Sometimes words slip out of the mouth like scars or platitudes that cannot heal. At times I wondered at those closest to me, sometimes distances grow like craters. And then dormant volcanoes erupt suddenly without meaning, without utility.
Where does integrity stand at the end of the day?
Square meals or salmon, the last paise spent on a delicious mango, I cry at a life that deserts me, I cry at the desserts they hand out, I cry out for the God who forsakes me.
I am not a philosopher, not even a quack philosopher; I am not a poet either for aspiring to be one can never be the same thing. Language abandons me time and again, images I love elude me for a reason unknown, and all the senses- the senses we take for granted or exalt beyond all measure- seem so often to be so vastly exaggerated.
It is nearing 4 am, and I am still awake. The storm raging within has translated itself into a tangible entity outside my window but all I can think of is how pathetic my fallacies have been. The sky isn’t crying for me, the sky is slipping away, away into a darkness that taught me that wistfulness is passé. The mango was eaten yesterday, and the pickle made last year has developed into what you may call Fungal Delights.
Why pickle in the first place? Why are the best things in life-like sake, wine, yogurt, and bread- fermented? Maybe bread isn’t, but don’t interrupt. Too long have we been interrupted, too long have we not realized that the snot is not a disease, it’s a symptom of a malaise that’s greener and murkier than one can envisage.
Why not religion? Why that half-baked attempt at a secular ethic that means even less than… I don’t know. Why does thakurma still sweat it out in the tiny pujor ghar chanting shlokas in a singsong monotone? I don’t know. I lurk about for the banana and nakuldana. I like to listen to her, listen to her sing honestly, as honest as you, perhaps even less so…but you don’t believe in religion.
Maybe we could have sat and discussed Raymond Williams, but you wouldn’t, I wanted to tell you about faking to have read Lyotard, but you never had the time to listen, never had time to talk, only indulge me with chocolate and more chocolate. Where do we stand today? What must we understand today… where did the craters lie? How did the magma die?
Today as we stand at a helpless crossroad, less helpless than the crossroad, as we look back at a life spent in deprivation and honesty, with occasional treats and unbelievable loneliness, I admire you. I dislike you too. But mostly, I love you.
In a society which has lost it’s human element, I am proud to be your daughter and at what better time can this affirmation come? The horror, the horror? That too shall pass as we transcend. Remember one of your favourite poems- Larkin's The Arundel Tomb? That collection of poems you got for me, like every other book that adorns my bookshelf, thank you for being the Best Baba in the world, The Chitta Baba who used to say that my potty looked like the best Dutch Cheese in the market. Thank you for filling my childhood with inanities that nobody understood, thank you for making me the person I am, warts and all. Well, maybe you're not the Best Baba in the world, but for me, you are the Only Baba in the world. Other than Meher Baba, i.e.
Anyway. I shall end with this-
Washing at their identity.
Now, helpless in the hollow of
An unarmorial age, a trough
Of smoke in slow suspended skeins
Above their scrap of history,
Only an attitude remains:
Time has transfigured them into Untruth.
The stone fidelity
They hardly meant has come to be
Their final blazon, and to prove
Our almost-instinct almost true:
What will survive of us is love.
It's been a good rollercoaster ride, thank Gawd we didn't go to Disneyworld, and I loved it all, including the randomness in front of friends. Thank you for ignoring it when I raided the Vat 69, and you'd be glad to know that I seem to be drinking only orange squash and tea these days. And no smoking.( But the 'exclusive' tea that you think nobody's drinking, the special one you hid from ma, that's the one I'm addicted to.)