Tuesday, June 27, 2006

The Swing: Second

I felt oftentimes, that a dusk has many beginnings. As if fragmented into different spaces, in different times it lingers in its own dillemma of the dull, the bright and the dark. However, when I needed most to feel that I'm alive I waited for the dusk. Probably it was the only certain dillemma that needed no solution. This was one of those dusks. I remember being insane when I stepped inside the dusk and I remember my forgetting the remembrances of my insanity when I stepped out. I attained perfection in insanity.... Perhaps, I'm making things a bit too much complicated. Just give me one more chance and I'll start from the beginning.

I felt oftentimes, that a dusk has many beginnings. My life had only one.

The swing in the storm. No one sat on it. The frenziac winds played with it. The swing - a libertine. It swimmed in the storm's lap. And invented all possible directions in which it had never been. And those directions that didn't exist started calling me. I ran to the swing. I ran through the storm.

The winds increased as I climbed onto the swing. I looked at the direction in which I used to stand. I stared. And I found myself standing over there, looking at me on the swing. Looking past me on the transparent swing. I had become weightless; bodyless; mindless. The storm passed through me. I had ceased existing. And thus my life began.

I became the master of the swing since then. I could convince the swing to move in any direction I wished. Make it follow untraceable paths. Negotiate it to move to a space from where it need not return to its point of origin. I started telling children -

"A swing is a staircase of unending. It has no bottom, no crux."

They listened mesmerized. They tried to find those spaces. But found the swing to be unfairly similar to the cradle of their lesser childhood. It moved back and forth, and went nowhere.

The swing took me alone farther and farther ahead as I climbed the stairs and reached to a colorful tent. I little knew then how those colors would never leave my face ever again....

Monday, June 26, 2006

The Swing: First

A storm had broken in somehow, into one of my childhood days.

It wasn't meant to be there. It should have been a clear evening in the park, like all evenings in the park are meant to be. There ought to have been children playing like every evening ... with the swing. And I was meant to be standing in one corner watching them, with the last rays of the sun glimmering on their eyebrows. I would have watched each of them taking someone else's turn to climb onto the swing.

Complaining, shouting, fighting, embracing, smiling.

I would be left alone, wondering why I should not join them. ..... wondering, perhaps, too long unto the evening's end. Recurrent evenings. But this was a different evening.

The promise of a storm. Silence. Empty benches. A transparent swing. An undisturbed stasis. Disturbing.

Perhaps, it had never been an evening. I had invaded the realm of an alien moment with no escape. A part of the day that had never been before. I knew it would choke me. It felt frightening.

When fear sprinkles in your heartbeat, it becomes your heartbeat. Suddenly you are not frightened of your fear anymore. You live in it. Strange forces. Strong. I waited for the storm.

"A storm will fulfill me, my half-being."

I little cared for what was to happen. I only thought of an unknown future. And the storm waited for all my gripping realizations. I watched spellbound at the changing colors over the horizon. My unchanging stance. The execution of an end. The storm infused slowly into the calm. But as it touched my skin it seemed, as it seems with all storms, invariably, sudden.

Then, for the first time in my life, I became conscious of an existence that would change my life forever. I felt the sonata. The music of the wind.

Sunday, June 25, 2006

The Swing: Prologue

Once, I wrote on a piece of paper. On one of its faces I scribbled the word - 'Reality', on the other - 'Imagination'. Then, I left it to the winds. It went and dropped into a river. One of its faces was washed by the water. Taken in by the river. Its alphabets gone. The other face remained.

I really don't know which face remained. But, all the same, I kept living by that face. Some of the people I met in my separate lives thought imagination was my name. Others believed it was just a mask.

Sometimes, I felt I had left reality completely for imagination. At other times, I felt imagination has left me completely for reality. Actually it was a swing, I kept moving back and forth, going nowhere. And the swing became my life.

Once, a lady I had little known, had been sitting on a swing, looking at the sky, musing. Sometimes, she was no longer awake. At other times, she was no longer asleep. She lived the life of the swing for those few moments. She oscillated between the existent and the non-existent. Later she asked me how long could that moment have been existing for she had fell asleep.

When we sit on a swing what we really cover is time. But we also cover ourselves in that time. And we become beginners. Children.

Fly away, children, fly away.

This lady had opened the gate to her primordial self. And times don't exist when we are children. For time cannot stay where beauty is. This moment is the stream that runs to eternity and cannot be measured in time. And she had really lived a baby's life - waking and sleeping ..... without a pinch of deliberation.

My life in the swing had also begun thus. And I promise to start from the beginning.

Saturday, June 24, 2006

The Swing: Introduction

A few days in my life are recurrent. On these days I know all events that are to follow, so that I could, not only, manage my actions accordingly but also those around me. On these days I can catch an old lady by her hand and say -- "Don't cross the road or you'll meet an accident in which you die." And thereby, I not only save her life but also stop the day from recurring.

