For all those words that keep on bouncing and banging on the walls of the mind …that urgency to be assembled and put into the meanings they wish to convey…when one is ultimately compelled to pick up pen and paper …like the birth of a new being…a vague write up is born.
While redesigning the interiors of our house,we decided to do away with all those old and not so old photo-frames along with the pics they contained from all our walls, shelves and tables.Thus giving the place a look more contemporary.Today after all the place for pictures is only on the Facebook or albums.
I seated myself in a comfortable corner with a steaming cup of tea…trying to admire the new look of the living room…searching still in the depths of my mind the reasons to pat myself for the job I just accomplished. After all a lot of efforts had gone into giving this fresh look to the living room…carefully stealing ideas from Google…putting in all the in trend hues and tones to the furniture and upholstery….Some thing deep inside me was constantly whispering something lacking still…
Watching my seven year old running here and there in a strange jolly mood…his unexpected sudden bouts of joy often confuse me…providing food for thought to my reasoning…How such little things fish out so much happiness out of NOTHING!
My thoughts went back to the days when I was his age…When a visit to the old ancestral house in the native village was a must for the passing year to be called complete.The home was like any ordinary peasant’s abode,nothing special to write pages about…Two big rooms to accommodate all the household stuff …from grains and beddings to the cotton and old agri tools and cycles….everything had a respectable place there…an open kitchen encirled with the frill of bricks and a more dignified adjoining closed one….But my thoughts seemed to be fixed,lingering around the most colorful room nicknamed baithak some few generations back.It was small square room with a palang and four chairs.Resting on the palang, my noons would float by…I had a strange obsession with the room.It’s not that the mattress there was any more fluffy or the fan gave out more cooler air than adjoining rooms.My small eyes used to remain busy with the walls of the baithak. Those walls contained pictures…all framed up nicely and hung next to each other in rows…Some were really ancient one’s….Those from black and white era while others were in monochrome…But a few were coloured as well…It seems my grand parents never kept any album at their place…The four walls of their baithak served that purpose…There were group photos of my father,uncles and aunts.Even some school pics of my grandfather where he looked my age…Some pics of the departed souls also found place there…Those I had never seen flesh and blood myself…I used to enquire about a few faces clicked at strange lands from my Biji,which she would candidly reply were the relatives living abroad may be Africa or England…Even she herself was not sure….perhaps they sent her those pics and she dutifully got them framed and honoured on the walls.
Standing on the palang and watching all the faces on the wall,one after another,carefully scrutinizing each was no less than going through the pages of a colourful magazine those days…I can today equate that…(But keeping that joy on a slightly higher pedestal)with scrolling of the news feed on Facebook these days…..Those were the living and communicating walls…full of life in a home housed by just two old people….The feeling of being alone in the room could never overtake me or them….. A beep on my cell,lying next to me on the carpet indicating some notification landed me back to the world…where mind was still hanging somewhere between the strange sudden joy attacks of the little one and my constant hunt for it’s reasonings…For now I could sense my inability to admire the corporate look of the room…Life was missing out of my living room may be…We can’t rationalise the role of small things here and there and the happiness they r capable of imparting to the souls residing in the body and some little joys are meant to be felt by small little beings leading pure non-designer lives.
Life of the mother of a teenage son keeps showing you something new and unexpected everyday.I mean you get used to encountering the not so pleasant surprises each day.For me the sudden announcement of the onset of teens of my son came with a shift of his interest in wrestling to music.Not any classical or golden age tasteful one but the contemporary pop in vernacular.The problem was not in the choice of language but the volume at which our ears were being forced upon by him.
