BIRD IN THE GOLDEN CAGE

A beautiful bird just commenced it’s flight in the sky. New found freedom made the bird flutter with joy. But sighting the possible dangers predators could pose the little bird was carefully put in a cage.

Cage was made of gold. It was spacious and decorated with beautiful embellishments. Food was served in a golden plate so was the water. Bird thought may be I was foolish to loiter aimlessly, may be this is my haven which is nothing less than heaven.

It flew happily within the boundaries of the cage covering every inch of it, devouring the delicacies off the plate. It began to croon happily and fearlessly. And that’s when it received it first shock.

“You are making a noise, stop it at once” boomed a thundering cane that stuck the cage, it was a mere harbinger of the problem in foresight. The bird went silent and it took no time to realize the constraints of the cage.

One day the cage was left unattended and open. The bird was in dilemma – shall I fly away? What if I fall prey to the predators outside, what if I don’t get to eat like I do here? what if ruthless winds shatter me? What if…what if…what if? And the ongoing ambiguity failed the bird as it couldn’t fly away but just fluttered hard on the threshold. And all it did was to attract the attention of the scissors that slowly clipped the feathers of the bird one by one leaving it wriggling in pain.

Now the food off the golden plate isn’t delicious nor the bling surrounding the cage kept the bird interested anymore. And one day the bird was lying motionless, it died and what was left behind was a repulsive smell.

That bird is nothing but our relationships. The cage is the name that we give to it. The embellishments are what we project on superficial surfaces – be it society or social media – everything right, beautiful and all hunky dory. Golden plate/ food – physical necessities we strive to fulfil, from bare minimums of food- cloth- shelter to sex and a charade of luxurious life. Crooning is the voice of our emotions both agreements & disagreements whereas the blow of cane is the realization that our voice is muffled and muted. Dilemma is about our innate fears and doubts about ourselves more or less like a Stockholm syndrome where we identify ourselves with the surroundings and people that we grew habituated to and in turn they grew on us finishing off our own identity. Scissors are the constant bickering, taunts, nagging and belittling of the persona and character of the person whereas the feathers are the very confidence and free will that soul possess. And when feathers of free will and confidence are slashed off what is left behind is an empty shell of monotonous routines and indifference, that is the motionless bird. And the repulsive odour is an emblematic to the core issue of lack of love and regard. To be precise it’s the hate, anger and pain.

Many of us do this mistake of believing that “providing” is enough and sole responsibility to be fulfilled in a relationship. Yes it is but our understanding has been restricted to tangible things. Providing time, love, regard, respect somehow and sadly diminishing from our ambit of reasoning as we are evolving. It is like you are gifting a pair of earrings but not ready to listen to what your partner has to say; gifting a watch and not giving time; providing a roof and not embracing the grieving person & say “I have your back”

If the bird you are nursing is fluttering hard, why not give it a window of freedom. It might like to enter the beautiful cage again if it believes it’s a bond and not a bondage!!!

MY FLAWS

“If my flaws make me humble, receptive and compassionate as compared to your perfection that made you indifferent and rude towards a fellow being then I would proudly embrace my flaws.”

Kalpana Vogeti

A JOYFUL RIDE IN THE FAIRYLAND

(Image Credit: Google Inc.)

Daughters usually (not generalizing) have a penchant for dolls and fairy tales, especially when they are in the age group of 3-10 years (not a scientifically proven data but an observation as a girl and as a mother). My daughter is in that phase. She got 10 dolls including the major Disney princesses, 7 lol dolls (her new found love), Disney channel subscription, two fairytale books – basically she is very much into Disney fantasy world apart from being interested in investing time in Lego building. And as a parent growing with a growing up child her curiosity and amusement infected me too. And together we ended up watching Disney movies on a loop over many weekends – hooting and rooting for the characters, bewitched by the magic on screen, the child in me has been rekindled. I am still in that trance, don’t want to be out of it soon 😁.

To compound the impact of that magic we also watched few videos on YouTube – Disneyland tours across the globe. It’s a whole happy world out there untouched by the worries on the other side of the gate. May be that’s the reason why the tagline says : “The Happiest Place On Earth”.

Happiness did spread across on my daughter’s face from the screen and she insisted that we should go to Disneyland someday. And when princess demands can the ordinance remain unheard? Off we go to Disneyland Paris during these vacations of 2021.

Before embarking our road trip to Disneyland I did some basic research about how Disneyland came into existence. The concept for Disneyland began when Walt Disney was visiting Griffith Park in Los Angeles with his daughters Diane and Sharon. While watching them ride the merry-go-round, he came up with the idea of a place where adults and their children could go and have fun together.

