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Showing posts from 2015

Many Faces of Kabir

Some call him a mystic poet Some a philosopher and saint The Hindus and Muslims Believe he is theirs Kabir is a tree The roots go beyond sight Each fruit unique like Prahlad and Mukhtiar Who is Kabir? Is he just lore? He answers in silence “I’m living truth” - हेरंब ISupportNAAM

Merry Christmas

Thuck! It was the last pencil he had. 10 more days before mother could buy him a new one. Everything appeared blurred. Eating a cream roll, Hari had seen all this from the kitchen. His mother worked as a maid. She called him to help her with the dishes. The broken pencil was replaced with a new one. “Merry Christmas!” - हेरंब ISupportNAAM

Lifetime | A Poem

Teach me to bow within in gratitude for lifetime Give me strength to embrace sorrows resonate with joy for lifetime Bless me with a mirror a mirror within for lifetime Not to admire but face the shortcomings for lifetime -हेरंब ISupportNAAM

Paid Poison

There lived a miser: not so nasty, not so good. He had an about-to-break-anytime rocking chair at home. Having crossed more than 60 years of age its squeaks had become a daily headache for his wife. “It’s my father’s last memory. I can’t repair it any form, he’ll be hurt.” Then there was the poison bottle post expiry date in house. His wife couldn’t bear this silliness. “I have paid Rs.15 for it 12 years ago. At least I have to recover the full price!”  “I’ll get the price recovered for you- too many rats in the house!” The miser was happy. That night she emptied the entire poison bottle in the cookie dough. “This tastes awesome. New recipe?” “Yes” she said. The miser lived long. He managed to recover the full price. ISupportNAAM

Goodness Will Always Fail

“Why don’t you understand? These good people suffer more when you erect their massive idols and worship them.” Saying this she went away. The worn out sandals rubbed against the new pavement a little harder. It was the 3rd month she hadn’t received a salary. She was a primary school teacher in a small town. She wasn’t on strike. ISupportNAAM

Air | a 15 second story

Chuff. The train moved after a 2 minute nap. Sitting facing each other, their eyes spewed out boiling hatred. One thought he was a Hindu, the other thought he was a Muslim. They were breathing each other’s air. #ISupportNAAM

The God He Found

With hurried strides Mohan was walking down the long winding mud road towards the river stream. The day light was getting dim. It was time for sunset. Panting heavily after the hour long walk he felt his throat little parched. “But it doesn't matter now,” he said to himself. Wiping away the tears as he strode few more steps, in a moment the world turned upside down with clouds of dust swirling over him, making it difficult to breathe as he tried getting up from the ground only to notice an upper tooth dangling in the cavity of his mouth sending the pain cracking his every nerve. The small round shining black stone he had toppled over was clearly visible. Quickly bowing down he said, "Thank you God for giving me back my life." Tears didn’t allow him to see anything further. It was that time of the year again, when the High School exam results are out. Many find their dream careers and a few end their mortal existence. Mohan had found his God. #ISupportNAAM

The League of Most Ordinary (Wo)Men

Poet or writer or novelist or author, call her/him anything you like. They belong to the same league: The League of Most Ordinary (Wo)Men. Ordinary? Ah! You thought they were the elite ones, right? Something like this? Somewhere deep in a silent palace, untouched by any other human habitation, dressed in tuxedo, writing on an expensive rosewood or mahogany table under a beautiful night lamp, with a glass of the most expensive wine placed beside or with an occasional puff and violinists playing Mozart’s 9th Symphony of Mozart in the background. (He has composed a 9th one, right?) And then there would be the most beautiful damsels waiting to serve them. Occasionally being awarded Poet Laureates, sitting among the knights and reading out their works to the royal family <oops! royal family should have been in all CAPS> Stop! The fact is poets/writers/novelists/authors are nothing but the most ordinary of the mortals. They notice and express what others try to forget/pretend t

What next? 10 Seconds to Nothing

What next? This is the question which haunts us when we finally achieve what we set out to achieve. It maybe landing a job with good pay package, finding someone special(ahem ahem!), or being able to catch the local train at the right time, which you could never in the last 10 years, and being able to find a seat to sit. The question meets us all the time: What next? Remove the What. Remove the next. It's only now.  10 secs.  Time's up. #ISupportNAAM

Yesterday I Was 'There' | A Tale of Seduction

The vacant lanes lit yellow those seducing looks of unquenched beings as if wanting you to embrace them at least for the night when you are alone Yesterday, I was 'there' where 'decent' folks never dare wander Not having met her for years I wondered whether my touch she'll still remember There, in the corner she lay with loose skin but feeling 16 sweet emotions present in her eyes How does age matter when expressing love? I still remember she was always taken before I could by someone who envied us being together But today without a moment's halt she fell into my arms taking me in the moments of bliss we couldn’t create before She was the autobiography of my favourite writer I, her reader yesterday, I was ‘there’ at the book exhibition. Advertisement The Last Poem - a novel by Rabindranath Tagore Excerpt: "The protagonist, Amit Ray, is a barrister educated at Oxford. He travels in order to escape the drudg

