Abyss 8

Today I walked up to the sea,
And in the shimmering lights of the sun,
Three-quarters hidden amidst the clouds,
Saw the waves making small white foams.
The waves today, they were all mild,
Calm as the white clouds, no storm to bring.
The rage and fury that I expected,
The roar and the rumble,
And the high and wild tides,
None of them were there.
Perhaps the sea was getting old.
Perhaps it realized it was all for nothing,
The pompousness, the deceit, all for none.

I couldn’t turn my back against it,
Not while you were still a part of it,
And so I looked straight into it,
And in the distance,
Saw a head bobble up, and go down again.
I waited for it to come up,
Waited for a long, long while,
But just like the waves, and just like you,
And just like the time that goes by,
It never came back.
I shouted loud, and heard my echo,
The echo faded away into the ocean,
Much like the brightness of the sun,
Which was now fully hidden behind the clouds.

The evening gave way to a silent night,
No stars celebrated the welcoming of the moon,
No bright black skies to ponder at,
No stars to count, no smiles to see.
And I counted the grains of sand,
Removed whilst writing your name,
Which was soon washed away,
Just as it were to be.
The burden of wishes is too heavy sometimes,
And so sometimes we must let some loose,
A part of our lives, never to come back,
Like I’ve let loose the perennial wish,
Of your return.

Roses

Roses are red, violets are blue. But violets are violet and roses can be of any color, so why do we say that?

It seems sometimes that all the paradigms upon which this world rests are but imaginary statements made to confine our thoughts and jail our passions and cut our wings to stop us from flying high in the skies. Skies are blue but they can be red and maroon and purple in the evening at twilight, and twilight is my favorite part of the day.

When we were small I remember we were taught (not by our teachers, but by friends), how red roses meant love and yellow roses meant friendship and white roses meant peace and blue roses were so rare that “as rare a blue rose” was a simile that was taught to us in Grammar. Growing up, I realized that all of this was just a cover up. Everything surmounts to love. Whether it be black, brown, yellow, red or white, every rose symbolized only one aspect of human life. And that was love. And that was the most important thing in the world. But this was my notion in high school.

By the time I started attending college, roses meant nothing to me. They were just flowers, like the chrysanthemums and petunias and bluebells and daffodils, pretty to look at and made a good show at a nursery, but nothing more and nothing less. Obviously, love was overrated. To have a flower just for one emotion and not for the other seemed unjust. Love was injustice. Hence I should not love. My conclusions were very hand-wavy, but they seemed to fill in the void that had been existing in my life for a while now, and helped to make me happier than I was, and I thought it was important that life should be this way. I never fell in love in college again.

Alright, that was a bit of a lie. I did, but I didn’t pay much heed to it.

And somehow whenever I talk about roses, at the end of the day, it is all the same. It boils down to the same color. Black. Someone once asked me whether I named my blog such because black was my favorite color. I did not know what to say, for I did not have a favorite color until then. But I thought, maybe, this is a good thing to think about. Maybe I should have a favorite color. So I looked at all the colors in a crayon box and tried to figure out which one I liked best. I scribbled them on empty sheets and painted images. I painted the skies green and the waters pink and the houses blue and the people red. My friends laughed at it and told me what a weird person I was. When my parents saw, they said it was the prettiest drawing they had ever seen. And that made me happy, because my parents liked it and if your parents like something it means that is good and you should therefore love your parents because they love you too.

What about the color, you ask? Well yes, I did figure out my favorite color. I’ll tell you about it in my next post.

The Parting

Always there is something. There is something that makes you take a step back even when you’re absolutely sure the only way to do it is by going forward. There is this feeling somewhere deep down in my gut and although I knew this day was to come, now that it is here I would have liked it to never come at all. For today we part, and that is the only thing that I do not want in my life. No, don’t get me wrong, I do not want you in my life such as being there forever for I know that is entirely not possible. But just for the sake of the moment, let us assume I could have had you forever, which is very absurd because that is not what I want, indeed, I do not want that and you must believe me for in this moment if you don’t then in the very next moment I won’t believe myself either for this is it, this is the last straw on the camel’s back. I know you aren’t here today, and it is just a mere coincidence, but what would I give to just see you one last time?

You know what, I have always thought friends are friends and nothing else and that there can be no reason to feel sad or happy about it for friends are just friends and they are just people and people are meant to come into your life and go away just like the days and nights and new mornings and seasons and fashionable clothes. But you, why did you come, you knew that this was not forever, I told you that on the very first day; you know I had to go, you knew this was not forever, I told you so, yet somehow what happened? Now that you aren’t here when I am going, and by the time you will be back I won’t be here; isn’t that just great, because I am sure I would have become teary-eyed at the last moment and all the drama that I have put up about being a stoic and not feeling anything would have gone to waste.

