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My Friend Sancho

My first novel, My Friend Sancho, is now on the stands across India. It is a contemporary love story set in Mumbai, and was longlisted for the Man Asian Literary Prize 2008. To learn more about the book, click here.


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Bastiat Prize 2007 Winner

Category Archives: Rhyme and Reason

A Top Edge (and a Brain Fade)

This is the 30th installment of Rhyme and Reason, my weekly set of limericks for the Sunday Times of India edit page.

SHERRY

Navjot Singh Sidhu was in a fix.
No party wanted him in the mix,
Till Congress took him on.
Good fortune came along.
His top edge went all the way for six.

CRICKET

One day, in my school, there was a raid.
A boy was caught cheating in tenth grade,
But he was remorseless.
He said, with great finesse,
“It was nothing more than a brain fade.”

Posted by Amit Varma on 19 March, 2017 in India | Politics | Rhyme and Reason | Rhymes | Sport


Unicorn vs ABVP vs Pappu

This is the 29th installment of Rhyme and Reason, my weekly set of limericks for the Sunday Times of India edit page.

UNICORNS

The losses pile up, as do brickbats
For India’s e-commerce copycats.
They beg for protection,
But avoid reflection
On why they deserve their dismal stats.
 
EDUCATION

I asked some college kids, amid groans,
“What have you learnt, besides Game of Thrones?”
One replied, with a sigh
“Demand creates supply.
I have a degree in throwing stones!”

YOUNG GUN

“Pappu needs time, he is not mature,”
Sheilaji told me. I replied, “Sure,
He’s only forty-six,
Still learning all the tricks.
Till he grows up, you must all endure.”

Posted by Amit Varma on 26 February, 2017 in India | Politics | Rhyme and Reason | Rhymes


Assembly Proceedings

This is the 28th installment of Rhyme and Reason, my weekly set of limericks for the Sunday Times of India edit page.

TAMIL NADU

My neighbourhood thugs were filled with awe.
The Chief Gunda explained, “I just saw
Assembly proceedings,
And now I’m conceding,
Compared to those pros, we are so raw!”

DISCOURSE

The speaker’s wife was extremely hurt.
When he got home, he was rather curt.
When she asked him why,
He said with a sigh,
Those ruffians tore my brand-new shirt!”

Posted by Amit Varma on 19 February, 2017 in India | Politics | Rhyme and Reason | Rhymes


Padmavati and Trump

This is the 27th installment of Rhyme and Reason, my weekly set of limericks for the Sunday Times of India edit page.

PADMAVATI

In Rajasthan there was some friction,
Folks objecting to a depiction
Of a certain lady.
It was all quite shady,
Since she didn’t exist, and was fiction.

BUMP

One dark night, a man named Donald Trump
Flew off his bed, landing on his rump.
The reason for this strife
Was his immigrant wife,
Who had given him a mighty thump.

Posted by Amit Varma on 05 February, 2017 in India | Politics | Rhyme and Reason | Rhymes


Gladiators at the Ballet

This is the 26th installment of Rhyme and Reason, my weekly set of limericks for the Sunday Times of India edit page.

STRAIGHT DRIVE

Rahul Dravid, when he played cricket,
Always put a price on his wicket.
Offered a PhD,
He said, “No, not for me.
I earn my way. Keep your free ticket.”

TIME MACHINE

When you switch on your TV today,
You’ll feel time begin to slip away.
Everything just a blur.
Nadal and Federer.
Two gladiators at the ballet.

Posted by Amit Varma on 29 January, 2017 in Rhyme and Reason | Rhymes | Sport


Mahi and the Indian Man

This is the 25th installment of Rhyme and Reason, my weekly set of limericks for the Sunday Times of India edit page.

MAHI

Mahendra Singh Dhoni made his name
With his skill for finishing a game.
The hardest thing to know
Is when to just let go.
His timing has been perfect again.

