Tag Archives: trees

Mausam


What can a change in weather trigger?

A tirade of memories, a sense of longing or a stomach full of butterflies.

If life is an adventure and the call of the new keeps the wheels in motion, then a sudden change in atmosphere, a low pressure hanging over the Arabian sea, something very banal and scientific, suddenly carries the mind back in time and drops it at the edge of the balcony where many a cool evenings were spent.

This sudden onset of cool winds in the peak of the Indian summer brings me back here today, on my blog.

Although the weather is a most welcome respite and I have spent the evening taking long walks, sharing a cuppa, sitting outdoors in a cafe with south Indian filter coffee accompanied by soft puffed pasty, the heart longs for the familiar, to the city of my youth, my childhood and my home.

Bangalore is now a buzz word, beaming with pride and so much envy. In a country like India, it is utopian in many ways, and now home to so many Indians, who have their own version of the city they have made home.

But I do not refer to the shiny bars, the glimmering malls, the breweries or the shops that line 100 feet road on Indiranagar, nor the buzz of koramangala and the  high rises of the south.

I refer to the yellow tabebuia trees that bloom every year at the onset of summer. Especially the ones that line the road leading upto Windsor Manor. I have memories of seeing these trees in bloom from my days in school, early in the morning when riding  the school bus.

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Or the soft pastel pink trees or tabebuia rosea that paint Cubbon Park into an image of romance, and urge you to take the diversion into the road leading into the park as you criss-cross across the city.

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I reminisce the massive Jacaranda trees that line Mosque road and make you look up as you maneuver your car in the traffic and park on the side to just enjoy the colorful canopy.

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Or the magnificent Jacaranda trees in Domlur as you drive towards airport road. Not to forget the Pink cassia trees around the city or the gulmohar tress also known as the flame of the forest in east Bangalore, around Malleswaram and Sankey Tank.

The trees inside Jaymahal or the ones that line Ulsoor lake carpet the streets with flowers and when it gets too hot for the city, a light shower brings down the mercury and the city smells like the first blush of romance.

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To rainy evenings and cool breezes….also a reminder to not pick the flowers, but let them be.

Transliteration

Darakht sochte hai jab, toh phool aate hai
Woh dhoop main duboke ungaliyan
Khayal likhte hai lachakti shaakhon par,
Toh rang rang lavz chunte hai,
Khushbuon se bolte hai aur bulate hai.

Hamara shook dekhiye….
Ki gardane ki kaat lete hai
jahan koi mehekta hai koi

In Hindi

दरख़्त सोचते हैं जब, तो फूल आते हैं,
वो धुप में डुबो के उँगलियाँ,
ख़्याल लिखते हैं, लचकती शाख़ों पर,
तो रंग रंग लफ्ज़ चुनते हैं,
खुशबुओं से बोलते हैं और बुलाते हैं.

हमारा शौक़ देखिये
की गर्दनें ही काट लेते हैं,
जहां कहीं महकता है कोई

Translation By Pavan K Verma

Blooms blossom when trees sink in thoughts,
With fingers smudged in sunshine,
They carve their emotions on swaying shoots,
Weave the words, painted in shades of colours,
Speaking with the fragrances, they then intimate us.

And see, in the name of desire,
We prune it off its stem,
the moment its fragrance reaches us.

A short movie with Gulzar’s voice

An amazing art work series inspired by the trees of Bangalore: Here

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Crickets


Sitting at my desk, the wind carries with it the humdrum of life outside. 

The chaotic little shrieks of children playing just after school hours reminds me of my happy childhood where I played for long hours outside, till my mother came calling for dinner.

The incessant blaring horns signal a traffic jam somewhere in the lanes behind home, leading me to imagine the frustrated looks and words exchanged by those caught in its midst.

This week late at night, as I sat at my desk furiously working the laptop while the energy outside started to mellow down, the slow chirp of crickets filtered in through my window transporting me to another time.

I have always wondered what made their sounds grow louder and louder and then fall way low, before they began the ritual again?  Often finding myself mimic their chorus or try and break their rhythm.

The chirp of crickets reminds me of late nights in the outdoors, camping under the stars, surrounded by darkness, with only their sound for company.

But what it reminds me of the most is this tree that lay on the road that led to my art classes. It was a massive tree that I think housed hundreds of them or so I imagined back then.

The sound of crickets terrified me then, so much so, that this memory lies etched in mind from 30 years ago.

You see, I was convinced that when I walked under that tree, these loud, invisible creatures would all at once sweep down and attack me. So there I was, all of 8, standing at the edge where its branches started, holding  my breath, gritting my teeth, clenching my fist, ready to make a dash to the other side where the tree ended.  

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Looking back, I am sure the crickets wondered why this little human increased her pace so furiously when walking under that tree.

This continued for the entire summer till art classes thankfully concluded and I no longer had to make that all too stressful walk under the tree.

What does their sound remind you of? Do you have memory associated with it?

Or any memory that gets ignited by a particular sound?

Do share if you do.

This week’s s poem by Gulzar again, about that tree…..his tree. Like so many trees, either lost to development or time.

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Mod pe dekha hai?

By Gulzar

Mod pe dekha hai wo boodha-sa ek ped kabhi ?
Mera waqif hai, bahut salon se mein use jaanata hoon

Jab mein chhota tha to ik aam udaane ke liye
Parli deewar se kandhon pe chadha tha uske
Jaane dukhti huee kis shaakh se jaa paanv lagaa
Dhaad se phenk diya tha muje neeche usne
Meine khunnas main bahut phenke the pathar us par

Meri shaadi pe mujhe yaad hai shaakhein dekar
Meri vedi ka hawan garm kiya tha usne
Aur jab haamla thi ‘Biba’ to dopahar main har din
Meri biwi ki taraf kairiyan phenki thi isi ne
Waqt ke saath sabhi phool, sabhi patti gaye

Tab bhi jal jaata tha jab Munne se kehti ‘Biba’
‘Haan,usi ped se aaya hai tu, Ped ka phal hai’
Ab bhi jal jaata hoon. jab mod se gujarte mein kabhi
Khaanskar kehta hai, ‘Kyo, Sar ke sabhi baal gaye?’

‘Subah se kaat rahe hain woh Kameti wale
Mod tak jaane ki himmat nahin hoti mujhko’

The Tree at The Corner

Translation by Pavan K Verma

Have you seen at the corner that ageing tree?
It is an acquaintance I have known for years.

When I was small, I had climbed on to its shoulders
From the adjacent wall to steal a mango
My feet touched on of its branches that was hurting
It threw me down with a thud
Angry, I threw many stones at it.

At my wedding I remember it gave its branches
To warm the fire of the havan
And when Biba was pregnant, it threw every afternoon
its raw mangoes at my wife
With time all its leaves and flowers disappeared
I would be jealous when Biba told the baby:
“You have come from that tree, you are his fruit”
Even today I feel angry when, as I pass the turning, he coughs
And says, ” Have you lost your hair”

Today since morning, the municipal authorities are cutting it to pieces
I do not have the courage to go up to the corner.

Bikhre Lavz now has a page on Facebook. Do like to get updates and more poetry related stuff!