"i was the hell that you needed, love..."

Once there was a girl. She made her words dance. Like Carroll’s Alice in the words wonderland. She wrote to know herself. She wrote to fall in love. She wrote because she fell in love. And she wrote because of all the little secrets, even the messy dirty ones.

The words spoke to her, their cadence and the silence between like a secret between her and them. They made love. An ardor that never felt wanting.

It’s so beautiful, just being alive, that I catch myself, tears wet on my face. Heartbreak is a luxury, single parents, cannot afford.

The whole time I kept thinking, “I can tide over this, lemme just write something … ‘am stolid enough by now…” But there weren’t words and so instead I noticed seams. Mine and everywhere else!

Now, imagine a frame by frame edit of breaking glass. Imagine a bullet gliding through, a blood less shot and then just a single red drop. Imagine.

I am the messenger and am the news. The prognosis is touch and go. Really, isn’t it always that. A brush with elegance, a brush with brutality.

Isn’t it always like that? We engrossed in the ordinariness of our beating hearts, our daily altercations and infractions and forget. We grow impatient at stoplights; we throw our hands in the air when someone claims our parking spot; maybe we yell fuck you, or whisper it beneath our breath.

When our kids dawdle we say, hurry up, won’t you? 

When we want to be close, we say can you just leave me alone?  

We are all fragile and failing and fallible bare foot. In a free-fall!

It’s like being in Stephanie Meyer novel or Vampire Diaries, only without the glamour and glory

Whatever I’ve become, whatever comes tomorrow, however fragmented the pieces look now, I know this… even today.  Am grateful!  

You know, when that bullet just dives through the glass.  It’s beautiful! Bilal Tanweer does the best job of describing the beauty this destruction is, really!

In the dark, past midnight, past 3 am, past memories, past the self-inflicted pain, past the promise to self; I hear the first bird chips; they feel like guiding stars.  

There once was a girl. She wrote. And, I want to tell her how much more she’ll have to write when her story isn’t solely hers, and there is everything to lose. When her heart isn’t her anymore, but is out of her body, pink in her kid’s flushed cheeks, or red hot in her lover’s careless words. 

So much more…

Copyright © Neerja Yadav

Some forgotten Snow and Some captured Sunshine

There once was a girl...

The winter inside me just stayed and stayed. A congregation of small white hills on the curbside of the being.  

Beautiful snow quickly turning into frozen rain and sleet, my own glacial record keeping of the things I  lost: A fairy dust pendant, a few books, my  sense of permanence, the feeling of home. 

The cold just lasted. Now anxiety, now restlessness; an abysmal resignation or hyperventilating panic.

In retrospect the universe was probably conspiring. In the moment it felt like everything skittered right up against the edge. Things happened slowly, then all of a sudden.

It felt like, how it feels when you almost hit the oncoming truck, but swerve just before and drive away, your heart still beating hard.

Sometime, if and when I picked my head above the sinking. I watched spring, unfolding everywhere. Instagram, Facebook, even Twitter seemed less cynical.

Then just like that a feeling of having outgrown my own circumference; the comfort zone of quiet and by-myself. 

Uneven footing, this. 

A flirtation with change. The idea of getting up and about out into the world  – the un-cyber one.  What-ifs showing up in my constant thoughts; the resolve to socialize and not be a recluse, if not my own… then for Nirvaan’s sake.

Tentative steps - from work from home to regular office. Took thought, took agonizing over daycare or babysitter details. Then as if all things converged and it just happened. I stepped out. And I fell in love. And realized how much I missed the professional tempo. 

Someone once said, if you think you can’t… just pretend! Sooner it becomes true! Pretend happiness and you are happy! Laws of intent and attraction!

So, I began with the pretense of being the extrovert go-getter, antithesis of let-me-be-with-my-work.

Began… five years ago. 

There once was a girl a scared wilting wallflower…

Began with getting to know my neighbors of several years, whose names too eluded me. Began by taking him out for a stroll. Began by reconnecting with school friends, because whatever happens after school and your adult self… they know the essence of you! Took impulsive flights! And impulsive phone calls.

