Friday, August 18, 2006

Panju mittai!

Now I have two templates. Must be me is a ghastly spiked-with-great-amounts-of-rose-escence-rose milk colour and the other, the usual speckled one. Idle hands and idle kicks I tell you...the template samples showed something close to hot pink which is a colour I like and then it turns out to be this bledy cotton candy with words scrawled all over! But if keyed in without the www then it's good ole speckles! Paah! Why won't that pink go away!!

update: pink poye pochu!


This is all some yikety yak cause it's an experiment. You see I had just uploaded a few of my fav poems...4 of them and blogspot refuses to show them. And the few that flit past my blog might miss out on some of the most amazing poems by incredible people. So I'm hoping this post effectively puts the missing poems back in view.

So about the yikety this the feline mating season??? Cause my garden is brimming with scurrying fluff and colours of all sizes and ages!! It first started off with a perky gray one with eyes that move faster than neo. Perky one's a sucker for cuddles. All that smothering gave his catty nature of owning the world, a mega boost. He sauntered into my house. It wouldn't be a bad thing if my parents weren't finicky about the cat shedding and fear of what the cat brought in and what the cat took out. So it's just the garden and verandah.

Anyway, Neo made his home everywhere inside ma house. We figured he sneaked in at some odd hour at night through the window. Instead of some holy-aura-instilling melody, mornings were bursting with hollers of my holy name! Cos Neo used to greet my parents every morning with a well rested purr. The cat expert was alerted with the negative vibes of muttered curses punctuating every bellow . Tripping down the stairs I had to come all groggy eyed, puffy cheeked and with gnarled hair. Cradling the oh-can-we-play!?!-I-throw-ball-u-catch, grey kitty, I go through rapidly unbolted doors, out on to the verandah and into the garden and leave him in the farthest corner. And yes, Neo thought it was a game and he repeated his outings to my house till we shut the windows and he ditched us after a week never to be spotted again i.e.
permanently loitering in our garden. Though he does drop in once in a while when he's crossing over to greener pastures. This one time instead of assuaging our wounded ego at an ungrateful cat who gorged on the most sought after fishes, we were quite relieved and I slept peaceful mornings.

Neo's best bud and blood bro Zebra had us quite worried. He was a docile cat. Never used to eat much of what we fed him and always let Neo have the first helping. We thought he was a wimp and not much of a cat. He couldn't even poop right and clean up like one. Yep, he wasn't much of cat. He remained a kitten for a long time. He was tiny and skinny. While I was wondering if he should get some growth hormones injected into him, tada! He grew. Jus a tad longer. And we saw him streak under a bush with a chameleon hanging limp and wanting to be dead in his mouth. I'm happy for him.

Karuthama is one hot kitty cat! She's jet black and is slick and sleek as Naomi Campbell. She's such a tease man. You gotta see her walk with those long legs patting the air daintily with her long sinuous shimmery tail. If twas the ramp, those would be flying kisses. And she's a CAT , a real one...silent, intriguing, with a purposeful look lining her green eyes, and flitting in and out like a dream.

Then there's Puff, her exact opposite. A little pudgy with irregular white tufts grown a lil muddy. He's quite a dirty bugger unusually. He's sweet, lazy, and easy on the eye cause he just sits, sits and sits. Wonder if beneath this languor lurks a maned lion insitnct...get me food lady! Now! On the double! I sure hope that Karuthama isn't dating him. But I gotta say he is quite an endearing slob, all round in the face like some stress ball and oval slits for eyes which are perpetually half closed with a blissful sunny smirk twitching across his lil mouth, wagging his tail slumberously while lolling under the pavazha malli bush bathed in its perfume.

All brown cats must be called Ramaswamy cause my dad's childhood cat was one and we think it's him in his 9 avatars. So Ramaswamy in keeping with his name is very south indian in nature. He loves rice! And any kozhambu added to it has him snarling at us to get away from him asap so that he can bury his face in the lil rice mound. He's home early and sticks true to what they say about a cat "poona pola varudhu" minute he is there, the next minute he's gone! No trouble with him. He wants his rice. But give him a whiff of more exotic stuff and something overcomes him...a kind of frenzy, the kind the masses feel when they get scent of Rajnikanth being due to make an appearance somewhere. He paces on the kitchen window sill alternating hiccups of squeals and cajoling purrs while my mum carries on passively cooking the sora puttu. He's almost in tears when it's cooked for he can no longer get anything outta his lips. But otherwise he's quite a placid cat.

