Festival of Lights | A Prose

As I stand on the terrace, chilly November wind brushes past the tip of my nose. I might catch a cold, there’s a 150% chance and I still stand there.

There are lights everywhere, mostly bright blue and green, dangling from houses in vertical lines. They used to be milder and warmer before, but still beautiful they are.

I can smell the fresh marigold all around, blooming in flower pots or hanging as garlands. Their bright yellow color reminds me of warmer days, of summer, of the sun, of the light. Incense sticks burn somewhere behind, it’s smell reminds me of the time I am in.

The city is a jewel in the dark night, devoid of the moon. The night is quiet and yet playful, it shines in colors of all kinds, in its own kind. But this night must end too, like all other nights. And yet I’d pray for time to slow down a little, if not much, for my senses to take hold of the beautiful moment that was, that is and that will be.

When I was a kid these lights could slow time down, filling my heart with the joy of just what it was – lights. I could then just say, ‘There’s still three days before school starts. I should enjoy these three days to the fullest.’ I didn’t know how long 24 hours would take. I’d just remain awake for a long time, believing I had slowed time down. These lights still fill my heart with joy of all that it is, but time seems to be always in a rush, or perhaps I’ve lost the magic keys that could slow it down. Maybe there still are three days before school starts and maybe I should still enjoy them. There are still 24 hours in a day.

The lights will return, perhaps in different shades the next year, but the oil lamps will always burn, radiating the rays of the sun.

Of Wishes and Nostalgia

I sometimes think of a piece of rock between the flowing waters, undisturbed and unresponsive of the water currents that pass by it. Just there. Sometimes I think I could be the rock, amidst the flowing time. Just there. Festivities are one of those times I feel most like the rock, like the observer.

These holidays, these festivities are perhaps a break in the flowing waters, like a dam that has been constructed so that the water overflows and remains there for a while, covering everything beneath its level. Instead of currents, there is a lake, a pool, a break from the nature of everyday. A pause to look unto which might have been missed in the everyday current. So much of time has passed, and so much remains to be passed. No fuss, no grandeur, just like that, just everyday stuff.

Nostalgia overcomes me, flows through each of my veins, as I smell the marigolds blooming in the kitchen garden, or the silent roads beyond the balcony of my room, or the half empty skies I haven’t stared at in a while. I know this is a price or the boon of growing up, of knowing something I did not know a decade ago, and of waiting to learn more in the years to come.

As I try to learn, with a tint of fear, to let go of all time that was and embrace what is and what comes, my wish for you, to you the traveller, to you the dreamer, and to you the believer, is that may you find your Why, may you defeat the darkness first inside of yourself and then outside, may you always shine like the sun, who I imagine doesn’t know its purpose, and still continues to shine for a million years to come. May we all, though a little lost we are, learn to carve our directions.

Happiness must happen, writes Viktor E. Frankl in Man’s Search for Meaning. I pray for happiness to happen for you, for me, for us all.

Space

If you were an artist

and I was an object,

what space would I

occupy in your canvas?

Would I be a fruit on the table

or a shadow beneath?

Or the painting inside the painting

or the floor spread all across?

Would you care

to splash your paint

and make space for me?

Peeled Skin

Layer after layer,
skin everywhere
peeled from one another.

As the layers are gone
so are the burdens with it.
Everything’s lighter now.

The peeling, indeed tough,
but the result much better.


I identify myself as an introvert. Much of my life I believed I couldn’t walk up and strike a conversation with anyone. Why would anyone ever want to listen to my awkward words. So I stayed put. It harmed me most of all. I closed myself to opportunities and ideas that could not just interest me but enchant me. I’m thankful the jobs I’ve taken up somehow requires me to break the barrier by peeling my own skin. Painful it was and it still is, but I enjoy it better. I know how wonderful things can be. I look on the brighter side now.