Saturday, February 25, 2012

Tracy Chapman ~ Be Careful Of My Heart

You and your sweet smile
You and your tantalizing ways
You and your honey lips
You and all the sweet things that they say
You and your wild wild ways
One day you just up and walked away
You left me hurting

But I can forgive you for that now
You taught me something
Something took half my life to learn
When you give all yourself away
Just tell them to be careful of your heart

Be careful of my heart, heart
Be careful of this heart of mine
Be careful of my heart, heart
It just might break and send some splinters flying
Be careful of my heart, heart
Be careful

You you you
You you you
You you you
Took my love
Thought you took it all

You you you
You you you
You you you
Took my love
And now you're gone

But I'm not breaking down
And I'm not falling apart
I just lost a little faith
When you broke my heart
Given a chance I might try it again
But I wouldn't risk it all this time

I'd save
A little love for myself
Enough for my heart to mend
A little love for myself
One day I just might love again
One day some sweet smile might turn my head
One day I just might give all myself away
One day
One day
One day

~ Tracy Chapman

Tracy Chapman

Thursday, February 23, 2012

The Shortest Stories

(Photo : Selvan)


When he woke up, the dinosaur was still there.

(Augusto Monterroso)


For Sale : Baby shoes, never worn.

(Ernest Hemingway)


God said, 'Cancel Program GENESIS'. 
The universe ceased to exist.

(Arthur C Clarke)


Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Haiku Of Issa

The distant mountains  

are reflected in the eye

of the dragonfly.

Before I arrived,

who were the people living here?

Only the violet flowers remain.

Arise from sleep, old cat,

and with great yawns

and stretchings -

Amble out for love.

Live in simple faith -

just as this

trusting cherry

Flowers, fades, and falls.

What a moon -

if only she were here,

my grumbling wife.

~ Kobayashi Issa

(1763 ~ 1828)

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

A Door Imperfectly Closed..

It was your familiar greeting.
But floating across the aisles in Sainsbury's
from a distance of many years
it caught me unprepared.

I turned - to see a different person
within a body that might have been
what yours was going to become.
Only your eyes unchanged.

The customary rapture of old acquaintance:
a slight touching of cheeks, in front of
four observant little eyes -
no scent of Mitsuko now -

your hand so close to my trolley
I might’ve touched it. But no time
or thought of news in aisle 12;
amid the Household Goods.

Your body, once so swift to respond,
now looked to have its own tempo –
passion just a memory,
a door imperfectly closed.

So, with a cursory admiration
of your womb's fair-headed fruit
we part, faithlessly promising
our families' reunion.

At the checkout I recall
the open cheque you gave me once,
drawn “All my love”, signed L,
and “Not Negotiable”.

What value might it have retained
in the teeth of scoundrel time
had you not issued, between
whiles, 'instructions not to pay'?

~ Michael Maxwell Steer

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

The Meeting ~ Katherine Mansfield

The Meeting 

We started speaking,
Looked at each other, then turned away.
The tears kept rising to my eyes.
But I could not weep.
I wanted to take your hand
But my hand trembled.
You kept counting the days
Before we should meet again.
But both of us felt in our hearts
That we parted for ever and ever.
The ticking of the little clock filled the quiet room.
"Listen," I said. "It is so loud,
Like a horse galloping on a lonely road,
As loud as a horse galloping past in the night."
You shut me up in your arms.
But the sound of the clock stifled our hearts' beating.
You said, "I cannot go: all that is living of me
Is here for ever and ever."
Then you went.
The world changed. The sound of the clock grew fainter,
Dwindled away, became a minute thing.
I whispered in the darkness. "If it stops, I shall die."

Katherine Mansfield 

(1888 ~ 1923)

Friday, February 10, 2012

Adi Shankara ~ Bhaja Govindam

Rendition By M.S.Subbulakshmi 

Bhaja Govindam

Worship Govinda, Worship Govinda, Worship Govinda. Oh fool! Rules of Grammar will not save you at the time of your death.