Always there is something. There is something that you have of me. A part of me to be precise. No this is not a love note, and I don’t want to tell you that I love you for I don’t love you the way you deserve to be loved and I loathe myself for that for I can never become what I want to, and that is because you are not what you are and I am not what I am and this world is not what it should be for us but what do I care and what do you care? I could give up entire worlds for your smile but I do not know now that the moment is here if I will see you anymore. Will I? I really hope I do for you right now, mean everything to me. I have never known a passion so raw, and I have already loved many and have been hated by many and put down by others and thrown out by more and kicked out by lots and spit upon by the rest and yet I have been loved by some as well and yet this is entirely different and I know you wouldn’t understand what I mean for this is not what I have shown you I am.

Oh, the night draws close and I close my eyes and I can only see your face and your smile covers my entire brain like a blanket; oh what should I do now? I desperately want to get rid of your thoughts, no don’t get me wrong but I need to live and to live I need to breathe but your thoughts are suffocating me like water filled up to the brim of the buckets which might overflow even on the slightest movement. Oh how disjointed my thoughts are, what am I saying? Did I just confess my undying love for you? If I did, consider that a lie, because I didn’t intend to and I don’t want to, and I don’t want you to know that I love you, because in fact I don’t love you, or at least not as much as you are worthy of or as much as I am capable of. This is an unfinished story. I want to write more. I want you to read more, but I don’t know if this story will ever reach a proper end. This time it ended so abruptly. Oh no, I will definitely come back, come back to you, and give this a proper end. For I cannot live with this thorn in my heart which pricks me in the night and my heart bleeds and blood fills my gut and yet you can’t see for what man can see inside another when both are so parted away?

An Average Day

As I woke up, the light stinging my eye through the tiny gap between the two curtains, I silently said a small prayer for the day to be sunny as it was. But it rained. I strolled down the road, hands in my pocket, wearing a hoodie, which also covered my head, although my hair was getting damp. Yesterday I had cycled all the way, but the raindrops on my hand felt like ice pellets, and I had no gloves, so I did not want to take the risk of getting my fingers numb again. People huddled at bus stops, for there they found some protection from the rains. As I entered the university, it felt warmer. The thermostat had done a good job. The door said ‘Drücken’ the next said ‘Ziehen’. I pushed and pulled the doors as necessary, pausing now and then to say ‘Hallo’ and ‘Gutten Morgen’ to faces that were unknown at the beginning, but had now become familiar.

For instance, I knew the man in the electronics laboratory, he was okay at English and had offered to help me on the very first day when I needed a two-point plug instead of the three-point that I was carrying for my laptop. I knew the lady at the ‘Mensa’ who gave subway sandwiches. I remember how first I had thought they were cucumber slices, but later realized they were thin egg slices, which made that breakfast so good! I was slowly getting used to this place. The Professor I worked with did not know much English, but we were good. We spoke Java, and that was universal. I wonder how some people cannot speak English but can code perfectly in English. How do you understand what you are coding when you do not know the language itself? It is one of those questions that I will never find an answer to, just like I still don’t know how babies learn their mother tongue.

I had just earned my stipend yesterday, my first ever earning. It was 200 euros, and I was so happy I treated myself to a really good pizza yesterday. German food was bland in general, and Italian helped me remember how good food can be. I took a slice of bread, and went back to my lab, then made some fresh brewed coffee. I must tell you, there is no better way to start a day other than having a huge cup of coffee. Until last week I was working on a desktop with a German OS installed. It was a relief to switch from Einstellungen to Settings and Zubehör to Accessories. I now had a desktop which had Windows 7 and an English US version of that. My work had been fun lately, and I desperately wished it continued to be so.

When I came out later for lunch, it was still raining. The food was hot, but only temperature wise, nothing spicy. Mustard helped in making it bearable. You realize the value of sauces only when you’re devoid of it. As I left for home in the evening, a small part of me wanted to stay behind, wait for her. She used to stay back in the university till two in the morning sometimes; I could have waited in her lab, but then I changed my mind. Reality hit me. And I strolled back home again. Meanwhile, the clouds still poured.

Missing You

I just downloaded the list of hundred novels every person should read before he dies. This list that I got was published by The Telegraph, so I am going to believe there is some truth to the post. It was surprising to see that I haven’t read so many of them. This definitely means I have a mission to complete before I die. Hopefully I will live long enough to finish these books.

