indranildutta

I write stuff

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  • indranildutta 79w

    #pod #mirakee #writersnetwork #readwriteunite #alone #lonely #introvert #writerly #definingMyself #discussion

    Until I left for college when I was 17, I had this weird tendency to look out the window of my bedroom at the market by the street near our house, to see if the stores were closed yet. Of course, they closed at the same time every night. I liked seeing the lights on, the people walking in from their cars, imagining them walking around inside the small shops, smelling the greasy fries in a small basket in the stores, picking a snack, maybe quickly, maybe after a long debate. I loved the idea of people moving around in the world outside, especially when things inside felt desperate and awful. As long as there was movement, I was not alone.

    So far in life, I've had a strange relationship with being alone. Even as a kid, I was more likely to choose being by myself over spending time with other people. (The exception was high school, when I completely believed that not having a plan for every week made you an aberration.) Now, that my teenage is over, being alone is something I crave like food. I need to be alone a lot, in ways that are complicated and bewildering, I think, to some of the people around me.

    I am good at being alone, it's one of the things I like most about myself. I'm proud of it. Knowing that being alone is something I'm not only comfortable with, but crave, has meant that I seem to need less of it. As long as I can close a door, or walk away, or sit by myself, I'm fine. Being alone makes me feel powerful and peaceful. It makes me feel like my brain is a gold mine, and I'm so lucky to have this imagination. Being alone has always felt deeply indulgent to me, like a day off or being able to buy whatever you want. I can subsume the need, of course, if I have to, and there's a part of me that thrives on crowds and bustle and ambient noise. Too much, though, and I get cranky and sad and thoroughly unpleasant.

    I am a person who needs a lot of space, not the physical sort, but the distance from others kind. I'm pretty sure I can't go on vacation with someone because I'd be grouchy if I couldn't spend at least 60% of the time alone, wandering the streets, watching nature or reading. This is something I'm pretty sure (very sure, actually) that a few people in my life find disarming because eventually you're supposed to stop being by yourself and find someone to be with instead. You stop being a solitary creature with your own space and start building a space with someone else. And then you add more people to that space. You should do this for a lot of reasons, but also...you don't REALLY want to be alone, right?

    We have bought this, I think, the idea that being alone is something we should avoid at all costs. Women who are alone, who live alone after a certain age, who aren't partnered, are pathetic and deeply suspicious. Men who are alone are either oversexed, perpetual teenagers, sad, asexual creatures, or creepy perverts. Being by yourself is not a choice anyone in their right mind is supposed to opt for.

    Charles Bukowski wrote, "Loneliness is something I've never been bothered with because I've always had this terrible itch for solitude." It's important to know the difference between being alone and being lonely, and they're often confused. For me, being alone is something I choose, loneliness is the result of being alone, or feeling alone when I haven't chosen it, but they aren't the same, and they don't necessarily lead to one another.

    It's assumed that if you are alone, you must be lonely, or there must be something wrong, especially in a culture in which we emphasize the heterosexual couple as the symbol of the ultimate satisfaction. Spending time alone is another method of developing a relationship with myself, of actively engaging with what I want and what the possibilities could be. It's a loss, I think, that being alone has become something else that we police socially, because the result is that we miss out on an important part of what it means to live in our bodies.

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    Aloneliness

    For me,
    Being alone is
    Something
    I choose,
    Loneliness
    is the result
    Of being alone,
    Or feeling alone
    But only when I
    Haven't chosen it,
    But they
    Aren't the same,
    And they
    Don't necessarily
    Lead to one another.

    ©indranildutta

  • indranildutta 179w

    Dichotomy

    Have you ever thought,
    That every story
    Will have two sides?
    And that knowingly,
    Or unknowingly,
    You'll believe one,
    More than the other?

    Have you ever thought,
    That you never know
    The complete story,
    Even if you were in it?
    Feelings, moments, words
    Twisted, turned, warped
    Till it all fits your side,
    Your definition of right?

    Do you ever think,
    During those pensive
    Monsoon evenings
    That maybe,
    Just maybe,
    You too
    Are wrong?

    ©indranildutta

  • indranildutta 200w

    Pandemic

    A single voice, like yours and mine, are trivial at most, often unheard, often silenced, and often mocked. But when a thousand voices awaken in unity, the world is bound to take notice. And the heinous crimes that had so far been buried, are slowly, but surely, unearthed.

    The #meToo movement is a prime example of the same. A movement that has no political agenda, no organising body and no central command. A movement that aims to right the wrong that prevails in the unipolar society that we live in, to point out to us all that the world isn't the make-believe Utopia we all are shown, to make us realize that in this world, if you're not a man, you're hardly a human.

    And then there is the media, these people in power who flip the coin altogether and play with a very strong weapon, victimization. They portray that it is in fact the men who are the victims, of false accusations and baked stories. But if I ask for the number of men being accused wrongly, I'm sure the number would be negligible compared to the number of women who have been catcalled or touched inappropriately, and yet men are being painted as the victims.

    Everyday I read headlines like #meToo gets this person, #meToo reaches this firm, as if they are reporting a pandemic which is out of control, akin to a forest fire that needs to be put out at the earliest. And to that I ask, "is it THAT bad to ask for equality and justice? Do we always need to be blind to the obvious?"

    No. If someone is afraid of this movement, it is for obvious reasons. The people who have done no wrong either support it, or they are just blissfully unaware. The world had spent an era trying to suppress a certain part of the society, but you can only defer judgement, not avoid it forever.

