Monday, 9 June 2014

Faces of Emotions

Emotions are fluid: they melt, they flow, they solidify, they harden... It all reflects upon the conditions we find ourselves in, the experiences we gather as life progresses. Sometimes we cry, sometimes we get angry, sometimes, we feel pain, bitterness, angst... and sometimes we really feel over the moon. Sometimes we show it, sometimes we don't. Some of our faces reflect the emotions swelling inside us, some of us don't, and yet it is universal: suffering is what makes our emotions flow. We do not intend to, consciously, but subconsciously we let it go, we let it express on the outside.

We let it flow, we let it drop, we let it freeze, we let it pour, we let it drip, one by one, we let it swell, splash, crack... against the inevitable in a fit of bitterness, we let it melt again, and again...

We yearn for something, we hope, we dream, we plan and yet we live our lives without choices: life is the strange bird which flies with the wind. It knows how to beat its wings but it cannot go against the flow. No way! It cannot be dictated, directed, channelized, controlled: it just happens. The flow then, in a sense, dictates how its wings beat. If there were such a market where emotions could be sold and bought, if it was really possible for such a market to exist, what emotions would you have? What would you choose? What would you go for?? Which one would you want to feel???How much would you pay? How much would you give, how would you bargain, on the Emotic Street of life???

.............................   ***   ............................

(7 September 2004)

In the market place
where everything is sold
beyond all bargain
are faces on display –
rich face and poor face,
glad face or sad one,
dark or light, young or old
stare wide and plain.
State your choice
and take your way.
Which one would you buy?

Beyond the crowd
of ignorant men
away from the scene
are faces on display –
hard face and soft face,
loathsome or lovely,
artless or guilty, humble or proud
inquire again and again.
as you choose
so you pay.
Which one would you buy?

In that canvas of life
where appearance deceives
and sympathies vary
behind the black curtain
are faces on display –
dead face and live face,
sweet face or bitter one,
welcome or hostile, pleasant or angry;
Which one would you love?
Which one would you see?

Here in this market 
come and buy me, me, me! they say.

Hopeful or forlorn, beautiful or ugly,
familiar or foreign
faces to play –
false one or true face
wait upon, wait again
for another bargain;
take your pick
and carry away.
Which one would you buy?

..........................   ***   ...............................

(This composition first appeared in the anthology Dandelion in 2006. The one appearing above has been slightly edited and altered for the purpose of clarity. Copyright reserved with the author.

The image used in this post is a photo montage created by the author using some of the author's google plus followers. The final image has been flipped and inverted. The author thanks and apologizes at the same time for including some and not including others in the montage due to space constraints. No harm intended in any manner, whatsoever.)

Thursday, 17 April 2014

Healing The Heart

Healing The Heart

I am really tired: tired of the way life has to be dragged on. I sometimes wonder whether it was a really bad day, a really bad hour, a really bad time I was born to feel like this. Maybe the planets, the constellations were misaligned exactly at the hour I was born. I really wonder at the mysterious forces that have not worked for me, ever, the way that would have made me feel otherwise.

What would I do to change? Hhhmmmmm....!

I ponder upon various outlets from this impasse. I don't really like to live here: I would love to quit. Let all things be as they choose to be: I would really love to hit the road!!!

I calculate. How much would it take for me get a bicycle and travel inland? To places? To people? Never staying at one place, always on the move... To feel the pulse of life, to feel the beat, the rhythm, the music that I have lost far behind... If I were to die on the road, it would just be fine. I would have to anyway, somewhere. And if I lived, and if my mind were to change somehow, return back to where I sprouted out from?

Hhhmmmmm.....!! It wouldn't be simple, it wouldn't be easy. A year's journey would mean six months going one way and six months getting back, if I survived the ordeal, the quest of life, that is. And I calculate, that one year's journey would, could, cost anywhere between 10 thousand to 12 thousand... The visa fees, the return expenses, the roadblocks, the detours... the breakdowns and the unexpected... A lot of discouragements along. Yet I aim for the lower figure, of course, and still...

Are there no encouragements?
Of course there are, sure. But it depends on humanity.
It is quite strange to know there are hundreds of different people but only two types of humanity. Those who have cannot offer much and those who don't are simply unable to. It is poverty deep inside the soul, not a physical one, that determines who is who. Yes, I need to go searching in the most unlikely of places to find a good one that really matters. Here is an analogy: if I go into a bank I cannot find any money, for that I need to go to the street. I need to go to the poorest hut to find the richest of people that really matter. And that is what I intend to do. But... 

But... That still would be an unimaginable sum of money; an awful lot... in US dollars.

Haven't counted even a quarter of that sum in my life, carried far far less, ever, seen only a fraction.

How old am I? Well, I have pretty much passed the mid point of my life, I guess.

