#NaPoWriMo Day 14: A sasuraal genda phool Senryū


This image is by Arjun Kamath

amma appa proud (5)
this is how it is (5)
Jasmines twines my hair (7)
arena ready (5)
conch shells blare trepidation (7)
husband's house smells Marigold (7)

You can catch the whole photostory by Arjun Kamath, Avani

Senryu (also called human haiku) is an unrhymed Japanese verse consisting of three unrhymed lines of five, seven, and five syllables (5, 7, 5) or 17 syllables in all. Senryu is usually written in the present tense and only references to some aspect of human nature or emotions. This is also a tanka.

Why do you blog? To gain followers? To make friends? To win customers?

I blog to practice my writing. The end goal is to put my work out into the void the world is until I get echoes of critiquing to my satisfaction. That is, not just good natured well-wishers but actual pointers to how I can get better at this mayhem of an interest- writing.

If your blog exceeded your wildest dreams, what would that look like? How many followers would you have? How often would you post? What would your blog do for you?

My blog would resemble an artsy, cosy, windy, inexpensive spot in town. Like my room perhaps. My bookshelf. The readers will get glimpses into my thought processes and the way I want to communicate with the world at large.

I don’t know how many followers I would have, but I do want a LOT of feedback and critiquing happening. I would post once a week at least to maintain a schedule and keep me practicing my moves (on words hehe) just like a skin care regime. Reserves of Discipline and self-motivation must be bountiful.


#NaPoWriMo Day 13: A smol one’s Magician Traiku

On my brother’s second birthday, (we celebrated in Venus Restaurant, in Muscat, Oman) I became a Magician. I wonder at that young girl with practically no magic skills or knowledge whatsoever, speeding away at her little show, growing red with excitement at all the attention tall tall people were giving her, while they probably, definitely were only just indulging her… How did this come to pass?

A smol one’s Magician Traiku 

confidence man's tongue magic
I was a child magician
wild tricks up my sleeves

showmanship blood hot
claps and appreciation-
my real show stealer

smiles and cheek pinches
then Baby Jaji grew up
shakes and shivers now

Today, 17th April is World Haiku Day, so I raise you to a Traiku. That’s three haikus(5-7-5). Why, yes, I’m behind on the schedule, but I shall catch up.


#NaPoWriMo Day 12: Call for National Youth Poetry Slam, 2016

I wrote most of this almost 8 months ago, when I was volunteering for National Youth Poetry Slam and had one of those Comic Con 2014 level eye-opening awe-inspiring head-heavy, heart soaring experiences.  I tweaked a lot of it, and decided to publish it here because otherwise it would never see the light of the day. For some reason, Airplane Poetry Movement, and Campus Diaries required me to send in this and a lot more for just a volunteering job. But oh well, the experience was worth it.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

I fawned after every flowery free verse

I loved every loquacious limerick master liner

An ode to an epic experience evermore

Rhythm and rhyme, pen and paper, audience and performer

Call for NYPS, 2016

Hear ye, hear ye!

Round up at Lotus Convention Center for dos days of poetry!

Hold on. Wait up. Before that. For maximum voodoo

Now that you have a ticket for you

Make it two to

Look at your friend wide-eyed

When “Boom!” goes the mic drop.

Now that you have a ticket for you

Make it three to

Jump up on stage and rap a dialogue with bae!

Another to box a beat with Sarah Kay!

Now that you have a ticket for you

Make it five to

Let Kalki Koechlin

String you all up like a violin

Make it many many more, for who else can brighten the scene

 at National Youth Poetry Slam, 2016-

Make it supercalifragilisticexpialidocious

Than your friends together; enthusiasm infectious?


All images here belong to Airplane Poetry Movement and Campus Diaries


#NaPoWriMo Day 11: Measuring the Streets of Bengaluru

via Daily Prompt: Measure

Streets of Bengaluru measured

Too hot, too hot, ahhh!

The roads of Bengaluru are measured tometro

make no sense to someone new here-

2nd Block is next to 4th

Further from 31st is 13th cross

Mami's daily Rangoli ritual

are of more seeming orderkolam437

That evening of May, 2005

the rain swept away blocks of Domlur

the way a saree pallu brushed away

powdered connected Rangoli

to make way for another highway.

The streets of Bengaluru have food

favourable to everyone, Rasgulla chaats, South Indian Filter Coffee

Masala puri, Benne Dose, just a few

Measure a bi-ttoo(by-two) kapi

Much like the cherries of Pacman

Creeps hound you too; 

Man on a Scooty flashing and cackling

fighting a level glance thrown.tumblr_nvx7eslyqw1urz3l2o1_500

Calculated risks, it is what it is

Measured glances between  friends

meant a coordinated rendezvous

in the backstreets and parks

dwindling in Garden City Bengaluru 

Always, though, Bengaluru roads are measured

For the traffic at Silk Board Junctionroad20bangalore

They can never be measured 
by their good conditions.

