Magic Wand

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This post is a part of Write Over the Weekend, an initiative for Indian Bloggers by BlogAdda.’

Give me a magic wand and I will make the unwilling time, dance under my tune. I would protect you forever.‘ Says that mom, who lovingly carries her baby in her snug womb, under the threat of a premature delivery, hoping for a full term. 

‘Give me a magic wand and I will make time pass by, so slowly!’  Laments that Also-Ran runner, who misses the winning spot by a whisker! By a teeny tiny, Millie Second!

Can I rewind Time? May I have such a magic wand please?‘ pleads that office girl, who misses her 8:13 shuttle by mere two steps and thus, her much awaited promotion.

Prod that relative, who has everything but time…Who has only those few months to live and who somehow, hopes to be forever alive! Wouldn’t he want a magic wand, just to prolong his time and settle his accounts – Debts of favors and loans of charity ?

Surely that father, who stares wistfully at his silent phone, showing pictures of his moppets who have grown wings and long gone, does wish for a wand, to make a long gone yesterday, a forever today!

Query that mother who waits for her son, who has gone in search of greener pastures, promising to be back in six months but years have passed by. Wouldn’t she want the wand, to change the status quo?

Some would want  the scalpel of a skillful doctor, to be their magic wand, which might restore their bygone looks. Some would wish for a flatter midriff and some, a tour of the world. Most would settle for food on their plate, a roof on their heads and threads in their cupboards. Some intrepid amongst us, would want to leave their footprints, on the sands of time.

We all want our magic wand.  What would I do, if I had a Magic wand?

Time goes by so quickly, like sand..So, I would relive my fond memories that I hold onto very dearly, that keep me warm and hopeful, on a wintry day.  Also, I would make sure, my family is happy and healthy. I would beseech the wand, to have His guiding hand on us.

The rest, will fall into place, anyways.

 

I am Seshu

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We are having our monthly picnic in the hills now, as I speak to you.

I, Seshu, my twin sister Diya and her beau Raghu – Her Beau who is my best pal.

There they go again, hugging and kissing, right in front of me, as if I don’t exist, my views on this display of love, don’t matter! Anytime and anywhere is PDA time for these two love birds!

You must be wondering, why do I fret so. After all, these two, are my sister and my best pal. What else would one ask in life?

Ha! Ha! You see, God( if he exists that is!) has been flagrantly unfair to me. My sister Diya, is youth and beauty personified with the grace of a gorgeous gazelle. And I? Bound to a wheelchair, because of my cerebral palsy. Even with this disease, I am an Einstein when compared to my sister. She is a bimbette, you know. You could say a kind one at that. She looks after me with a smothering love! There have been enough times when I have wondered, how does it feel to snap her delicate neck, whenever she came running to bestow upon me, her innate, albeit grating kindness! If only my hands could derive the requisite strength from my burning anger at the unfairness of it all – She being the destiny’s chosen one and I, it’s cruel joke! But then, almost immediately, I feel ashamed at my vile thoughts as Diya fusses over me, narrating her – as is usual – a spectacular day.

Oh! how I hate this see-saw of naked emotions! You can almost feel my blood boil when the public goes gaga over her! How often have I heard them whisper conspiratorially to my father, (an unfortunate widower, who has to bravely bear the vicissitudes of life namely his wife’s death and thereby, looking after the crippled me!! )

How beautiful and dutiful is Diya! So caring! Can’t believe these two, are twins! Tch Tch! Don’t worry, you poor man. Your darling daughter will be the pillar of strength to your handicapped son! He will not be left alone. All will be Ok!

I’m not handicapped, dammit! I have a brain, I have feelings, my heart can feel love and conceal vitriolic hatred too, Thank you! Then, just to rub salt on my festering wounds, my father would come in and ruffle my hair, check the settings of my wheelchair! Eesh father! stop pitying me. They don’t make like you, even in the movies anymore!

To this saccharine sweet setting, to save me from further disaster entered Raghu, Diya’s classmate, as my savior. Raghu is virile, the quintessential Alpha-male. Raghu’s views and tastes match with mine. We would often chat about books, politics, events and he would read out to me, interesting excerpts. He was the first one to see a soul hidden deep inside my crippled and under developed body. He drew me out. I mattered to him, my opinions did.

