abhijñānaśākuntalam

Live for love

I’m feeling creative like I want to write and keep on writing. It’s a good feeling and I hope it lasts for a long time—enough to write 50 pages. 

“Do you also notice every little detail, specks of housedust light, the weed sapling that makes its way out of concrete slits, watch clouds morph into familiar things? And wonder why nobody stops to notice?”

– Sumeet

The night is a varnished, peeling wall
against which I, too, want always

to be roughly pressed.

Tarfia Faizullah, from “Ramadan Nocturne,” in Blackbird (Vol.11, No. 2, Fall 2012)

I haven’t written in so long. Little thought occupies me. I hunger for wide open spaces and lazy days which stay hazy and undefined in my mind. I hunger mountain air and greening trees, monsoon and rain bearing clouds. But I also hunger this—a sense of good sharing, a feeling of living boundlessly and simply. I hunger for intimacy that comes naturally, generously, socially. 

There was this day when I went over to Shruthi’s house in the evening. In India, we do this unasked, and the word ‘visitor’ holds little meaning when it could come to mean something akin to extended family. Easy, generous hospitality. Casual pampering. This is what I miss most. Nobody was surprised I showed up. We drowned each other in news and gossip. Back then, life consisted of small things like these. Exchanges of news in the colony. That day, we went upstairs to the terrace and played games—the names of which I have forgotten. We impromptu crashed into a concert: those that are arranged by the road by one society or another, those which are free and full of people. Back then, Facebook or the internet or mobile phones did not exist in my life. There were far more important things. There were people. 

But with the people came a sense of sharing, a feeling of shared intimacy. And every time I went back to experience it, I found that life became too busy feeling content that going online and talking to someone felt pointless and cumbersome. 

That all feels like a different life now. Growing up so free from any distraction. Growing up like kids are supposed to—never hungry.

You are the only person who reminds me of that life, even if you weren’t a part of it. You are the only person who carries the scent of homeland on your skin, so that even by studying you—I feel at home. 

Even the scent of those times, even the winds of homeland and the intimacy it had bought me has thinned to become rare.

But I see it in your eyes. I see it in your eyes.