An Ode to the Monk

Untouched by opinions fearless and poised  on Kanyakumari's blazing rocks in burning sand and among roaring waves he strode in his own company and not for a moment stopped  The sun who woke up India from deep slumber The monk who has a single vision "Glory to his mother land,  Glory to the world" Vivekananda Read  Complete Works of Swami Vivekananda (9 Volumes) picture courtesy: #ISupportNAAM

Make Relations Beautiful

Utter the word "Relation" and in a moment we think about our boyfriend/girlfriend/spouse/cat/dog (No! This doesn't mean a boyfriend and girlfriend after becoming spouses fight like cats and dogs. The order of the sequence is immaterial :P). We build relations with everyone around - the chai wala (tea seller), travel partner in public transport or the child with no teeth smiling back at us for no reason. So what's the Raaz(secret) to beautiful relations? Making relations beautiful depends on talking to each other more than talking about each other. PS: I'm not a 'Relationship Guru'. #ISupportNAAM

A Crime Story: The Writer's Better Half

She was sitting in a mixed air of fear and excitement, anxious to hear the judgment. He looked at her with witty eyes, the glasses resting a little lower on the nose, forcing you to re-think the purpose of wearing it. "Yes, I am guilty, Sir," she pleaded. Untouched by the sudden burst of emotions he coldly passed the judgment, "You have been sentenced to come to the nearby book store, and later on drop me at the library, undisturbed for 3 hours." Her crime: She hadn't allowed him to read/write a single word during their 10 day holiday in Ooty, India. He was a writer. #ISupportNAAM

Complementary Words: Creating a Word Bank

Whether you are a blogger/writer/banker/programmer/president of the nation, the situation doesn't discriminate. There's always a time when we have the "It's-on-the-tip-of-my-tongue-but" moment. You know it but just can't get the perfect word at the right moment! We build a special relation with every word. Seeing & hearing a word throws forth another word in our memory. For example, nation: pride, pink: babies, disgust: garbage and so on. Let's call the second word a "complementary word". These complementary words can vary for all one of us. Try this Here are 3 words along with their complementary words that resonate in me. Nature: Love Truth: Child Honest: Women What complementary words do they mean to you? Make a mental note or share in a comment below. Or maybe you can add 3 more words of your choice in a comment with their complementary words. Using this you can create your own word bank (online or offline) and use it to re

Download for Free | Social Pay for #ISupportNAAM

Dear Reader, Thank you for being a part of #ISupportNAAM! (What is #ISupportNAAM? read it here ) (as on 06-12-15 10:42pm IST) I'm grateful for all the likes, shares, your feedback and monetary contribution. It would be great if we further spread the word about NAAM's work faster. Now let's spread the word through Social Pay by downloading # ISupportNAAM for free! How? • Click on the #ISupportNAAM button below • Enter your details on the payment gateway • Share or tweet about #ISupportNAAM • Download #ISupportNAAM package for free The monetary contribution received has been transferred to NAAM's bank account (see images below). You can send your monetary contributions to NAAM through (NEFT or Cash Transfer) here are the bank account details. NAAM Foundation | Bank Account Details Bank: State Bank of India Branch Name: Bund Garden Account Number: 35226127148 IFSC Code No: SBIN0006319 Swift Code No: SBININBB238 (Source:

I Desired

I desired good looks to be looked at and adored I desired vanity  for the spotlight of fame I desired information for them to call me smart I desired knowledge to be recognised as wise I desired humbleness and became human again #ISupportNAAM (Moment captured: May 2011.  My native place: Achra/Sindhudurg/Maharashtra)

His daughter

He didn't marry her because her father went broke. Less rains, sudden rains, increasing debts, resulting poor health and family conflicts. Here's what she wrote to him. After all she was the daughter of a man with unbound love in his heart. Her father was a farmer. Poem: Love Them When people you love hate you love them They may avoid go away say "it's over" Don't let opinions colour your voice they are but a myth With love it began with love it must complete love them I have nothing more to say. #ISupportNAAM

The Bond with Mother Earth | धरतीशी जडले नाते

(Picture captured: Malvan, Sindhudurg, May 2011) धरतीशी जडले नाते तरीही उमजे ना काही बघता मृत हे अंकुर शहारली मज आई (translation) Bonded with mother earth Still unable to grasp Seeing the dead plant shoots Shivers my mother - heramb Here अंकुर/Plant shoots is a symbol for 1300+ farmers who have committed suicide. Have you been a part of #ISupportNAAM? Don't forget to: View: Read & Participate: ‪#ISupportNAAM‬ आपल्या एक मित्रा/मैत्रिणी बरोबर नक्की शेअर करा! महाराष्ट्रात ,१३००+ शेतकऱ्यांनी जानेवारी-जून २०१५ या दरम्यान आत्महत्या केल्यात. हीच वेळ आहे परिस्थिती बदलण्याची. पहा: भाग घ्या: डाऊनलोड करा : कविता- "The Day I was Slapped" Background score by Sergey Cheremisinov, Music Composer (Russia) Share on Twitter: @insights

