Mini-Reviews And Some Other News


Le Zap

I never took writing fiction seriously. Someday I would just open a word doc and type furiously as if possessed by the very words I was writing and slowly a story would come to life.  El Pino Ruins is one such story that I am very proud of. It recently got published in the final edition of Le Zaporogue XVIII by various authors.  You can read it by downloading the ebook format free of cost from HERE  

This is what a fantastic writer friend Jerry Wilson had to say about my story

 

Jerry is one of the finest short story writers today and you must pick up his books. Just click on the link above.

Another writer/ columnist Kiran Chaturvedi also shared her thoughts with me.  You can read some of her articles by clicking the link.

 

Here’s the complete note.

“Dear Tikuli,

I read your wonderful El Pino Ruins short story today and enjoyed it very much. Loved the classic style and haunting mood. It has such a vividly evoked setting, and a rich narration that makes for a captivating read. You have paced the action fluidly and built the puzzle beautifully. You should write more prose and I suspect you are specially good at such other worldly story twists. “

Thanks so much Kiran.

Have you downloaded the free ebook? Please do by clicking the link above. 

 

Meanwhile, my second poetry book Wayfaring reached Sabine Pollack Merle in France. She sent me a very heartwarming note after reading the poems.

“I read your poetry book, Tikuli, and once again you have moved me with your words written here, and that you whisper in my ear…
Some of these poems have made me cry because they are so meaningful. 
It is such a precious one. 
I really can say but one thing, many people should read Wayfarer.
Tikuli, you are a beautiful woman. 
Brava !”

You can read her review on amazon.fr 

I posted these on Instagram earlier. You can follow me there.

Some copies of the book are up for review and I am eagerly waiting for more feedback. Do write to me if you are reading Wayfaring. The book is available with all online booksellers across the globe. Do get your copy soon.

Bhavana Nissima  is a fabulous writer, artist, educator and NLP practitioner. She is based in Hyderabad, India. I have always loved her writing. She is also a very compassionate human being and a friend I cherish. In last few months she unconditionally healed me from distance in one of the toughest phases of my life.  I am grateful to her for helping me connect with myself.

In August last year she did a wonderful write-up with one of my poems along with one another poet I admire. You can read it here –

#FridayLights — Issue2 

Thank you Bhavana for this generous gesture.

 

#superblurbloodmoon #shotwithOnePlus3T

 

The whole world watched the phenomenal #SuperBlueBloodMoon on 31st on Jan. I took these pix from my #OnePlus3T Sometimes I regret not having a good camera. The sight was enthralling to say the least, the rare convergence of a ‘supermoon’, a ‘blue moon’ and a ‘blood moon’. Thankfully Delhi weather didn’t play up that night and I was able to watch the total lunar eclipse.

I am writing some more of Hindi poems on Delhi and will soon start sharing. Last two months have been very hectic and I have been unwell too. Apart from a verse here and there I haven’t written much.

i

my soul
is impatient with itself, 
my inner – disquiet, 
my intellect – not satisfied, 
my heart – not still,
my mind – ruffled,
I’m restless as a
willow in windstorm.
If you are afraid to step into quicksand

stay away.

ii

mystery 
madness
chaos 
carnage 
passion
intrigue
phantasm –
landmines in poet’s mind 
tread softly

 

I am trying to get back into the rhythm and start reading more blogs from friends. Do keep giving the support and leave your comments if you visit the blog so I know you’ve been reading my stuff.

A small note to end the post –

We take people for granted. We feel ‘entitled” and this feeling of entitlement blocks us from giving or receiving and when we aren’t receptive to gratitude whether in receiving or giving then we may be lacking many other positive emotions.
Relationship becomes stronger and deeper when a little grace and humility is shown.
Great Relationships are precious gifts. Be grateful. 
Thank you for being part of my journey.

Love and Light.

Two Poems


First published in Le Zap XVI 

Observations 

1. Metro Poem

Laden with shopping bags

this poem rides the rush hour tide

at the metro station.

Coffee in hand, a packet of sugar

gripped between its teeth, a bag

strapped across its chest, hair

struggling to escape the floral bandana,

talking relentlessly into the bluetooth headset,

it makes its effortful way into the waiting train,

leaving behind a silage of memory.