No longer the Pensioner's Paradise

Bengaluru measures belovedly.mg-road-bangalore1



#NaPoWriMo Day 9: Bengaluru nights for the ’80s

One of those sleepless nights in Bengaluru, I took to Take 5 and got myself some contraband booty… A coaster with a saxophone.


Gods bless ye, Leonard Cohen and Bob Dylan, my inspirers, o’er ‘ere.

WhatsApp Image 2017-04-13 at 4.53.01 PM (1)WhatsApp Image 2017-04-13 at 4.53.01 PM (2)WhatsApp Image 2017-04-13 at 4.53.01 PM


So long, Mr Saxophone Man, but before that,
Would you play another little song for me
I’m in this dinghy bar in its own bubble
And got a curfew coming for me

It can be a swish and a flick of your instrument
The nights are tired but I cannot go
Back to where I came from so soon
It’s too far away, and the traffic is terrible, as it is.

Take me across this land to somewhere cold and blue
I don’t care what you do; just need to go with you
How you know which knob to press
Do it again, once again for me, Mr Saxophone Man

It makes for a mellow rich tune
Take a breath once in a while
Streets of Indiranagar will wait for you
Even to this ditty, you have me to woo

So long Mr. Saxophone Man
The street lights will flicker like our memories
As I walk back home, way past my curfew
On this tired night, remembering your swishing tune.⁠⁠⁠⁠


#NaPoWriMo Day 8: A Malay Pantoum to Love in the Metro

The pantoum is a poetic form originating in Malay where poets write quatrains (4-line stanzas) with an abab rhyme scheme and repeat lines 2 and 4 in the previous stanza as lines 1 and 3 in the next stanza.

And nope, this did not happen to me, and YOU KNOW WHY?! Because the METRO IN JAYANAGAR IS STILL UNDER CONSTRUCTION…


WhatsApp Image 2017-04-10 at 10.41.29 PM (1)WhatsApp Image 2017-04-10 at 10.41.29 PMWhatsApp Image 2017-04-10 at 10.29.55 PM (2)WhatsApp Image 2017-04-10 at 10.29.54 PMWhatsApp Image 2017-04-10 at 10.29.55 PMWhatsApp Image 2017-04-10 at 10.29.55 PM (1)

1. Boy meets girl, interlude, recompense- a mushy puree
2. Normally this is how a love poem goes
3. Mine started with a toss of funeral bouquet
4. “Pardon me.” His voice is oh so sonorous

2. Normally this is how a love poem goes
5. Up Up Down Down Left Right Left Right B A B A !
4. “Pardon me.” His voice is oh so sonorous
6. The Metro line, like his jawline snaked its way

5. Up Up Down Down Left Right Left Right B A B A !
7. Start! That’s when he slid in the sliding doors
6. The Metro line, like his jawline snaked its way
8. I felt like the angels were riding out their chorus.

7. Start! That’s when you slid in the sliding doors
9. I was all ready to meet you, just when I pressed play.
8. I felt like the angels were riding out their chorus.
10. I will talk to you someday, I resolved, just not today.

9. I was all ready to meet you, just when I pressed play
11. On my DVD, MP4, used less guitar,, I can’t remember? How preposterous!
10. I will talk to you someday, I resolved, just not today.
12. A nice smile, perhaps a pseudo intellectual? My mind quarrels.

11. On my DVD, MP4, used less guitar, I can’t remember? How preposterous!
13. Crooning songs drowned by the elephants in my stomach, to my dismay
12. A nice smile, perhaps a pseudo intellectual? My mind quarrels.
14. Nope, he takes out a good hardback to read; heart, anchors aweigh!


#NaPoWriMo Day 7: Pashtun Landay

Afghani women risk death in times of war to recite and perform poetry of daily struggles. But originally, every once in a while burst a saucy, sassy, smarting, bawdy tune. I love these, because they are so humane, humourous and whip-smart. Tashakor, my ladies, tashakor.


To know more about Landay with brilliant photography and examples:

Afghani poems

Khyber poems

My eye are round, and so are my hips                                           (9)
They can grind like pestle in mortar, but none for you           (13)

WhatsApp Image 2017-04-09 at 9.58.45 PM


#NaPoWriMo Day 6: Clerihew to Rohan Joshi of All India Bakchod

A Clerihew is a comic verse consisting of two couplets /a-a-b-b/

From instagram

Clerihew to Rohan Joshi ( Or as he was remembered in my head for two years, as “The Gujju Sword Edge Guy”)

To a particular Mister Rohan Joshi

who is adorable to a tolerable degree.

I first laughed at you in BCC 2014; Joker was a poker or a sword, at your… sword?

