An ongoing story about a traveller/vagabond's life
A Welcome Dream
The letter was dated 5th Jan 2015. It had a white cover moistened with a plaque of dirt. The vodka was running down, awaiting its last mischief. He grabbed hold of the bottle with his old shaky hands, poured its contents into his most cherished glass, a succession of thoughts prevailed in his mind. It was from the crockery shop in Shimla, she had bought this one silently and put it on his reading table. She had this knack of providing surprises.
He was still gazing at the letter, a long-lasting glare. "Aaaahhhh", some stream has broken loose, there is uncertainty , the restraints aren't functioning anymore, 'someday I must open it, may be its time' , he took the letter with his left hand, a slight tremor was on the rise, Samaresh could feel it. This is the last letter, opening which means, he took a deep sigh, this is where it all ends, the final mystery, life will bear no credibility henceforth. Gradually he put the vodka ' the last sip can wait, as this letter has waited ' he thought, down on the table, unpacked the last Marlboro, lighted it, took a strong puff, then stared at the letter, one last unopened expecting stare.
The letter had crossed blue lining circumscribed with an articulate design,-- Brishti. He blew a thrust of air to smack of the dirt and tore it slowly with care by one of its sides. Took the paper out, slowly unfolded it, each moment he could feel a gasp of air, sweating within the conditioned room' this is where it ends, and my life too, the life I was so proud of living, this is the moment awaiting for which since childhood I have done my schooling, had numerous friends, the numerous affairs, the ordeals, the dreams. This is where it comes round, ending in a vacant cabin. a sullen cabin, a poetic death of a famous self made vagabond '- swimming within his own thoughts he puts it back to his table drawer. This drawer has been a long company, it knows many of his secrets, some which he himself has buried down beyond time. Today it bears another of his secret.
He remembered the countless times he had built upon the courage to end it once and for all, and every time a sudden gush of emptiness hauls over him, stares at him with an acid look. He gives in every time.
He bent himself up and took the glass of vodka, took a sip, felt lighter, capable of flying his soul off his body, melting into thin air. He fell back on the back of his chair again. The left hand holding the glass rested on the cushion. He looked at the cushion, it bore his age, his history, his life. It was one of the first things Brishti had bought to make their one room house their very sweet home, where they longed for each other. ' Brishti, I want to caress you with all the love thy heaven blesses me with, please take me, I can't stay in this lonesome room alone anymore, please take me ' he cried out from inside. He took another strong puff of the waning Marlboro, engulfing with all his might, then swirling it out along with all those unsaid words that bore the thirst of an waning vagabond's furore. He could feel his senses calming down, the body is easing out itself allowing the soul to take over. Samaresh felt an urgent need to end this continuous battle, the rhythm of continuity has made him see through the toughest, now it appears out of tune, it can't comprehend where the limit has broken off. All it looks for are signs to give up, ' sometimes you have to give up, sometimes you have to accept the truth of being mortal'.
He looked up through the window. It has been almost a decade since the day he had known life would be a living burden, a burden too heavy to pay off. Of this decade, a fair share has been spent by these windows. They were his glaring view to the outside world, to feel the morning dew, to balm by the warmth of the sun, or to feel the poems the breezes would bring with them. A view that has kept him alive, 'nature caressing the drowning years'- a world, devoid of worldly affairs, days has been peaceful here, to think of days long bygone, days of the vagabond, days spent with Brishti, days of honorary surrender to the excruciatingly impeccable and impenetrable beauty.
The elements outside were manifesting a defining moment today, to foray a message to this gentleman, he thought, the sun was hinting its departing gestures, painting a corner of the palette crimson, the other half seemed to sense its demise with a shivering blue, made into a blatantly unspectrumed boundary with the sun's funeral. A bunch of colorful birds were hovering over the canvas, up they go and then left , down again with a gleeful swing and then streaming across to the other side. There stood a lake about half a kilometer away from Samaresh's window, a solitary lake, as solitary as in its magnitude as well as in its existence. The great artist , referred by all as Him, was retiring from the day's work , He washed and scrubbed his palette with the solitudeness of its water and impregnated the misty palette into the lake's womb. Samaresh watched the vision,' If only you were here, by my side to share this feeling I cant express to myself, only you could have told me why I feel so mystic , only you could have found the words to describe what I see with those eyes that do not reflect light but reflects its soul '. He kept staring at the gradually declining sun, waning beyond the horizons, along a path that went on and on. The sun seemed to keep on setting but would never actually set. There was a path beyond the crimson premises, faded but clearer than the earlier moment, 'Brsihti has traversed that path, now its my time '. He could see Brishti there, waiting for him beside the streams, and in this longing wait throwing small pebbles into a stream that smeared across.
Samaresh felt a sudden urge to swing over the window and hover across the clouds to go there, bidding farewell to everything mortal. 'This world is good,.rather its beautiful. It has chances, it has miracles, it has pains, but it also teaches you to love, to forgive. It provides you with hope. By the time things are over, you develop a sense of an universal energy, a motherly energy that gives you the courage to leave everything you have earned, craved for in this life , instead to opt for peace, eternal ,optimistic, burdenless and beautiful'.
He could feel himself waning off, the slits of his eyes were narrowing down. He was himself giving away the control, but suddenly it occurred to him, he must be missing something, ' to finish of the last peg? ' he cleared his throat with the last drink, the first one was in his school days, intervened by a gap of more than fifty years, he smiled. ' The Marlboro? ', took the last puff, the first one being earlier than the first drink, he smiled again. 'The letter? Yes, the letter. The letter must be read before I finish off ', he reached out for his table drawer, the breathing has become more intense, he felt short of time, an upper chest uneasiness was fast organizing itself, much faster than he could reach out for the letter.
