4 A.m Bicycle Ride: A Poem

When you’re biking around at 4 a.m,

The world is lavender.

At least if you stay to the right of my house.

When you bike towards the left, 

There are yellow hues emanating from the horizon.

The horizon you just cannot see,

Because of trees, but mostly Because of this blasted civilization.

You can’t see the sun, but it’s telling you it’s alive, that it’s coming, that it’s almost here. 

When you bike down the road parallel to the street my house is in,

There is a blue and yellow sky, and the approaching daytime on your left,

And lavender to your right, with the moon still shining proudly against the purple, peeking out from behind clouds of grey.

And ahead of you, you’ll see a lone star,

Guiding you God knows where,

When all the other stars have dimmed in honor of the coming day.

The world isn’t quiet at all, neither is the noise static.

There are birds chirping, and the sound of someone sweeping, in some house, somewhere.

The world is alive and it wants you to know it.

But at 4:20 a.m, the world is willing to let you be by yourself just for a little while.

It is willing to be the background you silently marvel at the beauty of.

And that is all you need from the world in that moment.

You might think this isn’t poetry.

It’s just sentences about obvious things like the colour of the sky when the sun is starting to rise, but hasn’t risen yet.

But I dare you to go for a bike around 4 a.m on a June morning,

When it has rained the night before,

And the world is alive and it’s colours are sharp.

The moisture that everything has soaked in,

Is almost tantalising, except you’re alright because it’s just the beginning of your fast.

I dare you to experience the beauty of everything being alive and you being alone in it’s midst.

And I dare you to not call it poetry.

It’s Ramadan, so after Sehri (the pre-fast meal that we eat just before the sun can begin to rise), and after praying Fajr (first prayer of the day), lazy ol’ me went for a ride on my bicycle, and saw things more beautiful than I could ever dream.of being. This is the poem I wrote when I got back. It’s meant to be a spoken word piece though.

Of Suns and Moons and Metaphors in Pairs

​And God made everything in pairs, like the earth and the sky, light and dark, the night and the day, me and you. Night and day is the perfect metaphor for us. Just like those other pairs; almost touching at some points, and blending beautifully where they do, but never one. The few moments in which we meet, we’re the pink-orange-purple-red marbled skies at sunset and sunrise. When we are apart, I’m like the stars against black; distant and beautiful. I’m like the moon, rarely whole. When we’re apart, you’re like the blue sky with pure white clouds floating through. You’re the sun with all it’s fierceness that sometimes hides when the clouds turn grey and cry raindrops. The moments where we learn to set our pain of being apart aside, I am a full moon , you are the sun shining despite the rain. I’m a blue moon, you’re a rainbow.

~ Broken bits of prose from the notes app on my phone (AKA Things I wrote when I was about to fall asleep)

Depth

​So many things seem deeper with time; worn dirt paths, thoughts, cracks… But the ocean doesn’t. The ocean seems more and more shallow, and safer, when you’ve lived so long in its depth. There are less undiscovered currents and caves, less to fear, less novelty. Maybe that’s why feelings seem to fade with time. Maybe they don’t fade. Maybe we get used to their depth so they don’t feel deep anymore. Maybe feelings are like the ocean.

~ An excerpt from a story I don’t know if I’ll ever write.

The Fall

My hella talented best friend y’all.

Confines of The Mind

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Revelries abound in the city streets

Chaos trumps order and this you adore

Benedictions fall from your lips

And you preach spirit and truth

Even as your hands drip red and

Stain irrevocably all that you touch

The smell of smoke in the air thickens

But you do not cease. Never do you cease

Even as the earth shakes beneath

your mortal bodies, you feel not regret

There are cracks in the horizon and

As time lapses, cracks you cannot balm

Become fractures.

Become fissures

Your people are blinded by the haze of their vices

Intoxicated by the wrongs they deem right

Pitiful facades are your flimsy defenses

Your people tin soldiers that you let fall

Once fruitful gardens now barren, neglected

And flowers massacred on madmen’s whims

Heresy abounds in your false haven

And borne are sins that stain the dawn dark

A specter lurks in the shadows still

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The Time Pizza Hut Sent Me Really Great Food to Review

I’ve been meaning to review food for a while, because I love food and I love writing, and I really don’t know why I’d been putting off writing about food. However, with Pizza Hut sending me their Triple Treat Box to review, I guess I’ll start here. Now, I’m living in my university’s hostel these days, and Pizza Hut didn’t deliver here, so I had to have it delivered to a friend’s house at night and they brought it to university in the morning. And even though it wasn’t fresh from the oven, it was still pretty darn awesome. I think that Pizza Hut sending bloggers free food to review, just shows that they’re confident in the quality of their product, and actually care about customer feedback.

First of all, let’s talk about the boxing. It was efficient and adorable. I loved the cute graphics on top, and also how everything came to me in perfect condition, despite the commute. Oh, and of course, I loved the little drawers.

So the box holds two medium pizzas (one is a classic hand-tossed, and the other a medium pan pizza), one of their super duper large Hershey’s double chocolate chip cookie (which one could call a pizookie), and a side of potato wedges and chicken wings with two dips.

