Silver Crusader

Tell me not in mournful numbers, Life is but an empty dream ! – H.W. Longfellow


friend friend find me a bride,

good looking, fine headed and upright,

loving caring looks me straight in the eye.


Countryside and True Love.

My fourteen year old cousin has fallen in love, with her ‘true’ love, and she proclaims to be in love since class fifth (now she has entered into class eighth). I was at my native place for a couple of days, electricity is erratic, mobile network almost non existent and a peaceful village calms descends as soon as the cool sweet water of the well is drank at from the handpump used to extract it.

I digressed, yes, we did not have much to do and I have a battalion of cousins who meet there with ages from 16 to youngest one of eleven months. This one is the third in number after my sister and the daughter of my aunt. She came to me and with blinking eyes asked if she could share a secret, I said yes. She started her heart wrenching story and I had a hard time suppressing my smile, but yet she was damn serious. She even threatened me with suicide if I told her parents, i.e. my aunt and uncle.

The story in itself is not very interesting, she likes a senior, he likes her not and thinks she is overshooting things at her age. He is a Rajput (we are a different caste) hence again never in life this cousin of mine will be able to marry him or etc, hence never again will she be happy in life, she is doomed, it would have been brilliant if she was born to a Rajput (they have some shaan she says, I blink) . She has already added the whole family of this senior on facebook and even pestered his brother for his number, which of course he dismisses. Still she got the number from somewhere and uses anybody’s cell she can get hold of to place calls to this guy. She even used my phone (even with the erratic network she goes to the rooftop and stretches her arms to the tower and rings on the speaker).

Amusing as the story went, I narrated it to my sister who is a stricter, and she was not at all humored, she called up this cousin and gave her a good sounding, and even threatened me to not lose my commanding height and authority (virtue of being eldest in the family) by evoking such tendencies (she thinks I am too slack, that my wife will divorce me in a month which is economic given the people who know me best give me nine months to an year for divorce). Phew ! I digressed again.

Yet the really interesting thing that came up was the fact that she was so sure of her decision or indecision and the fact that she has actually and truly fallen in love that I started doubting my own notion of the feeling. I asked her what would she do if the guy agrees, and lo the plan opens, she would talk to him a lot and since he is a Rajput he will come and take her to a fortress on horseback and then they would marry by the sword (she certainly has watched Bajirao Mastani and Raam Leela I guess, I was wrong to ask her if she read Prithviraj Raso, she is certain I am senile at my age) and then they would have children. I blundered again and probe her how that happens, she looks at me squarely and tells me that they have already been taught the systems of human body, I could help but blushing.

Tired as I was driving the dust laden road on the highway I feel asleep quite easily after the ceremonies of the day to the cool Purva which to just the earlier day was the warm Pachia, I am yet to understand what exactly the winds denote, are they SW and NE monsoonal winds or are we taking of the easterlies and westerlies of the equatorial belt. At around two in the morning an aunt comes and places her two children next to me, they are who are seven and ten years old and sleep like a bent bow, I was crunched for space, somehow I slept on, but that was not all, exactly at five in the morning the cock begins to crow, trying my best to ignore the cock was firm, at five fifteen I give up and climb down and the cock stops. The picture below is taken seconds after the debacle.


My grandfather is already up and the radio is burling out devotional songs, I take a twig from the fallen Sheesam and making it a datoon leave for a long walk. I am mesmerized by this morning,young and bright girls are leaving for school on bicycle, they giggle, I am a shehri, not one among them. I go further down and see mounds of cut wheat lying and some astute farmers checking them, sticks in their hands, the womenfolk are winnowing and the wind is taking away the chaff and leaves the grain. I pray that my cousin too is able to winnow and decide as we all will eventually. I go further the road is made under PMGSY, it’s not super smooth but it’s there and the dak bunglow which was a mughal establishment used for postmen and passerby is almost submerged in the ground. Time is strongest and change is the only permanence I suppose as the days of the village change.

