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Showing posts from September, 2014

The Suncatchers

Grabbing her estranged husband’s whiskey bottles, Gracy poured their contents into the sink, one by one. It was cathartic, allowing the pain, her tears and trauma, to ebb away along with the vile liquid.
The workshop acted as the catalyst, as she carefully poured in her favourite hues into the emptied, dried bottles; instructions playing in her mind: swirl the bottle slowly around till the colours spread evenly all over.
Gracy placed the transformed beauties in the wooden grooves and reveled in her new life as the sun-soaked tints of love, vitality and cheerfulness bathed her in the morning glow. 
________________ Word count: 100 ________________
100 word story written in response to the photo prompt at Friday Fictioneers at Rochelle Wisoff-Fields. You can post one of your own or read the other entries here.

A dialogue

Aditi looked in awe at the colourful masterpieces around her at the gallery; different hues suffused together to form lovely imageries. Rakhee, her protégé, was certainly talented; a deep, wistful sigh escaped her, taking her by surprise. Was she envious? She wondered, afraid to look for answers within.
“Wasn't it true that it was she who had introduced Rakhee to the world of painting? When did her apprentice, then, surpass, her, the guiding force and light behind Rakhee’s success?”Aditi bemoaned.
“Shhh..don’t think that way! It’s not right to feel resentment against genuine talent. In a creative field, someone will always be better than you” chided her friend.
“But, why me?” Argued Aditi, upset with the miss goody two shoes, ever-right mate. “I work hard too. Why is that I have to struggle so hard to reach where Rakhee is now?”
“It’s not fair..” she continued her rant, forcing her companion to withdraw into an uncomfortable silence.
 “Look at her, busy with all the adulation. Sh…

Mr. Murthy

Sharad stood defiantly in the corner of the classroom with his arms crossed tightly over his chest, eyes spewing venom, and his bloodied lip muttering silent curses at his teacher, Mr. Murthy, who had punished him for snatching the snack-box and subsequently getting into a full-blown hand-and-fist war with a classmate during lunch.
As the 10 year old walked nervously into the make-shift counseling -cum-teacher’s room in the small village school, Mr. Murthy sized up the insecure boy who now looked less fierce in his yellow-tinted shirt, hastily patched together at the seam on one side, and worn shabbily over faded under-sized shorts.
Mr. Murthy felt like the wheels of his own life had been reversed as his kind but perceptive questions revealed the unfair, love-shorn childhood of Sharad who having lost his parents to disease was living a difficult life with his uncle’s family; a story uncannily similar to his.
If not for his benevolent foster parents who re-instilled in him the hope a…


Self-deriding thoughts were pressed together in a tight knot as she studied the confident spread around. Nervous sweat mixed with tears of hard-work trickled down, as she plated up her dish, garnished with her mentor’s advice:
“Never let the others intimidate you”

Word count: 42

Connect, disconnect

As the evening wore on, Sujata got a hollow feeling in the pit of her stomach, as the enormous Banyan outside her room metamorphosed into an unfamiliar gaunt image on the reflective window pane.
Moments of confusion later, she relaxed!
This happened frequently in recent months when she’d wake up with a spring in her step, charged up to start her daily routine, but ended up gripping the window ledge, gnawing at the blank images the mind threw up.
Gazing at the mighty tree brought Sujata solace; its enveloping shade comforted her frayed nerves as she grappled with memory outages.  
100 Words written for the photo-prompt at the Light and Shade Challenge and for World Alzheimer's Day 2014 at Write Tribe.


Anticipating adventure, we excitedly dug out the dusty, old lamp from the attic at our grandparents’ house.
“Hurry, before someone sees us” urged my younger brother tugging at my sleeve.
“Stop!” “You’ll make me drop it” I barked in a low voice.
“Give it to me.” He demanded.
“No!..this lamp needs some dusting.” I snapped, wiping its surface, unaware of my miffed, mutiny-filled companion muttering sharply under his breath.
The cloud of dust billowed larger and I found myself shrunk in size, into an old woman; the cobbled pathway where I stood resembled large salt pans.
A voice echoed,” next wish!”
Word count: 101 _________________
Linking the 100 word fiction to this week's photo-prompt at Rochelle's Friday Fictioneers, and to BlogAdda's WOW prompt-A twist in the tale


Uplifting despairing souls Transcending physical folds  
Lilting prayers in joyous alley Strumming raw nerves in melancholy
Oh Music, you’re truly divine!
A blessing, when known in its entirety A means to experience divinity  For, even He stands to be your slave When offered in a humble way
Perceived as the spiritual ladder  to reach consciousness, much higher  It's a wonder, but a few  can cross the borders yonder
You grace the heart, only that is pure Even at your feet, we find Him near
Oh Music, you’re truly divine!

