On death.

I have been thinking lately, when I flutter down the rabbit hole of a quiet moment — when the sunlight is pouring like gold, warm like childhood, and no worries bite, when I am enfolded deep, deep into the wonders of being alive, when I lay curled up in the life that is falling and rising in my chest — in these stolen moments, the thought comes to my mind: that death should slip in through the open windows, past the fluttering curtains intertwined with afternoon light. Stealing through the air of tranquility, it should settle over me like sleep, like morning dew.

The end should happen when you are at home within yourself, reclining into moments, holding Life like a mug of tea, warm between your hands, and sipping from it.

Death should come then and sit by your side. You should die like you fall asleep: your breaths getting slower, deeper, your eyes fluttering, something in you yearning for rest.

Softly, sweetly.

It will feel like all the times your Dad carried you to bed after you fell asleep on the sofa. It will be warm and you will trust it without a thought, will lean into it like it is natural. It will feel like the summers you spent at the beach, hiding from the sun under a tree, until consciousness floated away, taken apart gently by the waves and sea breeze, and you awoke to a deserted scenery, people’s voices faraway, feeling like the only person on Earth.

I think Death should come not at a gruesome end, but rather during ordinary moments, as your gaze lingers a little too long on the deep green of curving curry leaves, as you bury your nose in clothes that are still on the line and inhale so deeply you can no longer breathe, as you grab a handful of pulses and feel them like pebbles under your touch. Death should come in contemplation and take your hand gently. And then the memory will bloom in you, a drop of ink on white paper…a memory that you have unconsciously chased all your life: that ‘death’ is something you lost at birth and all life long you wandered, lost, in search of it. And now, it is here to guide you home.

A long separation. A delayed reunion. A long journey back to the stars.


Blinded, blinded by the blue of the sky

sweeping, blue like a jewel stolen from a daydream.

Blue skies and warm, sunny days

that layer themselves on my skin,

that skim through the night-darkness of my hair

and kiss my eyelids close,

clinging to the tips of my eyelashes

and dropping into a sigh on my lips,

teasing the insignificant tips of my toes.

And in the afternoon,

the light, soft and honey-sweet,

tangles with the brush of the breeze,

and the trees’ dancing shadows

leave prints on the planes of my face,

turned heavenward, asking for direction.

The quiet of the streets

opens doors in my soul,

cranks open the windows of my mind

and halts the ever-turning wheel of time

just long enough for me to think

that the cosmos cares for my worries,

that my thread of fate is not suffocating

under a mass of other lives,

but that it runs its course,

intentful, poised with purpose,

with its dramatic highs and

languid lows.

And yet they say:

“There is nothing for you here.”

Immigrate. Immigrate. Immigrate.

The word grates my ears,

hurts my tenderest sensibilities.

What is wrong with here?

Why must life happen in

places that will never be home

places that won’t bat an eye when we die,

where the earth won’t welcome us

at last, at long last

as sons and daughters of the land,

where we won’t rest with

those that came before us?

Immigrate. Immigrate. Immigrate.

Uproot. Tear. Burn.

Forget, forget, forget.

You will never be here

to see the streets of your childhood

succumb to modernity

to watch as time spins on

relentlessly without you.

Ensconced in hypermodernity and hyperconvenience,

worlds, oceans and timelines away,

you will live and live and live

forgotten in the chaos of the city,

something in you sick

for the taste of home,

for the years that have already unreeled,

for another you in another life.

Immigrate, immigrate, immigrate.

I understand, I know, I know,

I know why.

And I also know that

my feet will touch other worlds,

my tongue will twist around foreign words,

and my heart will find new roots.

But the end must be here, where I began.

You understand, right?

A long separation.

We will meet again, you and I

One day, somewhere far distanced in time and memory,

leaving behind the names of this life

all our grief will dissolve,

all our sorrows will fade into light.

Our pains, our aching bones and bent backs

Our heavy, broken hearts and heaving breaths

the weight of all our years,

our white hair and deeply-lined faces,

of all our living inscribed in us —

they will be lifted,

they will all be lifted.

This is not the end.

Only a long separation. A long separation.