Referenced Doctor Who, John Oliver in stories and now I am on board.


It might have been Joker’s poker.


Images courtesy: salmaniac


#NaPoWriMo Day 5: Formula to a rap/hip-hop song

Probably the first in Hamilton: An American Musical Obsessions series in this blog. This was my favourite research time assignment I gave myself for #NaPoWriMo. I went through all the enormous wondrous ’90s rap music albums and worked hard to incorporate all the rappers who influenced Lin-Manuel Miranda in my rap here, and some more.

I only hope I am not appropriating the Black Culture, but it is a thin line to straddle. References, inspirations  have been given due credit.

If you do not know what this is all about, watch the following videos. One is in the White House Poetry, Music and Spoken Word event in the East Room. Another is an interview for #HeForShe with Emma Watson. (Psst! She beatboxes as well.)

Welcome to the Hamilton World. I hope you gain a shot of inspiration at least, out of this.

Thank you Lin-Manuel Miranda for these revelations.





Smooth talkin’


Hamilton does a jiggy, I bet he is practicing for the night to follow.


Bro-dudes drinking night


HamiltonRichard Rodgers Theatre



Imma saunter into your heart like dissssssssss


King George is having a break up coffee



We are all peasants and we shall look up to you, you genius talented humble beautiful Linnamanuel Roll


They are dead. Stop feeling helpless about them.


The cast has many faces, voices, and quite a few have two faces in the play itself.





Try and keep the flow continuous in your head, sing it to yourself like the rap songs you know, which you feel it is referencing to. Then, click on the links and see if your guess was right!

Formula to a rap/hip-hop song

Numero Uno’s the Intro, two, do a chorus sonorous, hiss a diss, for better or a verse, rehearse, bridge to an outro.

Watch for coordination, squadrons

If you are having procrastination problems

I feel sorry son

I got 99 problems, but rapping Angelica Schuyler’s part ain’t one.

Rely on my words, it is easier said than done.

Ayo, it’s tunes to keep the kundis quivering you better trust me,

It’s queer how eerily,

who you gonna call the HamilTrash* of this tragedy

In my milieux** writ it is though , easily

I am the biggest hypocrite of 2017

My heart is heavy, Mom’s gonna disagree, in reality,

I lose myself in the flow

bet you never gonna let you go,

Learning the lyrics in one shot,

do not blow the Hamiltons***,

honour is not just for one time

I’m only 21 but my mind is older

All you pompous “pure” poetry producers, in that order

Line up, of course it’s hard to be just for east coasters°, get off your high horse, with your empty boasts

but you got none on this champion Puerto Rican°°, Medea°°° of sheer nuclear power.

No, y’all are The Nightmares of J major˜.

Phil Kaye referenced you in #LouderThanWords Tour˜˜(AH!), but the streets of India,

feel decay, because they barely even know ya.

From the rapping hip hop musicals came glories didchu have a forseer

Your multiracial work has come through your portal

it will be immortal

in cities seriously insidious

The cast and crew rendezvous in my heart, free stylin fast laner has a crib here for

a jiggy, jiggy, jiggy, don’t you see, sometimes the stage just hypnotizes me

A race of babies˜˜˜, educated about a beginning of a country, now lost to Hades

His name is, his name is, L-I-N (kingpin) M-A-N (of word djinn)-U-E-L (unparalleled) MIRANDA. 

Boom goes the mic drop!

*HamilTrash is the word used by the millenials who are fans of Hamilton

**milleux pronounced /mil-yu/

***Hamiltons as in Phillip Hamilton and Alexander Hamilton

°Lin-Manuel Miranda is from East Coast, NYC

°°Lin-Manuel Miranda’s parents immigrated from Puerto Rico

°°°Medea was a Greek sorceress. Cool lady, but freaky.

˜Lin-Manuel Miranda’s first play in school was The Nightmare of D Major and it was the story of schoolkid’s first crush. I tweaked it into J Major, because, I’m Jajwalya and I was disappointed not enough people know this play, majorly.

˜˜I volunteered for this event where Sarah Kay and Phil Kaye performed along with several other slam poetry aficionados in Bengaluru. Phil Kaye made a joke about how people in the part of the crowd who don’t know about Spoken Word Poetry might have been expecting some Hamilton sorta rap, but got their art instead. (Nope, Phil Kaye, nope.) I Almost Jumped out of the seat like a struck cat because of my euphoria. Later, while signing my book, I asked them about the musical and what a cultural phenomenon it is.

˜˜˜Hamilton is also an educational experience for over 20,000 students who get to see this as a part of thier History Civics lessons. <sigh!>

If you are convinced yet… here is the link to the entire Original Cast Recording of Hamilton: An American Musical


Flying high with the French


The metro is at odds, sir


His Last Bow…


Alex Lacaimore, the musical genius

J Major