MARD

The Indian male is quite a beast.
One half devout, just like a priest,
But the half that prevails
Seems to treat all females
As mere dishes laid out at a feast.

Posted by Amit Varma on 08 January, 2017 in India | Rhyme and Reason | Rhymes | Sport


Strong Woman; Bad Men

This is the 24th installment of Rhyme and Reason, my weekly set of limericks for the Sunday Times of India edit page.

AMMA
 
They warned her about misogyny.
She said as she shaped her destiny,
“It’s a man’s world, indeed,
But I will not pay heed.
I will make those men bow before me.”
 
DAMAGE
 
Sanjay Gandhi came back from the dead.
He went to meet NaMo, and he said,
“I loved to hurt the weak,
But nasbandi seems meek.
I wish I’d done notebandi instead.”

Posted by Amit Varma on 11 December, 2016 in India | News | Politics | Rhyme and Reason | Rhymes


Demonetisation Tales

This is the 23rd installment of Rhyme and Reason, my weekly set of limericks for the Sunday Times of India edit page.

LOVE STORY

Once there was a young girl in a queue.
A young boy joined it, all set to woo.
She looked him up and down,
And told him with a frown,
“‘Yes’ if you have change, otherwise ‘Thoo!’”

BAPU

Mahatma Gandhi came down to earth
For just a visit (not a rebirth).
He screamed in double quotes,
“Take my face off your notes.
It’s eroding my sense of self-worth!”

Posted by Amit Varma on 27 November, 2016 in India | Politics | Rhyme and Reason | Rhymes


A Week of Upheaval

This is the 22nd installment of Rhyme and Reason, my weekly set of limericks for the Sunday Times of India edit page.

ORANGE MAN

Misogynists of the world, unite.
Racists and bigots, you won the fight.
You’ve got your president.
Now begin your descent
Into hatred, your sacred birthright.

CURRENCY

On Tuesday, India underwent
Surgical strikes that were meant to dent
All unaccounted gains.
Still the question remains,
Who will account for the government?

Posted by Amit Varma on 13 November, 2016 in Economics | India | News | Politics | Rhyme and Reason | Rhymes


The True Patriot

This is the 21st installment of Rhyme and Reason, my weekly set of limericks for the Sunday Times of India edit page.

DISSENT

The greatest danger to any land
Is a government that goes out of hand.
A true patriot’s task
Is to constantly ask
Probing questions, and to take a stand.

SMOG

A Delhi grandma, in confusion,
Looked around for her eye solution.
Her eyesight was just fine.
The reason she felt blind
Was, of course, the Delhi pollution.

Posted by Amit Varma on 06 November, 2016 in India | Politics | Rhyme and Reason | Rhymes


Family Business

This is the 20th installment of Rhyme and Reason, my weekly set of limericks for the Sunday Times of India edit page.

FAMILY BUSINESS 1

The Tatas built an unwieldy beast,
Bleeding profusely, to say the least.
Cyrus tried for a fix.
Now he’s out of the mix
Because Ratan remains the high priest.

FAMILY BUSINESS 2

Once the Yadavs had a pillow fight.
Shivpal threw bolsters with all his might.
Akhilesh slipped and fell.
Mulayam had to yell,
“Save me from this Samajwadi plight!”

Posted by Amit Varma on 30 October, 2016 in India | News | Politics | Rhyme and Reason | Rhymes


What a Fix!

This is the 19th installment of Rhyme and Reason, my weekly set of limericks for the Sunday Times of India edit page.

CRICKET MATCH

Anurag Thakur was in a fix.
Although a master of politics,
One day he told the press,
“I simply must confess,
That man Lodha has hit me for six.”

FILM FESTIVAL

Mumbai’s havaldars were in a fix,
As movie lovers scrambled for tix.
One cop said, “What drama!
They would call me ‘Mama.’
Why is there a ‘MAMI’ in the mix?

