Category Archives: Me & My Art


Somedays I am there
ready, smiling, like a
prelude to the onset of a
melodious symphony,
every chord of me knows it
feels the rhythm of it.

somedays I have melancholy thoughts
strange spaces in my mind
like I don’t belong to the hour
nor the place.

There is though
a self-sufficing power
in aloneness,
while I fill the vacant spaces
become stronger in these

catgirl power

Artwork by Maleeha




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I used to be nice

now I don’t see a reason

to scrape and bruise myself.

                                                             Haiku by Shal

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Brew up a kiss


I’ve given you enough warning

I’m not a great person to love, with

My shall-we-have-tea-first temper

It’s a destroyer? Me –thinks not.


I’m not just lips, and skin and poems

I’m a mansion, almost an abode

I’ll take you to galleries and sad movies

Kiss you in front of Gustav’s spot.


At times fresh pecks in bird-chirpy gardens

 caresses oft’ musty libraries & monuments

The smells you will gather in the recesses

Of your cortex, will keep you hot.


Pillager yes. Like a storm, inflamed

plunging berries soaked in soil inseparable

Exhilarating though, Leave you an earthy &  emotional

Toil, stains that do not blot.


Gustav Klimt, The Kiss , 1908–1909

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The trash bin has far more promise


Stories of late nights

with loud company, my

tall friend’s trashy jokes

each drained glass bottle has a

sense of nostalgia and purpose.


In between a swearing game of carom

my powdered fingers found a

napkin to jot down a new expletive

Who knows , could be useful

Aside, it romanced in nacho sauce.


Unsteady gaits reach out in

search of beds and /or their mates, haa

it rhymed; the stuff

in the  bin from last night is

tragically glamorous.


These bottles deserve

to be immortalized so that its energy

could keep circulating for years

to come; when we are distanced

and fall in other chaos.

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Finding my mojo back

Oftentimes, I seem to lose my will to write, or as they say, lose my mojo.

Its not a great feeling, I tell you, when all I know is ‘writing, and I cannot do that too. Robert says, ‘you cant stop believing in your own wizardry. That’s bad. Like the Wizard of Oz, it’s all about working weird levers behind a curtain. Do random stuff, indulge in other arts, and get it back. Whatever it takes, do without inhibitions. Magician- fool thyself!’

Fear not, I havnt yet started dancing like PP, although he did have a logical philosophy behind that. But who knows, I mean desperate times call for creative measures.


Pablo Picasso dancing in his studio, 1957 photo by David Douglas Duncan

A bunch of friends invited me for a game of carom. Reliving the much younger days, enjoying the hits and misses, seems I do have a decent sense of direction and purpose, my fingers not yet gone mental.

carom coins


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More about the hammer

Here I sit, toiling over the words, moulding it out, chiseling my piece, smoothening, sweating  and then the big dilemma – who should I reveal it to? who will that be, the first viewer?

Richard Schmid

Richard Schmid

Its difficult to show drafts around and gather meaningless responses in the name of critique, or feedback, or whatever. It takes years of practice to churn out good stuff; and it takes an equally good number of years to discover who will be the right person for reviewing the stuff. One cant trust judgment from someone who may not  understand the toil, the moulding efforts, the chiseling artwork…..the sweat, the love. One cant bother with responses like, ‘ Nice! Interesting!  I like ….”  oh, for pete’s sake.

When looking for another set of eyes, or ears, when listening to another voice, you’re giving credence to another creative force. Choose your collaborator with care, Genn says. A qualified mind, a skilled reader, one who believes in my infinite potential, or some potential, please.

Trust is important. A strange thing has happened though. As much as my supporter has helped me with feedback and coaching, I had to bring him up too; at times he advised to REwrite my story, often a totally different story……..Imagine that! I had to remind politely that’s it’s originally mine, and it has to belong to me, eventually. Politeness didn’t get results always, the hammer was useful.