Lisa knocked on the door, a couple of more knocks. There was no response. She lightly pushed on the door, it opened without any personal hesitation. The room was sullen and dark. In the last hour the climate has undergone a magnum change, dead stormy with volumes of showers, flooding most of the low ended streets, impatiently reaching for the higher ones . She had rushed out from her corner house to find out about Samaresh. The panes were muttering in pain out of the exuberant clashes against each other and putting up a formidable defense against the severe onslaught by the storm.
She stood in the middle of the room, studying every nook and corner, ' there is no trace of life, where is Samaresh then? ' . She walked towards the other room where she had found Samaresh more often, and as she walked, she felt she was moving on specs of broken glass, carefully she moved on. The door of the room was slightly hinged, pushing it gently it opened across. She saw him seated on his chair, his hands relaxed, felt out on both sides. On his left there was a larger spec of a broken glass. On his right there were couple of pages laid on the floor. She walked across and picked up the pages. They were letters. His head, a bit tilted. She looked at him and at once understood things were beyond help. She reached out for his pulse, ' still there old man, Huh!'. She searched her pockets for her cell and quickly dialed the emergency, asked them to respond fast else things will be late to count upon and then impatiently put it back.
Looking back at him again, she didn't feel pity, neither any need to help him regain senses. He didn't need to come back. There was a smile in his face, a resigned satisfied smile, a smile of completing a journey, a smile of beginning a new one. His years had been embraced in the fragrance of mysticism that Nature provided its thirsty travelers, with experiences of travelling, of love, of the nights spent amidst the mystic moonlight and the unknown. He had shared with her his stories, and she understood him. She had known him for not even a year, she recalled that evening. It was like any other normal evening, Lisa was walking down the street, suddenly she heard a voice , heavy-soft-poetic with an aura that pulled her up from the streets and guided her up the staircase to this same room.
" Megher shetar-e ajo bedonar sur
Bidhechhe tare bidyut atto-ahonkare
Bhoyarto joto pakhira shushwane
Ek jhak ure jaaye nij aaloy
Brishti ashbei, shei toruni-r roop-e
Nishi shei tari apekhyae;
Shikto shei trishnarto bhumi aj tomaro ba(D)ri te;
Alingone aajo bedonar sur
Shei shurete gaan bedhechhe ei jajabor."
"Things are not great", Dr. Majumdar had exhaled, trying very hard to conceal his own sadness and reflection from his face. It happens, when an old man like him finds a friend of the same age in an un-negotiable physiological condition. "Well Lisa", he cleared his throat, trying to bring the undying venom back in his voice, "Samaresh is in comma. Possibly irrecoverable". Intervened by a long pause Majumdar exhaled,"I just wished he died, and I wished there was something called heaven and , and I wished Brishti was ...". The seventy plus wrinkled cheeks sobbed in tears. Lisa curled her hands around him, made him seat, and then in natural instincts she began to tenderly race her fingers across his head, wrinkled and scarcely populated. "Let's have some coffee", Lisa said finally, first time perceiving how difficult it becomes to pacify with words the sea of limitless emotions. Majumdar agreed.
"Two filtered coffees", Lisa ordered. Nikhilesh walked over to the glass-top verandah attached to the cafe. He has never been part of such a mystic night, not even in the days of travelling. The nights in the countrysides of Europe, the dark slopes of the Himalayas, the vast extension of the Madagascar islands, they were all beautiful but not the same as of today. Nikhilesh murmured indise, "Those were fearless days. Today I feel mystically afraid, the night might be beautiful, but the unfathomable combination of the half-lit moon, chilling wind, and the biting drizzle. There is something beyond what we can see, something that eludes our common senses but the perception is always there". "Dr Majumdar, your coffee". Nikhilesh turned round to find Lisa holding out a coffee cup and some biscuits. "Thank you Miss", courted Nikhilesh. "How do you feel, Lisa?", asked Nikhilesh quiet unmindfully. "Are you asking about Samaresh? He should have died, you see! Comma is not what he deserved. What do you think?", said Lisa vehemently. "You are mistaking me Lisa. Its not about Samaresh, not about Brishti, nothing worldly, no no no no. It's not about that. Tell me have you sipped your coffee yet?". "No". "Then don't. Just put it over at that table, fast. There is something I would like to show you. Something about today, something about this night.Why all this happened today? Why the entire world conspired against Samaresh?". Lisa was taken aback by the unexpecting glare in Majumdar's eyes."What is it Nikhil? Are you alright?" queried Lisa. Intervening a long pause, lisa peeped again, "Nikhil?". As if a dream swooned back , as if a building DNA spiral decomposed into phosphate atoms. "Hhhha, yuh, yes Lisa, sorry miss, please have your coffee, its getting cold, I think we should not talk about it. A secret is better off as a secret,identity preserved."
"Yes, the night is mystic, no doubt, and the same holds for those who beholds it. I have known Samaresh for hardly a year, and you know him countless doubles more than me. He did share his secrets with me, may be not all, but nothing that reminds me off something with respect to today. I do not want to force you, but Nikhil, I would like to know.", insisted Lisa.
There is a curse called Destiny and a blessing called Life. The curse provokes you and the blessing eludes you. And then, there is a timeline, a very brief period of time that you get to spend in this world, to pleasure the joy of being alive. He leaves the choice to us..... step on the curse, receive the blessing or turn the curse into a blessing.