Thursday, March 13, 2008

ONCE UPON A SUMMER...

:To Sradha:

the small tea-point and stores nearby the libraray-lawns was filling with people. the sun was again close to the edge of the clouds, and one half of the sky was bright blue. a black couple got out of the shop, with a carry bag stuffed with little nothings, and went striding efficiently away. the young male indonesian who just squeezed out of the library doors stopped, thought for a while, looked puzzled and went back to the library. the two elderly ladies, clerks possibly, sat on, though their coffee cups, empty now, toppled in the late afternoon wind and their paper plates flew down to the lawn.

the dog lay with its chin on the grass and watched an ant hurrying within inches of him.

the baby sparrow that was strutting around came nearer to us and craned its neck to give her a 'hello-how-do-you-do' look.

'look, it's coming our way,' she said, full of tenderness. 'it's a baby.'

'how do you know?'

'can't you see it is?'

'they all look alike to me.'

she said nothing, but began pushing herself inch by inch slowly nearer and nearer towards it so that it would be intersted but not frightened.

the bird was hopping in an experimental way, now. it fluttered cheekily towards her one moment and chirped away the other.

her face was so intent and lit up. moist but warm puffs of wind lifted the curls off her neck and dropped them back. her eyes were closely stuck on the little hopping body on the ground. she would never know that her lips made a curious parting to smile but went together again in caution lest the bird know her joy and power-over her in the game.

suddenly she turned towards me, as if my eyes touched her out of their frolic. the sparrow flew away, the charm that tied it willingly broke.

for the first time since we sat down that afternoon, i broke outside my selfish prisons, and really saw her: the skewed sunlight drenching half her face.

and i saw her not only as she was now, but at some dream-slip second in my past and at the throbbing power-hours of the future. as a feathery promise of light and air, a memory that was ... a thousand memories that shall be...

'it's a nice little bird', i said, and she smiled full at me.

'oh it's so wonderful,' she said, vibrant with pleasure. 'i love this place. i love ...'

And indeed the sun had come out, filling the green garden with summer, making people's faces shine and smile.

13 comments:

vrinda said...

brought back wonderful memories for me too...about lazy evenings and conversations of sweet nothings...

i like the way the last conversation hangs somewhere...hidden in the beauty of the evening...nice read arun chetta...

crumbs said...

memories have a curiously delightful way of functioning right? They jump at you, out of no where, and then linger for sometime before they vanish again into that part of your brain where memories hide. All you are left is a smile and a warm feeling inside :)

it's very nicely written

Kichu & Chinnu said...

Arunetta, this time I've understood every word that you spoke....to look at the little bird through sradhachechi's eyes, and to look at her through your eyes, and to see the afternoon in all its splashes...could feel the vibration of your love in those words....love you both...
smitha

aswathy said...

for all those thousand memories that shall be weaved together, for all those summers and monsoons (kerala special) that shall be enjoyed together, i wish you eternities of sunbeams and moonlight...

ARUN said...

@ vrinda
thank you re...
:)

ARUN said...

@ crumbs
memory is an inexhaustible cloud-stack. we make things out of the bubbles and balloons that sprout. they vanish soon, as you said. and still stir up, in unexpected shots of time, as many forms to identify from, as earlier.
glad that you liked it :)
thanks

ARUN said...

@ kichu&chinnu
hmm at last i made sense to you (:P)

ARUN said...

@ ashwathy
thank you thank you
and may the same monsoon winds breeze your ways too..
:)

anitha said...

arunettaa..whatever u told me today was wonderful..and now this piece of memory -it happens to be a breeze of happiness that i didn't know, was in me. it blows out and out, smiles at me from a far point-thank you..the feeling is beyond definition and as you told me today..it deserves respect!!

ARUN said...

@ anitha
and im happy for you, too.
:)

Zeinab said...

Well, I paused long and hard before I descended upon this bit of lyric. It describes your style in writing, and what the reader feels while reading, your *blog*.

(What do you want?)
(What do you want?)

Zooropa...vorsprung durch technik
Zooropa...be all that you can be
Be a winner
Eat to get slimmer

Zooropa...a bluer kind of white
Zooropa...it could be yours tonight
We're mild and green
And squeaky clean

Zooropa...better by design
Zooropa...fly the friendly skies
Through appliance of science
We've got that ring of confidence

And I have no compass
And I have no map
And I have no reasons
No reasons to get back

And I have no religion
And I don't know what's what
And I don't know the limit
The limit of what we've got

Don't worry baby, it'll be alright
You got the right shoes
To get you through the night
It's cold outside, but brightly lit
Skip the subway
Let's go to the overground
Get your head out of the mud baby
Put flowers in the mud baby
Overground

No particular place names
No particular song
I've been hiding
What am I hiding from

Don't worry baby, it's gonna be alright
Uncertainty can be a guiding light
I hear voices, ridiculous voices
Out in the slipstream
Let's go, let's go overground
Take your head out of the mud baby

She's gonna dream up
The world she wants to live in
She's gonna dream out loud
She's gonna dream out loud
Dream out loud

[Zooropa, U2; 1995]

ARUN said...
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ARUN said...
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