My first poem worth INR 11 Lakh Rupees Only

This happened in India. One day, when an 8 year old school boy talked about his dream of becoming a farmer. Poem: The Day I Was Slapped My age is 8 and I love football Messi is my hero but that day changed it all Doing my homework trying to finish a math sum of division and multiplication pretending it to be fun It was when Papa asked what do you want to be a doctor, an engineer or a programmer maybe? I thought for some time and then came the answer in a moment I said a farmer! a farmer! He got up from the chair and rushed towards me furious like never before he slapped me three Then he started sobbing as I couldn't stop but cry caressing my red cheeks I still don't know why - Heramb I bow down to you with utmost gratitude for sparing your time to read this. Farmers... All of us survive and thrive fundamentally on food and farmers are the chief architects of it all! But what happens when they feel like ending their lives? What abou

Insight Stories | The New Logo

August 2013, when I started writing this blog, Insight Stories looked like... Two books in a shelf with a ball beside them to indicate playfulness. Stories evolve with time and I hope this blog did along with me. Glad to present the new logo of Insight Stories. When we start every work with a "श्री",why not stories? Let's sit around our digital bonfires(laptops and mobile devices) and celebrate our stories. Share on Twitter: @insightstories | Facebook: InsightStories

3 Flowers, Superstars and Intolerance

That day on the street corner, in that stinky garbage bin which we always avoid passing by, 3 dull, dry and dying flowers were talking with joy. The first flower said, "I was at the Mohammad's Dargah. How peaceful were those moments!" "I was at the cemetery beside an old man at his funeral. Poor chap!" said the second, shedding tears. "Being Ram Janma, I was offered at the Lord's feet yesterday. What a grand celebration it was," said the third. Up they went, being lifted into a garbage collection truck. Beside them was a crumpled newspaper with news of superstars speaking about intolerance in India. The headline read “Trending Now:  #Intolerance”. Note: A Dargah is an Islamic shrine built over the grave of a revered religious figure, often a Sufi saint or dervish.  Ram Janma is celebrate in India as the birth of Ram also known as Raghava, the seventh avatar of the Hindu god Vishnu, and king of Ayodhya. Information Courtesy: Wikipedi

Poet Borkar – The Flower Pollen!

Balkrishna Bhagvant Borkar ( बा.भ.बोरकर ) A poet handsome in every sense, inside out, just like he says आम्ही हो फुलांचे पराग ! (Eng Trans: I’m like the flower pollen!) नाही   पुण्याची   मोजणी  is one of his poems which will guide us within every time we read or listen. The poem is so beautiful (didn’t know a single word to express the experience, let’s say beautiful for now!) that I wanted it to be shared with my friends who do not understand Marathi. Translating a poem without diluting its essence is a challenge. Here’s a humble attempt. Would love to read your thoughts about it, don’t forget to comment. (Original Poem in Marathi) नाही पुण्याची मोजणी नाही पुण्याची मोजणी नाही पापाची टोचणी जिणे गंगौघाचे पाणी कशाचा न लागभाग कशाचा न पाठलाग आम्ही हो फुलांचे पराग आम्हां नाही नामरूप आम्ही आकाशस्वरूप जसा निळानिळा धूप पूजेतल्या पानाफुलां मृत्यु सर्वांगसोहळा धन्य निर्माल्याची कळा (Attempted Tran

6 Takeaways from #SMW15 | Spinning Content - Writing for the Web

Recently I was at Social Media Week Mumbai 2015 | Day 6 held at Indian School of Design & Innovation . Team Blogsters (from L to R: Kauro, Pooja, Deepa and Me) The panel discussions, keynotes and talks were so diverse and powerful that it will be exhausting to read about it in a single post. Get the highlights of the day and more on SMW's channels:  Twitter  or Facebook page  or my Twitter profile. For me the key highlight on Day 6 was the workshop "Spinning Content - Writing for the Web" by Parineeta Mehra, Founder of Look Beyond . Here are the 6 takeaways from the session. #01 Write, write and write! Make new mistakes and learn from them. #02 Keep the content precise. "Does it convey what you exactly wanted to express?" #03 Original, authentic content is the king. It adds more value than anything else. #04 There are no shortcuts to good content. #05 Don't let your ideas fly away. Pin them down. A pocket diary, or few apps

Tercets | The Play of 3

Numbers, numbers, numbers! Like a mathematician numbers matters to a poet. Maybe more. More than a deliberate attempt at crafting 3/5/7 line poems, there is something natural, existential, living about these which can be lost in explanation and reasoning. Just like Albert Einstein said, " if you described a Beethoven symphony as a variation of wave pressure." Tercets are one such phenomenon. They are three lines of poetry that may make a complete poem or a stanza. Few Tercets which I wrote even before I knew they existed. 1. Death Lock the doors, or keep guards. The mocking death always plays swift. 2. Young Young leaves dance, happy and content. Old ones fall down, never to meet again. 3. The Concert The strings stopped strumming and the bow stopped moving. The concert began. 

