24 April 2011

මතක හොරු අරන් / Memories robbed

“Don’t mix those photos . These once  I slept with and those are the once I fancied “
she smiles impishly.

“They are different  kinds you know, different emotions “
the smile dissolves in to  deeper thought

“Don’t you start counting them now , mister”, she playfully pulls back the pile of  5’’by 7’’ prints

“Will you help me to paste them and add the foot notes , before it fails. Before it is too late. “
She looks in to my eyes. Sharp pain run through my numb being . Is that possible at all?

“Now where do I paste this one”  she thinks out loud

A younger me from decades ago smiles at me in monochrome
Silence fills the room.

“Is your hand trembling?”

She gently covers her right hand with her left  “No it is nothing , doctor said it is a stage one symptom”
Again that smile .And silence follows.
tik tok tik tok …

“Doctor said to start using a plastic cup and a plate. Will you buy me a set in blue . I like blue."

"Do you remember the colour of the dress that I wore on our trip to Trincomalee”

“You remember?”

Memories of a  blue summer dress in dancing carelessly in the sea breeze fills my mind.
Tears  fill my eyes .
Silence fills the room, again.

I pick her scrap book. It is about couple inches thick
Only about quarter of the pages are filled with photos and  footnotes .

02Feb 1982 -Our wedding day has a row of smillies running up to the right edge of the page.

I close the book .  මතක හොරු අරන් ( memories robbed) I read the title

“Wasn’t  that a stage play. Or was it සිහින හොරු අරන් (dreams robbed)? “

She lifts her head from the pile of photos she is sorting.

අනේ මට මතක නෑ “  (I can’t remember)

PS: Alzheimer's disease (AD), also known in medical literature as Alzheimer disease, is the most common form of dementia. There is no cure for the disease, which worsens as it progresses, and eventually leads to death. It was first described by German psychiatrist and neuropathologist Alois Alzheimer in 1906 and was named after him.[1] Most often, AD is diagnosed in people over 65 years of age,[2] although the less-prevalent early-onset Alzheimer's can occur much earlier. In 2006, there were 26.6 million sufferers worldwide. Alzheimer's is predicted to affect 1 in 85 people globally by 2050.

He was here a minute ago
they were talking about the little boy
of decades ago , who never got the chance to perform
on full mooned nights
even now , they say
he comes from the other side ,
to play
Was it him ?
 who sat on this chair
Or did the boy just had take a toilet break

21 April 2011

Flying fish

You will have to tell me
for a moment
when she soar through waves
deep blue
the silver rays spread
over the glistening reach of scales
till head first she goes plunging
she thinks
for a moment she think
she can fly

20 April 2011

එහෙමත් කාලයක් තිබුනා

සිහින රාජ්ජ්යයේ කුමරා එනතුරු
දෙවට දිගේ
වැට අද්දර
හොර ගල් අහුලන

නැගී ඉගිලෙන්නට
රූන් ගා
වින්කලේ අයියා පැච් එක දමනතුරු

17 April 2011

මේක සිංහලෙන්ම ලියන්න ඕනේ කියල හිතුනත් කරන විදිය මට ප්‍රශ්නයක් වෙලා තිබ්බේ . එත් Necessity is the father of invention කියනවනේ

පරණ (වුනු) අවුරුද්ද

මියැන හිරු
ලැටිස් අතරින් එබී
බිත්තියේ කුරුටු ගායි
කිරිබත් රටා
පාලු පෝටිකෝවේ
වියපත් හාන්සි පුටුවට උඩින්

වසත් සුළඟ ලයේ හොවා
ගෙනවිත් අත හරියි
කැවුම් පුසුඹ
හිස් කෑම මේසය ළඟ

රතු කහ කමිස, ගවුම් පොඩි
කොලු කෙල්ලන්ගේ ගලගොට්ටිය
ඇඳ යට ඉදෙන කෙසෙල් සුවඳ
බිඳෙන් බිඳ මතකයන් ගලාවිත්
මා ආත්මය

පුතාලා අදවත් එයිද මන්දා?

15 April 2011

Parana Avuruddha

Waning rays of a late afternoon
draw familiar quadrangle shapes
of light and shade
through the window grill
patterns of Kiri bath
on the walls
enfolding the empty hall
with two chairs
and an old man

I gaze

Spring breeze
smell of sweatmeats
Kavum , Kokis
in it’s belly
to fill the room

I smell

screaming children
little dresses , bright yellow red
trickle down from my memory
deep in to my whole

I remember

04 April 2011

Mr Perera's Cricket world cup .

The last thing Mr Perera  remember of last night is Nuwan Kulasekare driving one straight to mid on.

Then things got hazy….|
Ofcourse he could remember having a cup of ginger tea with Chaminda Vaas at the boundary lines.
A pretty Indian girl in the stands behind them shouting “ Ayyo , eka out Nathda?” .

Things seep through in blotches and patches. 