His dream was a vision both in terms of tangible and intangible effects it had on future generations all over the world. Spread over many miles the theme park is an economically profitable venture that enveloped many vendors in it’s premises and of course a bigger contribution to the otherwise scheming, fretting, running and racing world – it delivered smiles!! I have experienced it very closely. Fantasy, adventure, amusement, magic and happiness – one word Disneyland. Three days stay there let me relive my childhood. Isn’t it enough reason for me to endorse it? Isn’t it the only thing we want – time recall / rewind?

One more reason for my happiness- We have always feared going out with our son for long trips, especially to places where it needs long waiting hours (yes, the only flip side – long queues with waiting periods ranging from 15-40 minutes). He being autistic patience is something which is not his forte. We feared serious melt downs with so many stimulations working around him. But to our utter surprise he thoroughly enjoyed the visit. He waited patiently like we never would have envisaged. Also the staff working there was quite understanding and helpful. That gave us HOPE as parents and family for we are hopeful now to fill his childhood as well with more fond memories.

If you get a chance do visit Disneyland, it surely is the happiest place on earth😊😊.

I WANT TO CALL IT A QUIT, BUT…

I very well understand that this poem reeks of negativity but there can’t be a denial that it exists. Many of us experience the feeling of being suffocated at various points of time and in different relationships. That feeling of claustrophobia comes from the fact that we willingly (unwillingly though) suppress ourselves from speaking up and out. We feel “give another chance, let’s not break”. But the fact is we want to break away at the first given chance but never dare to do so. This poem is about that dilemma where we want to express but fear if we are exposing ourselves – to the criticism, to the adversities, to trauma, to loneliness (which probably we might not have realized yet we are).

Dying in fragments everyday,
my soul still fears sneaking out
and searching for life
that I might leave many lives rattled behind.

Drinking from the cup of insults,
my heart is still keeping it’s disgust obscure
from the world for I might end up
enrage buried wounds.

Drained from the losses,
I am still restraining myself
from crying out my anguish
for that might not be music to the loved ones.

Detached from the bond once nurtured,
I am simply embracing the rubble
from crashing for I might be just remembered
for the sabotage.

Devastated from within,
I withhold that ugly sight to myself
for no one might understand
as I ain’t an angel but a human.

Doomed by dilemma at this dark hour of my life,
my thoughts are oscillating between liberation & submission,
for I don’t know if my freedom comes under
Express or Expose!!!

Kalpana Vogeti

Time and again, responsibility and the people we love are the biggest BUTs for which I quit to quit. 🙂

MAKE IT VIRAL!!!

Husband (looking into the mirror): Honey!!! Honey!!!

Wife comes running from balcony with phone in her hand. “Why are you screaming dear? You just spoiled my reel!! What on earth made you scream your lungs out? It better be something that really needs my attention.”

Husband : What do you mean by “your attention”. Look what happened to my trousers (pointed towards his trouser that was unevenly ripped only on the left and interestingly it’s not even denim but a regular formal one).

Wife: Oh that thing! I did it. You know my friend made a reel with her husband in a torn shirt and got over a million views. I want to make a better reel and surpass that number, that’s why this ( and she giggles leaving her husband bemused). Honey we need to make funny videos to make our numbers ticking. We can’t just Relax and let others take a lead.

Husband: Yeah funny, hmm. Why don’t you switch on the camera and say that you are Smart!! Funny isn’t it? (Left the room with wife smirking and getting busy with her camera)

Sarcasm and agony written all over that husband’s face which was just a reflection of the restlessness of his wife – restless to make her presence felt on social platform, restless for churning numbers of views and likes, restless for relevance in the context of trends.

I might have given a fictional account of a couple but the scenario isn’t fictional altogether. From vacation pictures of celebrities to absurd challenges; from transformation videos to derision of people in the name of comedy; from cringe like breaking out dancing in the middle of street to being violent to random people – all in the wake of getting “Viral” and gaining attention. What started off as harmless fun has now attained the status of more or less a gluttony that has messed badly with our brains, draining off sanity and peace leaving behind a worked and worn out mind.

