Life is unpredictable. Life behaves in bizarre ways.

Routine experiences in life – yet disturbingly new in their shock value – that make our thought processes so sick that we feel like resigning to our fates.

You never know what is going to happen the next moment yet you plan for it. That is human nature. Building you future on your perceived permutations and combinations is human nature. We all do that.

We pass. We fail. We feel stuck.

Sometimes, life walks along with us. Sometimes, it chokes our vision. Sometimes, it simply goes blank.

Routine experiences in life – that make us question our existence – or simply co-opt us to get along with the flow.

But come what may – a life we all have got – to live.

It is unpredictable. It is bizarre. Yet it is the only life that we have got – that we will get.

At times, it shocks you and it is true that no one else can do anything for you. It is only you who can find a way. It doesn’t matter how sick you are feeling, you have to find a way out of it.

You have to live them as routine experiences – being always conscious that they are not going to dictate your thought process – that they are not going to be the person for you.

Yes, that is always unpredictable – a shock’s shock-value – yet you have to find the threshold of it.

It’s bizarre – yet imperative to live your life here.




“Keeping yourself hooked to the surrogate banalities –
– that is the worst you do to your soul!”

Surrogate Banalities


©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey – https://santoshchaubey.wordpress.com/


This is my place to reminisce on memories of my life gone so far – picking up some thread, some element, some event, some experience from the days in my past – randomly – as they come – because we all are men of memories.

Here this is about this thing – a pen from my past – that came to my mind while discussing the proposition of ‘letting things go’ in life.

Like many, I, too, had this thing in my school days – collecting pens – and trying to get as soon as possible that new trendy introduction in the stationary shop that would be showcased – like a jewel of the category.

Obviously, there were cost constraints and I had to keep my pocket money into consideration while going for such ‘I must have’ decisions.

This pen – Add Diamond Roller – was recently launched in the market – when I saw it in the shop – in 1990s – when I was in 8th standard. I liked it at the first sight so much that I decided I would have it. But then there was this big problem. The pen was priced at Rs. 99, a considerably big sum for a schoolboy in those days, especially when it was the last week of the month. In fact, I had no money to purchase the pen if I had to manage the remaining days of the month with my pocket money.

But then the impulsive desire to have the pen was so intense that I found myself unable to wait for even a day more.

So, what could be done? So, what did I do?

Simple, and in fact, as I had a reputation of a good son, after a bit of convincing, I got some advance on my next month’s pocket money along with the money required to buy the pen.

The next day, the first thing I did was I rushed to the shop before going to the school to have the pen so that I could show it to others, could brag about it, as well as could feel good about it that I had such an expensive and latest addition to premium pens category in the market.

And for the whole day, I bathed in its glory.

And then it happened – the development that made it a memory worth reminiscing – because of its shock value.

I used to commute from auto-rickshaw in those days. I was very cautious about the pen and had it firmly slipped in my trouser’s pocket while boarding the one to my house. As usual, I was with my ‘feel good’ feelings, instilled with the pen’s possession now.

As soon I reached home, I rushed to show it to everyone there. I slipped my hand in my trouser’s pocket to have it and then I felt it – the shock of lifetime in those days. I had lost the pen somewhere – the pen that I had so cravingly purchased in the morning. It had slipped out of my pocket somewhere, probably in the auto-rickshaw.

At that instant I felt the whole world had come upside down. I felt both dumb and numb. While there were words of empathy, sympathy and even mockery on my loss, I suddenly felt detached from the world around me, and rushed to get some isolation.

Well, I didn’t know anything about ‘letting go’ or so in those days and how could we in that age, when we spend the whole life in convincing ourselves about the idea but it took me many days to get past the shock that I had so suddenly felt from the high pedestal of having the most expensive and elegant pen in the whole classroom. What would my friends and classmates say in the class next day? Certainly, you don’t like words of consolation in those moments.

The memory of this incident comes to revisit me again and again – in different hues – after different developments – but with similar core – even after so many years – because some of us build our life on memories – and I am certainly one of those fools. Yes, it makes me feel better that I have learnt to enjoy them or reconcile with them. That pen could not become part of my collection but its memory stayed – with different slants – in different circumstances.

When I thought to share this today, I was not sure if the pen was still available in the market but a Google search took me to its website that told me it was very much there.

Add Gel

©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey – https://santoshchaubey.wordpress.com/


Sometimes, I look there
To see if it is still there
Well, there is this canvas
I cannot say
But then I never needed it
Still, there is this feeling
That I could be there
That I had to be there
Filling it with colours
I felt comfortable with
Existing in that space
Where there lies a void now
Trying to speak to me
Through the disconnect
That time could not bring
Sometimes, I look there
To see if I can still go there
Bathing me in colours
My soul always longs for
Sometimes, I look there..

©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey – https://santoshchaubey.wordpress.com/



It is a busy public intersection in Delhi. All around are marketplaces, shops and big shopping malls. And there are street food vendors of all hues dotting the stretches on all sides.