Finding myself

Have you seen me?
I look for myself in the anonymous dark lanes, fearing to find out what would be me. Deep down in my heart I know myself and believe I deserve to soak in blinding lights of fame, recognition and applause.
Will I find myself at the end of the lane?
My quest to meet myself is hindered by the countless number of ‘others’ in whom I see a part of myself. The way they look at me colours my mind and I take a detour. It feels like I’m stuck in a maze.
Can you tell me the way out?
I have come a long way and yet have miles to go. I need a friend who’d lend me an encouraging hand. I need a guide who’d help me read the map. I need a companion who’ll make the journey a happy dance.
Will you come along? 

Linking this to the Wednesday prompt, I, me, and myself at Write Tribe.

Why didn't you come with a manual?


You are really growing up to be a fine kid on most counts. I do thank my stars for it and sometimes give myself a pat on the back too. After all, maybe I'm also doing my bit. However, being a mother, I do have my worries and concerns about certain aspects and thought I'd share it with you here.

Remember, I had this concern even earlier that you could not hold your interest on topics that dealt with relationships? I do worry that you are growing up to be a nerd because while you can rattle off the names of the car models and species of the animal and bird kingdom like they were family, you do struggle to get who's who in the family right.

You can play all by yourself, building blocks, racing cars or doodling whales, dinosaurs, aeroplanes and fishes. But, I have never seen you doodle a flower or even a house. You like playing with your friends but don't throw a fit when called to go home. It's like you are attached yet detached. Should it worry me? I'm not to…

Lost Innocence #FiveSentenceFiction

Ambrose crept behind stealthily, eyes twinkling mysteriously, tip-toeing to where the sand-castle was being constructed laboriously and with a swift movement, his leg toppled the tower over.
He threw back his head in impish laughter as the cascading sand granules set off horrified pearls of tears to roll down pretty cheeks.
Ambrose’s mother ruffled the little boy’s unruly hair in mock anger; her eyes blinded by love for her child could only sense pure innocence and harmless mischief.
Years later, Ambrose’s sadist eyes laughed uproariously as his impudent hands disrobed a terrified, screaming young lady and outraged her modesty.
As the unrepentant Ambrose stood at the gallows, his old mother grieved the misplaced sense of motherhood that had overlooked sparks of deviance disguised cleverly as innocence.

_____________________ Five sentence fiction written in response to the prompt: Grief at LillieMcferrinWrites.


She wrapped her arms close to his waist, digging her ashen face further into his hunched back, as he revved up the engine of his sports bike noisily and sped through the winding, up-hill roads. The cool wind lashed against her face and blew her hair away in a fiery motion, dancing wildly to her racing heart-beats. She loved him for this. She hated him for this.
He was as reckless as the wind while she was the epitome of calmness. No one made her laugh as hard as he did and she loved him for this. His don’t-care-a-damn-attitude, taking risk at the drop of a hat, living life dangerously, yet making the most of every moment, left her in awe, and in fear. He made every moment she spent with him come alive and she never felt as vibrant as she did in his company. Yet, she knew, he was not the committing kind and he’d never settle down for marriage and kids.
The view atop the hill was breath-taking. Silken, white sheets covered the bare, wet peaks seductively, while the naughty breeze gent…

The Danseuse #WriteTribe

The soft notes on the flute played a melodious tune and the rhythmic beats on the tabla rounded their synergy into a soul-stirring number. Sangita paid keen attention to the beats-takita taka dhimi dha. She did the math and choreographed her steps in her mind. It was a prestigious stage and she could ill afford to slip-up.
Sangita’s graceful hand and feet movements were in perfect sync with the percussion, yet she felt a void. With a deep breath, she closed her eyes, letting go of rules. She, then, let the haunting flute guide her heart to a rapturous performance.

100 words written for Write Tribe on the following quote:
Write from the soul, not from some notion about what you think the marketplace wants.The market is fickle; the soul is eternal’.
― Jeffrey Carver


People who are a regular to this space would be familiar with my rants of how the husband never 'surprised' me on special occasions despite subtle and non-subtle hints. You know, the usual accepted norm of giving flowers, or a cake, and the likes. In his opinion, and rightly so, these outward displays of affection are not needed when the concerned people are secure in their relationship and very well 'know' how much one cares or loves the other. Although, my practical side readily and completely agreed with his point of argument, my other illogical side always found a bone or two to pick with this casual behaviour. Too much of complacency is also not good for a romantic relationship, I'd say, rolling my eyes at him, pouting sadly, trying to emotionally black-mail him and even threatening him into 'gifting' me something!