Diya would often join us, not to contribute but to nod periodically and to eye her dishy classmate.There were fireworks all around. Between Diya and Raghu and unknown to all, my heart beat violently for Raghu. I would wait for him to touch me, lift me, help me around. Those were electrifying moments. But sadly only to me. Raghu had no inkling whatsoever of how I felt. I couldn’t dare let Raghu or for that matter, anyone else know.

This society wasn’t ready yet, for a brother and sister to have the same lover. But if my sexuality or my sexual preference made others uncomfortable or did not fit into the ‘usual’, is it my problem? Should I be the one, always adjusting and conforming to what is ‘Kosher’? Why can’t I be accepted and left alone? I am neither abnormal nor abominable. I just am!! 

As I vacillated between these extreme thoughts, Raghu proposed to Diya. Everyone celebrated except me.

Why good lord? Why? To have your sister touch what was supposed to be mine…All mine. Can you imagine the choking ache that sat permanently in my chest, in my throat? And it was open season now. That open, anytime PDA was enough to pierce my heart. Incensed at this new betrayal by fate, I tried to hog Raghu’s time, whenever he came visiting us, often asking him to help me out with various activities. Seeing Diya get irritated at my being a nuisance, hogging her time, somehow satisfied me.

Father, though, encouraged my growing dependence on Raghu as it somehow comforted him that there would be someone who would look after me, after he was gone.

All was honky-dory, till yesterday. I asked Raghu to help me change my shirt. As his hands struggled with my body, my fingers grabbed his hand and…You should have seen the revulsion in his eyes. As if he had touched a snake. His mental rebuke, killed me on the spot. Wordlessly, he walked out, closing the door behind him, leaving me to battle with my darkness, my demons, my insecurities. The longest hours of my life!

Today is the scheduled day of our monthly picnic in the hills. I thought, Raghu wouldn’t keep up with his date. Surprisingly, he did come but there has been no eye contact with me so far. Today Raghu seemed to hug Diya more, as if to drive home the point.

I am elated nonetheless, just to feel his presence around. I turn my head away, lest someone sees my hot scalding tears. I vow that I will do whatever it takes, to get the status quo back. He is just too precious to let go.

Now, please don’t advise me to forget him, to move on and that there are other fish in the pond as I agree to these already. The heart always craves for what it wants, you see. I don’t think I have the strength to tell father the truth, or to start all over, with someone else. Maybe time will be the best healer.

I move to the edge of the cliff. I can see the valley deep down. I turn back to see them kissing. Raghu’s eyes meet mine. There is that searing hatred in those black orbs…I know it clearly then, that it will never be the same again, come what may!

In a flash, I Seshu, am flying. I can feel the wind in my arms, my legs are dancing, mother Earth is eagerly waiting to embrace me.

I am one with the approving universe, finally.

A dream to remember

 

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This post is a part of Write Over the Weekend, an initiative for Indian Bloggers by BlogAdda.’

Author’s note :  It is actually surreal that this week’s Write Over the Weekend (WOW) prompt, asks us to tell BlogAdda, about a dream that has stayed on, in our subconsciousness. A dream to remember, that often makes us sit up and wonder about it’s mysteriousness. I had this dream about a year back.  I wrote this note to self, all about it, lest I forget the dream, with passage of time.

I reproduce the same  here-

It was one of the most difficult cars to navigate. A mother-of-pearl-white, gigantic Ambassador. That too for a person like me, who did not know how to drive! Against my volition, I was just thrust into the driver’s seat and asked to drive…Just like that!

The controls were all wired terribly wrong. A bus-like gear system, clutch else where, an accelerator in place of a brake and adding to this chaos was the incessant traffic. Enough to break a person.

To my utter delight, I coped beautifully. I drove slowly, avoided collisions and managed to park in a beautiful, lush green colony with happy faces and gamboling children.

Alas, the dark night came in sharply. It was time to head back. The evening traffic and T intersection seemed impossible to overcome.  I then realized with a start, that I was in the rear passenger seat.