Paris Terrorist Attacks | PM Modiji Are You and Your Citizens Listening?

Writers must not always be lost in their solitude. When time comes they must relentlessly write against the wrong. They are a part of the society. Yes, I know this is not a story or a beautiful romantic poem. However saddening it may be, but we must speak about this today. NOW. Since the Paris attacks happened I see a lot of "Praying for Paris victims" posts. Prayers are the first emotional response. Nothing against them. But we pray and forget. Going beyond prayers and sympathy, India needs to learn from this incident and further push its efforts towards Zero Tolerance Against Terrorism. Terrorist attacks are not a border security issue. Can happen anywhere right from your local malls to colleges and theatres. Let the government do its part. But are we vigilant enough as citizens??  When we don't care to switch off the fans when getting down from our 12/15/17 coach local trains which burn up loads of electricity, who cares to give a damn about an u

Let There Be Light!

Un-sponsored Advertisement We always complain "Diwali is a festival of NOISE. Crackers, banjo's, loud speakers..." Be the change. Let there be LIGHT! Here are beautiful table lamps handpicked for you from Shady Ideas available on Flipkart . Radiating peace from the Bodhisattva, these will make your reading time more peaceful and beautiful. Have a bright and cheerful Diwali! Have you read Buddha: A Story of Enlightenment by Deepak Chopra ? Shady Ideas Sunrise Buddha Table Lamp: Shady Ideas Bodhisattva Table Lamp: Shady Ideas Summer Seas Table Lamp: Shady Ideas is the creative brainchild of Jovita and Carl Mascarenhas, a husband and wife duo from Mumbai. Read more about Shady Ideas, here: ‪#happydiwali #diwaligifts

The Last Besan Laddu

Rohan, being little grumpy that night and little tired after the cricket match his team had lost, was lying on the bed with his back towards the ceiling, listening to the sound of the old grumpy fan stirring waves of warm air. His granny had given him a nice scolding for finishing off the last besan laddu she had kept reserved for his elder sister, who would be coming from the city in her diwali vacations. The loving enmity between the brother sister pair obviously made Rohan the suspect in her eyes. Now she was sitting beside him trying to console him and wiping away her own tears, feeling guilty of the scolding act. In the meanwhile, Manju the 2.5 year old cute cat, lying alone on the attic, was smacking away remnants of the last besan laddu off his whiskers.

BNLF: My First Indiblogger Meet

Compared to what was a soothing, dreamy world of literature at the Tata Lit Live ( did you miss the post? )  the Blog Now, Live Forever (BNLF ) was a fast paced exhilarating ride at The Lalit Mumbai. Oops! I couldn’t make to Day 1 at BNLF, but from what I heard and read it was a super-exciting start of the most disruptive conference on blogging by Indiblogger. I was lucky to immediately connect with two fellow Indibloggers, Geo and Nikhil, right from the first coffee break.  Geo, from Kerala, blogs on technology reviews. You can follow his blog here: Nikhil, from Bangalore, blogs on a variety of technology related topics, being passionate about Cloud computing. You can follow his blog here: Christopher Trappe , IMA Internet Marketer of Year – 2015 , is a content marketing strategist and consultant.  Christoph’s 3 hour session on “Six steps to stop traditional marketing and start authentic blogging” interspers

The first literature festival I attended - Tata Lit Live 2015

Disclaimer: This account is my personal experience and the views expressed may differ from other attendees’ at the festival. Day 1 | 29th October 2015 Having managed to keep myself from diving deep into literature or arts festivals for few years for silly reasons, I couldn’t resist myself from attending the Tata Lit Live 2015 at NCPA, the Sixth Mumbai International Literary Festival. The first workshop I attended was Robert Sullivan’s “Crossing the threshold of a poem: Translating emotion into words.” Robert currently teaches a popular creative writing class at MIT's MSVA Campus. You can read more about him here: Robert was really a cool guy, great listener and really sensitive person. Of course how could he be a poet if not sensitive? When you observe a person doing mundane things like lifting a cup of tea with great care, I know it may seem nothing extraordinary, but the feeling of being at ease and warmth is rare