PoemX: Misunderstood

To say the right thing, and be perceived wrong

To be someone, and is mistaken for someone else

To do what seems right, and is told it was wrong

To want to dream, but end up having no sleep

To hold people close, only to see them drift away

To seek help, and be ignored

To tell something and be falsely quoted

To show courage and is asked to fear the norms

Independent, and called selfish

Confident, and deemed arrogant

Proud, and told boisterous

Ambitious, and judged greed

Misunderstood!!

P.S

I started this PoemX series long back to write about feelings/emotions. I have not been consistent at it.

And, the other day I saw Robert Plutchik’s theory that says there are some eight basic emotions. Then I read Aristotle’s “Rhetoric” and Darwin’s view on emotions.

But none of them has anything to say about being misunderstood. I feel that it is the most common emotion that is not often acknowledged and hence, honoring it with few words.

Reminiscing the past

Recently, I went to this resort for a friend’s wedding. I had gone there several times before when I was a little kid, with my parents and brother. I remember sitting in the balcony overlooking the river and having hot cutlets with ketchup. And, several years later when I stepped into the same place, it never felt the same; not the place, not the river, not the taste, or the excitement.

***

Why does somethings feel so much better in our memory? And, however much we try to recreate it; it is never ever the same.

There are people that I think of with such fondness, the warmth of them in my thoughts is no longer there today.

There are places that create totally opposite and often conflicting feelings now than before.

But worst of all, when I look back, there is a different me that I see. And, I am not sure if that person is better than what I am now- but we sure are different.

I try to reach out to her, but she seems to walk away from me.

***

The other day my husband (may be out of his own nostalgia) bought this soap (Chandrika- a South Indian Brand), and he seemed very excited. I also could not contain my excitement (yes, I find happiness in little things). I remember that back in Palakkad, I used to walk into the bathroom that smells heavenly of this soap after coming home from school or playing. The smell of rain, wet soil and soap!

It was raining that day as well. I tried to teleport myself to those times. But it was never the same.

And, from a distance, a song seeped into my head from depths of my soul.

The poignant lines by eminent Malayalam poet O.N.V Kurup

ഓർമമകൾക്ക് എന്ത്  സുഗന്ധം, എൻ ആത്മാവിൻ നഷ്ട സുഗന്ധം

“Ormakalkkenthu Sugandham, En Aathmaavin Nashta Sugandham”, loosely translated (failing miserably ) as “The fragrance of memories, the lost fragrance of my soul”

And, I have the song stuck in my head ever since.

P.S

For those of you who want to listen to the song, here is the link . Forget the video and language, may be you will be able to relate to the feel. May be you will not. And, that is precisely my point!

Guest Blog #2: One last look back at you!

The protagonist is not afraid to say, he is a flirt. He flirts, cause to him, flirting is a game, one he excels at. Words, have always come to him easily, when he lays eyes on a beautiful woman, ever more so. The charm and the smile does what words couldn’t if they ever failed him. Make no mistake though, a flirt he may be, but a romantic more so at heart. The protagonist wishes to relive and share some candid thoughts he had for a woman who made a mark in his life. Carl Jung once said, “The meeting of two personalities is like the contact of two chemical substances: if there is any reaction, both are transformed.”, and the protagonist is thankful to “the ex”, and wishes to pay homage for the transformation she helped bring about.

And thus, came the conclusion to that, with a mighty sob that tugged the strings in my heart just as your nonchalant smile did the first time I laid my eyes on you. I wished ever so much to console you, tell you things are going to be good; With a heavy heart I said goodbye, a mumble under the breath followed by acquiescence. Long distance, have left many victims in their wake. Won’t deny it, I cried myself to sleep that night and a few after that (Alpha male, what is that? Besides manliness is overrated, unless you are one of those guys). They say karma is a bitch (always wondered who they are, hold them by the scruff shout at them while I violently shake them “Why must you always be right, and who are you to prove me wrong?”), and I shall have my comeuppance for the agony you suffered. But today, today is not the day for it. Today I shall remember you, glorify you, and finally be able to say, sorry for your misery but thank you for making me a part of your life. Thank you for having shared your time with me, laughed and shared your insights with me. I shall never forget you for as long as I shall exist.

