Dec 8, 2015


Far apart, weaned away
Distance keeps me from wringing my own heart
As it lunges and flails and sulks in a spotlight
As I encase it in steel and bubble wrap
Distance shields for storms are aplenty
Don't jump in the tornado
Don't wish to be swept off your feet
Build the bunker and hide underneath
Let the distance keep you in the dark
Darkness that lets me not see ahead
A blind step, fumble and fall maybe
Yet saved from knowing 'the known'
Distance for the short sighted
A blur of possibilities
Mirages, realities, hallucinations, dreams
A heady mix heaped into one
Don't tell me what's real
Don't show me the truth
Let my denial guide me forth 
Lest the facts fence my path
Distance is practice for the poker face
Keeps the heart away from the tray
Nothing to meddle with a straight face
Nothing to muddle with a straight head
Who said an ivory tower is evil
When it can never let your mind and heart go far astray!

- © Haem Roy
December 2015

Dec 1, 2015

Two red giants

Two stars wandering 

Unnoticed in the galaxy around

And yet they found their way to each other

And yet they were handed a path entwined


Two stars entwined

Orbiting each other

Liquid fire pouring across the galaxy 

Flashes of light burning away the skies


Two stars burning together

Unbound by planets, unattached to moons

A playground of constellations to choose from

A celestial hide and seek with darkness


Two stars chasing darkness

Centuries spent avoiding collisions

Lost in a limbo, swallowing all in their way

Parallel streaks blazing in tandem


Two stars in tandem

Growing wild and untamed

Unabashed unafraid underlining the sky

Inseparable even in their abandon


Two stars inseparable

Turned red and blazing

All set to shoot across sprinkling wishes

The red giants ready to explode, combust all at once


Two stars combusting

Destinies entangled, fated to fade together

A deep breath and all turns dark

One a supernova one a white dwarf becomes

- © Haem Roy

November 2015


Nov 29, 2015

What happens when...

What happens when your eyes catch mine, and mine smile back
When you watch me shuffling restlessly
What happens when I tug your shirt just a tiny bit
Or when I brush my fingers against yours
I wonder what you think when I let my gaze linger a tad longer... On purpose
I wonder how you feel when you catch me stealing glances
What happens when I strike conversation just so I can hear your soothing voice
Or the times when I fear the end of a conversation
What do you hear when I babble to cover the sound of my loudly beating heart
What happens when you find yourself next to me... Just me
What do you want when you break the silence slowly but never awkwardly
What gets you there when you somehow arrive at my grimmest moments, with instant laughter ready to go
What catches your attention when you are the most sought after, and your eyes find me for that moment
What happens when they lose me in the crowd right after
Do you feel the goosebumps I constantly try to hide around you
What happens when I fail to disguise

I wonder what happens when you see me every time 
I wonder what you think when you don't 

I wonder if I will ever find out.

- © Haem Roy
November 2015.

Nov 6, 2015

Of being ruined

The day I spotted you
Instantly drawn
Searing. Swallowing.
Ah that burning gaze of yours!

Words exchanged
The music began
Lilting. Swaying.
Ah you pied piper!

Mazes for the mind
Challenging ideas
Questioning. Learning.
Ah that riddling mind of yours!

Escape I must
Escape I can't
Trapped. Helpless. Doomed.
Ah this quicksand charm of yours!

Blazing from the inside out
Consumed whole
Surrendered. Fallen. Ruined.
Oh the forest fire you were!

- © Haem Roy
November 2015.

Sep 14, 2015

I am

I am that lone tree on the mountain top
Swaying by the sea
I am the wave that crashes the rock
Taking back a bit of sand with me

I was the bird in the flock
Moving together flying ahead
I was the anchored ship
Bobbing restless swaying yet still 

I am the streak of red bloom
At the edge of the field
I am the snow capped mountain peak
That refuses the summer

I find me drifting away with the clouds
Away from the skies away from the ground
I find me rooted to the earth
As the wind around me moves around
The heart sealed away in the oysters
The mind wandering with the stars
I find me rising and setting like the sun

I am the leaf that has left the branch
Aimlessly drifting into the wild
I am the flame once at the doorstep
That has found a forest to ashen

- Haem Roy

Sep 6, 2015

Wedding Blurs part 3: The other side of the glass

This story is a continuation of the Wedding Blurs series I started on this blog. If you haven't already, you can read the first two parts here:
Wedding Blurs Part 1
Wedding Blurs Part 2


The honking was getting louder and louder. He couldn't hear himself think anymore. Good. These were thoughts he did not want to hear or think. He had finally made the decision to get married, and he didn't want that Devil's advocate brain of his toppling things over again, all because he had a ‘hunch’. He needed to stop sabotaging his life, and he would not go and spoil something potentially good once again.

