When I came to know
The truth behind
My recent misery
I laughed at myself
It was not a misery actually
But an illusion
Created by my own mind
My pain is gone
that I can’t explain
And you’ll only
Know of it soon
When you’ll go through
Animesh had never expected it. He was totally lost looking at her . His eyes could not believe what was happening before him. The day was little hazy. It was drizzling outside the Blue Wave Cafe where he was sitting with Anamika. Orchestra was playing Bob Dylon’s blowing in the wind but at that time his mind was senseless, his ears were not receptive to any sound, any music. The only sound which was occupying space in his mind were his random thoughts which he dangerously thought and un-thought an hour ago. Yes just an hour ago, he was in office. NO, not exactly in office but in a little dark space at the corner of the office where his colleagues often smoked cigarettes. Office hours were over so there was no one.
He was restless, frustrated with his body shimmering inside and out. He took out his cigarette pack but there was no cigarette left in pack that he could smoke so he just started playing with his lighter, switching it off and on, again and again. In past month, at least ten times he made his mind that he would propose Anamika, but every time he had to take back his steps because he could never gather enough strength to do it. Sometimes even he thought if he would ever be able to express his feelings to Anamika.
He had an intrinsic fear that if Anamika told him no what he would do.His life would be totally purposeless. She was the only friend of him in this unforgiving city. He met her when both were attending a conference on child rights. First they exchanged only numbers but gradually they shared every secrets, pain, happiness, laughter of each other. But he was still unsure if he ever propose her, she would not take it otherwise.
These thoughts, slightly insipid and insane, had turned him into an insomniac. His half-lit face in dim light of lighter was expressionless and clueless. For a second he even thought what would happen with him if one day Anamika leaves the city. Then he would be same like a green tree which had been cut by its roots. Every time he thought about it, he felt a chilling down in his spines.
Every time he imagined her face, he resolved again and again to have a discussion with her on this topic. Her innocent smile was overpowering his restraint. And suddenly, and yes just an hour ago, finally he decided to be a gambler with putting all his good time spent with her on stake to propose her. He stood up energetically and threw his empty Wills Classic pack in dustbin. He searched if his mobile was in his pocket, not at his desk, as he usually kept it there, so he could call Anamika. Yes, it was there.
He took out his mobile and dialed her number. He never used his mobile phonebook to dial her number. He remembered it as if it was his date of birth. He was deeply scared if she didn’t take her call. But after two or three rings, he heard a relieving voice on other side. He could not be able to speak anything for sometime. In a choked voice he could only manage to say that he wanted to meet her and it was urgent. As she gave her nod to meet him at The Blue Wave Cafe near her office, he disconnected the phone and rushed to washroom. He hurriedly dressed his ruffled hair and buttoned his shirt.
Just in few minutes, he was out of office. He hired an auto rickshaw even without asking fare. He halted briefly at a jewellery shop and bought a diamond studded gold ring paying through credit card. The blue Wave Cafe was not far from his office but at that time it seemed to him as he was travelling in a desert with no clear destination in sight. It had started raining. The cold misty wind was blowing, giving comfort to his agitated mind.
It had taken twenty minutes to reach the Cafe. He paid the bill to autowallah and walked towards Cafe with long steps. Suddenly he stopped just near the main entrance and took a deep breath. He took a glance into Cafe through its transparent glasses. He watched towards the couch where he and Anamika used to sit after office hours. Yes, she was there, reading a book titled In The Valleys Of Shadows by Abhay Sapru.
She was calm and composed, wearing yellow-green Salwaar-Kurta with blue polka dots all over its border. A bunch of hairs was falling over her eyes obstructing her read. Her one hand was busy arranging those stubborn hairs to side of her ear. She had just finished a cup of green tea and murmuring some passage from the book . He opened the door and went straight to the couch. He sat before her without making any noise.
He could not remember what happened with him in past half an hour. Now his eyes were set at watching Anamika. He never imagined that Anamika’s reaction would be like this on his proposal. It was hard to believe for him that he was looking at the same face he was so used to. When he proposed her, she was in a utter shock for some time. Within moments tears started falling from her eyes like a cascade with her body intermittently sighing with relief.
It took no time when a smile christened her tear-stained face. Her eyes were red rimmed, but the dark liquid it held, still shone nonetheless. And, then she burst into round of tears, causing injustice to the pretty smile she wore a few seconds ago.
He was standing beside her, studied her, unsure of what had just happened. He watched closely, every time she haphazardly brushed away the tears that fell in abundance. When she regained her composure, she would tuck the silky ebony strands of hair that escaped her almost neat chignon behind her ear.
And then rub furiously at her nose with the handkerchief he had so graciously lent her. He had not known what to expect. Well, he did expect tears. But he was not prepared for the storm, that he received instead. Damn, women and their emotions. Animesh patted the woman’s back and tenderly brushed his lips across her forehead. But that did not help, in fact that made it worse.
She clung to him and dampened his favourite cotton shirt. He should have never came straight out and asked her. Animesh cursed himself mentally. For sometimes he thought internet would have been a more suitable mean. Sensible people relied on such technology. Yet, he had to be old-fashioned Animesh and tell it like it is. He closed his eyes and embraced her thin frame tenderly.
He wished this awkward moment would end so they could get on with their lives. He opened his eyes when he felt her small hand tap his shoulder. He gazed into the woman’s eyes feeling a sudden sadness creep up on him. Just then, a radiant smile replaced the unmistakable innocence in her eyes, as she removed the dainty ring from her left hand and placed it into the palm of his hand. And then very sweetly, she added, “Please Animesh, one more time, please ask me one more time? He glanced at the glittering piece of jewellery in his hand and boldly repeated his proposal. “Will you marry me Anamika?”
