Chapter – 8
I’d rather have the thought of you
To hold against my heart,
My spirit to be taught of you
With west winds blowing,
Than all the warm caresses
Of another love’s bestowing,
Or all the glories of the world
In which you had no part.
I’d rather have the theme of you
To thread my nights and days,
I’d rather have the dream of you
With faint stars glowing,
I’d rather have the want of you,
The rich, elusive taunt of you
Forever and forever and forever unconfessed
Than claim the alien comfort
Of any other’s breast.
O lover! O my lover,
That this should come to me!
I’d rather have the hope for you,
Ah, Love, I’d rather grope for you
Within the great abyss
Then claim another’s kiss-
Alone I’d rather go my way
Akash was Soma’s childhood friend since her father was at Chitora. They shared the same school and their fathers also were very close to each other. Then uncle transferred to Nakadi, in the same branch where my father also worked, in the excise department. Soma was admitted to our college and we became friends.
I met Akash when I came to Chitora for the first time with my parents, just one month before the mishap, the sudden accident of my father, to attend the marriage ceremony of Soma’s sister Sujata. We had just been admitted to college then and as our fathers were colleagues we attended the invitation.
The day I first met Akash, it was raining. We arrived the day before the ceremony. Our parents were busy among themselves. I was not quite familiar with everyone and Soma was busy with some jobs with their relatives. So feeling quite awkward and lonely I went to the roof terrace to meet the drizzling rain. No one noticed me. I lifted my face to feel the touch of rain. The sky was husky blue, smudged with some black here and there. I was humming music, that I cannot remember now. It might be one of the 70’s hit songs, foolishly sentimental yet glorious, a perfect picture of an oxymoron. I was so absorbed; I did not realize when a male voice coalesced with mine into the slender streams of rainwater and song, puddling in multiple torrents along the roof. When I turned around I found him, so tall that I felt just like a sapling in front of a big tree. I raised my wet face to meet his. I did not know what to say. We were gazing at each other, searching ourselves, exploring the potent fate that summoned us to one another in an undefined way. The music we were humming was no more on our lips but it was in the air. Perhaps my fate was written at that auspicious or ominous moment. The fate that burdened my coming years and the fate that cursed my immaturity in a hellish torment, I did not care. But I felt I could no longer avoid it. I did not know what was in his debonair eyes, perhaps I discovered the primitive warmth welcoming me to delve deep.
We stayed for eight days and visited the places surrounding Chitora. It was a fort city with so many historical places to visit and to explore the mystery of ancient India, murmuring in its soil. We made a group of teenagers and the gang leader was Akash. I was his right hand and blind follower in performing any mischief he ordered. His ruling power and the skill of controlling situations attracted me so much that even if I found something crooked, I supported him in every way. And his silent indulgence was there on me that I relished with a thirsty heart. I usually did not like gatherings and bustle, but I enjoyed those days most, just for Akash. I felt too much for him with the blossoming of my teenage heart. At the time of departure, I cried bitterly hugging him. He promised to stay in touch. But he never did, even after his father’s death. I yearned for a call, a letter, a message from any source. But he disappeared like a meteor grounding me in silent punishment. In my heart, he stayed like enchanting music resounding in every vein to keep the scar fresh.
Life Beyond Love, a Novella: Chapter-8: When it Rains…
Hey, I am Munmun, the phoenix fabulist who wants to tell you stories. I love to read stories and I love to weave stories. I feel life is an amalgamation of multiple stories, colourful threads, and threads of pain, pleasure, hope, and hopelessness. We just need to pick those hues and arrange them, knitting them with our own emotions and perception. So let’s celebrate the stories of life.