A pristine-white clad man with the most benevolent smile, was in the driver’s seat. He navigated with dexterity and cautioned me about an open door in the front, next to the passenger seat, where my first born was sitting.  As I sat transfixed, able to comprehend the gravity of the situation but simply unable to take any action, the pristine-white clad man shut the door for me and continued cruising along.

I saw that there was a steering wheel, clutch, accelerator, brake, in front of me, attached to the driver’s seat.  I tried to use them, to no avail. As the dream ended, the meaning of this entire sequence, hit me with a startling clarity.

All along, I had thought, it was I, who did the driving but all I had, were the dummy controls!

It was all along He!  And Him alone, who steered, navigated the course of my life and who watched out for me!!

Especially when the troubles hit me, making me paralyzed with fear.

So I could hope to soar, with renewed spirit and vigor, with a strong belief that I wasn’t alone in this journey of life!

 

Last Day in the City

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It was my last day in the city of Ayodhya.

Husband had asked me to leave, knowing fully well that I was carrying his progeny.
How easily his manhood was threatened! By mere hearsay!!

As I sat watching the helpers pack, I couldn’t even cry. The hot scalding anger, refused to flow out as comforting tears. They could pack my clothes, my jewellery.

Could they pack in my reminiscences too? Or my youth spent in the shadow of the epitome of human virtues?

My eternal love, in spite of it all?  My unwavering belief in the man? My bravery, my vulnerability, my dreams or my hopes?

Why didn’t words of anger come out, questioning the skewed justice of it all? Why didn’t anyone feel that they owed me an answer? Why this abject all-around acceptance? 
Why couldn’t I say, when I was served my sentence and pronounced guilty, “Dearie, May I be allowed to feel the same about you? Can you promise me that, you didn’t even think about another paramour?
Those questions stayed put, deep inside and I was left with this gnawing ache.

Was that due to the conditioning of generations of us – ‘the so-called fairer sex’? To accept and to endure without any questions asked? Did I do myself any favor by staying silent?
I surveyed my palatial quarters, the gilded cage of righteousness!
I heard some of the staff wondering, if I could cope with the harsh jungles. Would those be more constricting than these opulent, uncaring walls?
Soon, it was time to go. I searched for the same affection that I carried in my heart, in His eyes. I barely found any.
I then surveyed around, took a deep breath in, filled in my senses with memories and walked out with my head held high, to embrace the unknown newness with open arms and dignity.
I lived again.

Author’s note : Narrative changes often due to changing social mores. Only when faced with adversity does one find strength to move on. If she had found the strength to question, the story would have been different across generations.

This post is a part of Write Over the Weekend, an initiative for Indian Bloggers by BlogAdda.’

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On a Rainy Day

screen-shot-2017-02-14-at-12-26-08-amThis post is a part of Write Over the Weekend, an initiative for Indian Bloggers by BlogAdda.’

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Once, during a rainy day, my dad had this irresistible urge to eat an ice-cream. That too Nirula’s hot chocolate fudge! Mom, as is usual, thought this was way beyond silly. That too, at his age! That made my dad all the more determined to have that delectable ice-cream.
So, just to have peace, I took out his red Maruti ( Non-AC) and bundled us into the car. As we opened the windows to keep the heat out, we got drenched. Mom, now was game for some hot beverage.

As luck would have it, Nirulas had shut for maintenance. Dad’s face had become small and he refused to share the umbrella with mom as we walked back to our car. Tiny droplets of rain began to trickle down his mustache and an almighty argument started between the two.
As the dark clouds threatened to unload, the dulcet voice of Lata began to fill the air. “Lag ja gale ki Phir ye..” The song was playing on the rickety radio set of the chai-wala across the road. Dad and mom fell silent for a second to savor the song.
Mom suddenly walked across the road and muttered something to the chai-wala, who then looked at dad and smiled broadly. Dad, unable to contain his curiosity, joined them, albeit unwillingly. The chai-wala then shut the radio off, much to the irritation of dad.
Mom handed dad, a piping hot cup of chai and sang the same beautiful number.
“Lag ja gale ki Phir ye..”
And Dad? He smiled broadly, twirled his mustache, touched her wet ringlets and gave a peck on mom’s red cheeks. Chai tasted better too.
I am yet to see more romance packed in a singular moment.