Oh fool! Give up your thirst to amass wealth, devote your mind to thoughts to the Real. Be content with what comes through actions already performed in the past.

Do not get drowned in delusion by going wild with passions and lust by seeing a woman's navel and chest. Bodies are flesh, fat and blood. Do not fail to remember this again and again in your mind.

Uncertain is the life of man as rain drops on a lotus leaf. Know that the whole world remains a prey to disease, ego and grief.

  So long as a man is fit and able to support his family, see the affection all those around him show. But no one at home cares to even have a word with him when his body totters due to old age.

 When one is alive, his family members enquire kindly about his welfare. But when the soul departs from the body, even his wife runs away in fear of the corpse.

Childhood is lost in play. Youth is lost by attachment to woman. Old age passes away by thinking over many past things. Alas! Hardly is there anyone who yearns to be lost in Parabrahman.

Who is your wife? Who is your kid? Strange is this samsara. Of whom are you? Where have you come from? Friend, ponder over these truths.

From Satsanga comes non-attachment, from non-attachment comes freedom from delusion, which leads to self-settledness. From self-settledness comes liberation.

What good is lust when youth has fled? What use is a lake which has no water? Where are the relatives when wealth is gone? Where is samsara (the continuaiton of birth and death) when the Truth is known?

Do not boast of wealth, friends, and youth. Each one of these are destroyed within a minute. Free yourself from the illusion of the world of Maya and attain the timeless Truth.

Daylight and darkness, dusk and dawn, winter and springtime come and go. Time plays and life ebbs away. But the storm of desire never leaves.

This bouquet of twelve verses was imparted to a grammarian by the all-knowing Shankara, adored as the Bhagavadpada.

Oh mad man! Why this engrossment in thoughts of wealth? Is there no one to guide you? There is only one thing in three worlds that can save you from the ocean of samsara. Get into that boat of satsangha (knowledge of the Truth) quickly.

There are many who go with matted locks, many who have clean shaven heads, many whose hairs have been plucked out; some are clothed in saffron, yet others in various colors --- all just for a livelihood. Seeing truth revealed before them, still the foolish ones see it not.

Strength has left the old man's body; his head has become bald, his gums toothless and leaning on crutches. Even then the attachment is strong and he clings firmly to fruitless hope.

Behold there lies the man who sits warming up his body with the fire in front and the sun at the back; at night he curls up the body to keep out of the cold; he eats his beggar's food from the bowl of his hand and sleeps beneath the tree. Still in his heart, he is a wretched puppet at the hands of passions.

One may go to the Ganga, observe fasts, and give away riches in charity! Yet, devoid of jnana, nothing can give mukthi even at the end of a hundred births.

Take your residence in a temple or below a tree, wear the deerskin for the dress, and sleep with mother earth as your bed. Give up all attachments and renounce all comforts. Blessed with such vairagya, could any fail to be content?

One may take delight in yoga or bhoga, may have attachment or detachment. But only he whose mind steadily delights in Brahman enjoys bliss, no one else.

Let a man read but a little from the Bhagavad-Gita, drink just a drop of water from the Ganga, worship Murari (Krishna) just once. He then will have no altercation with Yama (the lord of death). 

Born again, death again, birth again to stay in the mother's womb! It is indeed hard to cross this boundless ocean of samsara. Oh Murari! Redeem me through Thy mercy.

There is no shortage of clothing for a monk so long as there are rags cast off the road. Freed from vice and virtue, onward he wanders. One who lives in communion with God enjoys bliss, pure and uncontaminated, like a child and as someone intoxicated.

Who are you? Who am I? From where do I come? Who is my mother, who is my father? Ponder thus, look at everything as essence-less and give up the world as an idle dream.