 

 

  1. Train Poem

Inside the stuffy train compartment

a woman reaches inside her blouse for the

hidden money and gives a frowning glare

to the man staring from the seat facing her,

a  little boy  gazes out of the window

with a look of wonder at the world

 unfolding before him, his sibling

toys with her mermaid length braid,

twirls it between her lips and nose

like a mustache and looks around with a

glint of mischief in her eyes, two women

inch their way through the crowd, tagging

a couple of noisy kids, find an empty seat

and settle there, wedged together like a sections

of orange, the train passes enters a tunnel

and in the dark a teenager’s face glows

in the light of his mobile, disappearing

as quickly, a man dozes off on the shoulder

of his companion who is staring at his own reflection

staring at him from the darkness outside,

an elderly man in bright red shirt adjusts

his reading glasses and buries himself

in a popular newspaper, a woman

smiles to herself as she closes the novel

she is reading, her thumb carefully marking the page,

the man in the suit, a laptop bag hanging from

the shoulder suddenly abuses loudly,

hastily lowers his voice and continues to pour

his anger into the iphone,

In Contrast, a dry, bleak lifelessness prevails

outside the window, the hellish

summer sun spitting fire, devouring all

life on earth, bare trees, barren fields,

small towns, each a glimpse and then gone.

I close my eyes, the music of the wheels goes on

clickity-clak clickity-clak clickity-clak.

My Mother – A Poem


First Published in Le Zaporogue XVI by various authors

 

My Mother

 

He sat beside me

silent as a breath

memories of that summer

wrapped in the wet crumpled tissue

that lay on his lap, his wrinkled hand

resting on the walking stick,

and then he spoke;

“Your mother’s hands were brown and soft,

just like the phulkas she made, she was

an earth woman. I often closed my eyes

when she sang, her songs rose from the

soft rhythms of the water wheel, the tinkling

of bells around the bullock’s neck, the

sweetness of the mustard flowers, and

the crackle of the wood fire of her stove, they

carried with them the scent of damp earth.

Often I would quietly slip in and listen

to her sing as she went about

doing her daily chores, her wet hair

rolled in a towel or loosely tied

in a bun with one or two tendrils

framing the face.

It was a cruel summer that year,

the river had dried and the cattle

kneeled and bowed their parched

heads to the river bed pleading

for a tickle of life, the fields

turned brown and the leafless trees

stood naked and exposed, as if

atoning to their unknown sins

under the merciless sky.

It was on such summer day I

found her hanging from the cross-beam

in the ceiling, the wood was old and

rot riddled but it held her weight

well enough. Her hair, shorn off,

lay in a jumbled pile on the floor,

next to it were the clothes she had worn,

the milk on the clay stove and boiled over

and dried, the milk bottle smashed against

the wall, the house smelled of rage,

lust and struggle. In the courtyard,

the clothesline had collapsed under

the weight of sorrow, the swing lay

dismantled and chained, a lone witness

to her shame. The makeshift hammock

hung limply from the tree,

a kind neighbour had quietly

whisked you away as the town burned.

Clasping your infant body

 like a broken doll and a

picture of your mother in my pocket,

I took refuge at a patchwork of shelters

that had sprouted on the smoldering land.

A few of us sat under a small covering

of rags, tarpaulin and sheet metal,

holding whatever was left of our

precious belongings, somewhere

a man sharpened the knife on a stone,

click clack, click clack,

the blade glistened in the dark,

another one sang, his low mournful voice

made the night bleed with absence and loss,

but the sun rose just as it always did,

bearing no sense of loss, and with it

we too rose carrying our wounded

identities and slipped into the folds

of anonymity.

A few days ago I walked through that part

of the town where I lived and loved,

where she sang her songs, our old haunts,

the old well, our ancestral home,

nothing lives there anymore,

even the ghosts have moved on,

but the river now flows to the brim and

in the fields the mustard flowers

bloom in abundance, the earth, they say,

still sings the songs of estrangement, in

memory of that summer and

 the sky pours it rains.”