Friday, July 29, 2011

My Little Wonders - I

I grew up rolling and strolling with a handful of little wonders. The biggest of them were the fireflies, the winged beetles that used to light up the dark lanes of the city suburb where I grew up. It was more of a village far away from the city's electricity distribution network and reach of city lights. I have fresh memories of rolling and playing on the grass covered streets watching random flights of fireflies on moonlight nights. Excitement would touch heights when you wake up in the middle of the night to find one or two of them inside the house, killing the darkness with their random luminescence. For some time transparent polythene bags stuffed with caught fireflies used to be our torch lights. But we decided to give up the enjoyment of stuffing them in polythene bags after somehow we realized that we were making them to suffer a lot. It was probably after an elderly man sprinkled wired the thought in our minds, "Just imagine how your mother will feel if someone stuffs you in a polythene packet like that!"

Many years later in high school I came to know secretes of these seemingly innocent, flying glow lights. Sitting in science class one day I learnt that 'the glowing wonder' was in fact a 'conspicuous crepuscular use of bioluminescence to attract mates or prey'. However this knowledge no way diminished the sense of wonder about fireflies I have been nourishing from my childhood.

On my hometown visits I try to find any traces of those 'darkness softened by moonlight and random firefly glows'. After three decades the city now has expanded its tentacles gobbling the suburb that I grew up in. Those dark grass covered lanes have become parts of the busy city lanes. The growing concrete jungle has killed all the bushes that used to house my little wonders. The halogen bulbs that flood the streets now a day has gone the last mile to disarm them from their means of existence, 'the conspicuous crepuscular use of bioluminescence to attract mates or prey'. My imagination comes back with only two options, either they have been crushed under the iron wheels of the construction machineries or they have opted to vacate their homes looking for places that still houses that soft darkness of moonlight nights far away from the my city lights…I can feel the emptiness grow bigger and bigger with the thought of the lost wonders.

The list of wonders is not a very long one, but its growing, and the last addition to it is my little child. More than half a year back she crept into our lives and flooded us with excitement. I am sequencing my thoughts and words to depict this wonder that has killed all possible reasons for silence and emptiness…

Saturday, January 30, 2010

The dream is gone!

It often makes me wake up with a jerk. “Had a dream of the big rat again?” asks wife with tone of absolute certainty. She has got used to it. I dream myself in sleep when a big rat hits rushing from the other side of the bed and I roll down the bed to be dropped on the floor. I can feel the momentous but immense feeling of weightlessness, while on the free fall, till I hit the floor.

Display intercom flashed “Boss calling”. “Can you come to my room?”…I found Vivek was also in the room. “Close the door”. While following his instructions, a felt the big question mark that popped up somewhere in my mind. This is something he hardly does, closing the door while talking to his “team“. I took the seat next to Vivek. “You must be wondering why boss has called both us together today!” A dramatic pause! Vivek and I looked at each other’s face with extreme curiosity. “Why???” I felt the question mark growing bigger and bigger, as if to explode out of my head and almost shrank to zero when boss’s voice broke the momentous but immense silence. “I have decided to move on”. I felt my look moving away from Boss’s face to the blank wall on the left, with a jerk. There was the same feeling, the feeling of a free fall…as if someone removed the floor below my chair…emptiness that grew fast somewhere inside the heart…”my decision will not have any significant impact on your positions or career...don’t worry”. While I heard what boss was saying with a complete mum, I could feel the question mark inside taking different shape and size at different points. “Am I worried?”…I am not. But I am sad, sad about losing the nearness of one whom you feel proud of calling “Boss”. This is second time I am seeing him saying bye while he vanishes into the dense fog of uncertainty, making everyone in his sphere of influence share the emptiness that has grown into my heart.

Slowly my heart will accept the hardness of the reality...the emptiness will shrink...it will be the start of a new walk…sometimes smiling, remembering the good times that passed by…sometimes smiling, imagining the paths meeting somewhere again…

Meeting is parting…

Sunday, April 05, 2009

Thousands of miles away, yet...

I do not remember what it was that made me realise, 'I am moving too fast'. I pulled in the breaks to a jerking halt.

I looked back to check how far I have travelled...the meter says I did travel a lot. But how can I still see the 'square one' clearly with my naked eyes? And where's the trace of 'me' that I am looking for? Why can't I see even the vague impression when I look forward? Was my journey like a wind mill? ' Running fast, but travel no far'?

It was some twenty years back. Just like many others, I asked the simple three word question ' Who am I?...Finding no one around to answer, I started my journey on foot. A search, for an identity...

And now when I glance back, sitting still on the corner of the tranqil lake, I can recollect answers to many questions that I have gathered during the journey so far...I know what I am, I know what I can do, I know what I can't...I know what I have gathered, what I had gathered and lost while running fast; some of them knowingly, some of them unknowing; but I still don't know myself...I'm yet to test the answer to that simple question...perhaps I need to be back to the square one and start the journey again, on a new way!

Friday, July 04, 2008

On the way back...

"A good traveler has no fixed plans, and is not intent on arriving.”
Lao Tzu




Don’t know whether we were good travelers, but seemed to be a little bit of it. We left home with the idea of exploring the enchanting land of Palampur, without knowing what plans the almighty had for us.
While negotiating with the Taxi operators in the Pathankot railway station, we ended up charting out a plan to first visit places in McLoad Ganj and Dharamshala (the land of Buddhist monks) and explore the vast green lands of Palampur on the way back. Though we maintained this travel plan till the end, the tit bits were changed many times in between with many omissions and additions. And at the end of the journey, when we were back to square one, there was consensus amongst us, it was a journey well made.


“I see my path, but I don't know where it leads. Not knowing where I'm going is what inspires me to travel it.” Rosalia de Castro




Travelling on the misty roads to Mcload Ganj, I realized the saying, ‘the journey, not the arrival that matters’. The suns playing ‘hide and seek’ among the trees in the foggy forests on both the sides of the road, touch of the ‘seemingly chilled but no not so cold’ fog on the face, rain drops lashing…it was a path to rejuvenation. Every moment I kept struggling to keep content my heart seeking to jump out and to vanish in the other side of the white vile of fog. The time was short and we had “milesto go before…”

On the way back, I made a promise to the misty land. “I’ll talk about you a lot. I’ll nourish you in the coziness of my heart. I’ll come back to you again.”

Sayonara!!!

Saturday, July 21, 2007

Rays of hope...

These days,
I can hear my heart saying
its time
you confront your life,
its time
you nourish dreams
fill some colours
to the grey grey world

And I followed it, added a colour, a crimson colour full of life. I can feel the spaces inside my heart getting filled with sight and smell of rose and sounds of echoing laughter. I can feel it growing fonder, quieter, warmer then ever. I am struggling for words to paint my heart. There are thousands of them.As it usually happens, in these moments I find it difficult to choose the best of them...all of them dearer, all of them nearer...I am sitting quite till they grow strong enough to break the barricade erected long time back. I am waiting for the day they unfold their wings again, to touch the vast blueness above.

These days, I can hear my heart saying the day is not far...