But the wound needs to be healed, the broken pieces need to be glued back together... The tears need to be stitched and sewn, fixed in some way. The heart has to be brought back to look like a heart, to feel like one. 

Stupid fellow! It's the bike that needs to be bought first, and the gear...!!

Forget it. Not possible.
What then?
Why not share the pieces if I can't find the whole?
Why not feel the heart of humanity if I can't feel my own?
Why not be human?
Why not beat the drum if I can't play the music?

As long as I can. As far as I can afford to. What I have, if I have.  The basic is there: some rice, some lentils, a few spoonfuls of tea, about a cup of sugar, about the same amount of salt, pepper, turmeric, ginger, garlic... a bed, a room, a stove, about a quarter of a cylinder full of gas, a few pots and pans, some plates... a few books, even. The PET bottle that originally contained a familiar cold-drink is empty: sorry, no cooking oil. Most often, there is not enough water except for drinking and it isn't significant how often I take a bath: basically I can go days more, even a week or two, than usual. Does it matter if I smell a little? No...! We all do, and if I can find a spray or deodorant then it can do the trick and save the uneasy feeling.  Somedays I go hungry. But if you can adjust, you can probably find almost anything...

Interested? Come then, and be a part of me, my life. Give some (don't be ashamed, it's a choice, not a compulsion), take some (feel free), we can get along, I suppose. We laugh if we can, if we can't we cry. As long as you are human, as long as I am human...  

May be you know how to stitch broken pieces, how to glue them back together, how to sew... Probably I can fix my heart in your company, if you don't mind.

My couch is available on humanitarian grounds.
What do you say?

(This photo, by George Hodan and sourced from publicdomainpictures, reflects the difficult-to-understand yet universal human symbolism signifying submission, help and forgiveness... No religious bias intended except that of humanity. )

Saturday, 22 March 2014

The Mirage of Happiness

The Mirage of Happiness

It is indeed very difficult, almost impossible, to come back from the dead and it has taken a rather long time. Just a few days back someone had suggested, "You need to 'hook things out', you know... if you can't get it with straight fingers."

"Never learnt to bend (my) fingers like the politicians. Now at this stage in life when my hairs are greying over....," I told him. He giggled but then suddenly I brightened up. "You know sometimes I feel like I'm being lured to the end of the line. One day the Big Angler, instead of finding the bait gone, shall surely hook me up like a minnow or a carp. That'll be the only hooking up I'll experience now, I think," I added.

He burst out to his seams with laughter.

Enchained, paralyzed, restricted, caged... I live at the end of a blind alley, if I live at all.

Do I cry over it? 
I do. What else is left there to do except lament over things and events that could have taken a far better turn and might have made heaven possible but instead chose not to.

Is there independence? 
No way! The Bird of Freedom is enchained.

Is there hope? 
A tiny flickering of light is still visible far, far away. That's all.

How do I live then? 
Moment to moment just as I die with every beat of my heart. I don't kill myself outright. I feel like I need to suffer what others can't.

I don't know. I just feel it in my head, feel it deep inside.

How can I continue like this? 
There are dozens of ways I cannot continue along. What remains in the end is the only possibility, no? The wind can flatten me down to the ground, crush me. But it won't break the chain, carry me off. And so I remain... where I have been chained.

I oftentimes pull the hairs out of my head, bite hard and swallow harder. It's unfortunate that I haven't gone insane so far but that would have been better I suppose. And yet to preserve my sanity I keep thinking about the possibilities: what would I do if I had all the things that you have? All the opportunities, the doors as well as the windows?

And perhaps that makes me who I am.

Do I not worry? 
I certainly do. If humanity were not to worry about things that could go wrong, then progress would have been impossible and everything would have gone backwards in time. Neither mistakes could have been avoided, nor disasters averted.

There are regrets, sure. When limitations confine you, there are fewer options to pick up, possibilities get reduced. Oftentimes one just has to face it all and suffer hopelessly. But perhaps that is what it is that makes a man(kind). No ego, no pride... Just a humble being with profound realizations that there are many things that cannot ever be changed, many events that cannot ever be undone, changed or chosen.

And these are integral parts of life. And that is one good thing that has to be lived, dull or colourful. As it comes. The question is not what comes but how one faces it. Yes there are certainly ways to stand and face the tribulations like a man(kind).

So, even if it be just glasses of water, let's clink them and celebrate. At least for a moment, at least for the time being, and as long as we're together. 


[The passage or passages presented above are taken from a book by the author. The emoticon has been taken from google search and I hold no copyrights to it: it belongs to the original creator and/or copyright holder who I do not know. It has been used here for purely literary/educational purposes. When claimed, credits shall be duly given/made to the rightful owner.]