    ©indranildutta

  • indranildutta 206w

    The Warrior Princess

    When I have a daughter, I would call her Aphrodite, for she would command absolute control over both love and war, the two traits with constant contradiction, with the utmost grace! My daughter would have the personality of goddesses that we read in books and the epics. Calm. Compassionate. Understanding. And when threatened, the unforgiving embodiment of destruction.

    Every morning, irrespective of how busy I might be, I would sit by her side, and listen to her stories, and glance into her wonderful world, the childlike Utopia that we all once believed in. I would listen, as her Utopia slowly and steadily is stripped of all its beauty, and stained with the black tar of reality. As her dreams of purple elephants and magenta oceans slowly turn to nightmares of selfish men driven only by lust, I would ask her to dream. But not of these morbid monsters, but of purple elephants and magenta oceans. Not of well mapped dark alleys and alien touches, but of liquorice rainbows and candy paths. And if she asks me why, I would tell her, that she doesn't need to battle monsters in her head, for she'll keep meeting them all her life, and so, her imagination can deign to be a nation free from them.

    Like the roots of the giant Banyan tree, I would let her grow with reckless abandon, letting her colour herself outside the lines, provided she grows in every direction. And I'll ask her to keep dreaming, and more importantly, believe every single one of them, something that this selfish world would never let her imbibe. I'll teach her to trust without contradiction, to respect without division and love without lust. I'll show her the path to destruction so she may learn to avoid it.

    Like a beacon of light, she'd shine through the dismal world of shattered dreams, and guide other wayward souls on her path. She'd be beautiful, I know it from the bottom of my heart. But her beauty won't be measured by the reactions to her picture on the social media. No. Her beauty would be measured in the number of lives she brings a positive change into.

    I would let her figure out the difference between the steady glare from across the hall, and the stolen glances from the corner of someone's eyes. And when someday she comes home, battered and bruised in love, I would tell her that she's stronger than the entire universe combined. That she has the power to warp time and space around her being, and that every person would be an experience she needs to live before finding the one who sees her for what she is.

    That day, I'll create a warrior out of her. Armed with a mind strengthened with dreams and thoughts, she would slay everything that tells her that she's anything less than great, and she would soar high above our petty convictions and repaint the dull world as we see today, into a world of purple elephants and magenta oceans.

    When I have a daughter, I'd let her be. For she may not be pretty to the world, but she'll be beautiful, for she would be my daughter,
    the Warrior Empress,
    Aphrodite.

    ©indranildutta

  • indranildutta 206w

    Hurt

    Have you ever wondered,
    How easy it is to hurt?

    The absence of a familiar smile,
    The mention of a single word,
    The silence of a few minutes,
    And you have shattered them.

    Our facade of invincibility,
    Left scarred forever,
    By a few words,
    Or lack thereof

    ©indranildutta

  • indranildutta 207w

    You can experience one of two things when it comes to love, either you can feel happy and content, or you can step into a bottomless abyss, and infinitely fall deeper and deeper, and can no longer even muster the courage to step back...

    #mirakee #mirakeelove #love #writeaway #readwriteunite #writersnetwork

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    Storm

    There is something
    Tremendously powerful
    About you.
    Like the sea,
    It doesn't matter
    If you're still and serene,
    Or in the fit of a storm,
    There's always
    A risk of drowning.

    ©indranildutta

  • indranildutta 211w

    War

    My dearest,
    Love is not something
    That you either have
    Or you don't.
    It's a test,
    An eternally losing war
    Where you must fight,
    So you may fight some more,
    But can never truly win.
    I promise to fight on,
    For all of eternity,
    Only if you promise
    To be there,
    When I come back
    Exhausted,
    But not defeated...

    ©indranildutta

  • indranildutta 211w

    Disgust

    This society has justified acid bottles in our hands as a part of unrequited love, it has justified those perverted touches in a crowded place as an honest mistake, it has justified violation of a lady's honour as a youthful spite. This society justifies scathing remarks on the character of a lady if her knees show in her dress, and yet finds it acceptable to coerce girls for their own libido. This society, these people, these men disgust me.

    ©indranildutta

  • indranildutta 212w

    I wish I could tell you of a day when I didn't hear a news or a post about rapes, molestations, indecency towards women, but alas, I can't.

    And I cannot express how incredibly helpless I feel with every passing day. With each day, I only grow more and more ashamed of myself, and the society we live in.

    How did we become this way?
    How do we save ourselves, from ourselves?

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    Fault

    It's your fault.
    It was always your fault.
    It'll always be your fault.
    It can never be my fault.

    Because you are a woman
    Born in this country called India.
    And no matter what you do,
    Or whatever is done to you,
    It was always your fault.
    It's always going to be your fault.

    And I'm afraid,
    All I can do now,
    Is hang my head in shame,
    Since I too am a man...

    ©indranildutta

  • indranildutta 224w

    A Million Love Ballads

    She always had an air of wondrous amazement,
    Every single night when she could see the stars.
    When all I could see were the faint familiar glimmer,
    She would look through them all, at something new.
    If you were to ever ask her what it is she finds there,
    She'd tell you of a million love ballads traced in braille.

    And suddenly you'd see the night sky come alive,
    With stories painted in the galaxy, and yet untold.
    When the tumultuous seas of our world simmered down,
    Her spirit put up the mainsails and sailed light years,
    Far away from you and me, and yet never lost to us,
    For her ink and her words forever pulled us close...

    ©indranildutta