Saturday, May 28, 2005
  A Nonchalant Day

Today is passing away in total disregard. I have chosen to not remind myself of anything I have to do, anyone I have to meet. I have sleptin the afternoon, calmly allowing myself to be startled awake.

In trying to speak in my own lingo - I am having to deal with things I wanted to ignore. Working within the strictures of coherence and definition. I felt I could just stage private shows - in which each of the invited would take pains to listen to me, the way I dribbled, the way I speak. No one has been coming home to listen to me, everyone isaway, at most waving at me from there, outside the fence.

I am putting up my flag today.

Where am I going, only where I am not allowing myself to not go. I am slowly sliding into the grooves. What is the story ? The story is that, time has passed without asking any of us and we have been stuck in our own rants. I can breathe. Real deep, my lungs can expand to hold everything I can see, everything I want to speak. Dance itself is motion, it can never be a metaphor - metaphors who know what they arecan sink without a trace.

I am not meeting anyone - each meeting being an interview, because sooner or later I have to allow myself to love my obese body. I have to allow myself to love the conflicting, self-conscious areas I swim in. I really cannot become anything I am not, when I am not trying anything.

The story is that the volume of each TV in each room is higher than the volume of the voice I am dying to hear - the clear, potent voice which is not bothered by either newspapers or agendas or livelihood pressures.... Imagine being poor after you've had a good time, had seven bank accounts, all loaded... Who'll want to help you ? You'll only want to time-travel.

I will not wipe my feet on the mat, see if you can stop me. Potency can be diluted by a shallow comment. Or can be ignored in view of other things. Going from swing to swing to swing. Slowly settling downby the river, playing with pebbles.

The Congress is having a great time ruling India - the ruling coalition is always in the news. The newspapers love to photograph the PM, it is good filler material. Last year it was Vajepayee, this year it is Singh. My wife switched from Express to the Times because Vajepayee was Express' favourite front page model for six days in a row ! At least times changed the semi-nudes everyday...

Looking squarely at the road ahead - I can barely keep memories away. I remember that day Amy, Anne, Paulette, Miri and I were driving to Karma Chilling. It was a good sunny day for Vermont and I was halfway between hyper and hysterical and sober / intense. I was part of this writers' reidency, Vermont Studio Center at Johnson. It was a month with a freakish freedom of being able to think only in one tongue, one language. There were no fights, induldences... which I risked falling into. Standing in the middle of a meditation room, balancing my notebook on my palm and writing poetry. Words were seeming to be neatly patterned in bits of rhythm.

Some snippets reach out to me quite intensely - our guide, Ukranian had quite a stylish slant in her smile, she was like slang rung out intemple bells. And like small child's half-smiling prayer.

Her introductory fragment in the cafe, her taking us around the centre... The room where Shambhala Budhism was born ! She saw us offto the path which went up to the retreats.

Making conversation, talking of meditation. The stupa / shrine in the middle of that forest clearing. Covered by hay, surrounded by hills. Half thawed slices of ice on the ground, small streams of waterflowing from here to there.

We walked thrice around the shrine, those of us who knew how to pray, prayed. And then we were all rushing back to our center in Amy's car. Which reminds me I haven't yet written back to her. At that moment I was feeling the sheer expanse, the scale of the silence, peace around me. Large fields strewn with small huts, converted to antique shops. Small covered bridges, dogs barking at passing cars.

At that moment, I felt I would like to come back to US some day... I still feel that.

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Location: Ahmedabad, Gujarat, India

Lining the edge of consciousness with words which behave like timed missiles.

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