Wednesday, June 22, 2005

collected sign posts


It’s a terrible longing when you cannot even put a name to it. Restlessness. There is a need to be somewhere else yet strangely totally at home with myself, here, now. I lay for a long time on my unmade bed, over the disturbed quilts, thinking about nothing at all. On my tongue, names kept rolling along like a slideshow on a lollipop and they all seemed like a taste remembered but not the flavor sought.

Names are good; they are like the filing system of the brain, the single word codes to many meters of memories. Those memories are like tiny maps of time and me at a certain place and those names are the signposts, some saying don’t go there, that road is no good, others doubtful and still others, good enough campsites. Some fractions of those names belong as much to me as they belong to the namesake. I own some parts of those names, those parts which were with me and which I took away with me. I carry those names but I don’t need to or maybe I do, as signposts to me. I think there is something wrong with this. Those signposts are pointing backwards but I have to follow the road ahead.

My friend has been calling me to her city for a mini holiday and I think will go soon. I can hardly wait to see her. We always have so much fun, being silly together. Even when we talk about sad stuff, we end up laughing like a couple of pre-adolescent girls. The first time we bonded I think, was the night she slept over in my house and we talked the night through. I don’t remember what we talked about, we must have been six or seven or maybe younger but I remember my mum had laid out a bed for us in the living room and we were sharing it, sharing stuff we could tell absolutely nobody else, mighty important stuff. When we needed to turn over, we switched sides so that we could continue talking to each other, facing each other. She lives in another city. We have spent our lives visiting each other and yet we still have loads to talk about. I must add here, that there have been long spaces in between where we almost lost contact but when we met again those spaces were only just some more stuff to talk about.

I tried writing a bit of erotica today but it ended up sounding false and sort of clichéd. It was true in parts but not true enough. It is important to be true although it is so easy to lie. To steal a heart, one can lie. One can lie to build a home but neither that heart nor that home will remain happy if bought with lies…. although lies are so tempting…like detours to the goalpost. Some guiding souls will tell you when you lie but most will not. You got to watch out for your own little lies.

“This land is your land, this land is my land/ from California to the New York island.”, an old song written by somebody called Woody Guthrie, has been playing in my head, all this while, in the scratchy old voice of Mr. Bruce Springsteen tempting me to sing and all I can remember are the first two lines.

43 comments:

finnegan said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
finnegan said...

Gulnaz, since you couldn't remember the lyrics, here it is. Truer now than ever before, considering what he was singing about:

THIS LAND IS YOUR LAND
words and music by Woody Guthrie

Chorus:
This land is your land, this land is my land
From California, to the New York Island
From the redwood forest, to the gulf stream waters
This land was made for you and me

As I was walking a ribbon of highway
I saw above me an endless skyway
I saw below me a golden valley
This land was made for you and me

Chorus

I've roamed and rambled and I've followed my footsteps
To the sparkling sands of her diamond deserts
And all around me a voice was sounding
This land was made for you and me

Chorus

The sun comes shining as I was strolling
The wheat fields waving and the dust clouds rolling
The fog was lifting a voice come chanting
This land was made for you and me

Chorus

As I was walkin' - I saw a sign there
And that sign said - no tress passin'
But on the other side .... it didn't say nothin!
Now that side was made for you and me!

Chorus

In the squares of the city - In the shadow of the steeple
Near the relief office - I see my people
And some are grumblin' and some are wonderin'
If this land's still made for you and me.

Interesting you should choose Woody Guthrie's song as a cap to your entry, since this song has always had such a heartfelt honesty about it.

I was really touched by what you've written, and that's no lie.

Russell Ragsdale said...

Memories and the names that join them to us are sometimes wonderful (sometimes disturbing) things. Thanks for sharing and letting us be a part of what goes through your mind!

thoughts said...

... signposts... nice way of presenting it...

Potted-flower said...

Great post. I think you should write a book, I mean, you get so many people that can write so good on these blogs, I think I might start recording all of the great blogs... yeah... anyway, I really like this post. Any tips on erotica, I think those birds know enough. They have been sitting in that nest for quite a long time now...

Geetanjali said...

I remember that song in the movie "Stepmother" - the little boy was part of it, as a Thanksgiving school performance. Terribly cute and all that :-)

Pyjama parties are the bestest time to bond, na? Gosh am getting all nostalgic abt my school days:-)

Sue hardy-Dawson said...

I remember having sleepovers with my best friend we talked all night, played our special music, sewed bells to full circle skirts made of lining silk and practiced dancing. Such simple pleasures

mermaid said...

"On my tongue, names kept rolling along like a slideshow on a lollipop and they all seemed like a taste remembered but not the flavor sought."

It's hard to make sense of the signs, what your yearning for, what you don't want, and how to balance both. Stay focused in the present, and let the answers come to you.

Have a great time with your friend.

Josh said...

i hate when a song sticks in my head and i cant figure out why ro the rest of the lyrics! :)

Surinder said...

whoa .. nice way to look at things :) .. names-signposts-memories :-) .. i think the signposts that point backwards are the wrong ones .. the right ones .. show you the way ahead :-)

DeeM said...

