It’s Christmas time!

After burning my fingers to bring out something better, I was walking alone in the lonely streets lightened by the evening sun. It is always a different feeling when you listen to your breathing, coordinating with the slowly moving winter breeze and the sun setting at the distant horizon. Though you are mentally at peace, there is something you feel deep inside your soul. It says something, not to you but to the fields with the green paddy around, to the golden light that falls on them, to the wind that makes you feel its touch, to the birds flying back to their nests and to their dark silhouettes casted by the twilight. You are silent when your heart speaks and you just listen to its conversations. It was strange that I noticed the big Christmas trees in my neighbourhood now, when the festive season has arrived. I guessed where my eyes were during the rest of the year. I might have noticed them but just enough to ignore later. So Christmas was near.

The evening street has just a few labours busy in constructing new houses, two or three housewives watering the saplings in their kitchen gardens and of course, children playing along the road in the vacant plots among the happy bushes who live there in peace. It is always a blissful sensation when you see children playing and shouting while having fun in ecstasy. You are happy and always wish if you could be one of them now, because children have innocent hearts, unaware of the worldly pleasures and troubles, away from jealousy and pain and because you know you were like them once. Yesterday, I heard them calling me. I smiled at them while walking straight to my destination. When I returned, they ran at their full speeds to catch me. I stopped when I saw them coming and this brought a big smile on my face. They all were shouting “Didi, please sign kar do”. Then I noticed that every one of them had a copy and pen in their hands. They needed my signature. I felt like a star. Suddenly a little girl said “Didi, aish karo, aapka autograph le rahe hain sab”. Smart kids, the 21st century’s rocking generation! Trying to follow the so-called adult scenario of looking into the things deeply before acting on them, I asked why on the earth was I getting so much attention. One of the smart boys said “It’s from the school didi, for Christmas. We need to show that we have collected so many blessings”. Nice way boy. Why don’t I have such ideas? I signed all of their notebooks and to my surprise I was the 220th person to do so. So they have already collected many blessings. I thought if I would have asked for autographs now I would have just one and that too mine! After making them happy I was on my way when I saw two shy girls standing at the corner of another street, again with copies in their hands. I smiled and waited if I will be experiencing a starry welcome again or not. I guessed right and I was approached by those sweet girls asking me to sign their copies. This time I was the 93rd person. I asked to which school she belonged and why she needed my signatures. She timidly turned around but since I was not going to return her notebook without a reply, she answered “Didi Christmas hai”. So? Again a shy smile and she said “To isse wish puri hoti hai”. I smiled and gave her the notebook back.

Her words felt as a blow to me. “Isse wish puri hoti hai”.  There came a flashback of what we used to do in our school days. This little thing, collecting the largest number of signatures, was the biggest victory of the entire life and that joy on winning was unbeatable by any other pleasure on this earth. What she would have wished for? May be a bicycle or a new pencil box? Or maybe she wished to find the lost collection of her Barbie make-up kit or the lost cap of her favourite pen? These could have been her wishes or may be something more precious to her, belonging to her fantasy world. I thought I should ask her but dropped the idea when I recalled how close these wishes are to a child’s heart. I was shocked. How can I forget what Christmas is all about when during my childhood I have waited the whole year for the festival to come? When even I knew Santa is no one, I wished if he could come. Christmas is all about wishes, about hope. Asking God to give us what we want the most, if he is there to listen to us. I wondered whether I am left with no such wishes apart from asking for peace. Is there nothing else I want that can make me happy and fill in the joy that a child feels? I realized how much I have grown old.

Take this resolution this Christmas that you will keep alive the child in your hearts, even when the sky will fall on you and the world drags the earth beneath your feet. Ask a wish this Christmas and wait for Santa to come. Wait until your wish comes true and when it comes, celebrate it the way you did when you were a child.

Merry Christmas to everyone!

Colours

Someday, someone gave me the news that they found their true love and are now the most happiest together. At the same time, I saw the faintest silver lining for someone to find love disappearing into the darkness in the ugliest way possible. I was the one to choose whether to feel happy or sad.

The afternoon sky that day was deep and transparent blue; the crystal blue sky filled with freshness and purity. It was after a very long time I saw an inexplicably beautiful evening sky with all possible combinations of blue, orange, pink and black. I stood looking the horizon for long, just staring at the sky. I could see the colours growing dark, blending in dusky blue with ease. I suddenly found it difficult to see them amalgamate. A strange feeling made me uncomfortable, but I stood there. I wanted to see the night coming. I wanted to know why

the evening greeted it happily. I stood. Slowly the colours were gone and the pure black night came with peace, bringing all the power to engulf every single ray. It seemed that the night sharply cuts through the time, slowly, mingling the pain with the joy so there is no screaming, no noise and the silence prevails. Then what do you do? Close your eyes to everything around you, to everything that happened with you that day, to everything you think and feel, to whatever you did or wanted to do. You close your eyes and go to sleep to a land that you own, where nothing from past or future can enter and where you forget what the present is. You go to a deep sleep, sometimes without even knowing when you will wake up and without making any plans for tomorrow.

And then, you open your eyes after a very long time and see the sunshine, making everything around you shimmer. The morning came far long back when you were sleeping. You didn’t noticed when the first ray of that day brightened your eyes and whispered in your ears to wake up. You see the light approaching now as it’s everywhere. You want to stand in front of the window to see the sun. You try to gather all the strength to realize that this is a new day with a new beginning, that this is a new start and that you have to move on today. You move on. It will be difficult to collect the broken pieces of hope, to join them together and fit yourself into the suit, but you will do it sometime and you will move on. Again you will live through the day and night. You will look up at the sky sometimes and sometimes you will close your eyes but you will still move on. I figured out soon that this is what life is all about. Nothing remains forever, nor the day and nor the night. You just experience, learn, act and move on.

I will mention two lines from one of my favourite ghazal, though I found of no use even if understood, as no one can help in making them ever come true. But, if faith and hope are all holding this life, there is no harm in living by them.

“Jin charaagon ko hawaon ka koi khauf nahi,

Un charaagon ko hawaon se bachaya jaye…”

Terra Incognita

To cry for a past that was never a time,

to die for an urge that never was born,

to miss a being that never existed,

to suffer a suffering never created,

to live a life that cannot  be lived,

to feel a touch never been done,

to cry on lonely nights alone,

to be a part of the one unreal,

to wish a wish that can never come true,

but just to wish for an illusion;

to choke the throat to suffocate the death,

to scream a pain aloud

when even the soul is deaf to it,

to hold a thing so tight in hands

while losing it forever,

to beg to die for living a moment

which is lost in far eternity,

to go so deep to never return,

to wish for an end at the beginning itself,

to just dream to live and to live in dreams,

is nothing but the unknown destiny of love.

Wanderer

Oh! ye the one who holds this world,

Come back on this earth where you belong to.

The wings of invisible hope that you cast,

The fire unburned within your soul,

The faith, the unreal, the superficial;

Thou shall never seek.

Come back, ‘coz their’s is a barren land,

Moist is the soil with blood of feelings.

You walk in a swamp and sink beneath,

Feet upon you, and you’ll bleed.

Thy won’t be yours as never were their own.

Walk , as you’ll not see me here again.

Come for the last souvenir, before it dies,

And nothing will remain but your own demise.