Tuesday, April 20, 2010

I Like It

We sat in a humid room
Our lungs enlarged with the heat
She panged from her sweat
Armpits all soaked

I had a guitar strapped on
Heavy under its weight
Trying to make “music”
Giving it a shot, finally

I began singing
Hoping she’d get what I meant
She waved her head from side to side
Said “The lyrics aren’t so fine,
and what’s that chord you’re playing?”

I gave up on the “song”
Sat down, started this New Thing
“Yappa-doodle. Dample-gampie-gum.
Volo-bolo-vinder-woo”

She, conquering the heat,
And the incomprehension
Uttered something with a smile,
“Yeah, I like it.”

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Joyful Delivery of Painful Thought

A paralyzing feeling of despondency is something all mortals must be acquainted with. It is cruel in its acuteness and is a very impolite visitor, which never warns of its coming. It ambles into your life, whistling a favourite tune, grinning with its yellowed teeth. You were going all fine, and thought that nothing could harm you now, that you finally had met and come to know all possible states of being in human life. But yet again, you are surprised. And both, the subtlety of how your mind cannot believe now what it once held as “the truth”, and the inevitability of the passing of this depressing “phase” of your life with due time, are lost on you. You are not tolerant, happy, relaxed, complacent, or smiley anymore. None of that fake bullshit now. You are in pain. You are depressed.

Pain has a habit of draining every bit of energy from your person. Pain, like all pure emotions, extends across the galaxy. Maybe even further out. Small, harmless things like ice-cream, pinball, sweetly smiling girls, and other niceties simply fail to lift your spirits. You are in generic despair. Ever-present gloom.

Small, never-ending alcoves of time are nasty things. They are always present on the cleanest of your days. Bang in the center of pure “busy-ness” and oblivion lands a tiny moment of listlessness. Examples include the time before the start of an interview, the small walk to the toilet (refrigerator, hostel mess), the “waiting period” before your next gol-gappa arrives. They are things that convince the human mind of the infinite nature of everything extant. They are vast worlds in themselves, gifted with their own time scales, and gilded with shiny, new physical laws. Man might have explained a great deal about planets, meteorites and semen to his fellow beings, but his consistent failure to enjoy a moment of nothingness is undeniable. Let’s paint this on our walls. Men cannot endure nothingness, emptiness. They subsist on “jobs”, on some directionality in life, a semblance of a path, a course divined by some outside force, a plan of action magneted to the refrigerator door.

Motive. It is important. In murder mysteries and life alike. All men, if they are men at all, must have inside their bosoms a specter of their ideal kind of dude, the perfection amongst men in their eyes. They observe him day and night. It is perhaps why men have been given eyes. To observe, to imitate, to keep them fixed at their ideals all the time, mesmerized by the whole possibility of somehow, some day matching them.

Creation is what both made us and makes us again everyday. We till our own gardens every morning, water the tiny saplings brimming with promise, and continue to sweat it out till dusk, cribbing every shade of weed creeping from the shadows, fearing every dry spell. Perhaps the joy of creation is unsurmountable. It indeed supplies us with an illusion of ever-spreading peace, calm and strength, of boundless hope. Creation gives us the first chance to have a peek at a part of ourselves with our own eyes. We hold this relic of our own creation in our hands, shivering under its weight, bathed in its glint. We marvel at this new-born baby, this item of mortality that unbelievingly soaks our consciousness with a glimpse of the immortal. We create, and thus we are born.

Man’s greatest folly is perhaps his blindness to his own loneliness in this abundance of the universe. It is a feeling he grapples with on every day he lives. Every hour of his existence, man gasps for assurance of the falseness of this truth – that he is essentially alone. He experiences his own emotions. His is a solitary odyssey. While it is true that social association helps man find his ways, and guides him through the world, it is idiotic to accept this usefulness as something that justifies society as an end in itself. Gallant refusal of submission before such helplessness is advocated. You can have friends. You can also eat with them, drink with them. But knowing how to bake your own cake, and to enjoy it in tasteful solitude are indispensible qualities.

So. What now? I am still falling down a dark well. Anticipation of what might lie at the other end is a pastime I got fed up with about two centuries ago. About 47 years ago, I finally decided to drop my weapons and sit back, enjoy the show. Joyous songs are joyous, but sad songs are sweet. And I do have something of a sweet tooth. I rejoice in the concurrence between me and the maker of these sad sounds. I hold my humble cup out, and he fills it with nectar.