On the wings of Time…

Many eons ago, humans and Gods lived together. It was a time of abundance and joy. Thirst or hunger were unknown and the slightest flicker of a desire was fulfilled. Into this world of bounty tiptoed Love in her chariot of flowers and myrrh, not to forget her gifts of passion and lust. 

With Love visiting them, the humans and Gods were put in a state of disarray. Suddenly, desires were not crystal clear as before. Their minds were often in the throes of passion, love and lust to think  without pause. They were like leaves on waves, tossed about mercilessly. 

For the first time in history, a conference was called. Humans and Gods and animals and plants and insects and birds – they wondered how they could address this strange yet seemingly unsurmountable problem. Love was an extremely powerful force and they couldn’t stand up to her. They had never seen someone like her.

Love attended the conference in her robe of jasmine flowers and lotus leaves. She heard them speak and listened.  And then, she listened some more.  Finally,  she told them they had a choice. 

A choice?

Yes, she said , in her strong, clear voice. It can help you stay calm and yet seat me on your mantle, worshipped with incense and doused in perfume.  

Time is the choice, she continued.  You have been living a timeless existence. But just a little distance away, unknown to any of you, lies the eternal dark. A darkness that can be transcended only by me. An obscure land wherein lies the most beautiful thing in the world : death. When life can begin again.  Where we can begin, again and again. And that is my choice.

You can live timelessly without me . Or you can choose to step over into the dark, where time can heal and soothe your soul. Over this wondrous thing called Time, you can become one with me and we can flow seamlessly over time (again), beginning again and yet again. It is your chance to be as powerful  as I am. The creatures of the world were perplexed. Love spoke again, 

When you choose Time, you also choose me for but a short while. For I cannot fly but on her arms. And my charms are powerless before her magnetic, radiant smile.  

It is decided then, said everyone.  We, the creatures of the universe, choose Time. We welcome her into our world.

And that is how Time, Death and therefore Life, came to be.

(This story has been submitted to the Bluebell Books Short Story Slam  at :



Methi Paranthas and a Mother’s words





Class Three was in a shambles. Notebooks lay wide open on the desks, bags were strewn over the floor and smelly, muddy feet tapped anxiously, waiting for the teacher to dismiss them for lunch. Right now, the teacher’s voice seemed muted to Sid, just like the TV at home, when Papa wanted to get in a few words with Mama as she sliced chillies for the dal. He looked out of the window idly, getting impatient. His mother had packed his favourite food for lunch today, methi paranthas. Umm, the golden brown rotis speckled with green and drizzled generously with oil, with a side of a spicy curry. He just could not wait.

” Children, wash your hands and start eating!” The teacher’s voice suddenly blared into his ears, no longer mute! Sid dashed off to the washroom. Back in class, he spread his napkin neatly on the desk and took out his tiffin box. It was his favourite day of the week anyway : they had reading, sports, music and dance lined up for the afternoon. The methi paranthas were just the icing on the cake. He heard Sparsh and Karan fighting in the row behind him. Who cares, he thought and opened his box.


His tiffin box was on the floor, his parathas all over the desk. That Karan,  he just did not know to mind his own business ! Sid was seething for revenge. He grabbed Karan’s arm and pinned him to the chair.

“Why did you do that? Now, I have to go hungry!”

Karan was an energetic boy, but not a bad sort. He apologized and said, “You can still eat it, it is on the desk, not on the floor! ”

Sid started to sob as he said, ” My mother asked me not to.”

The teacher hurried in to see what the commotion was all about. As the boys explained, Sparsh piped in, ” Ma’am, his mother has asked him not to eat food that was spilled, not even on the desk! He is only following her words! ”

The teacher smiled to herself and asked them, ” So boys… Sid cannot eat this food now and Karan is sorry for what he did. What should we do now?”

Karan hugged Sid as he said, ” I will share my lunch with him. My mother has made pulao today. Can we do that, Ma’am?”

As the bell rang for the next class, the boys were seen laughing and eating, the methi paranthas forgotten for the love of a kind that only eight year olds possess.

Home is where the heart is…

A couple of days ago, we moved our fish, Gouglu, from an aquarium in the living room to one in our bedroom. Before we know what happened next, you must know who Gouglu is. A boisterous, ‘happy’ fish.

Indeed, I had never really seen a fish that seemed so happy, before I knew Gouglu.I named him Gouglu because he so loved food : ‘ Gou’ from Gourmand and ‘glu’ from Glutton. He jumped at his food, caught roaches when they fell into his tank and I think he even knew his name. I am not a fish person, as I cannot hug or touch them to my satisfaction, but Gouglu was special. Sometimes in the quiet of the afternoon, I felt he could listen to me speak to him.Not only that, he even seemed to understand.

Maybe I am superimposing my lonely thoughts on him.

Maybe I am reading too much into certain typical behavioural traits exhibited by a Green Terror Cichlid.

Maybe I have just eaten too much sugar.

When I cannot sleep, when insomnia decides to pay me a ‘formal’ visit (we do not know each other so well) , I close my eyes and think back of a certain home.

With two bedrooms and a large balcony.

Where a young couple dreamed their first ever dreams.

Where children walked in at will, laughing and playing.

Where music and uplifting conversation formed a part of everyday life.

The house was small and often messy, yet, I have slept my deepest nights through in that house.

I have tasted the best ice cream there, sitting on the stairs with a much loved friend.

Love was the quilt, in which we were wrapped : snug and warm.

Slowly….. I fall asleep…. one with my thoughts.

And Gouglu?

He died from the move.

I know how you felt, Gouglu. I really do.

(This was written some time ago on my Medium page. I found it today and thought I’d publish it here, too. )