Get yourself some rest: Often we hear the term detoxify and the importance of cleansing one’s body. Very much needed indeed in the wake of the content we consume (like literally what goes in -what we eat) and our relatively less physically active lifestyles. But with our exposure to the social media and it’s content, our brain too has consumption. Wanted – unwanted; sensitive – bizarre; informative – crazy – say it , have it. It’s a buffet out there. And the brain too gets tired of consuming tirelessly a plethora of junk. And from consumption to serving dishes we have completed a full circle. And the problem arises when the circumference of that circle enlarges. When we are on consuming side we more often than not let our thoughts processes skew and let emotions embroil accordingly. Let’s go to the other side of the fence. Once a post is made, the next desire is to see it finding the reach – having clicks, views, likes , comments, shares, subscribers, followers, going viral. It’s a pretty much numbers game!! Pretty entangled. And when those expectations are not met we feel bad and rejected. We are in a self doubting mode – was it good enough? Worse , many also go through the existential crises as for them it’s about getting those impressions. We may accept it or not, our brains too need detoxification – a digital one. Our thoughts need a break from that constant worry of being able or not to impress others. Aimless wandering aiming for a set of benchmark numbers is an ailment for sure. Evading from the social scene from time to time is the best possible cure/ detoxification method. This is definitely not a new thing that I am phrasing out here but definitely less trended path.

Few exercises (questions) we constantly need to do:

  • Do our private life need social audience every time?
  • If the answer is yes to the above question then are we ready to ably handle the unwanted commentary (not supporting it by any means)?
  • Why and how opinions of strangers on virtual world matters?
  • Are you sure that all the happy faces on the internet are happy in reality as well?
  • What if at this very moment “I forget my password for every social account of mine and there’s no possibility to retrieve the same for a long period”, will that affect my quality of life?

These questions from time to time will give a reality check. This is not bashing social media but a small attempt to bring to notice that conscious consumption/supply is of paramount importance. That let’s brain breathe and think. Our brain too deserves rest and it doesn’t mean completely devoid and deprived of thoughts/ ideas/ opinions but it means better utilization of it and not squandering it for trivial and unimportant things.

Sharing my experience: I am politically centre- right aligned person. I was on Twitter where I thought I could speak my mind. But soon I found myself to be really effected by what others say. I rejoiced when I found same voices, I disliked (always in the realm of cordial disagreement) the otherwise opinion (though pondering over arguments backed with strong reasoning and logics) and really hurt over crude comments that had sole objective of abusing the people who don’t agree with their perspective. That left me thinking over and over, worried for some unexplained reasons. I was getting anxious and was evident on my face. My husband intervened at right time. He said ” if you can’t remain level headed, if social media debates are leaving you hassled, if words of unknown faces ring in your head, if you can’t see it as a way to pass of your time then you should better be off the wagon”. He was in a jovial mood when he said those things to me but I took it up as an advice on trial. Deleted my Twitter account, reduced my Facebook and Instagram engagement immediately. And to my surprise found myself lighter by many notches. My presence on social media wasn’t for the numbers yet it effected me as I was weak and let it to do so. I always maintained and practiced – acceptance is the key!!

Be a Voice not noise: The point is how we create or consume content on the social media. Presence of social media in our lives is nothing less than a boon where ideas, perspectives, creativity are given a buoyant push towards the public eye. But a discretion is always necessary as to how the creators and the consumers behave. What we are experiencing now is a rush to be visible and seemingly relevant than actually making sense. This extreme pressure we are exerting on ourselves is making it a noise than a voice. Users discretion is so important, isn’t it?

Try take a break and make this idea viral 😜.

BETWEEN THE DEMON AND THE SLOW POISON

My daughter was watching her favourite cartoon series on YouTube. Suddenly an advertisement popped up. It was a scary one. With demonic figures charging up, roaring at each other and inflicting carnage on everything and everyone, she got scared and came to me. I skipped the ad and consoled her. She gathered herself and asked me, “Mom are demons real?”

I smiled and said “no darling that’s all imagination, demons don’t exist. Don’t get scared” and hugged her tightly and put her to sleep. That night I watched her closely if that advertisement would have an impact on her sleep. Night passed off well and the next day she left to the school happily. Before leaving she posed one question that engaged my thoughts for a very long time. She asked “Mom can imagination yield something so alien or a completely non existing thing? Aren’t demons real?”

I didn’t say anything but smiled and saw her off. But I had an answer so complicated that I believed it would be out of the little girl’s comprehension. Answer was “Yes demons are for real”.

Demons are not the caricatures we see onscreen but they dwell well amidst us and within us, peeping through the cracks in our character. Always on a lookout to unleash themselves upon us, commanding us to submit and surrender ourselves (souls) to the ulterior motives.

