Floating untethered

Nowadays, there are moments when I feel as if I’m not present in this world. As if I’m in a dream where everything is sluggish — I look at my palms, wiggle my fingers but they seem to move with a delay, in slow glitchy motions — and a feeling of helplessness floods through me. I’m simply an observer floating untethered over the world, struggling to get a grip, find a hold, make sense of the changes flying past me even as they accelerate with every given second.

Check out my other post from earlier today, ‘i can’t help but romanticise the night’, which is a tad bit happier.

Written in response to the image prompt provided by Sonya’s Three Line Tales, Week 217.

Photo by NASA on Unsplash

i can’t help but romanticise the night

Alternative title: A Potterhead goes to watch the Cursed Child and the expected happens

I walk down the street,
it’s late
and I can’t help but romanticise the night
after walking out of the spell that was
the Cursed Child.

The night —
it’s not wrapped in a starry blanket 
but a stark blank canvas
onto which the buildings are painted,
the light from the windows are the stars in this city.

The Cursed Child’s music
floods through my earphones
and becomes the soundtrack to my steps.

I breathe in the cool air
as the music crescendos
and wonder why the hours long play 
felt not-quite-long-enough.

An echo
of the slight sadness I felt 
when the cast took their final bow
still lingers.

The play had
enveloped the whole theatre,
not missing one nook or cranny,
in its wake of evoking
a rainbow of emotions
and unfettered reactions.

And now its music
envelops the night around me
in its spectacle.

I went to see Harry Potter and the Cursed Child live almost a year ago and it was one of the most — well — magical experiences. So here is a piece of prose with line breaks about that night.

(Unrelated: I don’t know if this classifies as “poetry” – which is a whole other debate – but I like the way the line breaks look and read so I’m kind of just going with it.)

Hope you’re staying safe!

Photograph: Saakshi Gupta

my weird creaky maybe haunted apartment

There it is again, 
the apartment is settling in. 
I take one earphone out, the music still playing
as my head looks around,
my eyes scanning the room,
my ears straining to pinpoint the source of the creaks.
The apartment readjusts.
It has been sitting still for too long
so now it stretches its sleeping muscles
and groans.

It’s three in the morning when the pipes in the walls come alive,
their gurgles joining the symphony of the quiet.
No taps are running and yet,
blood courses through the apartment’s veins as it stirs in the dark,
making me acknowledge the unwanted company.
 
Sometimes footsteps join in the cacophony of the pipes.
They walk around above my apartment after midnight,
followed by screeches of furniture moving around.
Living on the last floor of a building 
where the door to the roof is locked and rusty with time,
I try to find sense in the shuffling upstairs.
 
Maybe I can borrow a broom from the 
witch I hear every weekend,
her cackles echoing from another apartment unknown,
travelling through to my window and into my room.
Mind you, I don’t mean a Harry-Potter-witch,
but a green-skinned one with all her pointies—
pointy hat,
pointy nose,
pointy chin,
—in place.
Maybe I can interrupt her stirring through 
the black cauldron of filth,
ask to borrow her broom and 
fly up to the roof to find sense in the shuffling upstairs.
 
Or maybe I will just sit in my weird creaky apartment and 
ponder over its haunted-ness.

Photo by rawpixel.com from Pexels

An Hour and a Half

Like crayons of every colour sticking out of their box – lined close to one another – the houses stood in front of me as the boat docked onto the port. I was expecting a camera to pop out and a ‘cut’ to be yelled, expecting the beauty in front of me to collapse like a temporary set up for a movie, for like a picturesque movie scene the site in front of me looked.

As I proceeded, I came up to a place where a canal snaked through – boats floating stagnant on the water – dividing the island, only to be connected by beautiful bridges that arched over it.

The balconies and windows lined with potted flowers, a common sight, but only adding to the dreamy haze that seemed to surround the place; their colours seeming to imitate those of the houses around.

I imagine: Juliet out on one of the balconies and Romeo standing on the cobbled streets below, committing themselves to one another.

A cluster of tables scattered at intervals outside restaurants, bustling with tourists. Small stalls bursting with souvenirs – postcards, key chains, magnets, bookmarks – dotted around the place. Shops adorned with intricate lace and glass works stand along the path where houses aren’t.

An hour and a half. I was in Burano for only an hour and a half, rushing through the beauty around to get to the next place on the list like a typical tourist. But that short time, apparently, was enough.

Photograph of Burano: Saakshi Gupta

Dipped in Blue

As the years go by,
you slip them
and the memories they
contain
between plastic sheets in your
album of souvenirs.
They gather dust,
and get shifted from
the most accessible spot –
right there,
to that place above the cupboard,
the one saved for things which are
not of immediate use –
out of reach.
And then one day
your surroundings get dipped in
a dreamy blue of nostalgia.
Sudden or with reason,
the nostalgia sinks into you,
engulfs you
and plays you like a
puppet,
taking your hand
and making it reach into the
foggy recesses of a corner which is
out of reach.
It plays you a tinted
vintage movie
starring those who told you to
‘keep in touch, okay?’ 
and those who do.

The albums keep
filling up,
but you still find yourself
flipping backwards,
the details missing
and the facts blurred,
but the comfort of the washed out
memories remaining warm and
unchanged.

Image from here.

A Thief. A Criminal.

“Time is a thief,”

you had said once.

And I hadn’t quite grasped the meaning of it back then. Your words always had a way of baffling me. And even though your face is fading away from my memory with every passing moment, your words, your words still echo through me clearly and sharply.

Time is indeed a thief, it is a criminal for taking you away from me and making me see sense in your words.

posted for Lillie McFerrin’s Five Sentence Fiction.

Photo by Zoe Holling on Unsplash

Almost

Everyone has flaws – some are magnanimous, defining the person, while others are minuscule, not visible to the untrained eye. It is the latter, with barely visible flaws who are perceived as ‘perfect’. And when even a tiny blotch appears on this pure veil of perfection, people feel deceived, not understanding, not knowing that a human can never be perfect. All one can ever be, if even that, is almost perfect.

Photo from here.