It is just a lifetime, just a lifetime between you and I

You have gone ahead,

but I too, will endure

I too, will trail, lost in life.

I too, hope to come home one day

to you, unburdened and untainted — whole,

the way I never saw you here,

well-pleased and well-pleasing,

a soul at peace.


“Now it is a strange thing, but things that are good to have and days that are good to spend are soon told about, and not much to listen to; while things that are uncomfortable, palpitating, and even gruesome, may make a good tale, and take a deal of telling anyway.”

J.R.R Tolkien, The Hobbit

Here I am, back again, with that air of change that accompanies one who has travelled, and in whose luggage lies yet more of that alluring foreignness — ready to dye an old world in unheard of colours, to disperse alien scents in an atmosphere of familiarity.

But it would be a lie to say I am back. As I’ve discovered, I’m simply not the person I used to be. Along the way, I left my shell in search of a bigger one. I’ve always been so fond of hermit crabs; curious little introverts of nature pursuing growth.

How can I say where I’ve been, what I’ve done? I have left too much undocumented, let too many landscapes of feelings go unrecorded. I have resented myself for this, but there was simply no need. This was what I set myself up for. I wished upon newly born stars and pushed myself out of the door, out of myself — my objections and perfectionism and self-loathing — and I walked and walked until someone said: “Would you like to go on an adventure?”

And I did. I did.

I am still on one.

And like all good travellers, I travel light. So I am no longer my old self. I have shed the parts of me that weighed me down, that did not serve my purpose. And even when I try, I find it impossible to return to myself without undoing the growth of this past year. So even now when I am closest to who I was, when I am writing again, I still reach out to the past, but my hand comes back empty.

I must admit, I am a little homesick for myself.

I miss my old shell, cozy and warm as it was.

But even so, cruelly, I must move on, past the growing pains.

Bittersweet as it feels, I must reach for myself in the future, instead.

Note: I hope you are all doing wonderfully 🤍 Yet again, I may have caught Covid. This would be the 4th time, and I would accept my fate if I was living it up and partying every weekend, but I’ve barely gone out in the past 2 months 😭😂 Oh well!

Happiness is a mango

Happiness is a seasonal fruit.

Last summer, I would return home every few days, excitedly hauling watermelons, to no one’s surprise. Sometimes it was humongous ones that you had to hold like a very fat baby indeed, sometimes two or three smaller ones that you rolled around for fun. And oh, every moment was delicious. The small thrill of opening up the watermelon, the crisp cutting, wondering just how red it would be inside, hoping there wouldn’t be too many seeds. And the juices dribbling down your elbow when you cut the watermelon up in small pieces, to be chilled and enjoyed later at night with family, when the cloying heat would become too much to bear and you would seek some relief from it.

And when the bowl was empty, when I downed the remaining juice — cold, refreshing and sweet — I would always go out to buy a new one. To replace it. To repeat the experience. To have more, more, more. Every single time, because I could.

Watermelon season usually lasts from mid-November to mid-January here. But a miraculous harvest made it so that I was able to find watermelons in the city streets up until beginning of March.

And then eventually, even though it lasted months past its season, even though it went counter-current for a while and surprised people with how long the season lasted, watermelon did go out of season.

And this — this is happiness. A seasonal fruit.

A fruit going out of season.

The thing about happiness is I couldn’t write about mine.

Whenever I sat down and began to put pen to paper, to consider the warmth of the happiness enveloping me, all I wanted was to dive back into it. All I wanted was more of it. I didn’t want to think. I didn’t want to write. I just wanted to be happy.

So I set the pen down and went running to savour happiness, like a fruit going out of season.

(And it did).


Title: Happiness is a mango

Subject of post: Watermelons.

I realise the absolute irony of this. But while watermelons are my favourite, I have a nostalgic connection to mangoes that I can never shake off. And here’s a photo of my very exciting watermelon season, I say casually, as though it’s not the first time I’m sharing a photo of myself here 😂

A falling star came to me.

There will be a time to let go.
This is what happens
when you catch a falling star.
So I draw you closer to me
and hold on a little tighter.
The end is too near, too soon.
But a miracle it is,
to catch a falling star at all!
Forever is too far away —
a distant idea, obscured by Fate.
Let them dream of tomorrow,
I have now.

