Tag Archives: reading love

Re-visiting; Re-reading.

I read this following poem time and again, very often, so often that by now I have most of the lines by heart and yet I do not get enough of it.

How can I? Because every time I read this, it gives me, well I won’t say new insight but the very same old feelings that I live with. The feelings are always there, they are ever present, only they come out or I let them come out not too often. These are the feelings I live with, most women live with.

Though there are some days when they flow so rapidly that I fail to control them, or give them a direction and on those days, I read, I read anything, and everything, I read poems, novels, stories, plays. I read this poem all over again.

Today is one such day, and I will share this once again. Because, I am flowing, I am hurting, I am smiling, because it’s all mine, because I am I.

An Introduction. 

I don’t know politics but I know the names
Of those in power, and can repeat them like
Days of week, or names of months, beginning with Nehru.
I am Indian, very brown, born inMalabar,
I speak three languages, write in
Two, dream in one.
Don’t write in English, they said, English is
Not your mother-tongue. Why not leave
Me alone, critics, friends, visiting cousins,
Every one of you? Why not let me speak in
Any language I like? The language I speak,
Becomes mine, its distortions, its queernesses
All mine, mine alone.
It is half English, halfIndian, funny perhaps, but it is honest,
It is as human as I am human, don’t
You see? It voices my joys, my longings, my
Hopes, and it is useful to me as cawing
Is to crows or roaring to the lions, it
Is human speech, the speech of the mind that is
Here and not there, a mind that sees and hears and
Is aware. Not the deaf, blind speech
Of trees in storm or of monsoon clouds or of rain or the
Incoherent mutterings of the blazing
Funeral pyre. I was child, and later they
Told me I grew, for I became tall, my limbs
Swelled and one or two places sprouted hair.
WhenI asked for love, not knowing what else to ask
For, he drew a youth of sixteen into the
Bedroom and closed the door, He did not beat me
But my sad woman-body felt so beaten.
The weight of my breasts and womb crushed me.
I shrank Pitifully.
Then … I wore a shirt and my
Brother’s trousers, cut my hair short and ignored
My womanliness. Dress in sarees, be girl
Be wife, they said. Be embroiderer, be cook,
Be a quarreller with servants. Fit in. Oh,
Belong, cried the categorizers. Don’t sit
On walls or peep in through our lace-draped windows.
Be Amy, or be Kamala. Or, better
Still, be Madhavikutty. It is time to
Choose a name, a role. Don’t play pretending games.
Don’t play at schizophrenia or be a
Nympho. Don’t cry embarrassingly loud when
Jilted in love … I met a man, loved him. Call
Him not by any name, he is every man
Who wants. a woman, just as I am every
Woman who seeks love. In him . . . the hungry haste
Of rivers, in me . . . the oceans’ tireless
Waiting. Who are you, I ask each and everyone,
The answer is, it is I. Anywhere and,
Everywhere, I see the one who calls himself I
In this world, he is tightly packed like the
Sword in its sheath. It is I who drink lonely
Drinks at twelve, midnight, in hotels of strange towns,
It is I who laugh, it is I who make love
And then, feel shame, it is I who lie dying
With a rattle in my throat. I am sinner,
I am saint. I am the beloved and the
Betrayed. I have no joys that are not yours, no
Aches which are not yours. I too call myself I.

Kamala Das. 

You are a Reader.

Today I have another reader realization, Bare with me..

 

You know you are a reader, you are certain that it is the only pleasure in your life, that it is the only solution to all your problems, that reading is the only source to digress yourself from all those problems, that reading is the only way to maintain sanity and that it is the only way to run away from reality.

 

So you think that you are a reader.

 

At least I thought so, or rather I think so, every time I see a book and find my mouth drooping at the magical words.

 

Until recently when I literally dozed off early in the morning, a book in my hand, and woke up after two hours only to realize that I was already running late for the day.

 

How come I dozed off? Well, as it happens, I am up for reading anything any place by anyone only till I am willing to do it, which is of my own accord. But as soon as someone pressurizes me for it, my mind stops working and I go numb. In this case, I am being pressurized by the so called ‘College people, here the examiners’.

 

My exams are coming up and I don’t understand why that this time I have to really try hard to even study what I like. My papers consists everything that I like, at least mostly what I like. I have to read theories, novels, stories and poems for them and yet here I am, trying to not nod off while preparing for them. Seriously, what is wrong with me? Had I heard of something from someplace else, I would definitely go and hunt down every little information about it and read it even in the middle of the night. But since it is in my syllabus all I am thinking about is that I have to study it, prepare an answer and then just write it down in my exam. I absolutely understand that this is wrong, the entire concept is wrong, this way I don’t understand anything and will be blindly following the teaching method usually applied. I have never been this, but I don’t know what is wrong. I am concentrating only on the fact that I have ‘exams.’

 

I’ll give you an instance, if I had come across the word ‘Marxism’ some place else then I was sure to Google every detail about it and read it till I understood it, but now that it is in my syllabus, I am almost day dreaming about sipping a drink near the ocean under the warm sun after my exams.

 

And I called myself a reader? I guess the problem is that not only I have to read it but understand it, retain it and prepare for the ‘exams’.

 

Okay, enough with the word ‘exams’ today, I guess I’ll go and pick up some long forgotten book which I might have read so many times, only to remind myself that I am a reader. 😀

 

 

I am a Reader!?

I am pretty sure that many of you here will be book readers, so much so that reading would be an inseparable part of your life. Yes, I’d say that too, that I love reading books, I love to get lost in an imaginary world. But today I read something which shook my beliefs, that I was or am a book reader.

So I say that I read books, but how many, which ones? There are so many books and which ones do I pick?

I know the quantity does not matter, the quality does, but wait till you read this..

books.jpg

 

What do you say now? 😀

I am not much of a calculative person, but I am pretty sure that I am not reading since I was 5, I sometimes take more than a week to complete a book, and what more? I might not even live to be 80.

So I don’t even read 1% of fiction, non-fiction that is available to me and I call myself a reader?

To The One Who Dreams

Because I am feeling a little dreamy today,

Because I am reading something too beautiful today,

Because everything is too good to be true today,

Because I believe; today:

to-the-girl-who-reads-by-flashlight-who-sees-dragons-28807347.png

 

Book Suggestions, please!!

I don’t understand what happens, and how this happens, but as soon as the holiday season kicks in, I start losing myself to negativity and uncertainty. I start losing all the hope and faith inside of me, and give in to the terrible anxiety and fear. These times are really trying, and however much I try it is extremely difficult to come out of it easily.

As always my consolation comes from books, being the recluse that I am. But somehow, whatever I am getting hold of recently seems to be depressing, either there is someone who dies, or something that keeps the protagonist in constant misery, there is only pain and suffering in what I am reading too.

So, basically I need book suggestions that do not include any kind of heartache. Please, I am really clinging onto you guys now, I need to revive my faith and get back on the right track.

I want to start my new year with something that brings smile to my face, and not with something that leaves me dejected and wondering.

Anything, please…. (You must know I am desperate, if only to read something good.)

 

Wondering why?

I don’t know why, but the darker the book’s plot, the more I tend to like it, so much so that I read it again and again.

So what is the darkest book you have read more than once?

Mine is:

A thousand splendid suns

-Khaled Hooseini.