چڑیل | The Witch

October 8th, 2018 / 4:49 PM

I came across a book while roaming the old bazaar. A book about witches, or better, a book on the subject of witches. The subject has existed in almost every culture, religion, and region though the ideas, beliefs, myths, and ideologies about evil under the guise of a woman differ. Even the one I was born and raised in has a lot to say about this fascinating subject. From folk tales, dramas, contemporary literature, modern writings to informal gossip, proverbs, urban myths, and those evening warnings dadi used to say when we kids wanted to go to the neighborhood park, she existed.

As I grew up, so did that churail (چڑیل). She has lost that horrifying makeover from my earliest perceptions. Maybe those perceptions came into existence from all that was spoken about her. No more exist her hard reptilian skin or her beastly nails. The glowing white or black-hole dark eyes are gone too. She doesn’t levitate in the air or walk on the ground with those inverted feet of hers. The horrifying mask of her has fallen. Out has come to the appearance I had never expected. Organic. Staple. And normal. Like any other non-witch being. Only a master with the skill and experience might be able to spot her. The fools of men would never be able to do so, even with a thousand eyes. Perhaps that is the reason why she mixes herself so well in the crowd and ordinary mortals fail to spot her truer self.

Not all definitions one starts believing in exist in the dictionary. Not all ideas one follows are taught at a school. The experience is, after all, the best teacher. It is that very same experience that helped craft definitions for hard and impossible to define concepts including those of life, death, love, divine, and the witch. Out from the hideous and centuries-old reptilian skin has come a normal and organic witch who looks like any other woman one would come across. In her definition, she has been to the universities and beyond. She has a social media presence that she uses, very aptly, for two of the most nefarious purposes – propaganda and stalking. Beyond her apparent modernist ideologies exists a centuries-old soul, if the soul has something to do with her. Her beliefs do not bend with the fevers of the present era. Men of the modern age would not stand a moment before her ancient powers.

Two of the short stories in my book are inspired by this topic. This number does not do justice as the number of witches that helped define her is higher. I know this because at least a few of them would surely read these words. Yes, this is for your eyes. You are the witch for you know what lives under your skin better than any mortal ever can. A few of the witches were kind enough. They didn’t suck blood even after biting. None of them had inverted feet even when some had feet that incited the foot fetish and helped it evolve to new heights. I always wondered what if one day she reveals her true nature and her feet bend backward, would my fetish stay the same or disappear? What if her horrendous scary skin was not what she removed but the skin was something she just wore on to mix among her human preys? A few witches kept saying that men are dogs. I am not sure of others but had I been one, I would have seen her true self. I was told dogs see what humans cannot. Maybe the inner dog found a bone in this book bazaar. I look forward to a new definition this book might help craft.

Aamir Bilal

August 26th, 2018 / 7:26 PM

 

ردیف قافیہ بندش خیال لفظ گری
وہ حور زینہ اترتے ہوئے سکھانے لگی

کتاب باب غزل شعر بیت لفظ حروف
خفیف رقص سے دل پر ابھارے مست پری

کلام عروض تغزل خیال ذوق جمال
بدن کے جام نے الفاظ کی صراحی بھری

قصیدہ شعر مسدس رباعی نظم غزل
مہکتے ہونٹوں کی تفسیر ہے بھلی سے بھلی

بیان علم معانی فصاحت علم بلاغ
بیان کر نہیں سکتے کسی کی ایک ہنسی

حریر اطلس و کمخواب پنکھڑی ریشم
کسی کے پھول سے تلووں سے شاہ مات سبھی

گلاب عنبر و ریحان موتیا لوبان
کسی کی زلف معطر میں سب کی خوشبو ملی

کسی کے مرمریں آئینے میں نمایاں ہیں
گھٹا بہار دھنک چاند پھول دیپ کلی

کسی کے شیریں لبوں سے ادھار لیتے ہیں
مٹھاس شہد رطب چینی قند مصری ڈلی

کسی کے نور کو چندھیا کے دیکھیں حیرت سے
چراغ جگنو شرر آفتاب پھول جھڑی

کسی کے حسن کو بن مانگے باج دیتے ہیں
وزیر میر سپاہی فقیہ ذوق شہی

نگاہیں چار ہوئیں وقت ہوش کھو بیٹھا
صدی دہائی برس ماہ روز آج ابھی

سیاہ زلف گھٹا جال جادو جنگ جلال
فسوں شباب شکارن شراب رات گھنی

ظریف ابرو غضب غمزہ غصہ غور غزل
گھمنڈ قوس قضا عشق طنز نیم سخی

گلابی گال شفق سیب سرخی غازہ کنول
طلسم چاہ بھنور ناز شرم نرم گری

نشیلی ٹھوڑی تبسم ترازو چاہ ذقن
خمیدہ خنداں خجستہ خمار پتلی گلی

گلا صراحی نوا گیت سوز آہ اثر
ترنگ چیخ ترنم ترانہ سر کی لڑی

ہتھیلی ریشمی نازک ملائی نرم لطیف
حسین مرمریں صندل سفید دودھ دھلی

جو اس پہ بوند گری ابر کپکپا اٹھا
اس ایک لمحے میں کافی گھروں پہ بجلی گری

قیامت آ گئی خوشبو کی کلیاں چیخ پڑیں
گلاب بولا نہیں غالباً وہ زلف کھلی

کمال‌ لیلیٰ تو دیکھو کہ صرف نام لیا
”پھر اس کے بعد چراغوں میں روشنی نہ رہی”