This marriage proposal had arrived through the family matchmaker. She looked pretty, at least in the pictures. The 'bio-data' as they called it was also impressive. A top ranker throughout college. Constant promotions at her job. But would she be the right one? Was this the right way to look for a partner? There goes the brain questioning everything again! He had insisted on meeting her alone first. Family pressures can get daunting, and he didn't want any of the nosy relatives making his decisions. Or worse, her decisions. They met at a coffee shop near her workplace. Familiar surroundings would probably make her feel a little less awkward. He reached early and found a table that wouldn't be the centre of attention. She walked in just then, dressed in simple denims and a collared maroon shirt. Hair tied back in a tight ponytail, no make-up and no extra accessories. She hadn't gone out of her way to dress up for 'the guy', he thought. And he immediately liked that about her. He got up and pulled a chair for her. Once they had ordered, he looked up from the menu trying very hard to keep the glance just right. Too long and it would be a creepy stare, too less and it would be a fidgety ferret. It was tough for guys out there wasn't it!

He had always been a little awkward growing up. Until that year he was working in South Africa. Some say an experience away from home changes you. Or does it merely show you a hidden side if you that you never knew existed? It is true that everyone has a past and he was no different. He hadn't spoken about it since. He hadn't even told his family. It was so long ago after all.

Inside the small coffee shop, the music was constantly playing somewhere in the background. She wasn't initiating conversation and hence he began.
"So... Having a good day at work?"
"It is just normal. Hectic and chaotic. But nothing beyond manageable."
"Ok. Umm...
Err... Your bio mentioned you like Chinese food and reading? What do you read?"
"The family wrote all that actually. I usually read non-fiction now. Biographies. Have read fiction in the past but I stopped."
"Oh! Wait... They wrote? Does that mean you are here against your will? If that is so please tell me. I am not going to force any conversations."
"No that's ok. We can talk. They didn't force me to come here."
"Alright. My work makes me travel a lot. Do you like to travel?"
"Not really. I am more of a quiet person and would prefer to stay indoors."

What was it about the quiet girls that appealed to him so much? She had been a quiet one too. Reserved, shy, reticent even. He had met her at a conference where she was handling the publicity. She handed him the name tag and schedule for the day with a smile and looked away. He didn't. Light brown eyes hidden under a fringe, a wide smile and pretty hands. He didn't know why he noticed the hands but he did. During the entire conference he kept finding ways to go back and talk to her - to borrow a pen, to ask where the washrooms were, to request for coffee, to request another copy of the schedule. He noticed her colleagues giggling at the side. Damn it she knew! It was best to come clean then. At the end of the conference he mustered the courage to ask her number, and she already had it written for him.

The conversation and coffee did not last more than twenty minutes. She hadn't spoken much. But maybe she was just hesitant. After all, arranged meetings can get overwhelming. Plus he liked that she hadn't tried to be someone else or put on an excited face just for him. He had no reason to say no. The next thing he knew, it was a week before the wedding. Even then, they had barely met three or four times and that too surrounded by relatives or to shop for trousseau. She was still quiet, and had agreed to almost all the suggestions the relatives would make. That seemed unusual to him. He had heard of bride-zillas and how finicky women could be, especially for their weddings.

Ah finicky women! SHE had been extra particular about many things - where to eat, how she liked her food, how he should hold her hand, and so on. It was just a few dates after their first meeting at the conference, and very soon, they were head over heels in love. Days were spent texting, and nights cuddling. Every weekend they would explore some new getaway around the city - and she made him try all that he never would have imagined. From hiking to skinny dipping to cosplay, it was an exciting new world for him. And he was soaking it all in wide eyed.

The day of the wedding arrived. He realised he would have to rush to the shop to pick up his wedding shoes. No point sending anyone else because they all had their duties. And honestly, he was the only one with no preparation duty at the moment. On his way to the shop, he got a call from an old friend who had moved out of the city long ago. "What the hell! I heard you are getting married? You sneaky bastard! Who is she? You better tell me everything right now or I am coming there to spill all your secrets."

His secret ‘foreign awakening’ had made him feel so far removed from home and everyone there. His family had no idea, and he barely spoke to any of his old friends. He had started speculating settling in South Africa. He had started wondering about a future with her. When things changed. She was pregnant. The news hit him like a brick. But... Didn't they take precautions? Yes, but something must have been missed. It was done now, and it was here in front of him. He wasn't casual about what they had, but he had never given the future any serious thought yet. Suddenly he was thrown into adulthood, with serious decisions to make. "Let's talk about it then" he said.