The amorous ones and I have quite a connection. Their hotbed is right under my bedroom window. Their orgasmic spitting and snarls has me bolt upright from the bed at unearthly hours, scramble for my phone and wake up snoozing p'dner and make her snap out of her slumber as well by holding the phone to the window. Once, the coconut tree bang outside my window got tired of their foreplay which involves some highpitched squeals and bawling like a baby, that a branch crashed on to them sending them in opposite directions spitting curses.

Apart from these regulars there are other locals who use my garden as a highway to ply between prospective food spots. Not only don't they pay toll, they don't even look sideways at us while strutting over and taking toilet breaks. Pthoo pthoo pthoo to you whiskered ones too!!

Ma bag o lyrics

Gregory Corso

Should I get married? Should I be Good?
Astound the girl next door with my velvet suit and faustaus hood?
Don't take her to movies but to cemeteries
tell all about werewolf bathtubs and forked clarinets
then desire her and kiss her and all the preliminaries
and she going just so far and I understanding why
not getting angry saying You must feel! It's beautiful to feel!
Instead take her in my arms lean against an old crooked tombstone
and woo her the entire night the constellations in the sky--

When she introduces me to her parents
back straightened, hair finally combed, strangled by a tie,
should I sit knees together on their 3rd degree sofa
and not ask Where's the bathroom?
How else to feel other than I am,
often thinking Flash Gordon soap--
O how terrible it must be for a young man
seated before a family and the family thinking
We never saw him before! He wants our Mary Lou!
After tea and homemade cookies they ask What do you do for a living?
Should I tell them? Would they like me then?
Say All right get married, we're losing a daughter
but we're gaining a son--
And should I then ask Where's the bathroom?

O God, and the wedding! All her family and her friends
and only a handful of mine all scroungy and bearded
just waiting to get at the drinks and food--
And the priest! He looking at me if I masturbated
asking me Do you take this woman for your lawful wedded wife?
And I trembling what to say say Pie Glue!
I kiss the bride all those corny men slapping me on the back
She's all yours, boy! Ha-ha-ha!
And in their eyes you could see some obscene honeymoon going on--

then all that absurd rice and clanky cans and shoes
Niagara Falls! Hordes of us! Husbands! Wives! Flowers! Chocolates!
All streaming into cozy hotels
All going to do the same thing tonight
The indifferent clerk he knowing what was going to happen
The lobby zombies they knowing what
The whistling elevator man he knowing
The winking bellboy knowing
Everybody knowing! I'd be almost inclined not to do anything!
Stay up all night! Stare that hotel clerk in the eye!
Screaming: I deny honeymoon! I deny honeymoon!
running rampant into those almost climatic suites
yelling Radio belly! Cat shovel!
O I'd live in Niagara forever! in a dark cave beneath the Falls
I'd sit there the Mad Honeymooner devising ways to break marriages, a scourge of
bigamy a saint of divorce--

But I should get married I should be good
How nice it'd be to come home to her
and sit by the fireplace and she in the kitchen
aproned young and lovely wanting by baby
and so happy about me she burns the roast beef
and comes crying to me and I get up from my big papa chair
saying Christmas teeth! Radiant brains! Apple deaf!
God what a husband I'd make! Yes, I should get married!
So much to do! like sneaking into Mr Jones' house late at night
and cover his golf clubs with 1920 Norwegian books
Like hanging a picture of Rimbaud on the lawnmower
like pasting Tannu Tuva postage stamps all over the picket fence
like when Mrs Kindhead comes to collect for the Community Chest
grab her and tell her There are unfavorable omens in the sky!
And when the mayor comes to get my vote tell him
When are you going to stop people killing whales!
And when the milkman comes leave him a note in the bottle
Penguin dust, bring me penguin dust, I want penguin dust--

Yet if I should get married and it's Connecticut and snow
and she gives birth to a child and I am sleepless, worn,
up for nights, head bowed against a quiet window, the past behind me,
finding myself in the most common of situations a trembling man
knowledged with responsibility not twig-smear not Roman coin soup--
O what would that be like!
Surely I'd give it for a nipple a rubber Tacitus
For a rattle bag of broken Bach records
Tack Della Francesca all over its crib
Sew the Greek alphabet on its bib
And build for its playpen a roofless Parthenon