In me, in you and in everything, none but the same Vishnu dwells. Your anger and impatience is meaningless. If you wish to attain the quality of Vishnu soon, have Sama Bhaava always.

Do not waste your efforts to win the love of or to fight against friend and foe, children and relatives. See yourself in everyone and give up all feelings of duality completely.
 Give up lust, anger, infatuation, and greed. Ponder over your real nature. Fools are they who are blind to the Self. Cast into hell they suffer there endlessly.

 Regularly recite from the Bhagavad-Gita, meditate on Vishnu in your heart, and chant His thousand glories. Take delight to be with the noble and the holy. Distribute your wealth in charity to the poor and the needy.

He who yields to lust for pleasure leaves his body a prey to disease. Though death brings an end to everything, man does not give up the sinful path.

 Wealth is not welfare, truly there is no joy in it. Reflect thus at all times. A rich man fears even his own son. This is the way of wealth everywhere.

Regulate the pranas (life airs within), remain unaffected by external influences and discriminate between the real and the fleeting. Chant the holy name of God and silence the turbulent mind. Perform these with care, with extreme care.

Oh devotee of the lotus feet of the Guru! May thou be soon free from Samsara. Through disciplined senses and controlled mind, thou shalt come to experience the indwelling Lord of your heart!

Thus was a silly grammarian lost in rules cleansed of his narrow vision and shown the Light by Shankara's apostles.

Worship Govinda, worship Govinda, worship Govinda, Oh fool! Other than chanting the Lord's names, there is no other way to cross the life's ocean.

~ Adi Shankara 

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Henri Cartier-Bresson : Learn To See


Photographers deal in things which are continually vanishing and when they have vanished there is no contrivance on earth which can make them come back again. We cannot develop and print a memory.


I'm not responsible for my photographs. Photography is not documentary, but intuition, a poetic experience. It's drowning yourself, dissolving yourself, and then sniff, sniff, sniff – being sensitive to coincidence. You can't go looking for it; you can't want it, or you want get it. First you must lose your self. Then it happens.


Photography is nothing--it's life that interests me.


Your first 10,000 photographs are your worst.


There is no closed figure in nature. Every shape participates with another. No one thing is independent of another, and one thing rhymes with another, and light gives them shape.


As time passes by and you look at portraits, the people come back to you like a silent echo. A photograph is a vestige of a face, a face in transit. Photography has something to do with death. It's a trace.


I cannot take portraits of actors because they pose.


What I am trying to do more than anything else is to obseve life.


There is one domain which photography has won away from painting – or so it is claimed – and that is portraiture. Faced with the camera, people proffer their best “profile” to posterity. It is their hope, blended with a certain magic fear, to outlive themselves in this portrait, and here they give us a hold. The first impression we have of a face is frequently correct; if to this first impression others are added by further acquaintance, the better we know the person the harder it becomes to pick out the essential qualities. One of the touching features of portraiture is that it reveals the permanence of mankind, even if only in the family album. We must respect the surroundings which provide the subject’s true setting, while avoiding all artifice which destroys the authentic image. The mere presence of the photographer and his camera affects the behavior of the “victim”. Massive apparatus and flash bulbs prevent the subject from being himself.


In photography is the evocation. Some photographs are like a Chekhov short story or a Maupassant story. They’re a quick thing, and there’s a whole world in them. But one is unconscious of that while shooting. That’s a wonderful thing with a camera. It jumps out of you.


Taking photographs is a means of understanding which cannot be separated from other means of visual expression. It is a way of shouting, of freeing oneself, not of proving or asserting one`s own originality. It is a way of life. 


Photography appears to be a simple matter, but it demands powers of concentration combined with mental enthusiasm and discipline. It is by strict economy of means that simplicity of expression is achieved.


It is an illusion that photos are made with the camera… they are made with the eye, heart and head.


You just have to live and life will give you pictures.


Quotes & Photographs :

~ Henri Cartier-Bresson (1908~2004)