Knock knock, rings the notification tone in the background; The clickety clack of the keyboard gone, replaced by the lull of expectation. I purse my lips, a wry smile on the horizon as I reach out to check the text. The walks where I would call you, and hear your morning voice, fresh from your sleep,  those moments stay fresh in my mind. You taught me to enjoy food more (Beef Bourgogne, Indian cuisine? Yum yum), the look of relish and childlike happiness as you dip your roti in the curry and gently slip it into your mouth. You taught me to never be afraid of trying things (Avial (South Indian dish)) with bitter gourd, suffice to say, I am still scared from that one.) and most of all, I learnt to take things one day at a time.

980x

I respect you, and I have always had nothing but love for you. Gripes there were a few, you made me feel worthless at times with your sharp words, as if I was nothing but a fly on the wall. I should have opened out about our relationship to my parents and validated it, which I failed to do. I failed to placate the doubts which should have been uprooted at inception. Times aplenty when language would stop us from understanding each other, but I also learnt how a relationship need not be anything but fun. Hurting you was never something I wished, but you knew it right from the beginning when you started calling me a foetus, and foetus is what I eventually showed myself to be. Distance, I am afraid brought cracks in my belief of us. I should have stood up, earned our right to be part of each other’s lives. Naysayers there were aplenty, but see through this with a smile on my face I should have. Counterproductive, but one day, hopefully you shall look back at this, less bitter and disappointed in me, having moved on to someone more deserving your affection, have a wry smile on your face and finally think “I didn’t understand you back then, but I can finally forgive you”.

***

Shruthi says:

I have known “The one who don’t want to be named” for a long long time now. I feel the best part of him is he can laugh until tummy hurts and cry like a baby when need be.To be able to go through something and feel emotion in truest sense is great, and I wish he does not change ever 🙂

Author’s inner monologue:

Three things that I fancy : food, travel and my ego. I spend my time thinking of the time I can get on the airport, nibbling away at the next  fancy meal, preferably with oysters and champagne, and the next time I can hear someone say I am amazing.
Put me in the company of people who want to experience new things and learn, and I will be happy. I write and read purely to express my superiority over others. Oh, and in case you haven’t figured, I am a narcissist. The joys of going anonymous

I am ———- !

These days I work from home and when I am chatting with someone over office network my mom can always guess what I am talking without even looking at screen. So, I was intrigued and asked her how do you do that, to which she replies: “Oh, it’s all those expressions on your face: the pouting, screwed up eyebrows and smiling”. And, I was like “hmm”.

Then, the other day I called my husband hoping to catch him for a few minutes alone and I heard some voice in background. So, I was silent and he laughed (cute one ;)) and said ” You are jealous, are you not?”. So I said “er, I am not”. And, he laughed a little more (still cute) and said ” I know you”.

So, while I pushed these to back of my mind and did not give it much thought, there was something I could not ignore. I got feedback from couple of people who read my previous blogs on how sad I sounded. There was even a discussion between two of my good friends who felt am going through this really sad period after reading my latest blogs, and my friend told to the other: “oh, it’s just her mood swings, read some of her old posts, she’s a dreamy girl in those”.

Now all this got me thinking: Is it not great that I can feel all these emotions, whether it is love, sorrow, despair, jealousy, insecurity and what not. Further more, if I go from one to another in a short time span, why call it a mood swing?? Here is where I beg to differ from people who tend to fixate on a particular emotion I am going through at a certain point and think that is what I am. Truth is I am a sum of all the emotions I go through and though it may seem like it is a soup, it really is not – it helps me deal with feelings on a day-to-day, sometimes even an hour to hour basis. And, I truly believe that it is not emotional instability or volatility, but rather what completes me as a person.

I have been thinking a lot about why are we not encouraged to feel every bit of what we are going through and express it?? Why is there such a pride associated with maintaining a poker face?? Why look down upon people who wear their heart on sleeve?? That took me back to two things. First was an old book I read back in school, which talked about felt emotions and displayed emotions. As a society, I really don’t get why we are obsessed with displaying emotions to fit into a certain mold. Secondly, I thought about this weird conversation I had with a friend of mine. So, we were discussing how one-dimensional it is to often introduce ourselves as “I am NAME”. I mean it is so shallow. What if we lived in a world where I could walk up to you and say “Hello, I am lonely” and you could say “I am friendly”. Would it not solve many issues if we just express our true self instead of projecting for the sake of it?

One thing I am starting to see more and more these days is a growing level of intolerance among people. I feel it is because we keep piling emotions in our mind, where it is like a volcano slowly burning under a heap of ash and one day it all comes out like hot lava scalding everyone around. Instead if we process stuff then and there, and move on, is it not easier and you can also live life to fullest.

Now this is what I feel. I really don’t know if expressing every emotion is going to help, it is just a thought.

Er, I am confused!