I want to dedicate this post to a really good friend of mine. I have been missing her a lot for some time, and as I was looking through pictures that we had clicked, some completely random, some nice ones, some so stupid I laugh even now, I realized that I was really happy when she was around. Now that she isn’t, all I can do is think about the wonderful moments that we had together. We stay in different countries now, and Whatsapp and Google Voice are the only two things that are even remotely close to what we could call talking. But I’m sure that we will meet again some day, and then hopefully we will create more moments like the ones before.

Then your smile was enough,
To make me happy on the saddest of mornings,
And now when you’re not around,
I imagine you all smiles and happy,
Your hair untied, unkempt, breeze within,
Your face gleaming with joy when you talk of swings,
Remember the first time you fell asleep on my lap?
Then your presence was enough,
To make me smile on the ugliest of days,
And now, when you aren’t around,
Even a single text from you is enough,
To make me happy on the saddest of mornings.

The Bell

Written on December 7, 2010.

Never before had Bull felt the way he felt right now. His emotions swung left and right, and he was under a fix as to whether what he thought was eternal relationship came to an end just because of the love of one’s own life. As he sat in the cell, the king came along.

“So your dear friend hasn’t arrived as yet. Wasn’t I very sure of this! After all why should someone be so foolish as to come back to die once he has been given the chance to escape? Only because his friend believes in him? This is pure bullshit Bull, I told you earlier do not come into all this but you didn’t listen. Now you have to suffer. You have no other choice.”

And then the man rose his head. The king noticed, silently, how the slight curves on his forehead now smoothened, how a black patch had developed beneath his eyes as though he hadn’t slept a million nights, how the skin of the lips had cracked, and how wrinkled the face had become, as if he weren’t a youth but an old man, older than him. Diseased he is, thought the king. Slowly, taking the support of the wall beside, Bull rose up, stood on his feet and cleared his throat. “Sir, you are mistaken. There is nothing to suffer in this.” And he sat down again, curled himself up and was lost in his thoughts.

The king, too confident to argue, left.

Lost in his thoughts, Bull now remembered those moments of his life which he wished he could relive a million times. The house painted white, behind the hedges, the evergreen field on which it stood, the fan hanging on the beam of the roof of it, which he always wished would rotate faster. He remembered how in the cold winter nights he would curl up under his quilt, listening to his parents’ talking among them. He still did not forget that day, when he returned from school to see that the house wasn’t there anymore, only rubble, and he still didn’t know where his parents were. People had told him that they dies when the house shattered to an earthquake, but he never believed those. He knew his parents would return.

His thoughts then went to his school. It was a small four-room cottage, but it was there that he framed himself for the latter part of his life. He remembered the white and red striped paint on the front walls, and the cement broken on the interiors. He remembered how a mattress used to be kept in order that the room wouldn’t get dirty, and how he and Ross stole all of them. Ross. Yes Ross. His favorite schoolmate.

Ross, a dark-complexioned boy, taller than Bull, he thought, and a wry smile crossed his face, when he was reminded of all the fun they had together. Bunking classes to sit by the river, picking pockets of the travellers who passed by, telling people wrong routes so that they lost themselves, making paper airplanes and flying them in the classroom, never doing their homework yet always escaped the teachers’ scolding by making some lame excuse… and how they grew up together, never realizing that time passed so quickly.

His thoughts now wandered only around Ross. He remembered the lunches they had together at his house, when Ross’s mother cooked better food than any other lady in the world. What a sumptuous lunch they had always, though he always wished that his mother come back from wherever she is and cook him her food too. He too wished that he invite Ross to his house and that he ate his mother’s made food. Little did he know that people don’t come out of their graves. Ross’s mother was a kind lady. Short-heighted, yellow streaks on her front hair, she was always a little bent, due to her age he supposed, she wasn’t pretty, but she was beautiful. Her face was white, white as the snow that fell when he stayed up the hills, at an age of four, with his parents. Sometimes when they both would return from school, his mother would be just outside the door, sweeping the floors with a long broom. The broom had a long wooden handle, and he could still remember the exact picture of it. And she would be coughing loud, the dust causing it. And he remembered how Ross would take the broom from her hands, and ask her to go inside whilst he swept the courtyard, after which they had lunch together, of bread with butter and a glass of milk, the milk of the cow tied to the fence in the backyard.

