Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Sunshine on my shoulders...

"My heart is a garden tired with autumn,
Heaped with bending asters and dahlias heavy and dark,
In the hazy sunshine, the garden remembers April,
The drench of rains and a snow-drop quick and clear as a spark;

Daffodils blowing in the cold wind of morning,

And golden tulips, goblets holding the rain --
The garden will be hushed with snow, forgotten soon, forgotten --
After the stillness, will spring come again?"

- Sara Teasdale, The Garden

You know, Mamoni (my mother-in-law) still hasn't recovered from her daily surprise of discovering me hidden behind the long green silky curtains of our huge window seat in the living room, brushing my teeth, eyes closed and a blissful look on my face, thanks to the sunshine streaming down on me through the glass. Even on the hottest summer morning Because I seem to share a beautiful bond with the sun that has always made me responsive to the way the sun does or does not appear on every single day of the year. Most of my poetry has been composed while I was lazing in the sun in our verandah, hemmed in by the sight of greenery on all sides, my wet hair soaking in the warmth of the tropical sun, my arms and legs basking in the sunshine and my sun-kissed face glowing with a feeling of well-being and exhilaration. Yes, the sun affects me that much and that positively. And, of course, I cannot refrain from bursting into song when I recall certain sunny days that form parts of a Kolkata winter. When you are picnicking at Falta on the suburbs of the city or repeating for the umpteenth time that visit to the Alipore Zoo that is so ritualistic a part of our childhood lore. Chomping away on hot sweet jilipis with a bunch of friends at the Bidhannnagar Mela, late in the afternoon or exchanging notes on a fashion faux pas at the annual college fest, when being spotted playing truant from the morning classes itself was something hot and happening. And of course, the number of times I've fallen asleep, relaxed and unresisting, a book in my lap and head in the clouds, in an armchair on the roof or on the parapet in the JUDE corridor, is too many to enumerate. Let it suffice that sunshine gives me a heady sense of hope and harmony, release and rejuvenation. Makes me want to do things. Sing songs. Write poetry. Grow plants. Germinate a novel. Dream of a utopia. Venture into new territories. Conquer the world.
So though I went all hyper at the sight of snow and the sense of an awe-inspiring silence, it won't last, I fear. I have a sinking feeling that my creativity and happiness will hibernate soon, horrified at the thought of a winter that throws leaves and life into disarray and toys with the idea of destroying the permanence that the sun embodies in my life.

"So dull and dark are the November days
The lazy mist high up the evening curled,
And now the morn quite hides in smoke and haze;

The place we occupy seems all the world."

- John Clare

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