And, soon it was bloom time. I had a bit of spring in my corner.  Or something. Something like that. Sort of. Minus the hundred thousand anxious moments. Minus all the things beyond my control. Minus the agonizing first few stages and moments. And misses and falls. 

Now of course, I forget it all. Forget the way it felt. 

Tenuous. Scared. Just the baby and me. 

And, me with zero idea of what the game was, let alone play. We hunched against the cold. 

I forget, because today there is sun, sun, and sun; yes it does get hot sometimes.

After the first few falls, a shift happened. I stopped being gawky and grew up and slipped into a more fluid state. I made new friends, lost some old ones. Spring cleaned the network graph. And slowly and simply became the journey.

Now, my love birds are chirping and flirting. And the air is warm enough finally to sit in sundresses, grinning. 

And, I close my eyes to see the red of the sun, red veins of life blood behind my eyelids.


Copyright©Neerja Yadav

My living loving Cinquain

You turned 5 with panache’. An opening limerick of the rest of your life

Five for the Fighting. Five for the Fun.

Eighteen days before, on a Saturday, we began the countdown. And, in that surprisingly different way of thinking you have, you said “Mamma lets count everyone’s birthday!” and there you were sitting with a notebook and a pen, sketching stuff, a time machine, a giant beanstalk…, all things you believe in. The magic of imagination – a reality! Counting everyone’s in drawings in your own way.

You are handful… in more ways than one! Even when you are sitting quietly, I know you are hyper-actively weaving your yarns and I know, am in for another one of those bed time stories… that’s correct, you tell Me, bedtime stories and you are way better than I can ever hope to be! 

We rub noses and I catch myself staring at you, disbelieving… the wonder you are!

The days have a staccato feel: dominos tumbling one after the other in a rapid-action blur. They come they go in an instant. I keep thinking, wait, didn’t I just turn 34? How am I 36? How did two years possibly pass? Let alone 5! My baby is 5 and not a baby at all.

You are as oblivious to your birthday as you are to so many other everyday things. And, at the same time you are like a barometer/thermometer of sensitivities… you catch on to even the slightest difference in the mood of the room, in me… if my overcrowded thoughts don’t let me rest, when I lie down with you to tuck you in; you become restless… even if you are very sleepy!

You are in turn very loving, showering kisses, smothering hugs and grouchy. You don’t take being denied easily… And, I kinda ignore when you are like that. 

The things are still your friends, if you say good night to mummy, you say good night to your toys and the house too... finishing my "love you" with "so much"... without fail, our little ritual.

You like numbers, better than alphabets. You are sort of bordering on cognitive genius with all your memory and recall and visual and nuanced understanding of stories.

Everything is still a wonder.  And, you actually give me scripts and even my dialogues when telling me about something … “you should tell aunty at the day care that ‘my baby needs to eat an apple’…“ Perfectly mimicking the characters that are to be in the scene!! 

When we talk about people and family, you include everyone – yes everyone, you have ever been fond of!!
Your conversations are peppered with “Oh dear!”, “Sweetie” “Abracadabra” “Butterfly camera time machine!” (your own invention)

You get upset, you love, you throw tantrum, you talk, you play, you dance, you laugh… all with the same passion, same gusto… absolute immersion!

Even with all this high energy and volume, you have this remarkable capacity for delayed gratification, as though you really understand what the moment offers. How it’s here to delight you only for now, and then it’s gone for good.

Now, time for Cakes to be cut. Candles to be blown! Time to celebrate the end of babyhood and beginning of glorious and messy years! 

My Love... Be what you are!  Passionate. Nerdy. Loving. Happy!

Love Mumma!

Copyright©Neerja Yadav

A suicide is a murder, ye!

The dispel charm doesn't work
Defaulted dark was thick enough
Its zero or infinity...
The maths lost its clarity
The kill shot was never seen
Ricochet too was clean
Hyperbole of parabola
Or, not even adequate
Reify the pain, Go on!
Have lived this rhetoric, a bit too long

Copyright © Neerja Yadav