And then the smile on his face turned to a dark gloom, and the curves on his forehead reappeared. It was due to what happened last week. Murder. Ross. Sentence. Thoughts flashed in and out of his mind. What apparently happened was that Ross had murdered the prince of the city. The reason for this was unknown to everyone. Ross did not share this even with Bull. But there was a rumor that it was because of the fact that both loved the same girl and that Ross was jealous of the fact that the girl loved the prince because he was richer. It was due to that that he had been sentenced to death. However, he had a last wish of seeing his parents before he died. But there was no guarantee that he would return once set free to meet his parents. That was where this man Bull came in. Ross begged Bull to stay in his place till he returned. The king put a condition that if Ross did not return within the stipulated time, Bull would be hanged instead. Bull had almost instantaneously accepted the proposal, he having so much faith in their friendship. But now, only fifteen minutes were left for the bell to ring, and he hadn’t arrived yet.

The bell rung. Bull was escorted to the place which was designed for the hanging. A large crowd had appeared. A sense of serenity showed on Bull’s face although in a few minutes he would be hanged for absolutely no fault of his. The bell rung a second time. The rope was put around his neck. Three. Two. One and… “Stop!” Came a voice from behind. He was huffing, panting and through his blurred vision, Bull saw Ross arrive. There was a smile on Bull’s face, a smile of faith, an eternal friendship, a relationship which had passed all limits. Amidst that smile, Bull’s eyes closed. “No!”, shouted Ross in the background. A loud applause of the crowd. Only had Ross been sooner by a second…

Return – Chapter 2

I knocked on the door. I knew what was impending, and even as I knocked again, I felt it would have been a relief if I could just run down the road beside, and keep running until I was tired. But then, I wanted to face what reality had in store for me. It wouldn’t be easy, I knew. In fact, the next few minutes could be the most tough moments of my life, something that I could pass on to my grandchildren in anonymous stories. I waited. A lady shouted from inside, which roughly translated to “I swear this is the thousandth time since morning someone knocked on my door. I will break this door someday.” She opened the door, and for a while she kept looking at me. I realized she wouldn’t know me; when I had last left her, I did not have a stubble. My hair was neatly combed that morning as I left for school. That was four years back. I smiled at her, hoping that would remind her of the past. She did not look a day older. She was the same old woman that I had left a few years ago. Same white sari, same white hair, plump but weak, fat rimmed spectacles, nothing had changed; except time. “Namaste Taaya,” I said, which meant, “Hello, Taaya”. Taaya was what I called her when I was small. I did not know how I came to learnt that name, and why no one asserted a problem to me calling her by that name when she was in fact not my taaya. In relations, taaya refers to an elder aunt. But she was not an aunt of mine, neither did she have any nephews. I was the only person she had, and only had she been the only person I had, nothing would have ever gone wrong. She was my mother.

She looked at me melancholically, kept looking at my eyes for about a minute, and then shut the door on my face. I couldn’t expect anything less or more than that. When I was young, sometimes we used to fight over small trivial matters. Then I used to pretend I was angry and would shut the door of my room and lock myself inside for hours. My mother would cry, thinking I was really angry. I felt sad about that, but I didn’t want to break it to her. If I did, she would never again think I was angry, and things wouldn’t work out. So many incidents flashed into my mind. But then, things changed. Today we played a role reversal. I was crying, and she had shut the door. Only, she literally did it. There was only one person I could now go to. I didn’t know if she would remember me at all, or whether she would give it any thought if I stepped up in front of her, but I owed it to myself, and I owed it to her, to meet her once more, to try to set things right, and to live my life as I should have done before. It was late, but they say it’s better to be late than never. I was praying they said it right. As I walked down the road, an old friend met me. He looked at me strangely, as I stood, stagnated, not moving an inch. He hugged me for a while, and as we walked, he narrated all what had happened in the interim that I was gone. I was gone. I had never thought anyone would put it that way. I was not gone, I was right here. All the while, I was right here. But I couldn’t explain that to him, nor could I talk about it to anyone else around. So I just nodded. He left me after a while, when he saw the way I was headed. “Don’t do it,” he said. “For your sake.”

I strolled on. I had to see if there were a life that I wished for, if there were a destiny that defined me. So I reached her house. And I knocked, hoping she would open and recognize me. I hadn’t been away that long that she’d not recognize me. Unless she did it purposefully… The door opened. She looked at me with her shining eyes. So much of her had changed. Except her eyes. They were still the same. They still said the same story that they said four years ago. And her tears still pained me as it did in my dreams. She had grown thinner, and she looked prettier than I could have ever imagined her to be. “I still love you,” I said. She put a finger on her lips, indicating me to stop talking. And she hugged me. “I’ve missed you,” she said. “I’ve missed you too, Shaena,” I said.

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