Monday, 13 March 2023

Unsaid, Unspoken

I am haunted by this feeling of finding this one term that will express how everything, everything, was left unsaid—between you and me. I am still looking for words, searching them in dictionaries, through narratives that speak of emotions. Maybe I will find all the words I am looking for through dialogues between two estranged lovers, or maybe estranged friends—people who were together but weren't together. Or maybe I will write them down, scattered like broken pieces of glass, beautiful yet devastating: for you to read, pick them up and not let your fingers bleed. I will write them for you.

That last phone call, the ring still echoes in my mind: What if I would've had received it?

Between all the stories I told you and wanted to tell, I have had so many things to ask—somethings my wonderment would never answer. 

How could you easily spot me in the crowd of thousands, call me up and remark my every movement, every expression? How many times did you practice my name to say it exactly the way I wanted you to say it? Why did you always keep a count of my coffee intake—two cups, five cups, seven cups. How much did you miss me on the New Year's eve? How could you remember everything about us in so much detail? If you knew, or remember me telling you, that I read your eyes like I read poems? Or if I told you that I wrote a quatrain about your eyes? And that I spoke so little because you understood everything even without me saying? How you could never lose your temper when with me? Or that how you'd always wait for me, without complaining? If you remember that night when you called and told me that you were experiencing one of the happiest moments in your life and you wanted me to be the first person to know it? How you'd react if I told you that you and I were past life lovers? If you know that I made a playlist of all the songs, of all the lyrics you'd text me? And "that" movie we watched sitting in the first row, because I wanted to watch it, will always be my favourite one?

Between all these questions I pondered, I told you stories: you'd laugh at my naiveness and always remembered their details. But there are stories I never told you—I assumed we had time.

About how I had a sob story about my every birthday till I was 16. About the boy, A, who lived next door and was my best friend (till I was 17) and I spent most of my time witheven though I could barely tolerate him. About how baby B, G and C came into my life. About how I put you to test without you even realizing it. And how sorry I was after I overlooked your presence while  reading as we sat in that quaint cafe on the outskirts of the city. About how I saw you in every character I read or studied. About how I never came across anyone as gentle as you, and that how you had set the bar high for every person I'd meet after you. About how I should've never ignored your vision about this certain decision—you knew I'd regret it! About how we had this 'ritual' of always stopping by this place, to stretch our time together a bit longer, to not say goodbye. That I was never really in love with you, but if I would've had decided to relax my boundaries: it would have been just for you!

I decided to write this, probably ten years later, after we metwhile I have so many lose ends to tie. I chose to write this down, with a never fading smile on my face with a realization that I had you, at some point, in my life. And when someone would just come across this; I hope they stop and remember about someone like you in their lives, keep their lives on hold for two seconds, smile, and get back to whatever they were doing.

I always assumed I was incapable of experiencing something like this.

Saturday, 1 October 2022


 This is the first time I am meeting someone. Actually, this is my first date ever. I've never been on a date before.

This girl sitting across him was sheepishly smiling when she heard him. My eyes were glued onto my phone and I was anticipating my coffee; the minute I heard "date" I looked up from my phone and my eyes locked onto this guy for two seconds. My eyes widened. I took a good look at both of them. The girl sported baby bangs and wore a hoodie and tracks. The guy looked like he put on the first t-shirt he laid his eyes on, un-ironed. His hairs were messy. Both looked like they were in their mid-twenties. When we entered café and took the center seats, a guy wearing a bright red t-shirt walked in and took a two-seater table just horizontally opposite to us. A few minutes later a girl walked in and joined him. Since both our seats were in the center of the floor, our voices echoed. All the seats were occupied but nobody was really talking. It was unusually quiet.

R, who sat right beside me, was busy. I was just whiling my time away, waiting, shaking my right leg. I told R to look at them. And...I continued eavesdropping, occasionally smiling, laughing too, pretending I was looking into my phone. I told R I want to sit here and see how it is turning out. I'd be writing about this. And R did the undoable (she swiped right for me!); I panicked and we laughed hard, enough to disturb them. We got that "these girls are so weird" look from that guy.

He continued in Bengali language this time, half of it I couldn't even understand, switching to English from time to time. I listened to him sipping coffee that turned cold in no time. He then mentioned.

See we've met in this arranged marriage thing. I had told my mother that I'd be meeting the girl first. 

The girl spoke too softly and I could barely hear her. Rather she didn't speak at all. Well that was because the guy didn't let her speak. He went on and on.

See I expect my wife to help my mother in household work. There are many opportunities to work from home these days. So I'd like my would-be wife to consider this.

