Tuesday, 23 January 2018

The Kunduli Girl

I was walking home from school
Running along, skipping along
Playing hide and seek
In the deep jungle trails
Loving their many secrets
Chasing the dappled shadows

The bag on my shoulders
My meagre notes and books
Forgotten in my wonder world
A smile on my lips
As I went hush hush after a squirrel
...Stepping on a twig

Was the noise very loud?
What did I hear?
Was that more twigs breaking?
Foolishly, still unconcerned
As I spy the squirrel again,
But not for long...

They creep up
Trample the mossy bed
Chase away the sun's rays
And give a howl of laughter
So I know they are near
With no place to go, No place to hide

Have you seen hyenas
Hunting sniffing playing with their prey
I am the prey
The bloody boots finally leave
With my smile... hunger satiated
Over my trodden bag, broken body

That was not the end
My halting story uttered
Hunted, haunted, deserted
My tale twisted, my virginity plundered
Many times over
I was a pariah, thrown to a hostel away from home

That was still not the end
Woken up at midnight for interrogation
Proven guilty by the learned
Police, doctors, human rights
Women commission, judges
For speaking up means guilty

This girl; How could she be raped
By the very custodians of safety
It has never happened before
She must be lying
The young girl tells big tales
Luscious images of a vivid mind, maybe

A rope to end it all
Distressed, depressed,
Disowned in many ways
An object of shame, pity, distrust
isolation, disgrace
And a hundred days of plunder

But that was again not the end.
The body dragged to the streets
Politician across parties
Fighting for their scrap of glory
Death too doesn't give dignity
While the jungle keeps it's secret, still

The only end is not to be born.

There are some tales which are so sad they need to be told and retold. Everyday we feel we have seen the worst... when actually the worst is around the corner. I would honestly have liked to name this poem "the death of humans".

Monday, 22 January 2018

On the subject of Architecture

I don't think any subject can aspire to be as aspiring or as all comprehensive as architecture.
People think architects only learn to make plans. No. They are taught to have an eye for colour, rhythm, pattern, taught distinctive styles ranging from the medieval to modern, taught climatic conditions and what type of built environment suits each one, taught about materials, old and new, learn about construction and structural techniques ranging from stone, bricks, steel, concrete to present day  new age materials.
History, sociology, botany, a bit of geology all form a part of what they need to know.
Truly, botany? Right! They need to understand plants and know which types provides what kind of shade and goes with which type of environment!
Plus obviously they learn drawing plans, elevations, sections to represent all that they know. Wait. They don't just sit at a computer and start drawing plans. They spend a couple of years practising drafting on a drawing board. Then they learn to translate their thoughts onto the ubiquitous software the language of which again they need to learn simultaneously with their other subjects.
So if you are an architect out there... love thyself is all I can say.