The rest of the days in my life are not mine. I wake up everyday in someone else's life. Perhaps, I live parallel lives.

Perhaps, I keep living a single day, over and over again. In changing contexts, changing spaces.

Perhaps, in one of my lives I bleed; in another I bandage the bleeding.

Perhaps, only in my dreams I'm awake.

Perhaps, my life has become the swing I had chosen for myself.

Thursday, June 22, 2006


Do you remember all the dissimilar shadows you had created the last time you had danced?

Probably not. For when we dance we don't usually expect our shadows to be there. Unlike the times when we are walking through a half-lit, lonely alley, in a dance we assume we are shadowless. Like spirits.

But shadows linger. And this is exactly where my tale starts-

I had once been to a party where I found a lady dancing. She was dancing alone slowly and gracefully. Guests were watching her. And I, as you must have guessed, was watching her shadow. How gracefully it moved and changed shape and assumed better beauties. The shadow captured all her postures. The lady was dancing beautifully and she was drenched in its rhythm. But then, a different realm was also calling her in. And this is the realm that I like to call -- Frenzy. She started defying all music and danced to some silent music of her own --- The musik of dementia.

Long after she stopped dancing, I found all shadows of her dissimilar postures, the insane creation of every possible synchronization of limbs, scattered on the floor. People were walking over them. Their own shadows got super-imposed on them and left. They lingered on the floor and in the minds of those who watched her dance. It was amazing to think of all the shadows she had left behind of herself.

What are shadows but little conquests of darkness? All of us were fading into the darkness. Perhaps, we all realised this. Maybe, thats why all of us left early that evening.

When I returned to that hall a few days later I didn't find the shadows anymore. Perhaps, the house-keeper had sweeped them off, like dead leaves by the roadside.

Tuesday, June 20, 2006


I have two brains. They are paired to think in two separate terms. They often work simultaneously. But it really starts getting difficult when thoughts start jumbling up. These are times when I must surrender.

In my leaving memories, there used to be a river. It kept flowing. Incessantly. Untiring.

In my other memory that refused to leave, there used to be a girl beside its bank. She kept sitting. Incessantly. Untiring.

I could swear that these two memories were unrelated. But they were inseparable. I remember walking to the girl for the first time and asking her - "why are you always sitting over here?" "Need it have a reason?", she looked back at me. "A question can never be an answer to another question." "I don't believe in answers.", she answered, indifferently.

Since then at the beginning of some uncertain dusks, I went and sat beside her. We never spoke. Just watched the water flowing. Listened to its music.

I don't remember when I stopped visiting her. Perhaps, the day I died. Perhaps, the day she did. Perhaps, the day we all do.

The only thing I remember now is that the river was a part of my leaving memories whereas the girl wasn't. Therefore, the river slowly stared fading out. And when the river was no more I watched the girl sitting in front of a defying blankness. Staring at nothing over the horizons. Without the flowing river time no longer moved for her. She sat trapped in a single unending moment .... within one unending heartbeat resided her life. And the sound of that heartbeat was becoming loud. Shrill. Unbearable.

And there was nothing beyond the unbearable. Only a never-ending stretch of endlessness. No more was to be the music of the river. Years later I learnt the scientific name of my guilt that took the river out of her life.

By then, my schizophrenia had already taken her life.

Saturday, June 17, 2006


"Must a risk always be dangerous?" - I remember one of my childhood friends had asked me once. I had found silence that day, for the first time, as an answer. The same silence had frightened me when I tried to go to sleep that night. I had realised I would be unable to take risks for the rest of my life. The silence had promised that I would never be able to recognize a risk. Because risk was just like death. It had no face.

It was from that day that I contacted a disease. An infection called magic. I could do things that other people won't dream of doing and coming out, not just alive but, unhurt. Children loved me because I could do everything. Their parents were afraid of me because I could do anything. Children were not allowed to play with me. But secretly, they met me and they loved it even more, because it was forbidden. Thus, magic was an infection that spread. And soon, all children in the town could do everything.

We had all forgotten fear. Risk had been terminated from our lives. We had become immortals. Little gods.

Thats when the rain came. And our parents told it had brought a disease. But we loved diseases. We thought magic as a disease. It had changed our lives forever. So, we went out in the rain, defying our parents, and embraced one more disease. We were growing up. We thought of it as moving from one disease to another, lives changing again and again like dates on a calender. When people stop growing up their lives don't move, diseases don't change their lives anymore. And they start growing old.

In that season of rains, however, we learnt that diseases were more powerful than we had known. Not only could it change lives but also take them. Children started dying. We saw corpses of little gods removed from their houses. We saw their parents crying. But we also saw our parents cry. They feared our death. The dead and the living alike brought tears in their eyes. The past and the future seemed equally uncertain. For those of us who survived, we kept living in guilt of some indecipherable mistake.

I rejoiced, however. I had found answer to a question asked to me a few years ago by a childhood friend -

"Must a risk always be dangerous?"

"Not as long as you take it for yourself."