The notes were falling on my ear drums as a torture…hurting my sensibility,since a few days.I finally decided to talk to him about his new love. As I was busy shaming my son for listening such songs at loud volume, I felt goose bumps of deja vu deep down my spine. That urgent feeling of having experienced the scene before also. Yes, some 20-25 years back…only I see myself now in the role of my father in this present day scenario. Even the words flowing out of my mouth are his. God can’t I pick some different ones!But kids these days want a healthy explanation to every issue the parents dare to raise. Turning my eyes towards my ageing father now, expecting some verbal help from him…I got a stoic silent response. New players play the game and the old ones now exhausted of age and experience just watch subjectively. It seems my own parents who once were so vocal against me for playing the stereo so loud THAT TEN HOUSEHOLDS WOULD HAVE BEEN DISTURBED… have suddenly gone through a character change…like a patient of depression calms down after consuming a pill of Anxit.
A few more days went by…me still wondering why my son who was till late so calm and sweet transformed suddenly…can’t his ears learn to enjoy the sound at a moderate volume? Lost in such questions,I was recalling all those things my mother would say to me and my brother, when we became difficult ones to deal with-I wish you too have the kids like yourself. But no that’s how the genetics works. Not guided by the curse of the mothers…It passes on through chromosomes where live our genes…that keep surfacing every now and then…preparing the background for fresh new tussles between the generations.
So one night before sleeping sonie wanted to play antakshri with me. I thought although the fellow keeps drinking music day-night, I have never heard him humming…on the note of optimism for the game to end up in minutes, I decided to play. Another surprise was poured upon me when I for the first time in my motherhood heard my boy singing stanzas of the popular vernacular numbers…he didn’t let the game finish…he was actually singing sweetly…all notes falling on proper place…my initial irritation due to my sleep being disturbed evaporated and I found myself admiring his newly acquired talent…I thought he may not be brilliant at school studies but if polished to sing he may never starve in life…BUT thundered my genes in me -A singer in the family of professionals?…Either mathematics or social sciences are worth admiration. Thus keeping the generations engaged these genes play their own wicked games with us the mortals till we live. Making not only us behave in the pre-programmed manner but also those with whom we share them. Generations after generations keep SUFFERING under their influence. Giving jolts of surprises at their exhibition by our kids and grand kids. Each generation wondering at the BEHAVIOR of the next…forgetting conveniently that moment…its just the repetition of the cycle instigated by the element they have themselves passed on to the present day culprits.
Quietly the time floats by…only sometimes if we carefully pay heed can we realize those silent whispers of nature in the receptors of our silent minds. We are born with a perfect eyesight to explore the world around.The gifts of nature keep on showering upon us…one after another till we reach our prime. We completely get absorbed in the world…forgetting our base.Our eyes many times a day admiring our image in the mirror…get completely dipped in the minute details of the multiple gifts from nature we keep receiving everyday…those couple of eyes who never fail to notice the slight physical faults of others and ours. They not only keep instructing our brains to rectify ours but also keep account of those we encounter day to day…busy helping mind in its untiring task of keep comparing,branding and grading. Alas! on such grading a big business of the world survives.
Busy with the ways of the outer world, we never realize there exists apart from our outer self a whole huge inner world. The in dweller in this outer covering that we are always busy flashing and boasting around. That in dweller keeps watching our journey of self obsession…waiting patiently for our ears to turn to its soft silent whisperings. But things happen when they have to happen…at their own pre destined time.
Beautiful is nature at all levels and stages of life and admirable are its driving skills from one background to another. No halts,no bumps…smoothly it changes its gears…without the traveler ever realizing…he is on yet another level. In our small world, we are still LIVING the way we are used to since birth…
Then without intimating before hand as is the nature of the nature…it slowly starts taking its gifts of beauty and sight back from us mortals. Our basic innocence hardly realizes when the reverse process starts up and reaches its climax. Till one day looking into the mirror the being can’t find any more fault in its beauty-skin looks so perfect to the weak sight. The world looks vague but perfect to the eyes that no longer can find faults to compare and contrast. The same two faculties of nature…beauty and sight…who worked till now in collaboration to acquaint us to the undiscovered world…to make us fit and comfortable there…after serving for decades drive us slowly to a more confident inward journey. More confidence derives power from our inability to notice the outward physical features any more. May be that’s nature’s silent whisper to our mind to ignore the outer world and be more inward in our journey…to focus our attention towards our inner self that lives in the mortal body.