No, I doubt I'd be that kind of father
not rural not snow no quiet window
but hot smelly New York City
seven flights up, roaches and rats in the walls
a fat Reichian wife screeching over potatoes Get a job!
And five nose running brats in love with Batman
And the neighbors all toothless and dry haired
like those hag masses of the 18th century
all wanting to come in and watch TV
The landlord wants his rent
Grocery store Blue Cross Gas & Electric Knights of Columbus
Impossible to lie back and dream Telephone snow, ghost parking--
No! I should not get married and I should never get married!
But--imagine if I were to marry a beautiful sophisticated woman
tall and pale wearing an elegant black dress and long black gloves
holding a cigarette holder in one hand and highball in the other
and we lived high up a penthouse with a huge window
from which we could see all of New York and even farther on clearer days
No I can't imagine myself married to that pleasant prison dream--

O but what about love? I forget love
not that I am incapable of love
it's just that I see love as odd as wearing shoes--
I never wanted to marry a girl who was like my mother
And Ingrid Bergman was always impossible
And there maybe a girl now but she's already married
And I don't like men and--
but there's got to be somebody!
Because what if I'm 60 years old and not married,
all alone in furnished room with pee stains on my underwear
and everybody else is married! All in the universe married but me!

Ah, yet well I know that were a woman possible as I am possible
then marriage would be possible--
Like SHE in her lonely alien gaud waiting her Egyptian lover
so I wait--bereft of 2,000 years and the bath of life.

The Love Song of J Alfred Prufrock
T.S. Eliot

Let us go then, you and I,
When the evening is spread out against the sky
Like a patient etherised upon a table;
Let us go, through certain half-deserted streets,
The muttering retreatsOf restless nights in one-night cheap hotels
And sawdust restaurants with oyster-shells:
Streets that follow like a tedious argument
Of insidious intent
To lead you to an overwhelming question...
Oh, do not ask, 'What is it?'
Let us go and make our visit.

In the room the women come and go
Talking of Michelangelo.

The yellow fog that rubs its back upon the window-panes,
The yellow smoke that rubs its muzzle on the window-panes
Licked its tongue into the corners of the evening,
Lingered upon the pools that stand in drains,
Let fall upon its back the soot that falls from chimneys,
Slipped by the terrace, made a sudden leap,
And seeing that it was a soft October night,
Curled once about the house, and fell asleep.

And indeed there will be time
For the yellow smoke that slides along the street,
Rubbing its back upon the window panes;
There will be time, there will be time
To prepare a face to meet the faces that you meet;
There will be time to murder and create,
And time for all the works and days of hands
That lift and drop a question on your plate;
Time for you and time for me,
And time yet for a hundred indecisions,
And for a hundred visions and revisions,
Before the taking of a toast and tea.

In the room the women come and go
Talking of Michelangelo.

And indeed there will be time
To wonder, 'Do I dare?' and, 'Do I dare?'
Time to turn back and descend the stair,
With a bald spot in the middle of my hair--
(They will say: 'How his hair is growing thin!')
My morning coat, my collar mounting firmly to the chin,
My necktie rich and modest, but asserted by a simple pin--
(They will say: 'But how his arms and legs are thin!')
Do I dareDisturb the universe?
In a minute there is time
For decisions and revisions which a minute will reverse.

For I have known them all already, known them all--
Have known the evenings, mornings, afternoons,
I have measured out my life with coffee spoons;
I know the voices dying with a dying fall
Beneath the music from a farther room.
So how should I presume?

And I have known the arms already, known them all--
Arms that are braceleted and white and bare
(But in the lamplight, downed with light brown hair!)
Is it perfume from a dress
That makes me so digress?
Arms that lie along a table, or wrap about a shawl.
And should I then presume?
And how should I begin?

Shall I say, I have gone at dusk through narrow streets
And watched the smoke that rises from the pipes
Of lonely men in shirt-sleeves, leaning out of windows?

I should have been a pair of ragged claws
Scuttling across the floors of silent seas.

. . . . .

And the afternoon, the evening, sleeps so peacefully!
Smoothed by long fingers,
Asleep ... tired ... or it malingers,
Stretched on on the floor, here beside you and me.
Should I, after tea and cakes and ices,
Have the strength to force the moment to its crisis?
But though I have wept and fasted, wept and prayed,
Though I have seen my head (grown slightly bald) brought in
upon a platter,
I am no prophet--and here's no great matter;
I have seen the moment of my greatness flicker,
And I have seen the eternal Footman hold my coat, and snicker,
And in short, I was afraid.