I was honestly disgusted by this time. The guy didn't stop to breathe and kept talking without giving an opportunity to that poor girl to voice her part. I looked at R and whispered who does that! I mean he is not letting her speak. I was studying their scenario for almost an hour. In that one hour, the girl spoke only twice. One out of the two was regarding placing their orders. By this time, I had already lost interest and even forgot that I had to go. I had to go use the restroom. Instead we set off homeward.

Backstory: Going to the restroom was the central idea of this whole scenario, and through my writing it will play out as distraction so I kept their date and my observation central! I & R wanted to use the restroom and we went to Starbucks only to find that it was quite awkwardly located. We left and decided to go to Coffee by Di Bella and there wasn't one! In my effort to distract myself, I focussed on the surrounding. We completely forgot we had to use the restroom. 

Sunday, 24 July 2022

An Eerie Incident


Maybe he passed by and took the staircase while I was lost in my own thoughts.

I usually reach college by 10:30 a.m. when it is buzzing with people, but today it was unusually quiet when I walked in at 9.27 a.m. I walked into the office, logged in for the day and came out and stood outside the lift. It was on 8th floor. I might just take the stairs. No, let's wait. I just talked myself into taking the lift. As I was looking towards the entrance, two men walked in. I didn't notice the one on my left, but did glance at the man walking towards me. It was a brief glance at his existence: he wore a white, long-sleeved T-shirt and probably blue pants, athletic build. I wanted to avoid making eye contact, so I looked away and didn't take note of his face. This is what my brain registered, attractive physique, without even observing him. He probably walked into the office, if not, then into HD Department. The lift was probably on 6th floor when that man walked in. I was now looking at the numbers. 5...4...3...2...1...0.

I was expecting for the lift to be empty, as today was Saturday. The lift opened, and a man was standing on the left inside the lift. I didn't see his face nor I made eye contact. I walked in, pressed the 4th button and tried pressing the close button; it didn't work, so he pulled out his left hand and pressed the button for me. I saw his hand, and it took me just 30 seconds to realise this. This was the same man who just walked by me few minutes ago. The silence in the lift for those few seconds was just as eerie as my realisation because the lift did not halt on any floor. But I didn't rule out logic, he probably took the stairs and went to the first floor and then got into the lift? But when lift halts at a certain floor, the lift button blinks. It didn't blink; my eyes were glued onto the numbers. When the lift stopped, I walked into staffroom, I saw R and H sitting at their tables. I called out R and asked her if there is a way that joins the lift either from office or HD department.

"No, why, what happened". She asked looking at my confused face. I was just trying to make sense of what happened.

"Okay. Something just happened. And I don't know how to put it into words." I said. 

Both R and H shared glances. I narrated the whole incident. R described a professor, but the physical description didn't match neither with him nor with any one in the college. I sat down, took few sips of water, trying to make sense of what had just happened. I just decided if I see a man wearing white t-shirt anytime today, I'll just talk to him and ask him if he took the stairs first before taking the lift, irrespective of how rude and intrusive I would sound to him. I wanted a logical, realistic closure. But I didn't see him nor anybody else saw anyone like him today. I will not be able to recognize him if I see him again. Probably.


I called M and asked her to meet me in the lab. As I was narrating the incident, one of the two lights that were on started flickering and the room turned dim. M screamed, and I laughed. I don't know why.

M was looking at me and her eyes widened, "Is this happening because you are telling me this? Because I have been sitting here all this while and never has it flickered even for a second."

I shrugged and all I could say was "probably".

The light turned on by itself, the minute I was done narrating the incident. 


I maybe overthinking this scenario a bit too much, but I cannot believe how these coincidences lined up, weaving all into one eerily funny story. 😂

Saturday, 25 June 2022

Just a vivid impression of a rainy day inscribed with figments of my fantasies...

same week, different day

What would you call this burning desire,

of watching the passing of dismal clouds,

losing my vision in frenzied blur of fog,

trickling down of droplets on window glass.

Day in, day out.

What would you call this dull ache,

of associating bleak skies with words,

taking notice obliviously as if a presage,

anticipating to be acknowledged and realised.

Day in, day out.

What would you call this unexpressed anguish,

of nothing that is left of us, you and I, or ever was,

misplacing everything I touch, never to be found again,

unriddling conundrums of this inevitable nothingness.

Day in, day out.

The place where I sit at work has this mundane view of sky, and the room is as good as empty every morning. I slip into poetic trance and often finding myself motivated to write. When I am away, I miss the place, the view. This poem being written on one of those days when it drizzled for hours, put away in my memory and relived days later (today). Just a vivid impression of a rainy day inscribed with figments of my fantasies...