Ice Cubes on Desert Sands
There is no separate story. Stories weave into each other like a well-spun fabric. Stories are like rivers, ever flowing, existing yet not existing, shifting still static, different and similar at the same time.
The pieces. The patchwork. Stories within The Story. Yours and mine.
Be the princess of your story. The seed in you carries the potential to be the tallest, luxuriant-most tree. The powerful force of creation propels the potential for maximization. Nature doesn’t want it to be a world of half-smiles, half-growths, half-blossoms and half-potential. There is a tendency for fullness. It pulls the process of evolution for the maximum, for completion, for what we call greatness.
O my mind, my seat of potentiality, take my journey further,
Be the seat of my strength, not weakness,
Be the seat of kindness, not cruelty,
Be the source of light, not darkness.
You, me and all of us are born for the stories of greatness. Let’s share our stories to see through the journey. Please give me company while I tell a few stories!
Lost in Red Mist
“A courtesan fighting for respectable identity among wars and intrigues.
A raped foreign tourist picking up the fragments of her violated self to redeem her pride.
A helpless pawn in sex trade regaining herself back to begin a new life.
The red mist of Kashmir eating away the little worlds of common hopes, dreams, and aspirations.
A huge man lifting unthinkable weights for a living, only to be crushed finally.
Someone gathering the nameless pieces of his scattered life on a platform.
An Australian anthropologist in Andaman and the sole surviving Shompen tribal.
A boy taking the onerous task of looking after his still smaller sister.
His dreams which grow in disproportion to his circumstances are as good as nightmares.
An old man, staying alone with a cat, patching up the holes in his present through tales.
A Western tourist at Rishikesh opening her spirits while a whole world drags around her feet.”
A Half House
“It’s a tumultuous, gurgling rivulet making noise against important issues. Tiny bits of truth beneficial for mundane humanity have been lost in the mythical haze and fake finery of the times. It’s an effort to dispel the smoggy veil to help the sun of truth shine brightly for surer minds. The breezy warm pace in both fiction and creative non-fiction tries to break many illusions plaguing us at the individual and collective levels.
The confident metaphors portray a fervent faith that always lurks around in our souls in lovely loneliness. These are tersely told tit-bits of truth unearthing a bigger portion of multilayered reality. There are vulnerably wholesome dreams of people commoner than the common. Anecdotes chime matter-of-factly and break the sepulchral silence. The twisted destinies of young man and women in metropolitan India narrate the efforts to carve out a life better than the ordinary.
Isn’t God the titular summation of profound mysteries, glorious ambiguities, inexplicable vagaries, and celestial certainties and uncertainties? Well, it depicts the common man hitting his head against the concept and then kissing it again forced by circumstances. Further, the narrative explores the misty political strains in the minds of common people as they tried to salvage their own bit of density in the build-up of the Modi wave.”
Beyond and Beneath
“She is majestically inaccessible. It’s her temperament and attitude. Her exquisitely outlined beauty always puts her as a bright lamp burning with its calmly consistent flicker. Meanwhile, darkness dispersed devilishly around burns with sadistic agony. She, the gypsy beauty, is solemnly composed and the ultimately incorrigible shadows try to chuck out this bright light. What is her fate? Even the God who put such effervescent colours in this human form must have been feeling anxious.
Her savoir—the selfless fatherly mile at this dew-jewelled rose—takes out his frail, feeble hands to protect this paradisiacal delight. Is self-less paternal love of an old man sufficient to protect her from the robust extortion of fate and its erring sons around? He, almost unproductive deadwood, jumps back to life for a cause far larger than his frail self.
They are against a dangerously expanding ego. Her unhindered splendour has created ripples in religious corridors of the ascetic. She is the culprit just for being so beautiful as to choke the holy man’s vow of chastity. The religious man has defied his basic instincts for so long, but now the suppressed volcano of his sexuality bursts out at her sight. Caught in this chasm, there are silent screams of humanity as it lost to the mundane badness of the day.”
Chimp, Champ and Chops
“These are dreamy descriptions outlining a softer humanity lying buried under the bigger talk of inexpressibly ridiculous modernity. The truth, lying in soft and silent spirits, gets a mouthpiece to call to attention the basic things in life through these poems. The verses narrate the enriched anatomy of the humane self with its soft emotions caged in rock-hard convictions. These solemnly composed verses in poems after poems highlight the monumental charisma of inherent beauty of the human self. The little poetic chisel strikes raise a virtuous fragrance as they hit against the sadly spread-out rock face of human indifference and insensitivity in present times. These true tears tell little stories with a face moving slowly in sedate resignation. There are plaintive tales in verse to highlight the prodigious waste of inhumanity building around. There are inspiring anecdotes to help the humane in us to get back onto its feet. There are murmuring complaints of human apathy about need, hunger and deprivation scattered like dust on our shoes. There are delightfully vague vistas that tell the stories of the nature choked at material crossroads. These footloose fantasies take you to a world basking in balmy serenity…far away from the zoom, boom and doom of the modern world.”
“Unremitting cries of humanity, plaintive wails of the deprived. Death, the final victory. On the other side, there is the simple, genuine and natural beauty preserved in the villages, in chilly winters and warm summers.
Sandeep Dahiya weaves a complex web with his users, involved ideologies, paradoxical parallels and intricate wordplay. Indeed the poems continue to perplex the reader long after the page is read and the book put aside.”
Verses from the Land of Farmers’ Messiah
“From his base in a village in Haryana, the poet paints a charming picture using vivid imagination and humanistic colours. The verses chime with an enamouring softness of heart. It sounds divine against the modern day cacophony. Silent spiritual reflections, comforting quietude and teasing tranquillity weave a cosy web where the reader can take a shelter for some precious moments.”