And would it have been worth it, after all,
After the cups, the marmalade, the tea,
Among the porcelain, among some talk of you and me,
Would it have been worth while,
To have bitten off the matter with a smile,
To have squeezed the universe into a ball
To roll it toward some overwhelming question,
To say: 'I am Lazarus, come from the dead,
Come back to tell you all,
I shall tell you all'--
If one, settling a pillow by her head,
Should say: 'That is not what I meant at all;
That is not it, at all.'

And would it have been worth it, after all,
Would it have been worth while,
After the sunsets and the dooryards and the sprinkled streets,
After the novels, after the teacups, after the skirts that trail
along the floor--
And this, and so much more?--
It is impossible to say just what I mean!
But as if a magic lantern threw the nerves in patterns on a
Would it have been worth while
If one, settling a pillow or throwing off a shawl,
And turning toward the window, should say:
'That is not it at all,
That is not what I meant, at all.'

. . . . .

No! I am not Prince Hamlet, nor was meant to be;
Am an attendant lord, one that will do
To swell a progress, start a scene or two,
Advise the prince; no doubt, an easy tool,
Deferential, glad to be of use,
Politic, cautious, and meticulous;
Full of high sentence, but a bit obtuse;
At times, indeed, almost ridiculous--
Almost, at times, the Fool.

I grow old ... I grow old ...
I shall wear the bottoms of my trousers rolled.

Shall I part my hair behind? Do I dare to eat a peach?
I shall wear white flannel trousers, and walk upon the beach.
I have heard the mermaids singing, each to each.

I do not think that they will sing to me.

I have seen them riding seaward on the waves
Combing the white hair of the waves blown back
When the wind blows the water white and black.

We have lingered in the chambers of the sea
By sea-girls wreathed with seaweed red and brown
Till human voices wake us, and we drown.

The Revolution will not be telvised
Gil Scott Heron

You will not be able to stay home, brother.
You will not be able to plug in, turn on and cop out.
You will not be able to lose yourself on skag and skip,S
kip out for beer during commercials,
Because the revolution will not be televised.

The revolution will not be televised.
The revolution will not be brought to you by Xerox
In 4 parts without commercial interruptions.
The revolution will not show you pictures of Nixon
blowing a bugle and leading a charge by John
Mitchell, General Abrams and Spiro Agnew to eat
hog maws confiscated from a Harlem sanctuary.
The revolution will not be televised.

The revolution will not be brought to you by the
Schaefer Award Theatre and will not star Natalie
Woods and Steve McQueen or Bullwinkle and Julia.
The revolution will not give your mouth sex appeal.
The revolution will not get rid of the nubs.
The revolution will not make you look five pounds
thinner, because the revolution will not be televised, Brother.

There will be no pictures of you and Willie May
pushing that shopping cart down the block on the dead run,
or trying to slide that color television into a stolen ambulance.
NBC will not be able predict the winner at 8:32
or report from 29 districts.
The revolution will n0t be televised.

There will be no pictures of pigs shooting down
brothers in the instant replay.
There will be no pictures of pigs shooting down
brothers in the instant replay.
There will be no pictures of Whitney Young being
run out of Harlem on a rail with a brand new process.
There will be no slow motion or still life of Roy
Wilkens strolling through Watts in a Red, Black and
Green liberation jumpsuit that he had been saving
For just the proper occasion.

Green Acres, The Beverly hillbillies, and Hooterville
Junction will no longer be so damned relevant, and
women will not care if Dick finally gets down with
Jane on Search for Tomorrow because Black people
will be in the street looking for a brighter day.
The rvolution will not be televised.

There will be no highlights on the eleven o' clock
news and no pictures of hairy armed women
liberationists and Jackie Onassis blowing her nose.
The theme song will not be written by Jim Webb,
Francis Scott Key, nor sung by Glen Campbell, Tom
Jones, Johnny Cash, Englebert Humperdink, or the Rare Earth.
The revolution will not be televised.

The revolution will not be right back after a message
about a white tornado, white lightning, or white people.
You will not have to worry about a dove in your
bedroom, a tiger in your tank, or the giant in your toilet bowl.
The revolution will not go better with Coke.
The revolution will not fight the germs that may cause bad breath.
The revolution will put you in the driver's seat.

