Branding Divisive Patriotism


A play by the renowned writer Mahashweta Devi , DRAUPADI , Was yesterday enacted in Haryana University turning it into a battleground between right wing organisations and students. Its a story of a tribal woman killed in an encounter by special forces .

It is amusing how every prime time newsroom uses army as a brand for proclaiming a self defined and proffessed nationalism.
Why has it become a fashion for some to question a civilian’s patriotic credentials?
Your one post on facebook won’t make you more patriotic than every other citizen of this country .

What happened to the unsaid rule that the citizenry of a country stands with its forces no matter what ? While you explicitly try to show that your heart bleeds for all the lives lost , you very cleverly try to divide the masses , infuse in them a sense of hostility and suspicion.

Isn’t it easy ?
Human rights violence , rape or anything else … How subtly you link it to army and divide the nation?
Noone asks the question that needs to be asked . It’s not about the institution , it’s about men. Army doesn’t rape , men do . And no uniform gives anyone a clean chit affidavit of impeccable character.
You make it about pro n anti army ?
No one said …
More than the army its about rape, the brutual dehumanizing weapon in the hands of patriarchy and the State .
How cunningly the real issue gets lost in all the Newshours !
When we can question the legislature , the judiciary , the executive , the bureaucracy then what , what is so sacrosanct about the any nation’s army? Is it above the Constitution ?

I wonder when the pseudo nationalists will attack the Supreme Court for its recent ruling on AFSPA .
And this isn’t about Kashmir . Lets talk about north east a change .

Sometimes uniformity and vagueness is actually oneness . When you implicitly demarcate the invisible boundaries of Us vs Them then lines will emerge , cracks develop and organs severed .


I Sung You Like A Verse


(From a writer to another writer . In a moment of chilling heights , warm tea , songs sung and conversations held .) 

I sung you like a verse from a forgotten poem ,
Like a stroke of brush from a faded canvas ,
Like a touch of life in a weathered sculpture ,
Mentioned you like a sacred prayer …

In the eyes that said a thousand words ,
In the smile that hid the secrets unknown ,
In the hands that held a crisp stone ,
In those seconds ,
I sung you like a verse from a forgotten poem .

I know you saw the sunlight on my face ,
I know you saw my closed eyes as I prayed in oblivion ,
I know you saw the tears that flooded my eyes ,
I saw you stealing me …
I saw your eyes betraying you .
That’s when I sung you like a verse from a forgotten poem .

Do you do these things usually ?
Do you warm up a cold heart ,
Do you write and conjure words for yourself ,
Do you protect what you deem to be yours ,
Do you let others sing you …like a verse from a forgotten poem ?

Like air , all pervasive , free , pure ,
I saw you heal me ,
I saw you covering me ,
I saw you holding my baggage while I flew amidst the clouds ,
I saw you letting me play while you watched ,
For all this , for all that , for all it felt …

-Athena (Ambika)
P.s – You owe me a lot of verses baby doll.

I sung you like a verse from a forgotten poem .



(My first poem in Hindi)

Kuch Ajeeb sa lgta hai ab pyaar ka mtlb ,
Kuch khoya sa , kuch jhootha sa ,
Kuch mtlabi , kuch neeras sa…

Jaise uttran ho कई dilon ki,
Jaise baghban mein anchahi ghaas ,
Jaise purani imarton me dbe hue itihaas ,
Kuch aisa lgta hai Ye pyaar

Nhi jaanti ki kya hai tumse जुड़ा ,
Tum kehte ho yeh hai pyaar ,
Kuch apna sa lgta hai , Sab spna sa lgta hai …
Nhi chahti ke Ye bhi ho ek waisa hi pyaar …
Jaise Wo uttran or Wo itihaas ,

Na chahun tumhe baandhna un rishton mein ,
Jinki umr hi nhi kuch saalon mein ,
Na chahun tumhe baandhna un ehsaason mein ,
Jinhe naam dete hi Wo kho jaate hain hazaaron mein,
Na chahun tumhe baandhna un bematlab ki rivayton mein ,
Jinhe nibhate nibhate alag ho jaate hain raaste …

Bs chahti hu tum rho , hum rhe ,
Bs yuhi tham jaaye zindagi isi pal mein …

Poochti hu phir bhi kbhi khud se ,
Kya haq hai mera in sab khushiyon pe?
Kya krz utaarne honge in sab muskurahton ke?

Bs drti hu ki kahin aadat na bn jao ,
Darti hu ki kahin door na nikal jau ,
Darti hu tumhare pyaar se …
Kahin doob na jau …

Dil phir wahin kashmakash mein jeeta hai ,
Ki ,
Agar baandha nhi , is benaam ehsas ko ,
To kahin kho na du tere saath ko !!!

©Ambika Bhan

Shiva To Me – Shivoham


As my days are spent in sifting through the magnanimous cultural heritage of this land of sadhus and aghoris , a land of conch shells and snake charmers (I am proud to belong to the land of such mysticism and spirituality ) , a land of breathtaking art and architecture , I can’t help but stand in reverence and awe to the temples , caves , murals and sculptures of this land .

I have been a sucker for religious theories , temples , palaces , animistic traditions and all that surrounds it , the art , the architecture the mythical tales since childhood.
Born a Hindu , I think it to be a vague terminology with the plethora of traditions , sects , deities we have .

In such a long long time I realise I identify myself with Shaivism and some shades of Buddhism.

Its not the godliness that is enticing . It is the sheer simplicity of your dwelling , the perfect example maintaining attachment yet remaining detached from the vices of the cosmos and the world. Its the same for Buddha.

Shiva invokes a strange fire in me with just the perfect blend of subtle coolness. As a woman it is attraction , as a devotee is love , as a soul it is the reminder of detachment from what is materialistic and temporary,  as a warrior to fight your own vices , to become one with Shiva , as a yogi to invoke the energy chakras in us ,
as a lover to love passionately in full consciousness of the powerful force that love is .
As a rebel to accept others yet outshine your individualities in the ways you look irrespective of the perspectives society throws on you .
Shiva the aghori , the natraj , the one so docile yet so strong , the one denouncing everything yet holding the prakriti in his reigns and the moon in his hair .
The one contended with few drops of water people put onto him , yet holding the holy Ganges in his tresses .

“Fire in his head, the sun and moon his eyes , space his ears , the Vedas his speech , the wind his breath, the universe his heart. From his feet the earth has originated . Verily he is the inner self of all beings “.
Shivoham …

The Chaos We Called Love -3

You want me to be a tragic backdrop so that you can appear to be illuminated, so that people can say ‘Wow, isn’t he so terribly brave to love a girl who is so obviously sad?’ You think I’ll be the dark sky so you can be the star? I’ll swallow you whole.

The Chaos We Called Love -3 💔

The Chaos We Call Love -2 🍁

They want to know if I love them,  that’s all anyone wants from anyone else, not love itself but the knowledge that love is there, like new batteries in the flashlight in the emergency kit in the hall closet.

The Chaos We Call Love -2 🍁