A Dream

What shadows dance on you soul ?
You moonshine,
Where do your troubles unfold,
You mine.

Years ago I knew a bird,
I wonder when she will burn,
To shine and rise,
That phoneix out of ashes.

In our sparesly numbered days,
Each day we miss that we are away,
When will the shadows die,
What is it that mists your eyes.

Some years will pass,
And the tender our skins will shed,
Then the eyes will only hold,
The sparkles of our soul.

Slowly as the tide will rise,
I will be by your side.
Slowly as the tide does fall,
Our memories shall fade in toll.

-A dedication.


आज कई दिनों बाद एक हसीं चाँद खिला है,
आज कई दिनों बाद तेरी हँसी याद आई है,
आज कई दिनों बाद एक सुकून सा मिला है,
आज कई दिनों बाद वक़्त ठहरा है |

कभी देखता हूँ तेरी ओर तो भूल सा जाता हूँ,
कैसे किस्मत ने हमें इन पटरियों की तरह बनाया है,
मैं हर सुबह तेरे साथ चलने को तो मजबूर हूँ,
पर हर शब तुझसे दूरी का अंदाज़ भी रखना पड़ता है |

कौन कहता है की जिस्म मोहोबत करते है,
हमने तो तेरी रूह से इश्क़ किया है,
कौन कहता है की रोज़ दीदार न हो तो इश्क़ ठहर जाता है,
हमे तो आज भी तुझसे वैसी ही हसीं याद आती है |

बड़ा खुशनसीब है यह चाँद,
तुझपर डोरे डालता फिरता है,
बड़ी जलन होती है इससे कभी,
फिर अपनी आह हो हवाओं में मोड़ कर बिखरा देता हूँ सूनेपन में |


They say you cannot sleep,
If you are awake in someone’s dream,
All the sleepless nights she could not tell,
Why in his dreams her presence fell.


I am stuck these days,
They roll on and go by,
And each day ends and further I find myself,
From everything I know, I feel, I was sure.

Wherever I walk to, all places slightly known,
A voice on the winds asks me to keep walking on,
When finally I reach even further,
And am lost at the hands of irrelevance.

I have stopped reaching out to life,
They accuse me of passivity,
I know they are ignorant,
And above us time laughs.

Each day I agree more,
How absences matter and presences ignored,
A dead is mourned, a living treated as stone,
How love is jilted and drudgery kept ashore.

I walked even further today,
I lost my way back too,
I wonder if I could sit by the tree side,
Calm my mind to it’s timeless song.


Again I have those blood shot eyes, they burn,
My arching back pains as I try to reshuffle it to comfort,
The fan under the keyboard is guzzling air from the dank room,
I sit here tired.

Days on end have passed without the trace of sleep,
The hours that I close my eyes for are mystified by dreams,
As if I die in this world, and wake up in another,
Yet without the calm of a serene sleep.

Long ago I taught myself to sleep alone,
When the sky grew heavy above,
I recoiled myself like in the womb,
And slowly erased all living memory till just a beating heart was left. It stopped working.

There were days when I thought, if you could stoke my hairs,
And lay by my side, maybe I could sleep,
Maybe you could guard for me in both the worlds, just till I get a sound nap,
You said no. I understand. My back hurts, my eyes burn.


Once upon a time,
I had a valentine,
A lot many days passed,
And now I hardly mind.




It nags you, I can hear it in your voice sweetheart,
There is no love, no friendship left to salvage,
It’s just the routine trail,
Assuage your guilt till you finally turn grey.

Of course you should not feel so dear,
It was not your fault, nor mine,
We mixed vodka and wine,
The violent retching is just surely it’s kind.

How long how long oh desolation,
Will you keep me crucified,
Of course I love your embrace solitude,
I am just not sure if I will ever leave your side.

They say spring is near, winter shall wear off in sometime,
Oh seasons, my seasons, when will the boughs be filled,
Somewhere in my life, I lost change, did I ?
Where did I lose you, my wings, when will you spread out to make me fly.



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