The warmth of a palm on his shoulder . The maroon Satakaya, the   moustache.   “ Go to the bed and sleep”.

Rajnikanth, lifting his Sarong up to his knees , looking straight at them and rolling the tip of his moustache. The most dangerous man in the world!

It is blurry still.  Arrack of the night gone is still drumming in his head.

The ring on the side table that  years of  cups of morning tea’s have sketched  sans  the wafts  of slow brewing  tea, seem odd. This is trouble. 
He knows the drill, this used happen during the pay days once  upon a time , but since he entered the retirement life it has been far and apart.
Did I say something wrong in my sleep?
“Lalani , Lalani , what happened to the match” , He bowls one slightly outside the off ,  enticing the batsman to let down the defense. Silence . Lalani offers no stroke.

“Lalani , did we win?”
“ dawalta uyanna elawalu genna one” ( Need to bring vegetables for lunch) , Lalani plays an unorthodox stroke , completely defeats the keeper .

He must be really in big trouble .

Even the day after  Lal’s son’s wedding , where he got carried away  in the spirit of the moment , got up to the stage and sang happy Birthday to Lalani, it wasn’t like this.
Sure , she dragged him off the reception before dinner . And was silent through the whole journey home. Yet that was it.

What really did he do last night?  
When old friends get together , men do foolish things. It is true that Mr Perera and the amber liquid and the dreamy haze has not enjoyed  each other’s company for some time. But surely , after 40 years of marriage , there’s very little that could have shocked Lalani that much.

Mr Perera notices the  Sunday paper on the Rattan chair, “ India wins the world cup” reads the headline .

The telephone rings . What is the time in Melbourne ?

It was just yesterday Mr Perera realised how during the last six weeks , they have talked more than the usual.  Before each match , she would bring a cup of tea sit by him and listen like  the days gone by . Awed by his wisdom, sipping Ice coffee at Fountain Cafe.  
She  would try to comment on batting line up and he would smile to himself .

During the last six weeks there was cricket .  And life seemed , normal.


He looks at the paper again and can’t help but to wonder whether Sanga got his bed tea.

01 April 2011

Mrs Perera's Worldcup

02Apr11, 1030 hrs , 4 hours to toss

Mrs Perera took her “heart medicine “ well in advance . For today is the last one, in Bombay. (This Mumbai , Chennai business is still alien to her) .

Should get ready for the evening. Will order string hoppers from the boutique down the road for today, she makes the dinner plans in her mind.

Doolage Thaththaa , Chicken curryda , Fish curryda ada raata one?”
She checks her husband’s preference.

1130am, 3hrs to toss

She meets Soma near the old Maara tree. At the exact place where once there was a Army checkpoint stands a cutout of the great Sri Lankan Spinner. In his bowling stride , snapped wide eyed , just before he delivers one of his deceiving deliveries.

The check point mentality and lifestyle have waned since the last over in Nandikadal . The loud cheer that was once for the heroes in camouflaged fatigue, seem to have re-emerged for the boys in blue.
Lalani, Angelo is not playing lu ane , they have sent Vaas to play” She shares some latest information her son in law has picked up from Cricinfo.com.

E unata he has not played any games ne “ Mrs Perera is concerned

“His daughter goes to the same school as menaka’s little one ne “ Soma draws a connection . “One day I saw him at the school gate , He is looking very fit men “. Soma defends with a straight bat

“ Hopefully we will win this one “ Soma speaks her nerves.

“I made a vow for 25 buns to St Anthony also Lalani “ Soma takes stand confidently . For today, it seem in Srilanka’s corner will stand a few deities and a few saints, led by the ordained one from Padua .

1400 hrs – after the toss ,
umpires walking in to the middle

“Achchi , are you watching Cricket ?”
Mrs Perera’s Grand daughter queries in her alien accent over the telephone lines

. “Yes yes , I was just saying my evening prayers early duwa, and after that I will sit to watch the match, are you watching the match too ? “She consciously speaks slowly with double spaces in between her words , so that the young girl could gather

“Yes we are going for a Cricket party now , and Achchi I am wearing my Sri Lanka T shirt “

“ She is going to a Cricket Party “ Mrs Perera précis for her husband’s benefit , who has been standing behind her for any information that spills .

2000hrs – 24.4 overs , 2nd session

“Me , eka no ball nemeyda?” (isn't that a no ball)
Mrs Perera reverts to her husband for a better judgment.

Mr Perera , after obtaining permission to have a few shots of Arrack today, has
(As per Mrs Perara’s records) smuggled 3 glasses of carefully poured two finger widths of Mendis’ brew filled with Elephant house Soda so far .

Since finishing the last shot , his calling for runs , rearranging of the rest of the batting order and expert insights have gone quiet

“Ara ayeth damma , There he did that again , Thawa podden it would have hit Dilshan’s head “ She turns to the arm chair as she launch another loud appeal.

“Not out “ Mr Perera ,mumbles in his sleep.