When you’re struck with tragedy, what is the first thought that resurrects itself firmly in your head? The thought that pushes itself up from the numbness of shock, the one that reverberates inside on an infinte loop? It is of death, your newfound lust for death. Suddenly all sense of reality leaves your body and whats left inside is a silent tale of crippling sorrow. The tragedy runs in your blood now; life fleeting in tiny drops of grief, flowing out facilely because the sunsets have lost their charm and the stars are just inept stones of light. Your spirit has died and the haven of bliss is slowly slipping like grains of sand. Everything you once held sacred seems futile and all love empty; life has faintly donned the hideous white robe of death, barring your soul of colours and joy. But the irony is, even in loss, when you readily accept death, you keep on living because that is the most logical thing to do, accept the circumstances and move on, even with a heart that has been ripped into shreds. You move on and you keep on living, sometimes searching and sometimes hunting desperately for a laconic peace of mind that you lost when the moon still shined bright. Life goes on and so does tragedy. You never forget it, you never leave it behind, you just let it slip from your mind, even if momentarily and find your harmony.
I stopped to look at the calendar before grabbing my stuff and heading out. 30 June’17, the last day of June. June has always been my happy month; my month of life. June symbolises warmth and love and gifts and long drives and birthday lunches. This is the month of laughter, of sunlit fields brimming with flowers, of strawberries and impromptu trips to the snowy hills. Lately, everything has been changing over like the new colors of bud after spring. June has lost its charm and life has lost its meaning. I’m leaving my city, my home, my ownself. I’m leaving my June behind.
Someone once asked me, you ask a lot of questions, why is that? What are you seeking so desperately? At that moment the question had hit my conscious with such a force that all sense of speech had left my body and I was bereft of any words.
What WAS I seeking?
I had no answer for this question, just like I never had any answers. Answers always meant the end of destiny, the end of the road, and I wasn’t ready for that. This undying thirst for knowledge had gripped me tightly in its arms and the answers seemed like a million dreams away.
I started asking questions to avoid mediocrity, to build a place for my own self from the ashes. The questions define me, not the answers. The questions are the muse. There is warmth in curiosity, the unfounded feeling of having a forever.
So, what was I seeking?
I was seeking my ownself in this gigantic carnival of a world.
Have you ever picked up a withered flower and wished with all your heart to witness it blooming again?
To once again be a silent spectator of its mesmerising youth?
Have you ever plodded down a busy road, bustling with nothing but unfounded nostalgia?
To relive it all again and see everything burning in your eyes?
Have you walked away from life through a closed door, only to be led back to your ownself?
Have you? I prod, rather intrusively.
Have you loved someone so much that all your senses slow slip away from grasp and you stand back, smiling widely at its departure.
Everything is burning and my soul is tired.
I meant to write something long, something from the heart, something to take the edge off, just something, to heal the bruised art. The words had arrived, tumbling in their path, dragging along with them the dripping ink and its pristine canvas. I meant to rip open every portal there was, to let the pain out, to let it all escape me; to be finally bereft of those silent tears and it felt so soothing, at least in my thoughts. I had it all, my muse was back, but the words betrayed me yet again, this time laughing sinisterly at my gaped soul. The sands of time had etiolated the initial enthusiasm of their arrival and my pen remained unmoved, burdened by the weight of the ink of my thoughts. The canvas lies in tatters now, simply because it could not escape the wrath of my frustrated mind. Another day passes and the pain is still inside begging for the words to stop their sabbatical. I cannot end this cycle and the war inside wages on. The words are fleeting but the agony is perpetual.
Perched on my shoulders, rests a lost little bird, drinking in everything through his shiny beady eyes, somewhat awry of his surroundings yet in a unique state of bliss.
“What keeps you so high about, oh little bird?” I ask him earnestly, curious of his meanderings and adventures.
“I escaped my cage today.” comes his joyful reply.
“What was it like?”
“Like that first drop of rain after a sultry summer, like those precious moments in the morning when there’s nothing more beautiful than a few rays of sunshine. It was like waking up after a horrible nightmare and realising that the demons that torture our souls cannot overpower our flamboyant selves. I escaped my prison with a heavy heart and an exuberant smile, when will you escape yours?” He peers at me slightly, preparing to fly away any minute.
“I’m not a prisoner, just an obstinate person.” I laugh shakily, bewildered at his delusional words.
The bird only gives me a sad smile, pecks my heart repeatedly and takes his leave. He turns back for the last time, stares at me with utter determination and whispers, “One day even you will be free from your caged heart.”