For some days there was this deep sadness that has been grappling me, taking over my entire body as I tried to battle it. The days become longer even after the Sun settles and the noises around me dull down to almost inaudible levels. This sadness manifests itself in many ways, sometimes my poetry and sometimes other things such as my daily routine. 2020 had been a great year for me. I joined a job I’ve been waiting for three years now, got my first book published and many more things. However, the loss of my beloved Joy was something that I had thought I had recovered from.
It’s difficult sometimes being the strong one, keeping up a strong face for others so that they don’t break down. It’s a responsibility people rarely discuss. I remember my school days. Each day I attended my school, I was appalled. Didn’t want to go a single day. Didn’t have many friends and talking with others was such a big hurdle for me back then. (It still is but I can now reply in much better fashion than I did before. ) I would come back from school, watch cartoons with my brother for sometime and would then go back to studies. I wasn’t a person who would enjoy sports nor any outdoor activity as most sports required a social interaction, something I have feared for the good part of my life. Growing up is such an organic process that you wouldn’t even notice that you have grown out of your own shell. The things that could rile you up sometimes, now even don’t cross your minds, the happiness that would come so easily, eludes you when you work hardest for it. Earning more and more, big house, big car, pumping iron, botox, alcohol, women, drugs. They bring you bouts of happiness, or just an illusion that your soul doesn’t crave for anything, for the moment. It is satisfied, its thirst quenched, it can finally close its eyes while it lays on the bed. But what happens when these fade off. The silences chase you to the far side of the moon and you grasp for air. For your air was that illusion, that moment that brought you happiness. After school, as the school bus dropped us at our house, me and my brother would run back to the house and the smell of freshly cooked food would bring wide smiles to our faces. I am still like this. Whenever an opportunity opens up at the office, I run back straight to the house. My house is my sanctorum, the place where I can be me and not someone I cannot like. Sometimes we would meet our father for lunch and we displayed the best of our behaviour. It was back then we thought that our father should be one whom we feared. He cannot be a friend. Times were different back then. He was trying his hardest to put food on our table and roof above our head. He wouldn’t talk much back then. But now when he has passed that phase of life, he has become our friend. Maybe he always was. Although, he has time now, but we two brothers have become someone else.
Change is the only thing that’s permanent. I had heard that many times and wasn’t much an advocate of the fact, as being the person I am, I am a big fan of inertia. The rock should stay where it has stayed for long. Changes bring me anxiety, maybe anxiety is a strong word. Maybe my anxiety might not be as the way your anxiety behaves with you. But mine too takes me down a waterfall, sometimes even an endless tunnel that doesn’t seem to have any light at the end. My father keeps on asking us to sit with him and talk with him. Sometimes I want to, every fibre in me wants to, but then a thought floods my head and I just walk away from him. I want to provide a bigger house, a bigger car for him. The smell of food doesn’t fill my stomach any more.
Men have always been the provider, its embedded in their genes, just like motherhood is embedded in girls. We work hard, most of the times so hard that night becomes day and day becomes night. Its a strange paradox. The battle starts right from the day we fight millions of prospective candidates and become a living being in our mother’s womb. Nine months she carries us, taking care of the house she has been living, a house that might sometimes be so strange to what she might have left back. We keep on fighting and not all the times for materialistic gains. The saint struggles to find God, the fool struggles to find gold, the hungry strives for grains, the clouds crave for land, the land wants to touch the sky. I’ve always heard people saying that you find Moksha when you are done with your responsibilities and that your work here is done. If Moksha was something so real and so tangible, wouldn’t we find it performing our responsibilities? I know all of this might sound too dramatic, even too dismal for people. Aren’t we failing as human race if empathy sounded of something weak, gullible. Shouldn’t we be “One for All, All for One.”? While going through some interviews I did for my book, I was asked what was really in my book. I thought for a while and could of all the poems think of one poem that I wrote :
The winds had thundered that day,
As the earth trembled,
And the oceans laid their chest bare open,
When everyone took refuge in their homes,
He took out his ship,
Opened the mast up and high,
Steered the little speck in the mighty sea,
Towards the highest wave,
That stood infront of him,
As the ship climbed the wave,
It reached the top, Rode the wave hard,
It broke, it broke, it broke,
The will of the sea, it broke,
The wave caressed the ship down,
Onto its chest,
The ship had tasted blood,
The boy had become a sailor….
This poem was something I wrote during my darkest times to remind myself that there would always be something good at the end of tunnel, that there’s always a silver lining to a cloud, that after the storm, Sun shall shine bright again. It was this poem that I have turned to again and again when I thought myself to be not thinking straight, of thinking to embrace the darkness. I keep a happy face because this mind of ours is a very innocent being. You can fool it very easily. Just pretend that you are happy and it will listen to you. Think that you are sad all the time and it will think as such. This might be true for most of us. However, things tend to become way more complex for the people who cannot communicate their emotions to others in a way they want to. A link that they have craved for their entire lives and maybe will crave for the rest of their lives. It’s this feeling of paralysis, the virus that affects me most of the times. Words have always been my friend, they know my deepest secrets and they listen so carefully, almost like a communication that my mind has craved for eternities. It almost feels as one. I am not my usual self and I think that’s organic too. Maybe the inertia I desire is fictional. Maybe sadness wants to stay with me for sometime.
I close my eyes,
To see the stars,
Embedded in the garb of night,
They sing me lullabies to sleep,
The cold showers of twinkling light,
That calm my wounds,
And repair the skin around them,
For wounds don’t heal,
They never do,But the stars are kind,
They show me the path around the wounds,
I see the planets around them,
The many galaxies I could easily live,
The reality I want them to be……….