At the peak of night, I draw you close.
A warm, fluttering light,
My affection bounces about,
alive and well, exultant.

At the peak of night, I draw you close.
I commit to memory the way you feel,
the way I feel.
I let go of Fate and
sink deeply into the now
I cut ties with all
and float in the infinity of this
— this self-contained moment,
encased in glass.

The sun will be up soon
your light will melt into
the light of a new day.

I draw you close tonight,
because tomorrow you return.
Tomorrow you join the sky
you came to me from.
Tomorrow you remind me
that while moments last forever,
people are only ever loaned to us.

I kiss you and give you back.
Melt. Become the sun.
Become a star.

Note: I am no poetess, but this came to me. So now it’s also coming to you, because. Hope you’re doing beautifully!

Blue night.

Summer nights shift through my hair, pressing gently on my eyelids.

This, I realise, is the feeling of summer: not fun, a spark-like joy, but rather a feeling that is half relief and half boredom, underpinned by old longing — something that was once desperate, restless yearning but that has since been worn into this pale, tired feeling. It’s the saddest thing in the world: for yearning to become a wistful “could have been”, to see your longing through a veil of impossibility where before it was real, throbbing in you.

With the gentleness of a mother explaining the limits of the world to her child, the years crush your most feverish yearnings, rearranging them into artful melancholy; faraway looks into the night sky, sighs carried away by the vastness of the night and a heaviness from which there seems to be no relief.

Where “I long for you” was once a promise branded in heat, it is now a space in your body — a small, distant illness, something you live with most days, something you ignore and forget about, until. Until it is summer again and the end of year frees you for a precious few weeks; until you start getting drunk on the coolness of the night air; until you let your hair down and your shirt clings to the back of your neck; until you feel a smile tugging at your lips as the neighbours’ music echoes in the streets; until you are allowed a moment’s contemplation and the matter of your own happiness comes up, the figurative lid popped off by the heat, loosened while you were busy cutting open watermelons and picking at the fibrous remains of mangoes between your teeth, while you wrinkled your nose at the smoke of cigarettes the neighbour indulges in even more zealously in the darkness of his veranda.

It is summer, it is the end of the year and there are no hermetic spaces left. All the possible doors, windows and vents have been flung open and the summer air commingled with hope and regret infiltrate your lungs, even as you are too busy partaking in the rituals of summer: getting burnt by the sun, haggling prices for litchis, complaining about the people.

This is all it takes: a stream of warm, good days to envelope you and the cold, repressed truth comes streaming out.

Note: Happy New Year to you! Be blessed with warmth, goodness and light for this year and all the ones that follow. This piece is a bit late but here it is anyway, featuring some of the most egregious use of semi-colons and repetition you have ever seen 😂

Who are you?

Collage by: Unknown

I am a mess-maker.

A hobby-hopper. A pull-every-crayon-outer, a faded enthusiast, a leave-behind-a-trail-of-passions-gone-colder. I am an interest-plucker, an endless well of curiosity.

I am light, reflected and magnified, travelling from the cosmos to forest and hillside and to that particular corner of a kitchen somewhere, sometime in the afternoon.

I am perfume that spreads through the air. I am here and there, in this moment and the next and the one before. I am a blade of grass waving to the sky, a raven remembering a face, a raindrop falling on someone’s shoulder. I am scattered, everywhere all at once. I am gone, as short-lived as I am intense. I am an imprint, a scar you can’t forget, a vertiginous sensation you cannot describe, a feeling you will never feel again.

I am a falling star that you forget as soon as the morning comes.

I am an old song that clings to your skin, a childhood memory you will remember at a crossroad in your life. I am someone you’ve never met before, but who you’ve known for millennia. I am the last of my kind — a quiet extinction. I am a disappearance no one notices, but which leaves the world changed, silent.

I am a softness you did not know existed. I am a warmth you thought you would not find again. I am the last kite you ever flew; the last time you saw your primary school friends. I am the embrace you never wanted to leave; that one love you kept hidden. I am a calm sea, a deserted beach on a weekday. I am a truth you’ve lost to the years.

I am a morning that comes when you don’t want it to.

