Devil’s Daughter IV

The pink public square of Jaipur is now tainted red with the blood of devil’s daughter’s guillotined head – the public is cheering the beheading of the devil’s daughter, the children are sucking on red lollipops sitting on their father’s shoulders. As the head rolls on the street, the public is relieved, they celebrate the death of the devil. The reign of Good is established.

What the public does not know yet that devil’s daughter had laid an egg in a nest that is protected by wolves. Unbeknownst to the world, from that egg will emerge another devil’s daughter destined to destroy this mortal world.

If, at this moment, you enter the dark part of the forest by mistake, you will see the wolves circled near the forbidden nest, chanting, “The devil is dead. Long live the devil.”

Devil’s Daughter III

The Devil’s daughter finds the literary community nauseating. The Devil has taught her that the world deserves contempt and destruction. She once read a tweet that a worker bee makes very little honey in her lifetime and it must be devastating to have it all stolen by humans. The Devil’s daughter is delighted by this. In fact, she steals the honey and then roasts the bee with oil she stole from olives and salt she stole from the sea on the fire she stole from the carbon dioxide, water vapour, oxygen and nitrogen that she stole from air that she also constantly steals to be alive. Not many people know but she exists because she stole cells from her mother’s womb.

When the Devil’s daughter arrives bejewelled in the middle of an unknown forest, all the bees from all the hives fall at her feet. The honey belongs to her. The bees belong to her. The Earth belongs to her.

The Devil is dead. Long live the Devil.

Devil’s Daughter II

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The devil’s daughter likes to cook in her spare time. When she is not busy inflicting harm on this fragile world, she also likes to read Clarice Lispector. The devil’s daughter doesn’t like to read anyone else. The devil’s daughter likes red meat and red carnations. The door of her high-rise apartment is painted red, just like her nails. On her balcony, she grows red cherry tomatoes that she injects with the blood of the people she hates.

In the fading sunlight on Campo de’ Fiori in Rome, she sells them to unsuspecting customers for an exorbitant amount. With the money she earns, she buys a pair of gold earrings every week. De Chirico roams the Roman streets hoping to find her. He wants to see her once, just once.

Someone whispers on a phone in Volgograd, “The devil is dead. Long live the devil.”

Devil’s Daughter / Issued in public interest

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I have embraced my new position as a ghoul. It was long time coming, for the daughter of a devil (more often than not) turns out to be a devil herself. For anyone interested, the discovery was not startling and rather liberating. Like a criminal, I am now against the world, free to do whatever my heart desires.

The devil is dead. Long live the devil.

 

Mound of the Dead

The famous Hindi writer Rangey Raghav has a novel on the Indus Valley civilization. It is called मुर्दों का टीला, or Mound of the Dead. Apart from describing the long defunct civilisation, this phrase can also be used to aptly describe modern men. To encounter the modern man is to encounter a dead body. To fall in love with a modern man is to commit necrophilia.

An incomplete list of all the things I am

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The first thing I am is not good at mathematics. I am not intelligent. I am unmarriageable because I had no interest in cooking, wore shorts, and read books like Dracula. I am ruined because I wore perfume when I was nine. I am too domestic because I eventually started enjoying cooking. I am intelligent because I went to the best university in the country. I am anti-national. I am a whore because someone on Twitter said it. I am also a witch because someone on a road in Calcutta called me so. I am always silent. I am beautiful. I don’t have good skin. I am old. My voice is too husky. I am rich because I wear gold jewellery. I am spoilt. I am very intelligent. I don’t seem like I live in a small town. I am independent. I am not a good employee. My teeth are crooked. I am seditious. I am racist. I am radical. I am mature beyond my years. I am young. I cannot really write. I can write good short prose. I am anti-Hindu. I live in a small town. I am poor because I don’t wear gold jewellery. I am trashy. It seems like I am not focused. I looked too confused in the Abu Dhabi airport. I am a drug dealer. I should try my hands at poetry. I am too close with my mother. I express my opinions too much. I read only literary books. I am too Hindu. I support fascism. I cannot afford food. I don’t know what my narrative is doing. I am really good with kids. I am too cold. I have lived a life of luxury. I am too friendly. My name is Sodamini. My name is Sauda Mani. I am too pale. I am a good photographer. My name is Sardangini.

Sardangini doesn’t know how to keep the camera focused.

The immortal intellectuals

In an important part of the world, right next to a colony of cockroaches, is a group of people who claim to have understood the ephemera of existence, their beautiful faces glowing in the aureate evening light with melancholy, hands holding the poetic letters of an incomplete love, their feet perfectly arched in a sorrowful position as if any moment now they will break into a ballet of their own tragedy, their lips frozen in the shape of almost-said.

They are the immortal intellectuals. They cannot die. Their hearts forever beat in fear.

They will inherit the earth.

Notes on love / A found letter by Ingeborg Bachmann

Life is not going to accommodate us, Ingeborg; waiting for that would surely be the most unfitting way for us to be.

Be—yes, we can and are allowed to do so.  To be—be there for another.

Even if it is only a few words, alla breve, one letter once a month: the heart will know how to live.

– Paul Celan to Ingeborg Bachmann, October 31st, 1957

It was on a forgotten table in the Indian Coffee House, M.I. Road, that I found in an abandoned diary an answer to the letter quoted above. It may have been written  by Ingeborg Bachmann or her ghost. It doesn’t matter. I have reproduced the found letter below, without modifications, the authenticity of which must be doubted:

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Dear Paul

Life accommodates what we wish for it to accommodate. I will not accept language as replacement of life. You mention, in your rather strange letter, that we are allowed to be – to be there for another. Your sentence already prevents me for being there for you – for I cannot be there for anyone who seeks permission (even if imaginary, even if irrelevant) from society or the universe. Why is there a need for the word ‘allow’? Should life not be lived solely on our own terms – and if it is your own heart that you seek permission from, then it is perhaps better that we be apart in this lifetime, because I cannot be in love with anyone whose heart feels guilty for being in love.

The melancholy climate of Europe seems to affect you badly, dear Paul. Some sunshine might dry off the damp cowardice from your soul. You are perhaps one of the greatest poet of our generation – I cannot neither do I want to argue with that – but poetry sometimes requires sacrifice of life. And in that I stand apart even from poetry. Even from you.

If a letter a month is all that your heart requires to live – then certainly it will learn to live without it. If not, then you will be another one of the many men who have died for lack of life. There’s nothing extraordinary about that fate. Rejoice, then, in the ordinariness of your destiny, Paul.

This will be my last letter to you.

Ingeborg.

Tale of a dazzlingly boring girl

She is in bed, her neck is swollen, and the ubiquity of mirrors in her home suddenly bothers her. She doesn’t want to look at herself. She doesn’t want to do anything except talk about her illness. She realizes that no one wants to hear her talk about it continuously. She is dazzlingly boring. To be ill is to encounter one’s own boredom. She tries to be interesting but she fails. Nothing interests her except the news of her body.

She tries to write a blog post hoping that writing would make her interesting again but it doesn’t. Nothing can make her interesting at this moment. She must wait.

Her hands rest on a book she won’t read tonight.