Posted by Amit Varma on 23 October, 2016 in Arts and entertainment | Rhyme and Reason | Rhymes | Sport


Two Villains

This is the 18th installment of Rhyme and Reason, my weekly set of limericks for the Sunday Times of India edit page.

DUSSEHRA

Ravana, a man of great acclaim
Said to me, frustrated, all aflame,
“I’ve been trying to click
A selfie with a stick
But my ten heads won’t fit in the frame!”

LAND OF GROPE

One day the Statue of Liberty
Broke down & walked off into the sea.
She said, “Trump’s such a pig,
If he should get this gig,
Call me the Statue of Misery.’

Posted by Amit Varma on 16 October, 2016 in Politics | Rhyme and Reason | Rhymes


Hillary and Donald

This is the 17th installment of Rhyme and Reason, my weekly set of limericks for the Sunday Times of India edit page.

THE CHOICE

Hillary Clinton drew lots of hate,
But believed in the electorate.
With a delighted shriek,
She said, ‘I may be weak,
But look at the other candidate!’

THE WALL

Donald Trump wanted to build a wall.
Humpty Dumpty told him, ‘Hey, bad call.
A bridge is much better,
Brings people together.
You might just be heading for a fall.’

Posted by Amit Varma on 02 October, 2016 in Politics | Rhyme and Reason | Rhymes


Tragedy Nights on the Cauvery

This is the 16th installment of Rhyme and Reason, my weekly set of limericks for the Sunday Times of India edit page.

CAUVERY

Wanting to solve the Cauvery mire,
A neta said to his goons for hire,
‘It is getting hotter.
Everyone wants water,
So let’s go set some buses on fire.’

TRAGEDY NIGHTS

Kapil Sharma told a sorry tale
Of corruption on a massive scale.
The netas we elect,
For a chilling effect,
Made his life a cautionary tale.

Posted by Amit Varma on 18 September, 2016 in India | News | Politics | Rhyme and Reason | Rhymes


Haryana and Qatar

This is the 15th installment of Rhyme and Reason, my weekly set of limericks for the Sunday Times of India edit page

HARYANA

I am a biryani inspector,
A friend of the district collector.
Please pass me your rice.
Mmm! This is so nice!
How I love being a beef detector!

QUEUE

A friend of mine by the name of Jai
Texted me from Doha. He wrote, “Hey,
I’ve been trying to call
But can’t get through at all.
I keep hearing, ‘Aap Qatar mein hai.’”

Posted by Amit Varma on 11 September, 2016 in India | News | Rhyme and Reason | Rhymes


Poor Paris Hilton Started To Cry

This is the 14th installment of Rhyme and Reason, my weekly set of limericks for the Sunday Times of India edit page

AAM AADMI

Poor Paris Hilton started to cry.
Kim Kardashian explained with a sigh,
“We are the sex tape queens.
We are the mean machines.
Who the hell is this Sandeep Kumar guy?”

NECESSARY MEASURES

A minister who was farsighted
Said, “Men must not get too excited.
I would like to ban skirts,
Jail any girl that flirts,
Ban all women,” he said, delighted.

Posted by Amit Varma on 04 September, 2016 in India | News | Politics | Rhyme and Reason | Rhymes


Usain Bolt vs Mrs Patel

This is the 13th installment of Rhyme and Reason, my weekly set of limericks for the Sunday Times of India edit page

RUN

Usain Bolt was sprinting like a gale
When he was passed by Mrs Patel.
The crowd was entertained.
Mrs Patel explained,
‘Haven’t you heard? Zara has a sale!’

JUNKET

Once there was a minister of sport
Who loved using his pretty passport.
He went on pilgrimage
To the Olympic village.
What a superb holiday resort!

Posted by Amit Varma on 28 August, 2016 in Rhyme and Reason | Rhymes | Sport


Sindhu and Sakshi

This is the 12th installment of Rhyme and Reason, my weekly set of limericks for the Sunday Times of India edit page

SINDHU

There was a young girl who was told
Girls should be demure, never bold.
She gave a sharp retort
On the badminton court,
And almost won Olympic gold.