With those heavy thoughts the I tapped the phone to check out the news with my morning coffee. I tumbled over different “Viral” materials across the internet, making their way to the news portals. A group of bullies beating a lone person mercilessly; an officer abusing subordinates and general public while misusing the authority bestowed; miscreants ill treating (vis a vis torturing) animals just for fun; both the genders getting harassed on various pretexts while transgenders still getting mocked up to an extent of utter humiliation for just being a part of nature’s scheme and everything ranging from witty to atrocious. A sigh escaped my lips.

More than the brutality of the incidents the silence of spectators busy in capturing the episodes in their phones is quite bone chilling. Demons that we are acquainted with are blood thirsty creatures who thrive on the weakness, sorrow and fear of others. We had a notion that demons are unworldly and against humans. But a bird’s eye view at the times we are living in it is clear that it’s has nothing to do with a certain type of specie. It’s about humanity which is almost incessantly depleting from the human race. To worsen the woes what we are witnessing is an oscillation between apparent demons (driven by greed, lust, anger, ego) and slow poison (the mute spectators who claim to be peace loving and the law abiding people). Between the demons and slow poison, it’s the slow poison that is posing a great threat to humanity as it is gifting away the encouragement for such insidious and horrific plans of scrupulous souls to be put into action. Precisely the slow poison of the thought process called “why get involved” is ushering life into the ideology of “who will dare”. In a way the periphery system to the humanity – our value system is paralysed. We react, regret and forget but don’t act at the very first place. Over the years of evolution we have technically advanced but morally been (still) through a downward spiral. We are somehow habituated to live in a cocoon, a bubble from where we pray – to keep Us / Ourselves safe and happy; from where we have a view of everything happening around us and hope nothing unfortunate lands at our doorstep; from where we certainly talk about the cruelties of the wicked ones but don’t speak against it because we are more or less paralysed by one question “Why Get Involved?“. This illusion that our silence will save us from problems is like believing that we might save ourselves from a wild fire by simply changing our path or keep the catastrophic tornado at bay using an umbrella. Sooner or later we all will get engulfed.

To Sum it upWe are aware and woke but not awake.

Our System is infected – Since we made an incredible and unfathomable amount of technological advancements let us talk in technical terms. Considering the human society as a system say a computer that is connected to the entire ecosystem via peripherals of values and responsibilities. Time and again this system is being attacked by the virus of brutalities and over the years various technicians (leaders/ law makers) through their tireless research enabled a security for the system. Security include laws and regulations, code of conducts. But that has not been able to completely secure the system, in fact over a period of time the defense of the system has been weakened considerably. Reason – corrosion of the peripheral that made the security rather ineffective. But the technicians and the users are still turning their user manuals to find defect. It’s high time that we revive the connections with certifications of “compassion”, “gratitude”, “unity” towards the entire system.

Reboot is thy need of the hour!!

PS: Have you encountered demons or tasted slow poison????

BUZZ OF FAILURE

From the moment we feel down and out till we recuperate ourselves to fight our way through all the hiccups of life our heart experiences an excruciating pain. This poem is about that pain, that hopelessness we all experience at one or other point of time.

Completely rattled by a relentless commotion,

I looked around to ascertain the origin of this motion.

More I dug deep and looked around, more I felt disappointed,

For there’s only a vacuum sucking me in and left me disoriented.

There’s a myriad of reasons to be celebrated with glee,

Also there’s despair marking it’s presence, lurking around rearing to engulf me.

I ran incessantly to escape the deafening roar chasing my existence,

Only to find the horizons closing on me, throttling every trivial glimmer of resistance.

I clasped my hands to hold on to a cover to shut off that nerve wracking noise,

I believed that shore is finally in reach, so is my sanity and poise.

But truth finally dawned upon me, it was the cry of pain emanating from the heart,

A barrage of piled up emotions that sedimented for ages now determined to tear me apart.

I realized for long I have been walking without moving an inch,

ache of being rejected, failing, falling is making it’s voice felt now with a pinch.

Nothing achieved so far , not sure of any success in future,

Its the buzz of questions that I posed to myself – how long like this, would I be able to provide my broken soul any suture?

For the moment I am standing at a juncture fighting demons within that eloquently pronounced me a failure,

Aware of the fact yet oblivious to the outcome, the only choice I am left with is to either give up or go down fighting as a gladiator.

The buzz of failure from within is the worst enemy one can deal,

It could cripple the courage, hurt the senses and butcher the individuality beyond heal.

I am listening to that buzz of failure…