed..
you smiled that sweetest I have ever seen
and hugged the same woman I have seen
I dont like waiting....
but I just have to
If waiting means having you..
Then I will wait till I have you...
The first time I touched his small little hands
It was exquisite to the touch
Such soft sweet little hands...I smiled with mother pride
The first time I lay his tiny little feet to my mouth
My senses were reeling with the delicate little feet
Then I lay claim to those eyes...big wonderful almond shaped eyes
There was laughter as he stared right back at me...then from that
To an aching love that only a small child could give
With an unconditinal love, I touched his delicate skin
Lovingly I caressed the wonder of my boy
My tiny...Little...Wonderful boy.... ooh what joy
©Kaila George 2013
Silence called for us to stop.
So addicted to each other.
Strokes between your legs and lies,
thread less bruises, your disguise.
I saw your demons, you plowed mine
covered all in dust and lust.
Her eyes started once more
Entwined cruel tortures lure
my present past rejections small
talk, and even smile so gracious.
Soft blankets and white teeth,
Bedazzled songs of craving meat.
Sweetened by the blood of cats.
Melted in some fancy rats.
You reach around my neck and bite.
Put up some chandeliers to dance.
We kissed and laugh in front of shadows.
Rest our backs in wet cold meadows.
Met our end, our land of death vaults.
My feet are long
Long enough to be considered big
Both my big toenails are ingrown
and none of my shoes fit right
On my right leg I have 38 scars
Some of them are so faint
They are almost gone
38 and even though I put every single of them there
not a single one
is my fault
On my left leg I have no scars at all
A blank slate
Marred only by a small
it wasn’t meant to be a literary device
My belly is a minefield of pimples and hair and scars and scars and scars
the beautiful thing sticks out farther than my face
it’s large enough to be considered fat
and none of my shirts fit right
Sometimes I feel bad for my breasts
Always squished under the same two bras
if i flip them around that means they’re not dirty anymore
My fingers are bony and thin
People recoil when they see them
They don’t bend the right way
And it hurts to hold a pencil
Maybe they’re ingrown too
My arms are
only one scar worth mentioning
and only worth mentioning
because it was the first one i put on myself
My neck is sensitive
and always sore
it sends a shooting pain down my spine
and i cradle it and ask
My face is bright
even if my eyes are dull
big and dull and blue with long lashes
too fucking feminine
i try not to make a 39th
its not my fault
i am beautiful
but beauty belongs to women