Guitarist Oil on Canvas by Richard Schmid

Oil on Canvas
by Richard Schmid

“It often takes two to do a good painting – one to paint it, and another to rap the painter smartly with a hammer before he or she can ruin it.” (Richard Schmid)

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Manipulation of the psyche


Strict instruction is not good for the sensitivities of the artistic mind, left brain  right brain dilemma, neural tissue needs to be aligned, set an expensive course, massage the ego-forces, awaken the artist within,  lure the muse, enuff of the dramatics now. Basically, A whack on the head is what’s needed at decent intervals to get it all out. Aah, I like my new hammer!

Platinum Heat oil on canvas Don Haggerty, Seattle, WA, USA

Platinum Heat
oil on canvas
Don Haggerty, Seattle, WA, USA



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sweet reminder

So yesterday a friend called up to ask what I’ve been upto, and why I havn’t been blogging for a while. Well, the real reasons are absolutely usual, life , stuff, kid, school, travel, and such other distractions. It feels good to know someone looks forward to reading my posts, and reminds me to respect and prioritize my work. Another  friend was messaging in the afternoon to check on me, advising to not take on too much work, and take care of my health, etc.

Although almost all my friends know that I don’t like being checked upon, it did leave a nice feeling.

So here, for you my friend…..

Hope resting oil painting Scott Burdick

Hope resting
oil painting
Scott Burdick


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Is Nothing Sacred?

Rafiee Ghani oil on canvas 214 cm x 214 cm

Rafiee Ghani – Nothing is sacred
oil on canvas 214 cm x 214 cm

Today evening, I went to an art exhibition in KL, a solo by a Malay artist Rafiee Ghani. Raifee is an abstract painter, the solo exhibit is based on the theme Homeland that relates to the phenomenon of people/communities being uprooted owing to wars or calamities, who have to take refuge and find identity in new places. Vibrant colours on large canvases seem to be his style.

I spent sometime at the gallery, enjoying the big pieces of work, among other strangers , probably art lovers. The feeling is really good, KL is growing on me slowly, and I am finding peace here.  I was reading the titles of the works like , ‘ Yearning for home, No network, Peace below the red mountain’ , and ‘ Nothing is sacred’. It caught my eye, and memories rushed to a few years back when I had read Mr. Salman Rushdie’s essay/lecture –  Is Nothing sacred? Nostalgia struck . It’s so beautifully written, I came home and searched for it , read it all over again.

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Season for Gifts

When asked what I want for Diwali , Christmas, New years , B day, anniversary ( all falling within weeks of each other) I am never able to put it straight. The list I can put together though ( with difficulty) is a list of my stuff that is over, and I may (not necessarily) need it.

By no means I am ungrateful, mind you. I’m thinking that artists are among those who don’t really want to receive too many gifts for the Holiday Season. It may have something to do with the overabundance of joy in our daily lives , or for the constant distraction of our brains, but we artists, by and large, are not into materialism. Actually, this year the only thing that I want is a doodle book, thanx to my latest obsession. That may also be a great way to spend time with my son – me doodling, him googling…aah.

But I digress. The only thing that I can ever remember really craving for is the know-how to do a decent novel. I would like to be another great writer. For my stocking I want a zapper — perhaps a pill or an easily gulped liquid. Rushdie chutzpah, wodehouse talent, chinaski insanity, Monet joy – mash this stuff in bottles and gift it for me. Pop one just before stepping into the studio, and “Presto,” I’d be the wizard I always knew I was. Actually, I do receive much inspiration from my mentor, and from fellow artists, a few say they get inspired by me. Well, little nibbles of gifts they are.

I totally resonate what Robert says, ‘We don’t need stuff. We need ideas and energy and subjects and motivation and time and lots of other things that can’t be bought and are not sold at Wal-Mart. Happiness is not under the Christmas tree but somewhere in the air above it. It doesn’t stick to traditional dates or statutory holidays. It can sometimes be found on the most ordinary of Thursdays. Sometimes it just blows in like a swallow in December. Sometimes when you want it most you can’t have it. And sometimes you’re up to your elbows. That’s why we don’t need regular gifts. We’re into bigger stuff. And if we need tools or paint or clay or something we just go out and buy it anyway.’

“Thanks to my work everything’s going well.” (Claude Monet)



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