The revolution will notbe televised, will not be televised,
will not be televised, will not be televised.
The revolution will be no re-run brothers;
The revolution will be live.

The Emperor of Icecream
Wallace Stevens

Call the roller of big cigars,
The muscular one, and bid him whip
In kitchen cups concupiscent curds.
Let the wenches dawdle in such dress
As they are used to wear, and let the boys
Bring flowers in last month's newspapers.
Let be be finale of seem.
The only emperor is the emperor of ice-cream.

Take from the dresser of deal,
Lacking the three glass knobs, that sheet
On which she embroidered fantails once
And spread it so as to cover her face.
If her horny feet protrude, they come
To show how cold she is, and dumb.
Let the lamp affix its beam.
The only emperor is the emperor of ice-cream.

Friday, August 11, 2006

*snicker at smacker*

The other night I was going through the Metroplus Food Guide of Chennai. I knew almost all the places and very few I had actually sampled. Many reasons for the unvisited - driven away by the yuppiness, expelled by the prices, shaken off by horrible stories of service, banished by tags such as Pure Veg and Health Food or simply cause it’s not in an area I fancy.

Perusing, I figured them ambience out in my head and scrawled numbers and names and addresses for better pocket days. And this list I know is doomed from its inception. Cause I am going to bust money on mexican chicken cheese burgers at Kenzos, a beer (I always find myself stuck with a bike to take home so...just an a will do) and platters of oil-leak-sprung kebabs at Bike & Barrel, or crumb fried chicken and hot fudge brownie at Sparky’s, chocolate mint cake at Mocha, chicken stroganoff and mint ice cream and mint soda pop at Casa Picola, or chocolate truffles at Satyam laid hands on by braving lecherous crotch-rubbing men, kids who love to push and squeal with the surge, aunties with chiffon sarees gristling against my skin and all for gooey chocolate. Tis worth it! Or else I’d be with ranji at Noodle House over steamed rice and spicy chicken gravy, or coffee world and their really real and addictively aromatic coffees, or at karpagambal mess embedding my fingers in malli poo kinda idlis and swiping the yellowing banana leaf off its gobsmakcing saambar or scraping kapaleeshwar temple’ well-renowned puli sadham out of a dhonai. Note how the tummy budget shrinks.

Well, that’s the way of my pocket and that’s where the tongue tried and tested satisfaction. Utterly conditioned by these places and having figured out ways of my shrinking wallet, my taste buds have grown conservative. But they aint dogmatic... Yet. So a lil conscious overworking of the glands will unloosen legs towards a new destination.

My tongue I must say is quite a fretter...uneasily settling in the mouth, constantly lapping and tickling roof in annoyed anticipation, oozing skepticism on what’s to come. Keeping it still is quite a task. “Can I have a fresh lime soda please?” The salinity and lime gives it a lashing. In the meanwhile I scan, peering into the menu almost expecting a culinary hole to slide down. While marinating in the salt my tongue gives sudden upstarts as I skim over loving words...cheese, spice, jalapenos, deep fried, tangy, curried, sauteed, chilli, garlic, ginger, cloves, spring onions, melting hot jacket potato, vendaka, broccoli, cream of something soup, sour cream, mayo, beer batter, tamarind paste, vanjaram, kaadai and a bunch of other stuff. I stick by my decision to try the untried and clamp it shut, grind my teeth giving myslef cheek bites and order.

If I could give my tongue a cigarette I’m sure it’ll grab the opportunity, walk out of my mouth, envelope the tobaco and puff away while marching up and down in anxiety. Breaking conditioning is hard for my tongue too. But it has to understand it belongs to me. And it is not me. So I throw it a scorching look (all internally of course). And while it sulks, people watching, spacing out, a book, or a TV with set top box has me quite occupied.

New food arrives. I am pathetic at introductions. This piping hot something or bledy cold somethinger or neither nothinger greets my glum tongue with thrusts of spoons or scooped fingers and more often than not they always click and have a ball of a time. “I told you so...I know what you like. I know what’s good for you.” Am I a tyrant? Or is my tongue just indulging me having had an understanding with my brain?

And then of course that slip of paper with the Slurp List is doomed otherwise also. We all know all that is scrawled must crawl away.