Friday, September 22, 2017

BookReview: Sialkot Saga


This book caught my attention on the railway station book stall as I almost boarded my train. That particular shade of red always draws my eye, as it had previously with Bhim. Particularly lucrative was the thickness of the book which promised to fill the dull hours of the train journey with more interesting scenery.

The work itself was an easy read, the language simple and natural although sometimes I wondered if the characters in the books would actually speak in those terms. Indians have their own set of slangs which could have been more faithfully rendered.

The story itself is engrossing, as all stories filled with crime are. Being illiterate in the current affairs of our country I struggled to put together some of the references of the crimes. Some were fresh in my memory and needed no dab of paint to spring forth, new again from the folds of my memory.

The book felt all too familiar to my world. I could have written it. I would have written it in the exact same way too, since I knew nothing of the streets of Mumbai or Calcutta for that matter. All I've known is what I've read and most of my reading has been in English and by foreign authors.

Towards the end the book took on a fantastic spin of science fiction and hand waved away a lot of the things as being 'quantum' in nature. I must say that good science fiction resides in pockets where science does not know the answer yet. If instead a book tries to claim fiction in a field science does know, it is merely fiction. No grudges held however, seeing as how the book was indeed called fiction.

Reading this book sparked off a strange thought. Books which reinterpret Indian mythology / history and leverage the idea of 'lost science' have become all too common since Amish wrote his Meluha. There's been a spate of these books, all reinterpreting classics with more 'lost knowledge' and better explanations. It reminds me of Hussain Haidry's poem this independence day. The authors too have picked up the saffron fever.


Thursday, April 20, 2017

Meenamkulam Beach

I walked to the beach today. Quiet a lovely experience. Here's the path I took.


I had begun by stitching a phone holder onto my bag but that turned out to be an exercise in futility since the phone was touchscreen and so kept getting "touched" by the bag/cover leading to mayhem.

Perhaps I'll use my Raspberry Pi to document the journey next time. It would certainly be a lot easier.

I started off during the evening. Maps gave the estimated time as 1.5 Hours and so taking into account my walking speed and the various elevations in the land, I had estimated 2-2.5 Hours to get there.

At first I was a little unsure of where I was going since the route looked quiet different from the Google Maps route. Those nearly straight lines? They are not nearly as straight as it seems. There are also elevations and flyovers adding to the confusion of an inexperienced walker.

During the last legs of the journey I did find confirmation that I was on the right track by way of seeing the water over the horizon of the road.

I might try going to St. Andrews beach next time, though I am told that the people there are not friendly to the passing admirer.


Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Conversations With Fire

I wrote to you and You,
unexpectedly;
wrote back to me.

Arose a tide of overnight love;
three years in the making,
Bewildered, scared; unprepared,
I sat with my heart pounding, aching.

All this while seeing things as I do,
Not seeing, the sight You had too.
I approach to bask in Dragon flame,
the inferno itself, knew me only by name.

Holding on to, what of You;
rebuilt from memory, I now remember.
Unnoticed; until I do,
my every act seeks You,
like ash seek'th ember.

Zeus's spark, when I approached,
For evermore to stay near the blaze,
My blizzard bitten bones to blame,
the blessed ignited, broke the gaze.

So I'll stay beyond your silent fence,
Throw a rock your way, now and then.
in hope that you'll find the ore;
sometime years and decades hence.

When you do; look beyond your moat.
You'll find a man, still strung to the name,
Held by death, or still drawing breath.
warm from; to your flare, his claim.

A claim he lays, now steeped in longing and desire,
to conversations he had once held with Fire.