'like a slideshow on a lollipop and they all seemed like a taste remembered but not the flavor sought.' you are an amazing writer, gulnaz.

Rakesh said...

nice blog
and good and bold posts

also it is always good to have a nice vacation
so have fun

small squirrel said...

you took me on a journey in this post! I stopped so many times while reading... thinking about people and names, my closest girlfriends, sleepovers, holidays, what makes me want to write erotica and who I write it for....

lovely post gulnaz.
(and do go and have fun)

sal said...

"It is important to be true although it is so easy to lie. To steal a heart, one can lie. One can lie to build a home but neither that heart nor that home will remain happy if bought with lies…. although lies are so tempting…like detours to the goalpost. Some guiding souls will tell you when you lie but most will not. You got to watch out for your own little lies."

How true... it just hit me.

Grin. I know of someone who writes erotica well. Got reminded of him.
Give it a try Gulnaz.

Lovely entry.

Patry Francis said...

I think you are one of those guiding souls, Gulnaz. Your post is a talisman against lies.

transience said...

this is probably my most favorite post of yours, gulnaz. it drips with nostalgia and self-epiphanies and a wonderful sense of solitude. i have been longing to write something that feels this way, but i guess now i don't have to.

Carrie said...

Lovely post...I so enjoyed that.

Misreflection said...

Nice post GS, good to follow the thoughts in your head,hope you take that vac too,- lies, hey each one to his own, people lie for all sorts of reason don't they, but sooner or later they catch up with you so really I beleive honesty to be the best policy. AND most of all be honest to yourself and if you're a believer of GOD then watch out as I'm sure he see's all. :-)

ruby said...

Have had trouble posting replies to your recent posts, hope this one shows up .
I hope you have a lovelly time visiting with your friend, nothing like a few days of unexpected break with an old friend have a great time .

Pallavi said...

Every time i feel like this I go travelling.. maybe you should try it.. it works in bringing peace to the mind.. it keeps looking for change on and off :)

. : A : . said...

"Names are good; they are like the filing system of the brain, the single word codes to many meters of memories."

This is so true. Names can evoke and bring back so many memories. All it takes is a spark. And sometimes the name is just enough.

Strong honest post here Gulnaz.

gulnaz said...

finnegan, thank you so much for posting the lyrics! i heard this song some years back now and i rememer listening to it again and again. i reallly like it and what he says here.

it touched you....hmmm...it feels good to be able to reach out and do so. thanks.

russell, was trying to make sense of my mind, glad u appreciate it.

thoughts, thanks, i hope you liked the rest of it too.

PF, aww sweetie you are so kind. yes there are some really good writes around in this space and i too would love to read books by them. what tips can i give on erotica...eat your worms, hehe, take care of your health and the rest will follow. ;)

Geetanjali, yes there is something about the night, encourages bonding I guess. ;)

Sue, yes sue, girlfreinds are the best people in the world, they make can make everything seem better. bells on full circle skirts, wow, would love to dance wearing them. :)

mermaid, that's good advice. its the present alone that counts.

Josh, yeah isnt that a terrible feeling, like an incomplete sneeze. :) thanks for visiting and hope you come again too. i'll visit your blog too.

Surinder, thanks, and you are right! :) glad you like it. :)

Deem, hey deem love u for saying that but i am hardly a writer! still u get a hug for that. :)

Rakesh, thanks but i did not know my posts were bold, well good if they are so. comeby again.

Small squirrel, thanks am so glad it found such resonance with you! thanks a lot sweetie and am serious about the fun. ;)
i hope you have fun too on your holiday.

woman, thanks darling! :))

Party Francis, wow, that is one of the best things anyone has ever told me, i will always cherish that though am not worthy of what you say. thank you. glad you liked it so. :)

trans, please don't let it stop you, i love reading your posts and that is why it pleases me even more that you liked this so much. :)

Mitzee, thank am so glad you did, its honestly sweet to be appreciated.

Missy, sometimes ppl lie out of weakness and need and they are not even bad persons and its hurtful when they do that.

ruby, its probably blogger acting up again, it happens and it so frustrating, has happened to me too. glad you were finally able to comment though. :)

Pallavi, yes its a good idea. i don't travel as much as i want to and it gets to me sometimes i think though am quite content remaining home as well. ;)

.:A:., thank you! ;)

Crew Koos said...

Great Blog by the way !!

M said...

Need I say more than this :)?

Roger Stevens said...

Lovely writing. I notice you have a new photograph. Do you think it's a good likeness?

Ye manzilen !! said...

.....And then there are some sign posts you can not see in this journey of life. Because, by the time you get to them your vision is corrrupted, you have no motivation left to even "read" them...you assume what they have to say..same ol ..same ol.

It is your fault.
Signpost will stand there and see you pass..
thats all!!

Tarkash

Manjusha said...

Wonderful post. I can relate to those feelings - restlessness, the need for change.

anumita said...