SAKSHI

Once there was a Haryanvi lass
Who would never let a problem pass.
She’d fling it to the ground,
Expertly pin it down
Because desi girls can kick ass.

Posted by Amit Varma on 21 August, 2016 in India | Rhyme and Reason | Rhymes | Sport


Atheism and Shopping

This is the 11th installment of Rhyme and Reason, my weekly set of limericks for the Sunday Times of India edit page

ATHEIST

One day God came to me, full of grief.
‘I’m distraught,’ she said, ‘I need relief.
Whatever I decree,
No one listens to me,
And now I’m losing my self-belief.’

SHOPPING

There was a girl who loved to buy shoes,
Whether from Kolhapur or Toulouse.
She bought very many,
But never wore any
Because she wasn’t able to choose.

Posted by Amit Varma on 14 August, 2016 in Rhyme and Reason | Rhymes


Good Night, Pappu

This is the second of two limericks in the 10th installment of Rhyme and Reason, my weekly set of limericks for the Sunday Times of India edit page

image

BEDTIME

Pappu woke to slaps from his mama.
He explained why he caused such drama.
‘Parliament is a bore
I was tired. What’s more,
I was already in my pajama.’

Posted by Amit Varma on 24 July, 2016 in India | News | Politics | Rhyme and Reason | Rhymes


Mosquitoes As Big As A Bus

This is the first of two limericks in the 10th installment of Rhyme and Reason, my weekly set of limericks for the Sunday Times of India edit page

GAME

Once mosquitoes as big as a bus
Attacked me with a great deal of fuss.
They chased me around,
And now I have found
They’re playing Pokemon Go with us.

Posted by Amit Varma on 24 July, 2016 in Rhyme and Reason | Rhymes


Two States

This is the 9th installment of Rhyme and Reason, my weekly set of limericks for the Sunday Times of India edit page

UTTAR PRADESH

Once the Congress seemed rather smug.
‘Gandhi’ was their designer drug.
Do they now realise
That the Gandhi franchise
Is not a feature but a bug?


KASHMIR

A wise man said, ‘An eye for an eye
Makes the whole world blind.’ Those who decry
This circle of violence
Must speak through the silence.
We’ll fall too far if we don’t aim high.

Posted by Amit Varma on 17 July, 2016 in Freedom | India | Politics | Rhyme and Reason | Rhymes


The Impresario and the Intellectual

This is the 8th installment of Rhyme and Reason, my weekly set of limericks for the Sunday Times of India edit page

IMPRESARIO

There was a man with a giant belly
Who sat all day glued to his telly.
Then he died. He was gone,
But the belly lived on.
Now it throws great parties in New Delhi.


INTELLECTUAL

There was a man with a giant head
Who told us where the future led.
His brain was so loaded,
One day it exploded
And now he’s confined to his bed.

Posted by Amit Varma on 10 July, 2016 in Rhyme and Reason | Rhymes


Politics and Money

This is the second of two limericks from the 7th installment of Rhyme and Reason, my weekly set of limericks for the Sunday Times of India edit page.

POLITICS

A neta who loves currency notes
Told me what his line of work denotes.
‘It is kind of funny.
We steal people’s money
And use some of it to buy their votes.’

Posted by Amit Varma on 03 July, 2016 in Freedom | India | Politics | Rhyme and Reason | Rhymes


Donald Trump and Immigration

This is the first of two limericks from the 7th installment of Rhyme and Reason, my weekly set of limericks for the Sunday Times of India edit page.

NATIVIST

Donald Trump was full of indignation.
He wanted to undo immigration.
God granted his prayer,
Made the US all bare,
And once more a Red Indian nation.

Posted by Amit Varma on 03 July, 2016 in Politics | Rhyme and Reason | Rhymes


A Nation With A Glorious Past

This is the sixth installment of Rhyme and Reason, my weekly set of limericks for the Sunday Times of India edit page.

