I now take the readers to another journey.I used to write humourous poetry in Hindi in the seventies.When I sent it for publication,there were hardly any takers ! Then someone suggested:”Try translating it into English and send it to some not-so-famous magazine.”

I did heed this advise.I translated the poem titled “MAUT KA MAHURAT” from Hindi to a passable one in English,titled it: ” The Muhurat for Dying !” and sent it to a magazine called “THOUGHT” – a weekly review of politics and the arts,published from New Delhi by Siddhartha Publications Pvt Ltd.

After a few reminders,it luckily saw the day and was published in the Issue dated DECEMBER 7TH 1974(VOL XXVI NO.48)A copy of the magazine then used to cost just 60 paise !! I don’t recollect having received any honorarium for it.I was just happy to see my name :”JITOO BROCA” in print.It was indeed a very heady moment !Today,I am posting it (after 34 years) on my blog and elsewhere.

I leave it to the readers to judge its quality,content,humour,presentation etc.Feedback is well come.Mind you,I was then just 25 years old.Today I am 59 years old !


The Muhurat For Dying !”

The clock struck ten.

I got up.I had fallen asleep.

I glanced at my wrist-watch.

It was five past ten.

I looked at the wall-clock

It was ten PM.

I thought:”According to which time should I die ?”

I no longer wished to live.

I had lived so far from hand to mouth.

I didn’t even put on the light.

Why add to my light bill?

I was burning myself!

Why should I burn the lamp ?

This way death will be costly !

Suddenly my hand reached my back.

I caught something.It was a bloody bug!

I crushed it on the wall.

The red stain appeared black,

On the white wall in the dark.

I searched all over my bed. -So many bugs!

As if soldiers on a route-march !

Some were hiding in the bed-covers.

Like infiltrators.

The bloody bugs,attack in the dark,always.

I’ll have to mend their ways !

Spraypump lay under my cot.

I opened it.

I got up.Went to the shelf.

Picked up the bottle of “Tik-20”

In the dark,I emptied it into the pump.

Swish! Swish !I pumped.

I got scared of the noise it made!

I looked across the window.

My wife was changing her side from right to left.

Quickly I sprayed all over the cot,its corners,

On the bed-sheet,on the bed cover.

Their life will be a real hell now !

The clock struck once.

What?Was it already one ?

I looked at my wrist-watch.

It was ten thirty-five.

Half an hour had passed,dealing with the lousy bugs.

Oh!Now I’ll have a peaceful night!

No sooner did I lie down,when I jumped up!

Oh ! Oh! What have I done?

In killing these bugs,I had forgotten my death !

Oh !The cost of death will now increase.

I’ll have to buy another bottle of “Tik-20”!

Since last two months,I was unhappy.

I couldn’t think of anything.

I was frustrated.

Publishers wouldn’t print my poems.

My stories too- They would throw into the waste paper basket.

Many a cross-word quiz I’d filled and sent.

Yet I never did get a dime.

Borrowing some money from my better-half,

Lottery tickets of Kerala,Punjab,Maharashtra,etcetera.

I bought at a time-however,

Only my numbers were excluded from the prize lists!

I had heard that when Allah gives,

He tears your thatched roof and gives !

Then I thought:”I’d better replace my RCC roof with a thatched roof,

So that Allah finds it easy to tear !”

My clock,wrist-watch,cot etcetera,

My wife had brought as her “Dowry”.

Now she was thinking-“Damn it.

At what inauspicious moment did I marry.”

A year had passed,fighting tooth and nail.

At last,being fed up,I’d decided to die.

I’d bought a pack of “Tik-20”,

“If bugs can die,why not I ?

It’s our blood that’s found in them !”

Little did I know,what trouble I’d have to undergo!


“Muhurat”-(auspicious time) I had calculated

-Was eleven PM ,for dying.

At ten I had got up to write for my wife.

My last wishes in a few lines.

But now ? What had happened had happened!

I lay down,turned round and fell asleep.

Next morning my wife woke me up smilingly!

“Get up,your tea is getting cold.”

I got thinking-“It’s better. The ‘muhurat’ has passed !”

Empty ‘Tik-20’bottle lay before me.

My wife was sipping her lonely tea !

I sang-“I had butter to eat, In the days of Lord Krishna.

In the days of Lord Rama,I ate plenty of ghee.

But,in the kingdom of Indira–( my missus!)

Just a cup of hot watery tea !!”

– Jitoo Broca.

This entry was posted in Humour, Nostalgia. Bookmark the permalink.

9 Responses to THE ‘MUHURAT’ FOR DYING !

  1. dr pooja says:

    Jitoo Sir,
    I think you were offered watery tea because the water could not possibly be added to ghee or butter!!! And secondly, ghee and butter are never served in cups! So aunty had no other choice. I hope you got the answers to your long standing queries!! Best wishes.

    Dr Pooja G Bhuyar, Bijapur
    Jan 11, 2009


  2. SESHU says:

    Hilarious piece with wit and sarcasm. Well enjoyed.

    Seshu B S R Chamarty, Hyderabad
    Jan 12, 2009

  3. LINA says:

    Dear Brocaji, A little different from your other entries. Nice and funny piece. Regards to you,

    Lina Mistry/Tandel, Virginia, USA
    Jan 13, 2009


  4. j s broca says:

    Dear Dr Pooja ji

    Thanks for your humourous response. I thought Doctors only knew about tea spoons, but you seem to know about cups and crockery/cutlery and other kitchenwares as well. Great!!

    J S Broca, New Delhi
    Jan 13, 2009


  5. j s broca says:

    Dear Seshu ji

    I am happy to note that you liked my wit and sarcasm in this posting. Sometimes one gets such inspirations and one comes out with delightful concoctions to suit various tastes of readers. More of such postings in near future, will also come up to your expectations. Keep smiling.

    J S Broca, New Delhi
    Jan 13, 2009

  6. j s broca says:

    Dear Linaji

    Glad to see you back from your holidays. Thanks for your feedback. Chutney and pickles used as complements to usual food stuff, add to the taste. So, sometime I try to be different. For some more change, see my recent postings on my blog relating to Hindi films controversies, question-answers etc. I sm sure you’ll like them too for a change.

    J S Broca, New Delhi
    Jan 13, 2009

  7. dr pooja says:

    Jitoo Sir,
    Finally you also asked me this question. Because, this is the common question people ask me when they all meet me and know me as a doctor. And they all ask with a exclamatory remark. They ask, Oh doctor, do you cook? Have you ever been into your kitchen? Many such questions.When I tell them that I cook great, they all break into laughter. But Sir, please believe me, I cook. This is how I have started convincing everyone. But when I say please, they again feel, I don’t know. This is my great worry. I hope you believe me. I am actually hoping against the hope now. Best wishes.

    Dr Pooja G Bhuyar, Bijapur
    Jan 13, 2009


  8. j s broca says:

    Dear Dr Poojaji

    I have not asked any question about your cooking or otherwise. In fact I have acknowledged that you know a lot about food etc. I believe you! Will you believe if I tell you that I am also a good cook? On a lighter note, someone has said : “There are two types of women. One who can cook but won’t. The other who can’t cook but will”. No offence meant.

    J S Broca, New Delhi
    Jan 13, 2009


  9. Marina says:

    You have really interesting blog, keep up posting such informative posts!

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