Beautifully written, Gulnaz!
Took me back to my childhood too and my talking-all-night times.

NicoleBraganza said...

HI! NEW PHOTO I SEE. WOULD YOU BE KIND ENOUGH TO EXPLAIN? (if I'm not being too inquisitive)

gulnaz said...

Crew Koos, thanks for dropping and commenting. merci monsieur. that a few phrases more are all i know of french. *sighs* i visited your blog, seemed nice but i don't speak french.

M, no darling, even a smile from you is enough, lol. :)

Roger Stevens, thanks and appreciaton coming from someone who writes so well himself...my day for feeling good. :)
Its my likeness in abstract. ;)
i have used 3 hobo codes here, from the url finnegan sent me.
http://www.slackaction.com/signroll.htm#
the three used here mean:
the two parallel, straight lines = the sky is the limit
the crossed circle = its a good road to follow
the open square= you can camp here.
Do you like it?

Ye manzilen, well, i speak from my experience and you yours.
thanks for dropping and commenting.

Manjusha, thanks, i am glad you relate to it. :))

Anumita, wow, praise from a writer! ;) i can still talk all-night, lol.

Nicky, of course not sweetie would love to explain, have just posted the explanation behing the hobo codes to Roger's comment, read that.
the reason i changed my face, was i got tired looking at my mug and i don't look at my face that often in a day, so it was making me uncomfortable. its still there on a post in the archives though.

deewani said...

It's great to catch up with friends. I have a friend visiting from Australia next month and I am so looking forward to seeing her. It's been about 5 years since I last saw her as we have been separated by many thousads of miles. But even after all this time I know it will be like just seeing her yesterday. Friends like that are ones to treasure :-)

DeeM said...

Well, I meant it. I'll take the hug.

Pecos Blue said...

I find it hard not to go back and visit my sign posts my names. Sometimes looking to make sure I went the right way. Or the best wayI I like how you stated this. So many ways to go but trust your instinct-

Lorena said...

hi gulnaz, what a beautiful way to look at memories. the imagery was wonderful and i agree with deem, that line she singled out, AMAZING! I'm always looking back as well and now thanks to you i see it differently.
"Those signposts are pointing backwards but I have to follow the road ahead."
it's an ongoing struggle, isn't it?

on your friendship. i can relate to this. i feel so blessed to have a friend like this. everytime we would get together (she lives in texas) we would act like kids, being silly and all. i love that i have someone for that.

(if this is your last post before you leave, have fun on your trip & take lots of pictures)

:)

Pecos Blue said...

Good morning. I added your site to my blogg. Please let me know if this is okay.

gulnaz said...

deewani, absolutely! they are sooo precious!

DeeM, :)

Pecos Blue, i agree with you about trusting one's instincts.
honoured that you should add me to your links. thanks! :)

Lorena, thanks! am so glad you liked it. we always think we could have done it better, another way but we forget that what we are now, we were not then. so, if we know better now, then something inside us must have grown and that is always a good thing. its always an ongoing struggle and i make mistakes all the time.
still not sure when i'll be going. :)

Joel said...

Lying. I try not to do it, but in the error of belief that I must not hurt the feelings of others, I do do it at times.

It comes from feeling different from others, from wanting to be liked. When one is a rare type -- particularly in a society which is asked each day to conform -- one is shunned for one's uniqueness, no matter how harmless.

I have come to the conclusion that I will never find acceptance in American society or, for that matter, anywhere else. There's a sense of belongingness that is just missing. You can't will that unilaterally: it must come back to you from others, no matter what the social workers and therapists tell you. You must be liked. It's part of your meaning.

venus said...

I think, a need of girlfriend for a girl, can not be understood by boys. I see it as a necessity. I did not have any girlfriend for a long time, and when I had, I realized what I was missing. You are fortunate to have some friends like this! Enjoy your mini vacation with her!

gulnaz said...

Joel, hey you are a great guy don't let anyone allow you to feel otherwise. such people who make you think bad about yourself are toxic themselves.
There are many who don't like me, it use to bother me earlier but i am realising that it has more to do with their own problems and their expectations of me than anything to do with me. I try to be good but i don't allow others to make me feel bad about myself anymore.

Venus freinds like that are as important as lovers, parents, siblings, kids etc. I am glad you have a girlfreind too now. :) i don't have a sister and growing up with 3 brothers, i understood men hurt too, are sweet too and fun too. i did not come across many girls i liked but of late i understand and relate to women so much better. in fact, i really appreciate and like women now, their vulnerability, their beauty, their strength and their support. women are wonderful creatures! :)

Potted-flower said...

I read the first line of your again. That is such a beautiful line... I know what it feels like, though. Like, sickness, but sadness. Bordering on crying. Thats what I think of it anyway - like stress, melancholy... but unbearable. Hmm... am I wrong?

Anonymous said...

no, pf, u r not wrong at all and thanks. ;]
gulnaz

Potted-flower said...

Why anonymous?? Hmm...?

gulnaz said...

P-f, was using this mobile thing, on which the blogger's spaces for name and password would not show up, hence the anon.