عطائے حسن تھی قیسؔ اک جھلک میں شوخ غزل
کتاب لکھتا میں اس پر مگر وہ پھر نہ ملی

 

HEREDITARY

August 10th, 2018 / 4:33 PM
Two years is too long to wait for a movie. I have waited for this movie to be released from the day I heard about its story. Some months ago a staff member from TheVerge was invited to the screening of the film. He along others gave pretty good reviews about it. It’s class could not be doubted after I came to know that A24 bought its rights to the distribution. I wanted the studio to release it as soon as they could but they kept me waiting. I knew that the movie would never be released in Pakistan as cinemas here are a home to classless movies.

The theme of the movie is horror. Horror itself is a wide spectrum especially in the movies. Found footage, monsters, cults, vampires, zombies, psychological horror, etc. All the reviews of the movie up to that point were from the people who were at the screening and they all agreed that the movie is as mind bending and twisted as another horror movie GET OUT. 

I found a pretty decent yet pirated version of the film through a Reddit post but the movie was dubbed in Russian. So I downloaded that sick print which was in English too and then using my average skill of video editing, I layered the English audio track on top of that good Russian print. I could not wait any longer. And I watched HEREDITARY. There is no doubt that movie is one mind bending film. People are really reaching new heights in the genre of horror and this movie proves it. 

The movie is about a family who has recently lost their grandmother. Their days of mourning  extend when the tragedy strikes them again, sooner than anyone expects, including the viewer. As the film proceeds an observer starts to realize that everything is not what it seems to be in the first place. A nasty unseen evil exists which can be felt but not seen. So far this is the best horror movie I have seen in 2018. I really wish that by now there must’ve existed a far better version of the film. Anybody who loves the genre of horror should stop doing whatever they are and should watch this film. Immediately.

A24 did not disappoint. Like always.

Twice the same crop

August 5th, 2018 / 10:09 PM

A man in my neighborhood just divorced his wife. That is not a new thing. It’s not the first time somebody has divorced his wife and certainly it’s not the last time either. The term divorce and the whole dilemma that surrounds it is our social stigma. People are happily accepting bigger monsters yet this word frightens many. It is not just the act that is scary. The repercussions are what go deeper. When one faces a similar situation they don’t want anybody else to talk about it as it pertains to them. But when they listen about someone else getting divorced, this talk becomes a favourite topic for them. It itself is the evil polarity that will destroy the society in the end. Polarity will kill as many as global warming would. 

My next door neighbour is a very polite and a humble man. I’ve not heard any negative air about him which partly is because he does not interfere in the works of either the union or anybody else in the neighborhood. He limits to himself. That is why when I heard that he had divorced his wife after a night of long, loud and scary arguments which started after midnight, I took some time to believe in what the people were talking about. The very next day when I was going for work, I saw that man with a burqa clad woman. Right at the entrance of the building, two old ladies were whispering something to each other and pointing towards my neighbour. I knew that it could not be something good or positive. Obviously the biggest monster in our society is not the vampire who can walk on walls and can suck all the blood out of you in a minute. The biggest monster is not the one who becomes a wolf when the first ray of moonlight hits him. It is not even that unstable mind who would pick up a gun and without a second thought kill the innocents. You guessed it right! It is that man who divorces his wife even if the bridge of the marriage started to collapse at the end of the wife. At the time of this writing, I came to know that he divorced his wife for another woman. 
Nothing new. 
It happens. It can happen. 
That is how humans are. Nobody likes to eat the same thing at dinner for the rest of his life. But my neighbour’s new dinner came from the same restaurant. He married the sister of his wife. The size of the monster grew in the eyes of the society when the people came to know that both of his wives are living in the same apartment and he has not formally divorced the first wife before marrying the second one. It is a twisted society perhaps. I was hungry at the start of day and decided to eat something fancy. However at this moment I am feeling that no restaurant can serve me good. I would skip dinner.  
 

Reset Button

August 2nd, 2018 / 3:30 PM

Everyone at old age wants to become young again. There is a price of being young. The price of experiencing the same things including troubles and pain and learning from these experiences. After realizing the actual price of starting life over again, many might not want to press the reset button. It is not easy to give everything up and face the same tortures and the same monsters for another time. Nobody wants to die twice just to be in the same heaven.
Changing one’s primary method of communication to a newer bridge is not comfortable. It surely has the same price. Without a doubt, the advantage is as enormous as the hardship. I waited for almost 15 minutes in the hall before this realization hit me. I gave up the idea of creating a new Rome. I can live with the monster but I don’t have both the stamina and the courage to get a new number again and start the communication of life from the beginning. I cannot press the reset button. I guess that’s why a lot of men do not develop the same spark once they get married. The newer attractions live only in the cages of flings and attractions. They opt for such comforting and easier adventures instead of falling into a pit that has fewer chances of coming out ever again. So let’s not press that button. Let’s never press that button.