I had slowly begun to make peace with the benign, indulgent smile or worse a mocking laugh that I'd get in return for all the badgerin…

When Chikmagaluru beckoned

It's been such a long while since I wrote on this space without the crutch of a prompt. And, what better way to write extempore than a travelogue!

Last month was a bonanza for me since we traveled twice in the same month. Quite an achievement for someone whose last vacation (if you discount the visits to the parents') was in April last year!

We decided to utilize the long weekend of 15th August and made our bookings for Chikmagalur. This was a place I'd been wanting to visit for a very long time but for some reason the plans got jinxed each time at the last moment. This time, the stars did align favourably :-)

We had a lovely drive to the place. The rainy season guarantees some great visual gratification on your getaways around Bangalore and this route particularly has some best ones in store. Views of pregnant grey clouds resting gracefully on dark green mountains, lush, verdant fields all along the 5 hour drive was such a soul-lifting experience. Intermittent, cool driz…

Reflection #FridayFictioneers

The quaint, English room seemed perfect to ease out my tired, work-worn muscles over the long weekend.
I was particularly taken in by the huge mirror on one side of the room that reflected off the valance-framed windows on the other side, with several books lined up on its sill. Even the hotel knew of its book-loving guest, I thought amusedly.
As I caught my reflection in the mirror a shiver ran down my spine. I was accompanied by the old manager who had regaled me with the villa’s haunted history.
But, I could not see him in the mirror.

Finding new haven #flashfiction #50words

It's time for the weekly challenge at Shailaja's blog once again. Shailaja of The Moving Quill and The diary of a doting mom fame, hosts an interesting weekly feature, 'From 15-50' flash fiction challenge', on her blog every month. Do visit her blog to read all about it and participate.
I had fun participating at the challenge last month and was also immensely pleased to know that my ambitious attempt to write fiction in 15 words was adjudged one of top 5 posts. I'm a little late in acknowledging the honour here, but, as they say, it's better late than never. :-)

Here's my response to this month's challenge. I've chosen to use 50 words this time, using all the prompts :-) __________
Finding new haven
The girls lined up, identically dressed. Their peasant parents had just a single cloth to cover them with. They had hoped for a boy to alleviate their misery, but had three girls in a row.

Blessing or curse is after all a matter of perspective”, sai…

The Answer- Light and Shade Challenge

Sharanya set the loud alarm on ‘snooze’ multiple times until the warm white rays penetrated directly into her room through the translucent drapes, forcing her out of her tired slumber. Was it 7’o clock already? She got up with a start. It was an hour and a half later than she normally woke up, yet she felt like she had hardly slept. She glanced over at her side and saw her toddler sleeping peacefully. A quick peck on his soft cheeks and she swung off the bed and strode to the kitchen, mechanically beginning her day.
She scanned the refrigerator for the day’s menu as she kept the milk was kept to boil. Sharanya took in the cool air, lost in thoughts, numb. She lost count of the time until she heard a strong hiss behind her. She swirled quickly, but not in time, and the stove and counter got filled with large patches of white, sticky liquid. Today was certainly not her day, she cursed under her breath.
Sharanya began to fear the state of her mind that had recently begun to resemble aci…

Disparity #YeahWrite #Gargleblaster

The affluent threw a lavish party Swimming in riches, discarding the excess They made merry
An urchin nearby, sought warmth, soaking dry Hunger glowed, eyeing the spread that had over-flowed
Eager hands  grabbed, Desperate mouth relished, the taste, now mixed with waste

Word count:42

Idiomatic conversation- Light and Shade Challenge

I shall cross the bridge when it comes” quipped Lindel priding herself on her quick thinking.
Always mend your bridges and never burn them” countered Esther calmly.
Hold the bridge!..wait..or is it the fort??” blurted Lindel, panic eyes darting between the swift-moving sand and the picture.
It’s all water under the bridge, now” scorned Esther, tapping the sand clock of its residue, signaling the end of the time limit.
“Now that your creative juices are well shaken, sit down to write that essay” bellowed Jonathan, an English professor and the picture-word game’s brainchild, secretly pleased with his children’s vocabulary.  ____________ Word count:100
100 word fiction written for the Light and Shade Challenge, combining both the prompts below:
Photo prompt:
And the quote:
Shake well before opening - instructions on a milkshake bottle.