How did Mother India get to a point, where an innocent young girl was raped, torn apart and discarded on the side of the road bleeding, to death? While an angry nation spilled out on the streets to protest, a tender, fifteen year old was being gang raped in Bihar. Yet another young rape victim from Punjab killed herself after being subjected to the pornographic interrogation by the police.

In an effort to diminish the protests, the shameless and irresponsible police along with the criminally negligent government have the audacity to blame the atrocity on the victims themselves, by talking about cosmetics and discotheques.

What has make-up and disco got to do with a woman being raped?

Knuckle to knuckle she stands
Fists pressed against each other,
Elbows digging into her sides –
A bundle of nerves, as she twists around her waist.

She shrugs her shoulders, wrings her arms
Trying to lose the butterflies,
She stares intently, at that which only she can see.

She inhales deeply as it dawns on her,
That all the time she toiled away
Has condensed into this solitary moment;
As the spotlight shines, she must be sublime.

When life’s burgeoning,
World feels like spring
Moments freeze into memories sweet.

When the heart gets broken
Engulfed by loneliness,
Seconds crawl at snail’s pace.

balinesecouple/Shelly Paul
Image by Shelly Paul

….while, on Planet Primitive, in the nation of Dysfunction, it was the year 140 BTLM(Before The Lone Man). A hundred thousand men had gathered in the nation’s capital to protest the passing of a bill into law.

The throng of protesters gathered around the parliament building spilled on to the adjacent street, flowing to the other end where the wrought iron fence surrounded the Presidential palace.

The protesters chanted slogans and banged on the fence from time to time, expressing discontent. The placards and banners they held cried out the deplorable state of men in the matriarchal nation of Dysfunction. Any minute now the parliament would finish voting on the ‘Neutralization Bill’. The air was thick with tension.

Within the compounds of the Parliament and the Palace stood a barricade of the Women’s Elite Police force, armed with taser and guns, ready to go off at the slightest provocation. A tall wrought iron fence separated the mob from the police. The clamor was growing, the police tense, and braced for the uproar.

Incomplete thought fragments
Strung together unimaginatively
With neither heart nor mind
This is the make-up of modern poetry –
Muddled, borrowed creativity

I am the Queen of Tragedies,
Henceforth I declare:

I have been wronged at every turn in my life
Yet, I never rendered any harm to a single soul.
I am incapable of sins and wrongs
Anyone who thinks otherwise is a sinner.

I shall judge the world around me,
Punish anyone who disagrees with me,
Absolve them —
When,
From their hearts they will acknowledge my Purity.

Then when I peer into me,
I see the world just the way it is
And all the beauty it contains,
I am free from all the ties that bind
I bind myself to the world around me,

For a person who fights tooth and nail against the government’s lack of transparency, Julian Assange is a very opaque person. His personal life aside, he is highly secretive about the way he goes about his method of journalism. He does not reveal any sources, either financial or otherwise.

One might argue that he is not required to answer any questions. But his method of journalism raises several questions. If his sources are secretive how does one determine if these secret whistle-blowers are not pursuing an agenda of their own? Therefore how does one determine if the leaks are objective or cherry-picked information to fill in the frame of a desired picture?

Where does his funding coming from?

sea-legs/port charlotte
Port Charlotte

I like the beach. I like the waves pounding the shore; the sun disappearing into inky blue waters. But I hate being on a ship. This was my discovery on a recent five-day cruise.

It was an exciting moment when we boarded the ship. It was late afternoon; our cabin was cute as a button as it was spick and span. We settled down nice and easy. The docked ship rocked ever so gently. As she sailed, the scenery improved. It looked like the beginning of another great vacation.

The next morning we walked around the ship enjoying the scenery. It was a beautiful sight watching the sun come up over endless waters, as the ship tore through dark-blue waters, throwing frothy white surf in its wake. The tranquility of all this did something wonderful to the soul.

afterlife/Shelly Paul
Image by Shelly Paul

What do you tell someone who lost a loved one recently? How do you console someone in bereavement when, even the most eloquent of words seems trite and superfluous? These were the questions that arose in my mind when I rang up my cousin, who had just lost his father.

Although not very close, my uncle was a permanent part of the childhood memories of my summer vacations. His departure was sudden and came as a shock to me. So one can imagine the blow it dealt to his immediate family – my aunt and cousins. On the day before his unexpected demise, he spent most of the day in the house of his eldest son, who invited his siblings and their families, at his father’s request.

When I heard the news, I knew I had to call him to offer my condolences. That’s when I realized