The traffic red light at this public intersection is quite a busy one with long queues of vehicles on each side waiting for the signal to turn green. Throngs of people can be seen waiting for buses, auto-rickshaws and other modes of public transportation at every road diverting from that intersection. And in addition to all this, a regular flux of people keeps coming in and going out of the Delhi Metro station which is exactly above this intersection (Delhi Metro is an intra-city public transpiration system connecting to suburbs of Gurgaon, Noida, Ghaziabad and Faridabad).

As I stepped out of the Delhi Metro station, I saw a street food vendor badly pounding a handicapped man – in that hubbub of people – and no one was coming forward. In fact, a passerby like me tried to intervene and was meted with the same treatment. Well, the way he was thrashing that guy, with his both polio-affected legs, the incident first shocked me.

Yes, I have seen much more human brutality than this, but such things always shock me. But I knew I didn’t have much time and I was about to intervene when I saw this police patrol vehicle. By this time, I had clearly come to know that the vendor was drunk and the handicapped guy was a beggar.

So, here was this guy, a street food vendor and he was drunk, beating a handicapped person like hell and extending the same treatment to the other guy who tried to intervene, and there were people all around – most of them able-bodied who could easily take on that guy but were desisting from intervening. Probably, they all would be having their own reasons and reasoning.

Anyway, after my initial shock, my priority was to save this man because whatever was happening was grotesque, grossly inhuman and could never be justified in any possible way and then I saw this police vehicle. Well, being a journalist, I am comfortable in approaching police and whenever I do so, I am quite rigid and straight in my dealings with them.

That police vehicle was steps away under the shadow of Delhi Metro stairs and was not directly visible from the spot where this guy was being badly beaten by a drunken ruffian.

I spontaneously approached the police and they were there in no time. When a policeman from the patrol vehicle reached there, the street vendor was still exercising his meek bravado on a man who needed society’s care and support. As soon as he saw police, as normally happens, he changed his track. He started verbally abusing the guy of harassing him daily and trying to show nothing beyond that had happened. Probably, he thought no one would come forward to tell what he did – even if the handicapped guy had his shirt ripped apart and his ears had a shade of blood – probably (and rightly) he thought the police would not get bothered about a beggar.

Well, I was in no mood to let this happen. I could never have allowed this blasphemy. As soon as we reached the spot, I grabbed the vendor and pushed him away from the handicapped fellow. Then, I had some pretty tough and rough words for the policeman as well for this ruffian – for the police to do something – and for the vendor to dislodge him from his drunken tyranny.

I knew my words were meaningless for a drunken fellow of that mindset but it did make other people to join me in protesting the incident – who, till now, mere just mute spectators. I was quite agitated, and well, we all should be, in such circumstances. And it took a while for me to calm down, but not before the vendor had some ‘unofficial treatment the Indian police way’ and he was made to shell out money for treatment and clothes of the handicapped fellow. Meanwhile, another person came forward with a burger and reassuring words for him.

The final outcome was like this. The vendor would pay for rickshaw and doctor’s fee, in addition to what he had already given earlier, and another vendor there assured that he would ensure that nothing untoward happens after the episode. The policeman also said that he would keep a tight vigil and would inform the ‘beat police constables’ to keep a tab on the vendor.

While leaving, I warned the policeman and the vendors there I would come there again tomorrow to check on what I was promised.

I know we live in a society where there cannot be permanent solutions to such anomalies. What best you can do is to remain humane in your sphere of life and be true to the principles of humanity. Yes, it is very difficult, but once internalized, like an incident had done it with me a long ago, it becomes inseparable part of you.

You don’t need to become a reformer or an activist for doing so. Just a case by case approach would do. What we need to do is to remain honest in each case and to remain honest with what we see – because we, practically, cannot go into the past and the future of every such incident – or in fact, in almost of them.

When I was leaving, a man came and told us that whatever happened to this handicapped fellow was justified. He said the fellow begged in this entire area and would regularly engage in confrontation with society guards while under influence of alcohol.

That may be true but that doesn’t allow the vendor (or someone else) to beat this man. What this fellow did or what he does may be entirely wrong but justifying ‘beating him to pulp’ is equally inhuman. We have countless men and women in our society who need the state’s help for their rehabilitation – the help that never comes.

We can do a lot by being honest to them and to us – helping them whenever and wherever we can.

And thankfully, I don’t think I am doing something extraordinary by doing so. It is the basic minimum that we all need to do to express our gratitude for our existence here.

And one should always go ahead of this ‘basic minimum’.

©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey – https://santoshchaubey.wordpress.com/


(An August 2010 work, rearranged and rewritten today.)

Sometimes beginning the day with a whisper,
Sometimes with a cry,
Sometimes gaping in the void,
At times beginning it with an innocent invite.

Cruising into the myopic state of your bionic reflections,
Jaded by the hyperemia,
The ephemeral circumvention of the moment,
Drawn away from the routine empirical hysteria.

To the cerebral existence of the self-efficacious creation,
To that fleeting vision,
You never knew when it took you into its embrace,
As you just reacted naturally, like you do always.