The friend asked him everything - her name, what she does and how it all happened. "Wait a minute... I have heard that name before." He tried to recall how he knew her. After a few questions about where she studied and worked, he remembered. She used to date an acquaintance. "Oh... Date? Was it serious?" "I think so. He was pretty crazy about her from what I could figure. But I didn't know him that well." His mind was racing now on the various possibilities. The many things that could go wrong if they got married. Was she still in love with him? Is it over? Oh shut up! She had agreed to this willingly. She was probably over it all. But then why hadn’t she told him? Controlling the flurry of emotions in his voice, he pretended to casually ask the friend, "So where is he now?" "Unfortunately he is no more."

"What is there to talk about? I have taken care of it. The baby is no more."\

Aug 9, 2015

When fire and water meet

Wisps of words unsaid
Making the air heavy
I look at your eyes
Like they have all those stories to tell
Your sealed lips burn through
The flame of my questions turns wild fire
Every grin by you nonchalantly strewn
Oh ice on fire!
The sizzle piercing through every breath

Your words like droplets
My parched silence soaks them in
Chained passion now gushing through
I see your questioning eyes
I see your bated breaths
My concealing grins flowing along
As your fingers find mine all knowingly
Ah fiery flare!
Evaporating my will
My concealed fists are all that hold in my words

- Haem Roy
9th August 2015

May 4, 2015

Coffee with a stranger

She walked back two steps and peeked. Nothing. She could have sworn she had sensed someone there.

But then again, her mind had been playing tricks with her these days. All she could think of was him. Not that she was distracted. On the other hand, she was her most efficient self, churning out work faster than ever. The work actually was the distraction. From him. From the thought of having lost him.

The best part about her job was that it allowed her to pretend. She could always find numerous excuses to cover for her slightly puffy eyes. "Oh, it's probably from staring at the screen all day". She could always explain the quiet moods. "Well, there is so much work. Do you expect me to be chatty or to work?" Mustering up a made up smile was breeze on most days.

But the pain showed up in those few spare moments. It was burden of knowledge, knowledge that she could reach out to him, touch him, talk to him, but had lost him. He was always there in person, but for her, he was gone.

Then again, the ghost was with her. His ghost. Of course living beings could have ghosts. Every person you've met and left an impact on, you've left behind a ghost. And his ghost is what she saw that day too.

She went back to that spot the next day. There was surely something she could sense. There was a café just around the corner and she decided to grab a Cappuccino there. As she sat, staring into blank space, a tall guy, book in hand dashed into the chair next to her. It broke her reverie and she almost dropped her coffee.

He noticed that and highly apologetically, offered to get her something. She refused, but he sat down at the same table and started talking. "I'm so sorry. You see, I was actually looking at that little kid in the corner and didn't really watch whereI was going. I don't usually do that, but sometimes I get distracted. Ok very often. Is the coffee here good? I think I need coffee. Excuse me, can I please order!"

She wasn't really listening. She was watching. Him, his mannerisms. Oh gosh! The chair crasher reminded her of HIM. That did not happen much, because not many could meet those benchmarks he'd set. No one ever seemed to match what they had.  Yet somehow, in just less than two minutes though, chair crasher had managed to cross a few.

She forced herself to talk to him. The conversation wasn't bad. The laughter and wit was ample too. And just then, coffee was over. It was time to head back.

She got up and excused herself. "It was really nice to meet you". He grinned widely, sprung up and gave her a hug. "It indeed was ". And she walked away.

No. Numbers were not exchanged. Numbers were not asked. Names were not asked. And yet, this half an hour with a stranger liberated her. She knew she would never meet him again in all likelihood. She knew this wasn't a date or even a new friend. And she also knew, that it was this stranger who just broke her shackles.

She had just discovered, that the benchmarks she was bound by could be broken. That they were possible. She had lost him long ago, but today, she had lost his ghost too.

Mar 29, 2015

That 'what if'

It gnaws it claws it hides in crevices
It rustles up from beneath
It shadows from behind
It hovers above at all times
It seeps through like the sun

That thing that's been bothering you
That one hanging thought
That question hunting for its answer
That hope trying to find straws
That regret inching up through your veins

It sticks to your senses
It underlines all your thoughts
Shake it off, scratch it off, pull it away
It stays in the crumbs that don't go away
It lives in the darkness that will oft surface

That dream that finds nightmares as roommates
The wish that didn't find its genie
That one word spoken hanging in mid air
That turn of events unexpected and strange
That 'what if' which never leaves.

- Haem Roy,
29 March 2015.