CIVILIZATION

A man said to me on the Virar Fast,
‘We’re a nation with a glorious past.
In both science and art,
Our ancients were smart.
Oh, by the way, what is your caste?’

PRIDE

Once I had a patriotic guest
Who told me, ‘Indians are the best.
Yes, inflation is dicey,
Tomatoes are pricey,
But our PM has a 56-inch chest!’

Posted by Amit Varma on 26 June, 2016 in India | Politics | Rhyme and Reason | Rhymes


Modi’s Boudi, and Obama’s Pajama

This is the fifth installment of Rhyme and Reason, my weekly set of limericks for the Sunday Times of India edit page.

MISHTI DOI

Once there was a man named Modi
Who fell in love with a Bengali boudi.
He had such a huge crush
That he would copiously blush
At the very thought of sitting in her godi.


SECOND LADY

There was a man named Barack Obama
Who one day misplaced his pajama,
So he said, “All righty,
I’ll just sleep in a nightie.
Hey Michelle, tonight I’m the hot mamma!”

Posted by Amit Varma on 19 June, 2016 in Rhyme and Reason | Rhymes


The King of Hearts

This is the second of two limericks in the fourth installment of Rhyme and Reason, my weekly set of limericks for the Sunday Times of India edit page.

MACROCRUSH

An army of ladies stormed the RBI Gate
To meet Raghu, and set the record straight.
They said, ‘If you gotta go,
Then you oughta know
That you will never, ever lower our interest rate.’

Posted by Amit Varma on 12 June, 2016 in India | Rhyme and Reason | Rhymes


Pappu the Prince

This is the first of two limericks in the fourth installment of Rhyme and Reason, my weekly set of limericks for the Sunday Times of India edit page.

CORONATION

‘Mommy, Mommy, throw me a party,’
Said Pappu the Prince, all hale and hearty.
Mommy said, ‘Fine.
The Congress was mine.
Now it’s yours, my cute little smarty!’

Posted by Amit Varma on 12 June, 2016 in India | Politics | Rhyme and Reason | Rhymes


Swamy vs God

This is the third installment of Rhyme and Reason, my weekly set of limericks for the Sunday Times of India edit page

FIGHTER

There was a man named Subramanian Swamy
Who was known to be kind of barmy.
PM Modi put him right.
He said, ‘I know you like to fight,
So why don’t you join the bloody army?’

HEY BHAGWAN

Subbu Swamy filed a case against God.
Subbu Swamy accused God of fraud.
Much thunder was heard.
God said, ‘How absurd!
Such chutzpah I really must applaud.’

Posted by Amit Varma on 06 June, 2016 in India | Politics | Rhyme and Reason | Rhymes


Gandhi and the Troll

Every Sunday, two of my limericks appear on the edit page of the Sunday Times of India. Here’s today’s installment.

QUIT INDIA

Once there was an airport named Gandhi
Where all flights were grounded in an aandhi.
So with a laugh and a cough,
The airport flew off,
Now all the pilots are sitting drinking brandy.

FLUSH

Once there was an internet troll
Who was pushed into a toilet bowl
By his dad, who decreed,
‘Having seen your twitter feed,
I hereby perform delayed birth control.’

Posted by Amit Varma on 29 May, 2016 in India | Politics | Rhyme and Reason | Rhymes


A Wrestler Sweats in the Summer

Starting today, two of my limericks will appear every Sunday on the edit page of the Sunday Times of India. This is the first installment.

CULPABLE

Once there was a problem of water
Summer was hot and getting hotter
A politician explained,
‘Our hands are blood-stained.
Bad governance is equal to manslaughter.’

LITIGATION

Once a wrestler tried to move a building
Muscular Sushil grunting and pushing
When chastised,
He said, ‘I was advised
To move court, so that’s what I’m doing.’

Posted by Amit Varma on 22 May, 2016 in India | News | Politics | Rhyme and Reason | Rhymes | Sport


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