The sudden trance that it takes you into,
Away from the oversized clutches of the trite,
Dragging away, disconnected,
Liberating to the elementary momentary amnesia.

There comes a time,
When debates become primordial,
When the need of solutions become unreal.

O childhood,
Why don’t you stay forever transcending me,
To the realms of that fading Ideal.

©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey - http://severallyalone.blogspot.com


©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey – https://santoshchaubey.wordpress.com/


The sheer joy of these days,
Of creating, of conversing with ideas,
In these labyrinthine alleys of times,
The good life had some best moments.

Travelling deep in thoughts,
Traversing worlds and beyond,
I met life many times all this while,
And sat with many lives all along.

Sometimes, it was dark,
Sometimes, it was illuminated bright,
But always it was a journey inside.

Yes, it was a pleasant sky this weekend,
With clear rains soaking the soul,
As I stood there, in its afterthoughts..

The Lonely Thorns..The Lonesome Curves


©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey – https://santoshchaubey.wordpress.com/


Even If I Still Believed In.

I never knew emotions could have run so cold
I never could have thought so, yes, before it
But I was forced to go through it the last winter
A frosty experience of a long winter
Inflicted on a chilly night on that wily day
Inflicting a blow so heavy that it still rains
Pushing me to dark oblivion of darkened voids
Into a world of deafening heartless voids
Freezing polarity of emotions unilaterally
Freezing insularity of passions mutually
I still remember those numbing words
Words I still find hard to explain in words
Air was tearing into me, slashing me bare
Air that was frigid had come with a message
That life had taken a grey turn with no extremes
And my emotions had to stay put in those extremes
Even if I still tried to believe in my life a day before
Even if I still believed in the layered beauty of winter


©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey – https://santoshchaubey.wordpress.com/


Well, nothing historical like Roman Elegies in this journey,
But it still has a story that stretches back to the days,
When I used to love its amorphous sharpness.

White, or black, or pink, or yellow, colours adored me,
When you were on my lips, playing vivaciously,
Dipping in me with a tippy playfulness.

Today always waited for tomorrow, in jocular anticipation,
When it will be the time of the day of emancipation,
In unison of us, and your piquant acess.

Having you was always complete and the feeling was so intrinsic,
Penetrating deep, melting in my thoughts at the moment,
That I would have you before all caress.

Scalding or piercing, yes, at times you would intently act so,
But then you had become a tale so personified in my soul,
That I would always look beyond, inside me, for address.

Then suddenly, one day, you told me you had a revelation, for me,
That gone are the days when you used to be mutual with me,
And the piquant was to be bitter now with sullenness.

I didn’t accept that, and like a child’s virtue, I still don’t follow it,
For, what you felt to me, was basic to me, pure and pointed,
Yes, it soured initially, but never in absoluteness.

I know the story is yet to be told, I don’t know how, and when,
The piquant is still not bitter, though is bereft of touch now,
Missing that flavour of life dipped in your playfulness.

Colour Collage 2


©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey – https://santoshchaubey.wordpress.com/


It is basically from an old poem that I wrote in ‘different and sometime overlapping’ units in August 2014. For the day-7 requirement, I have reworked and rewritten it – with modifications – and with ramifications :). I chose to do so because I found it close to what I wanted to do when the mail about this assignment dropped in my mailbox. Here it is:

(And on a day, when you are overworked, it proved more ‘thought-engaging’ than writing a new one altogether. :))


There is this street that I meet every day,
Walking along its passage, talking within
But I don’t look back at its corner on my way
As I am aware of so far, as I have seen
I know its life as felt in my many 10 minutes
It’s, like life, is full of life, striking a chord within
There will be something in those 10 minutes
To know about but not the thing that I have seen

While passing through the street of my routine
I find the point to go within because there is more
The life in 10 minutes, scattered across, umpteen
Randomly stacked with identities on my daily chore
Every other day of its mundane life is a screen
That prevents me to look back at its encore
Pushing me to become we to look at its sheen
A canvas so vibrant, a view panoramic at its fore

I don’t look back at its corner because I know
There is this street that offers to open up to me
Every day, going beyond the horizon to grow
Much more, seeking me, seeking when I am free
The street calls me regularly saying a new hello
Asking me to go past, to see what I need to see
Teaching me how varied and how parallel can it go
Telling me how different and how routine days can be

From its shades to its elements the very next day
It’s a kaleidoscope waiting for me when the street calls
I know I have to be earnest with the way I sway
To know what I learnt today, to see where it falls
To realize life’s one more existence on this today
On this journey of togetherness that mutually enthralls
On that errand of indifference and selfishness that way
Sometimes, a day of meaninglessness is all in my halls

There is this street while on itinerary to somewhere
Consciously reading the juxtaposed formations of its being
We converse but the exchanges are silent and are in clear
The understanding demands no interference annoying
And respect for independent existences in our sphere
Yes, the street does indeed extend invitation assuaging
But we both know the restriction it may bring in its rear

©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey – https://santoshchaubey.wordpress.com/