When it came to choosing the pizza flavours, I picked Fajita Sicilian, and Hot Stuff pizza, both flavours I hadn’t had at Pizza hut before, so I would not only be reviewing the deal, but the flavours as well. Needless to say, I loved them both. Hot stuff came with this really nice dipping sauce that just added to the flavour.

The chicken wings and potato wedges were good, but everything else in the box was so great, that they were comparitively average. The two dips that came with them were Garlic-mint, and Ranch.

I’ve always loved their pizza, so it was the cookie that totally blew my mind. I shared the box with my friends, and when we heated up the cookie and had a slice each at the end of a long, tiring day, my friend summed it up perfectly; “This made my whole day better.”

I loved the food, despite the fact that the only re-heating method available to me was a microwave. For people who have actual ovens available, they have very cute instructions about how to make the experience even more amazing.

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The Triple Treat Box was great, and it can easily feed 5-6 people. The box costs Rs.2500, but since it includes 2 pizzas, dips, sides, as well a cookie that is individually around Rs.800, I think that isn’t as overpriced as it first sounds when you hear it.

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I personally really enjoyed the box. You guys should try it out. Go to your nearest Pizzahut, or order now:

Of Dreams and Magic and Growing up

When I was really young, 7 or 8 years old, a kind American neighbour gifted me her childhood copies of the first 5 Little House books. I read them, and loved them, and grew up re-reading them every so often. I think in the second book, Laura and Pa build a log house together. The book explained the entire process of how they built it. And ever since then, I’ve dreamed of building a log house, or at least of building my own little reading cabin or a tree-house. But as of late, I’ve realised that in me getting older and bigger, so many of my dreams have gotten smaller. All I now occasionally fantasize about is building a book shelf from pre-processed slabs of wood. I’m pathetic. I used to dream of my own farm or a ranch, of cows and stables and horses and big fields to gallop through. Now I occasionally find myself wishing I had a horse I could ride, as we trot along the patches of green that line Islamabad’s roads. I still dream big about some things, but those things, when I think about them, feel so… corporate and capitalist. I want to be a writer, yes. But I also want to be big in publishing. I dream entreprenurial dreams of business and startups. I get almost as excited about networking as I do about making new friends. And I understand that politeness is a good thing, but it means just smiling and patting their back when someone you actually don’t feel yourself getting along with hugs you and that makes me feel so fake. There are so many aspects of growing up I like though. I love that I grew up to be someone who thinks so much (it’s tiring and gets me in trouble but I maintain that it’s a good thing to do), someone with so many opinions, someone who dreams, albeit differently. I just hate that all the magic in everything is gone.

Art

I can feel art beating in my heart, flowing in my veins, clawing at the walls, turning summersaults in my memory and taking form, but I’m failing at finding the words to let it out.

 

Home

Yeah maybe, but home can be nice too. Home is mama showering me with attention and making all the best food. Home is sibling banter and wasting each other’s time even when we all have exams on Monday. Home is parents worrying I don’t get enough exercise and forcing me to go on bike rides I actually end up enjoying. Home is hot soup that didn’t come out of a satchet. Home is warm showers and heaters and extra blankets. It is pieces of cake stashed in the freezer, because if anyone brings cake over, mama has to save me a piece. Home is an attached bathroom. Home is having a room all to myself and still not being alone. Home is putting out a pile of clothes and have them freshly washed the next day. Home is me complaining how behind I am on everything and parents complaining that I don’t study enough. Home is me announcing that I’m out of cash again. Home is empty Nutella jars waiting for me to lick them clean.

~ About that time I wrote something I ended up quite liking, while I was half asleep.

 

I cosied up in bed sleepily after praying Fajr. I checked my phone and twitter out of habit. I had a message from a friend asking why I went home every weekend (I WISH) when hostel weekends are so fun. The above passage is what I typed out, but before sending it, I copy-pasted it elsewhere, and sent a normal length text.

I Would

I’d show you my scars, but they’re too well hidden,

I’d show you my laugh, but I’ve made it too common.

I’d paint with my words, it’s pencils that fail me,

I’d sing to the deaf, at the top of my voice.

 

I’d be broken and torn, if I wasn’t so stubborn,

I’d be in danger or more, if I wasn’t so scared.

I’d live more and yet less, in this temporary web,

I’d see colors of light, refracted through tears.

 

I’d break through the walls, if I hadn’t worked hard to build them,

I’d fail to be strong, because I often do.

I’d ask for you too, if I was someone different,

I’d give you myself, if I was that weak.

 

And I’d tell you the truth, if I was sure I knew it,

I’d give you the answers, if I knew what they were.

I’d tell you my tale, if I knew how to spin it,

I’d open my soul, if I hadn’t lost the key.

Look Into My Eyes

Look into my eyes

And tell me

That you can see it too

Me and you

The possibilities

and the likelihood for happiness

Look into my eyes

And show me

That the only reason

We don’t know

We’re right

Is because we’ve never tried

 

Look into my eyes

And burn through

To my mind

And like

What you see

But respect it more

Look into my eyes

And agree that we

Don’t know if we’ll be perfect

Together

But we can’t be

Completely wrong

 

Look into my eyes

Just once

And then look away

Not because all you say

Are lies

But because you’re lowering your gaze