I am a dawn after the darkest night.

I am the solemn words of a person of faith. I am a piece of Fate. A common flower that grows on the side of the path you walk everyday. I am the plastic bag flying in the wind. The new poster superimposed on layers of old paper and glue. I am too many sensations, I am nothingness.

I am a chance, a breath.

I am one spark of light, millions of years ago.

Note: This very conveniently started out as me documenting how much of a mess I can be and then the right song played and it ended up being about something else. As always, sending my warmest thoughts your way!

Big details.

There is something to be said about the aching tenderness with which the afternoon light layers itself on the tops of houses, with what fondness it settles there, tired and warm.

I am in quiet awe of such end-of-day scenes lately, caught up in these little love affairs that are there for all to see, should the eye but linger a little, just a little. Life becomes a picture, a post card in these evenings. As we melt into the summer and humidity clings to us, the sunsets also grow more colourful, the sky painting scenes that might seem fabricated were they not so overwhelmingly, achingly real. One sky, dyed the colour of daydreams, summer loves and the tunes of youth. Pink and lilac, purple and fiery orange, yellow and peach, all blooming into the wide open sky. A spectacle, a feast, a homecoming. The essence of our beings. Mostly ignored. Forgotten.

How essential it is, how absolutely essential.

It was just a few days ago when I was telling him — as we pulled up in a parking lot, reclined our seats and watched the sun lower behind the mountains — how endlessly important it is to take one step back, to feel small. Problems too quickly seem insurmountable, too easily become the point to which our lives and consciousness are moored when we focus only on ourselves.

Step outside of yourself, understand you are small, so small in the vastness of this universe and if the sun can move, if the colours of the sky can change, then will your pain last forever? Will the sadness never pass, when even clouds and seas shift? Is there no hope in a world that everyday revolves around a ball of fire? Though our routines lull us into a sense of stability and stagnancy, should we ever forget that there are greater powers at play? Should we ever forget that we are moored not just to ourselves, but to each other? That our lives and selves ripple across time and space, and there is always, always more to us than what we limit ourselves to?

It is vital to get lost in the details of life, to follow each one until one forgets, until one’s own self becomes a point in the distance, small and surrounded by so many others, part of a much vaster picture.

Art by: Alexandra Levasseur

Note: So I guess this is where I give up all pretense that I will regularly maintain this blog (?) It’s been a strange, healing, bad, no, actually good year. And even though it sounds too good to be true and I’m waiting for the other shoe to drop, I’m officially a business owner! (WHAT). Ahh anyway, I hope you have all been doing beautifully.

In a vacuum.

Art by: Jon Marchione

It rattles, rattles, rattles…

The train dives head-on into the scenery, currently flanked by yellowed, crackly bushes. All of us are locked safely, almost hermetically in this moment in time. We are suspended in the infinity of those few minutes, a sort of solemnity not even broken by the stops few and far between, the beeping, the sliding open of doors, the driver’s staticky voice on the intercom announcing the station and closing of doors.

Nothing takes away or interrupts my longing gaze into the faraway, the zooming past cities and villages, cutting through congested arteries, sugarcane fields and mountains alike.

The train’s ‘new’ pathway slices through and lays bare even the most intimate details of the city outskirts: holey shirts and dingy shorts hanging on the line, someone’s dog looking all but melted into an early afternoon nap and the piercing gazes of people-watching grandmas now hourly exposed to the eyes of thousands — all of this private life, previously hidden away has now been bared, and has become a part of the spectacle the train offers. And I, I was brought here as a spectator, not an actor. These days, everything I do feels wrong. Tough decisions with tough consequences that leave me feeling not at all like myself. I was brought here not to be, not to change or disturb the littlest thing. I was brought here to see and feel and maybe, maybe write about it.

The train should go on forever. It should cross into the night, rattling on its way to unknown galaxies, to stories I was told as a child, to blurry memories of childhood beach days. The train should go on forever, with me on it, a traveller, a spectator. Someone who does not influence the story but only records it. A record-writer, quiet, unassuming, existing outside of the rules that the rest of the actors are subjected to.

Let me hold onto life a little lighter. Let me have these moments forever.

Listening to: