It’s a beautiful day

•December 3, 2017 • 2 Comments

I had a dream and in the dream, I was standing at a grand gilded mirror wearing a green satin dress and a diadem with a purple great gem. I stood looking at myself, not in the grand vanity mirror really, but in that silver mirror in my hand at my side, where I looked and looked at myself, reflected a thousand times. I imagined those little reflected worlds in different spaces and different times, and wondered whether those little me’s were exactly equal to me. Just as jaded and unhappy. Then I woke up, because my dream self recognised that wink of reality and shoved my unwelcome pessimistic self from its perfect, pristine world.

Good lord! 6:00! Late again? I had changed my alarm tone so I would be greeted in the morning with Bono’s voice singing, “It’s a beautiful day”. Clearly I needed some Machel in my life. I dragged myself out of bed, very conscious that my behaviour couldn’t possibly get me any closer to the promotion I had been fantasising about. The stupid phone was dead. I didn’t attach it to the charger properly. I had better hurry up. I dove into the shower to make quick work of getting ready. Doubles for breakfast today. I’d do an extra 15 minutes on the treadmill to burn it off in the evening. I passed the girl at the walk-over who sold spells that promised to heal broken hearts, bring financial fortune and bring back lovers that left. The traffic was especially bad today. Exclamations like “Yuh buy yuh license or wah?” and “Move yuh so and so car!” were punctuated by blaring horns and suddenly screeching tyres.  It didn’t help that those awful radio announcers were unnecessarily shouting at each other while discussing “important” matters like Vicky Boodram’s escape from jail. By the time I clocked in and checked my mounting late minutes, I was already tired. I hummed, “it’s a beautiful day” while sipping my sweet Starbucks coffee. Just before my phone died again, I saw a meme that said “Work would be so much fun if we were all drunk!” along with a dozen other flowery, good morning greetings. So I was forced to communicate with people with my mouth today.

We had a baby shower planned for one of my coworkers today. I must say, Nadine and Sacha outdid themselves this year. They often did everything themselves despite the committee meetings. Two of our girls were out on maternity leave already and Carla was going to join them by the end of the week. This fiscal year’s closing was going to be madness. I yanked a thought of my birthday coming up the following week from my brain. Divine cakes and pastries were on show at the shower. I’d make up for that in tomorrow’s workout. Amid the laughter and gaiety of our party, I could hear the clamouring of protesters in the street demanding better wages. They had been at it since 8 a.m. I heard. More is the pity that the C.P.O.s office was a few floors up. She certainly could not hear them. I don’t even think she was in office today, from what I heard from the lunch room gossipers this morning. Same old thing, all the time, all the way, same same same; shame shame shame.

While inspecting myself in the bathroom mirror, I hear crying in one of the stalls. I tried to ignore it but the sobs sounded so desperate and hurt. I walked up to the stall and knocked softly. The sobs stopped abruptly as the girl stifled her crying. “Do you need something?” I asked softly. “I am fine. Don’t worry,” replied a voice I didn’t recognise. I lingered a bit but I didn’t know what else to say. I returned to the mirror to fix the frosty pink lipstick smudge below my lip from eating pastries. I almost left and dismissed the girl as the crying didn’t resume, but I went back to the mirror. I looked into it without seeing myself. “Cry it out,” I said, “But make sure not to cry for the same thing twice.” Then I left.

I dipped my fingers in the fountain at the front of our building as I passed, trying not to skid on the so-called non skid tiles the covered the ground floor. The jacaranda trees were in full bloom up the street so that beautiful spots of purple, violet and fuchsia dotted the street with subtle majesty. The quiet hum of the past still reverberates in these parts. The further downtown you go, the dirtier and more grungy the city becomes. On my way home I had to duck into an alternative street because a homeless man was pelting bottles at some young men who were dashing up the street with mirth, the bottles narrowly missing them, because mister vagrant man had really good aim. I walked fast with my head straight up the lonely street with cars parked along the street for company. One black Mercedes stood out in the line and I wondered if I had ever seen a Mercedes being towed for being parked illegally. A trail of garbage juice started from KFC’s back door on the side of the road and coursed up the road, left behind by the rubbish truck. That smell knocked me out of my musings. It was that bad. I held my breath and walked as briskly as I could.

The gym was pumping. Techno music burst out from the spin classes in the studio as the door opens and closes. Gym was my quiet time. Musclemen grunted at the weight racks while the tinkling laughter of gym girls wafted over, along with that metallic crash of weights hitting the racks accompanying satisfied ejaculations. A trainer kept speeding up the treadmill under a beginner while she struggled to keep up. I used the machines that weren’t being hogged and used an elliptical before the usual rush hour crowd came out in full glory. Even amid all that noise I couldn’t escape my thoughts.

When my phone charged later that evening, my only message was from my ex asking if I wanted to have some wine with him. I groaned. I didn’t need that kind of negativity. I ate, coloured and watched reruns of sex and the city. I thought of the search for the perfect man. My mother and my sister were lucky. “All the good ones are dead,” Granny always said, and if looks could kill, my mother would have murdered my grandmother a thousand times. To love was sacred. I learned that the hard way. It starts from inside and fills you up, but you have to practice and have patience, like when filling in the blank pages of a colouring book.

That night I dreamed an angel sat on my bed and told me a story of a sorceress who wanted to find love. She made concoctions that smelled like mangoes and buttercream, vanilla and cinnamon, berries and cream, but were potent love potions. When she went to fetch water, she met a god disguised as an old man who wanted a drink of water. She gave him to drink and he revealed himself. He asked what boon she would ask of him. She listed all the qualities she wanted in a man. The god replied, “I give you peace and joy, as you have had all of those in your past lives and you will have all them again in your futures to come.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Fat

•August 21, 2016 • Leave a Comment

Round eyes peered and the face that was mostly cheeks

Constipated with shame, but morbidly fascinated, peeks

At her body, a work of grotesquerie

Some say fluffy, some say puffy.

She is repelled by her corpulent figure

Reflected in the lake.

How could she have gotten bigger?

As though in her stomach lying awake

Was an insatiable gigantic snake.

And she goes running again to the patisserie.

Then after she ate

She tempted fate

Looking at herself again,

Tempted with cream and cake

She fell in hate.

 

What are you due?

You should see a fitness guru.

All that fat gonna kill you.

Everyone is raving about this miracle stew.

Don’t look so blue.

I wouldn’t tell you if it weren’t true.

Mischief begins to brew.

 

The diets don’t work.

The trainer is a jerk.

These supplements are just a fad.

Finally! End of session.

Where is that fun she should have had?

On the brink of depression

Our girl has had enough.

The process was not a little tough.

 

It was when she learnt to be content

Despite all the time and money she had spent

With that the one body, that house of soul

Need tender loving care to mend the hole

Of imagined inadequacy.

 

The power of the mind is underrated.

A lot of love, a little respect: freedom from hatred

And it would be sated.

 

Louella Mahabir

21st. August

Half a heart

•August 20, 2016 • Leave a Comment

Life flourishes to grow

Slightly diminished if one doesn’t know.

Day by day, a child will play

And remnants of innocence will with him stay.

Pieces of the heart that once was whole

As immense and ample

But she only remains with a sample

As fleeting and fragile as the world is old.

At first she is blissfully ignorant

Then the void becomes gaping and blatant

The search begins, seemingly leisurely

But he’s actually rummaging desperately.

Where is it?

What is it?

He knows not.

She can’t guess.

 

That part of the heart that she searches for in art.

The missing piece absent from the dregs of the wine of solace and peace.

Joyless hugs, powerless drugs, hapless dugs and humourless thugs

Flavourless flings and soulless things

Clam chowder, white powder,

Shaking trees that do not bear

To see if one can see, think, feel or hear

The evasive half.

 

It must be in my imagination, that almost inaudible mocking laugh…

 

They suffer and pine

Until they divine

That it is not out there

But in here.

 

Louella Mahabir

20th. August

Hero

•August 20, 2016 • Leave a Comment

You can’t deny the merits of sitting still

Letting providence erase the tiny hill

Of small conflicts that per chance arise.

But it is also wise, if it calls, not to fold.

 

To be bold

Is to be feline and unafraid

Of what you might by chance meet

To claim treasures languishing at your feet

Where they were laid.

Leave behind demure and staid

All your fibres woven into a strong braid

Which will not be left trailing or fused to a yoke

But to climb

The crags and cliffs you’ve yourself hewn

Getting in your own way

Multitude of hopes strewn

Along the path for predators and creditors

Laughing and yawning when the large stones fall

To bruise your head and snatch away the day.

 

But this is your mountain.

You aren’t sure? I am certain.

You’ve drunk your concoction

Revered an illusion

Then await the craft of a far off magician

To cart away the debris and take off with you in flight

Free you of your plight

Because you fear doing it yourself stone by stone

Alone

Hmmm, no backbone.

You’ve established this trail

Ignore the heart.

You’ve already set yourself up to fail.

No point in not being afraid.

In its absence, you can’t gage

Clarity after pointless rage

The measure of your own courage.

You are not the first in your predicament

Nor are you without implement.

Continue the ascent.

Everything can’t be lovely and pleasant.

Your morale stands in peril

As you don’t grasp and hold with force or will.

All is lost if you continue to stand still.

 

Louella Mahabir

20th. August.

Whores of Hedge Money

•August 20, 2016 • Leave a Comment

Underground kings in the highest towers
Now made of glass instead of the stone
The red mortar remains
None can ever remove such stains.

They’ve tired of the minstrel and bard
Their wives and concubines no longer wrapped
In lamb, ham, gravy and lard
Kings lust for blood
Not drops or mouthfuls but in a great flood.

She longs to disappear, so he will notice her.
He longs for them to disappear
Yet wishes them to remain here
To wage war,
That outlasts sword and spear
Out of which is forged an idea
That all of which they hold dear
Is worth fighting for if they really care.

So the skirmishes continue
Little feudal quarrels we live to rue
Most on the hedge jumping over whichever edge
To the side that has the advantage.
The blockades and stockades
What is his soul to you if it were not for prices and merchandises?
What is her body to you but another brick?
Sick.
You don’t have to be such a…

Louella Mahabir
August 19th.

Tribute to Frida Kahlo

•December 24, 2015 • Leave a Comment

My translation could never do her justice. I salute you lady…

You deserve a love that wants you disheveled, with everything, and is the reason you wake up quickly, with everything, and the demons that won’t let you sleep.

 You deserve a love that makes you feel safe, that can eat up the whole world by walking with your hand , that feels that your arms go perfectly with their skin.

You deserve a love that wants to dance with you, that goes to paradise by looking in your eyes, and never gets bored reading your expressions.

You deserve a love that listens to you sing and supports you when you’re being ridiculous, respects that you are free, accompanies you in your flight without fear of falling.

 You deserve a love that drives away lies, and brings illusion, coffee and poetry.

-Frida Kahlo

 

you deserve

On inappropriate anger. Get over yourself

•December 24, 2015 • 1 Comment

Ice Queen, De-clawed

 

Seldom does one find in this lifetime

Everything one desires in one single thing

Little things come together…and they rhyme!

First apply a little faith, ignore the barbs that sting.

Liberty and Dignity, first on your list,

Of course, generous amounts of humility.

Very rarely do I see all my iniquity,

Each time I am hurt, under a pretext,

Hastily lash out in anger

Eliciting respect.

Audacious and bold, brandishing my stinger,

Ludicrous, foolishly deserving of what I get.

Stop.

23rd. December, 2015