Never. 

The Skin Of A Woman

July 28th, 2018 / 10:55 AM

I peeled the skin of a woman out of curiosity. Under the layer was a truer being. The monster who used to looked good. Undoubtedly, with the charms of those appearances, there would be many fools of men the monster would have pulled and swallowed. A monster, however, lives inside me too. It is neither as charming nor as ugly as hers. It’s the monster under my skin who saw her broken skin. Curiosity made him have a peek. In the end, it was frightened but content. Its hunch was right. The ugly monster is still alive. I guess it takes a monster to know a monster.

First of July

July 1st, 2018 / 4:24 AM
It’s someone’s birthday. Every day is someone’s birthday. So is today. We spent a good time together. A golden time perhaps. Only if that could be re-lived. I cannot overlook a question. Will any of us forget and forgive if we relive it? I fail to reach any answer when I realize that I have not forgotten anything even today. It is being very unwise of me. A fool here. I have no idea of the other side. If anyone comes to see my end, they will find my side of the bridge intact. Maybe the other end is intact too. Yet the bridge fell. It is another question that keeps peaceful sleep and harmony at bay. We once talked about life and the afterlife and decided that the one who outlives the other should tell the next generation of ours about how many years we stayed in each other’s lives. I believe that silence is not absence. It never is. Has God ever talked to us? Yet when we pray, we believe that he is there. This example does not apply to those who don’t believe in a God. The number of years we talked is now less than the number of years we haven’t. I wish the wiser of us was more wiser. It is the first of July. I wish happiness for the other end of the bridge, even if it has fallen. 

 

بھولی باتیں

June 8th, 2018 / 02:42 AM 

اپنی ڈائری میں لکھی ہوئی کچھ باتیں دوبارہ پڑھیں تو بہت حیرت ہوئی. مجھے کچھ یاد نہیں کہ یہ سب میں نے کب لکھا .لیکن جوں جوں ایک ایک لفظ میری آنکھوں کے سامنے سے گزرا ہر پرانی چیزتازہ ہوگی. لوگوں کی کی ہوئی مہربانیاں بھی. اور دوستوں کی کی ہوئی نا انصافیاں بھی . نہ جانے میں نے یہ سب کب لکھا . اتنی پرانی باتیں پڑھ کر لگتا ہے کہ شاید وہ کوئی دوسری زندگی تھی. لیکن میں تو تب بھی میں ہی تھا

Doppelgänger

June 3rd, 2018 / 7:14 PM

I had been reading some older writings that although I want to push here, this effort to digitize older creations cannot be achieved without the mentioning of those people that defined life. With time some people become too irrelevant to not even think about, let alone write anything about them. I faced the dilemma when left with only two possible solutions. Either to drop those posts completely which mention those now-unworthy folks. Or to give them alternative names. Both of these solutions have an advantage and a bigger disadvantage. Dropping the posts kills the purpose of the idea in the first place. And if I give every person a new name, it will become very hard to remember who became who. Besides, it slows down the thought process bringing it to a snail pace. That is when a very remarkable solution lit up like a beacon.
Doppelgängers.
Everyone who left a mark on life in any way bears resemblance to someone popular like a movie star. Thankfully most, if not all of the exes have a doppelgänger. One has such a striking similarity to a pornstar. The problem looks solved already. An adult performer who bore a resemblance with an ex took her own life in the December of 2017. Many have already forgotten her. Now, whenever I see that ex, the face of that dead performer pops up. I guess it is not easy to be a doppelgänger. Whom do you bear resemblance to?

  

301

June 2nd, 2018 / 6:51 PM
These days of Ramadan are riddled with hot and unbearably long days. These fasts are not for the faint of the heart. In this life, I don’t have the perks to take an entire week off. Still, I am VERY happy with this path of life instead of the other side. After waking up, I either have too little energy to write anything down. I feel falling short on finishing the books and graphic novels that I started. This is my 301st post that I intended to publish. I spent last week reading old parchments and collecting them all in a workflow to push them here. Internet is where I hope they outlive my biological life and their paper life. Some scribbles have become irrelevant. Some are too personal. Some are broken. Some trigger regrets. This is the price of nostalgia. It brings not only the happy feelings. This isn’t the first post that I have pushed today. Work is happening since the first of Ramadan. I hope to get this done soon. I want to place my diaries back in the locker as soon as I can. But as I look back into the older days, a time machine states to work. Three weeks of collecting notes and newspapers (for visual additions along posts) while having long summer fasts is no easy task. Reading old time is reliving in a way. You can live the same day for more than once, only if it is better documented.