In a bright summer afternoon,
when a gusty wind blows my window,
I establish my connection with outer world.
Standing besides the opened window,
I can hear a confusion of sounds,
the loud talks,
quarreling in neighborhood,
an engine letting go off steam,
the cries of playing children,
free laughter of beautiful girls,
the rumble of a passing lorry,
the buzzing of bees,
and the strident call of the crows.
Amidst all this noise,
a silence starts creeping into my soul
unsought and uninvited .
I was lying, thinking, sobbing
With a thought hammering my mind
I was sweating like a pig with loose veins
My blood became blue, thick like a glue
Heart was aching, quivering, shivering
Eyes were moisten
With thirst thrashing my stomach
My ventricles lay in silence
I came up with one thing
But nobody Can make my pain thinner
Which has turned me into a insomniac
I could decipher the cause of my pain
It is my logic that is misunderstood,
I’ve to do things for my own good
I opened my eyes, swept my tears
For my future,
I’ve to be prepare
Last night when
I was lying, thinking, sobbing
Aruna wrapped in green pinkish sari gazes out from a window in a seaside hotel, feeling the faint breeze against her face. Her one hand is suspended on a grill, with other hand she is caressing her hairs that are fluttering in the way of cool breeze. Her eyes are shut, she is feeling the white sand warm between her bare toes although she is confined to her hotel room. The place is beautiful beyond belief, she can see ultramarine sea with roaring streams. Some bare-chested Foreign tourists are playing beach volleyball, jumping and screaming. Some local boys are diving into the sea.
These intermingling scenes can alleviate any pain but her grief thickens as she remembers the last time she had been here. A series of past events moves before her eyes.
She had married Vivek right here on this spot three years ago to the day. Dressed in a simple white dress, miniature white roses attempting to tame her long dark curls, Aruna had been happier than she had ever thought possible. Vivek was even less formal but utterly irresistible in creased summer trousers and a loose white cotton shirt. His dark hair slightly ruffled and his eyes full of adoration as his looked at his bride to be.
They tightly held their hands and laughed at the sheer joy of being young, in love and staying in a five-star resort on a seaside. They sat together on beach. They promised each other to be together forever. They planned their children, two she said, he said four so they compromised on three (two girls and a boy of course); where they would live, the traveling they would do together – it was all certain, so they had thought then.
But that seemed such a long time ago now. A lot can change in just a few years – a lot of heartache can change a person and can break even the strongest ties, break even the deepest love. Three years to the day and she has returned, though this time for revisiting those days and forget them forever.
Aruna leaves out a sigh that is filled with pain and regret. What can she do but move on, find a new life and new dreams? – the old one is beyond repair. How can this beautiful place, with its lush green coastline, eternity of azure blue sea and endless sands be a place for the agony she feels now?
Three years ago, it was the same beach where Vivek stood watching her from the edge of the palm trees. She was taking a bathe inside the sea. Vivek couldn’t take his eyes away of her. As a professional photographer Vivek had taken some great pictures of her. She was beautiful, with her slim figure dressed in a loose flowing cotton dress, her crazy hair and bright blue eyes not far off the colour of the sea itself. Although later Vivek had told her that it was her loneliness and intensity that attracted him. Vivek approached her when she had come out of the sea. They had few drinks at the bar. Amazingly within days of meeting they decided to marry each other.
Everything was dreamlike for Aruna for next 2 years. Things started to change when she was six months pregnant. She was the happiest she had ever been when the pains had started. At that time she was staying with her mother as Vivek was working out-of-town. He hadn’t made it back in last 4 months. As the date of delivery approaching, she was desperately waiting for him. She even tried to visit Vivek who was living in another town. But all it was in vain as she didn’t know the address of Vivek and his new adopted family. She never believed when her relatives told her that Vivek married another woman because of her wealth only. She was older than him and had two children with her previous marriage. She later came to know that Vivek was totally bankrupted and frustrated when he had left the town. Many creditors were after him.
Aruna could not believe this was the only reason. How could he left on this petty reasons. But all her longings for Vivek died down, when She didn’t hear anything about him even when she delivered a dead baby. She often remember her mother’s words ” Don’t ever believe a man and if believe, try to test him anyway.” Her mother’s advice always fell on her deaf ear but she could see now how much it was true. Whenever She thought Vivek actually never loved her and it was just an infatuation on the part of him, a simmering tickle shivered down her spine. She wanted to yell at him if she ever get a chance to meet him. She had left with her only her mother’s old decaying house and some archaic furniture.
It was sure She had to start a fresh if she wanted to live. That incident had changed Aruna completely. She now began to hate him, for not being there, for not hurting as much he could but most of all for her tiny baby boy that she held for just three hours before the doctor took him away. All through the following months, she had withdrawn from her husband, family, friends. Not wanting to recover from the pain she felt – that would have been a betrayal of her son.
Looking up in the past, Aruna can see her pain but now she doesn’t feel alone anymore, she has left the unbearable burden. In start it was quite difficult for her to detach herself form those memories. But she recovered from it anyway. She gradually begins to believe that maybe she has a lonely future, but she will make it strong and enjoyable. After all these things, She does not want any man in her life.
She does not want to shed her invaluable tears anymore, instead she wants to make all her dream come true that often sparks in her hazy eyes. Aruna closes the window as she closes past chapters in her life. Now she is embarking on a new life and that is hers and only hers.