Monday, 25 June 2012


 Bright as a dream and a heart of gold.
To every wish's end, would her means unfold.
 'twas her wish, like a speck to flow,
Twisted and twirled into Zephyr's soft blow.
O' dear Heavens! She settled for low.

Cried the heavens.."She settled for so less!".
Her gifted wits, she traded for a dress.
Bought a minute's mirth, escaped the wailing weeks,
Relished her cheer, ignoring life's shrieks.

But who in world could advise the wise,
 leading themselves to an ironic demise.
Treading the desert, in search of snow,
Sigh heaved the heavens,
"She settled for so low!"

(Don't remember when the line "oh she settled for low" struck my head. Been trying to wrap my head around it ever since)

Tuesday, 12 June 2012

How to: SoupRage

(Aha!! You thought I forgot about my 'How to: xx' series, after that How to: be a Roommate post, DID YOU NOT !?!?! _|_ I didn't !)

This post is meant to educate the sub species of humanity, on the magical and arcane etiquette of eating soup.

I was in my office cafeteria waiting in line for my turn to collect my food tray which included soup, like everyone else. I was perpetually bored and annoyed at the guy serving at the counter, for not being nimble and fast enough. Every scoop of rice he slopped onto the tray was like a work of art to him, that he enjoyed admiring.
Someone ought to teach them about Service Level Agreements (SLAs)!

Anyway, as I was slugging it out in the line, I saw that every person who got his tray+soup bowl was blindly adding extra pepper and salt to that vegetable decoction, without even tasting it first. Seriously! What if the 'artist' at the counter poured a bowl of salt in your soup without realizing, and here you are sprinkling those glorious white grains..

It is alright if you're at a random relaxed place where food is just a hassle that you need to get through everyday. But, lets say you're at a party/business lunch where the host/chef is serving soup and you here, like a gorilla just dash for the vinegar+salt+pepper combo without even tasting the soup first. This would be a great insult to the chef/host because (s)he'd feel that you're prejudiced about his/her culinary skills and somehow magically knew that whatever effort (s)he put into making that soup for you, wasn't good enough, and it'd ALWAYS NEED MORE SALT!

How would you feel if after a day's hard work, which would include writing code, fixing bugs and yelling at testers at office, your manager comes up to you and says "your soup sucks! I want more salt!" ? (I guess your answer would be "trolled".) Its the same way, you'd make the chef feel.

Have a little curtsy next time and take sip first, to show your appreciation for the chef's effort and then add the condiments, as required. Let the chef..

Breathe Easy. \/

Sunday, 10 June 2012

The Raven (1845)

(Warning: This poem has a lot going on and is pretty long, so, if you can't read the whole poem, then don't begin at all.)

Once upon a midnight dreary, while I pondered weak and weary,
Over many a quaint and curious volume of forgotten lore,
While I nodded, nearly napping, suddenly there came a tapping,
As of some one gently rapping, rapping at my chamber door.
`'Tis some visitor,' I muttered, `tapping at my chamber door -
Only this, and nothing more.'

Ah, distinctly I remember it was in the bleak December,
And each separate dying ember wrought its ghost upon the floor.
Eagerly I wished the morrow; - vainly I had sought to borrow
From my books surcease of sorrow - sorrow for the lost Lenore -
For the rare and radiant maiden whom the angels named Lenore -
Nameless here for evermore.

And the silken sad uncertain rustling of each purple curtain
Thrilled me - filled me with fantastic terrors never felt before;
So that now, to still the beating of my heart, I stood repeating
`'Tis some visitor entreating entrance at my chamber door -
Some late visitor entreating entrance at my chamber door; -
This it is, and nothing more,'

Presently my soul grew stronger; hesitating then no longer,
`Sir,' said I, `or Madam, truly your forgiveness I implore;
But the fact is I was napping, and so gently you came rapping,
And so faintly you came tapping, tapping at my chamber door,
That I scarce was sure I heard you' - here I opened wide the door; -
Darkness there, and nothing more.

Deep into that darkness peering, long I stood there wondering, fearing,
Doubting, dreaming dreams no mortal ever dared to dream before;
But the silence was unbroken, and the darkness gave no token,
And the only word there spoken was the whispered word, `Lenore!'
This I whispered, and an echo murmured back the word, `Lenore!'
Merely this and nothing more.

Back into the chamber turning, all my soul within me burning,
Soon again I heard a tapping somewhat louder than before.
`Surely,' said I, `surely that is something at my window lattice;
Let me see then, what thereat is, and this mystery explore -
Let my heart be still a moment and this mystery explore; -
'Tis the wind and nothing more!'

Open here I flung the shutter, when, with many a flirt and flutter,
In there stepped a stately raven of the saintly days of yore.
Not the least obeisance made he; not a minute stopped or stayed he;
But, with mien of lord or lady, perched above my chamber door -
Perched upon a bust of Pallas just above my chamber door -
Perched, and sat, and nothing more.

Then this ebony bird beguiling my sad fancy into smiling,
By the grave and stern decorum of the countenance it wore,
`Though thy crest be shorn and shaven, thou,' I said, `art sure no craven.
Ghastly grim and ancient raven wandering from the nightly shore -
Tell me what thy lordly name is on the Night's Plutonian shore!'
Quoth the raven, `Nevermore.'

Much I marvelled this ungainly fowl to hear discourse so plainly,
Though its answer little meaning - little relevancy bore;
For we cannot help agreeing that no living human being
Ever yet was blessed with seeing bird above his chamber door -
Bird or beast above the sculptured bust above his chamber door,
With such name as `Nevermore.'

But the raven, sitting lonely on the placid bust, spoke only,
That one word, as if his soul in that one word he did outpour.
Nothing further then he uttered - not a feather then he fluttered -
Till I scarcely more than muttered `Other friends have flown before -
On the morrow he will leave me, as my hopes have flown before.'
Then the bird said, `Nevermore.'

Startled at the stillness broken by reply so aptly spoken,
`Doubtless,' said I, `what it utters is its only stock and store,
Caught from some unhappy master whom unmerciful disaster
Followed fast and followed faster till his songs one burden bore -
Till the dirges of his hope that melancholy burden bore
Of "Never-nevermore."'

But the raven still beguiling all my sad soul into smiling,
Straight I wheeled a cushioned seat in front of bird and bust and door;
Then, upon the velvet sinking, I betook myself to linking
Fancy unto fancy, thinking what this ominous bird of yore -
What this grim, ungainly, ghastly, gaunt, and ominous bird of yore
Meant in croaking `Nevermore.'

This I sat engaged in guessing, but no syllable expressing
To the fowl whose fiery eyes now burned into my bosom's core;
This and more I sat divining, with my head at ease reclining
On the cushion's velvet lining that the lamp-light gloated o'er,
But whose velvet violet lining with the lamp-light gloating o'er,
She shall press, ah, nevermore!

Then, methought, the air grew denser, perfumed from an unseen censer
Swung by Seraphim whose foot-falls tinkled on the tufted floor.
`Wretch,' I cried, `thy God hath lent thee - by these angels he has sent thee
Respite - respite and nepenthe from thy memories of Lenore!
Quaff, oh quaff this kind nepenthe, and forget this lost Lenore!'
Quoth the raven, `Nevermore.'

`Prophet!' said I, `thing of evil! - prophet still, if bird or devil! -
Whether tempter sent, or whether tempest tossed thee here ashore,
Desolate yet all undaunted, on this desert land enchanted -
On this home by horror haunted - tell me truly, I implore -
Is there - is there balm in Gilead? - tell me - tell me, I implore!'
Quoth the raven, `Nevermore.'

`Prophet!' said I, `thing of evil! - prophet still, if bird or devil!
By that Heaven that bends above us - by that God we both adore -
Tell this soul with sorrow laden if, within the distant Aidenn,
It shall clasp a sainted maiden whom the angels named Lenore -
Clasp a rare and radiant maiden, whom the angels named Lenore?'
Quoth the raven, `Nevermore.'

`Be that word our sign of parting, bird or fiend!' I shrieked upstarting -
`Get thee back into the tempest and the Night's Plutonian shore!
Leave no black plume as a token of that lie thy soul hath spoken!
Leave my loneliness unbroken! - quit the bust above my door!
Take thy beak from out my heart, and take thy form from off my door!'
Quoth the raven, `Nevermore.'

And the raven, never flitting, still is sitting, still is sitting
On the pallid bust of Pallas just above my chamber door;
And his eyes have all the seeming of a demon's that is dreaming,
And the lamp-light o'er him streaming throws his shadow on the floor;
And my soul from out that shadow that lies floating on the floor
Shall be lifted - nevermore!

- Edgar Allan Poe


Has any of you reading this ever read the poem 'The Raven' by Edgar Allan Poe ?
It was the first poem that I read seriously with an intent to understand, what's being said. I stumbled across this amazing poetry when, a few months back, I caught myself humming "Once upon a midnight dreary, while I pondered weak and weary" repeatedly, and subconsciously trying to find the next line but to no avail.

I think I had read the poem in my 8th grade the first time, or probably it was the below comic, by xkcd
that I read and decided to Google out the source..

Whatever it may be I found The Raven, and its style clicked something inside me and made me want to write. Although I'm no literature connoisseur, I personally think that this poem's style was way ahead of its time. Almost like Lamb of God opening to Shakespeare musical.
In short, the rhyme scheme and the refrain of the poem got me weak in the knees. (There! I sound like one of those douches who like to use jargon just to show off.)

So, I've decided to post 'The Raven' as is, without me commenting or inferring stuff from it. Why dissect something beautiful when you can just stand back and enjoy?

 Hope you see what I saw in that poem.

Breathe Easy. \/
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