Friday, August 20, 2010

Heat


This is a Magpie Tale

A hazy vision tells me I’ve finally opened my eyes. I am soaked with sweat, from head to toe, and all the time last night I’ve been dreaming I was drowning. I don’t look at my torn watch lying on the next to my bed, I forget to do so, or I just got too used to not knowing time. Days feel like sand grains slipping through your fingers without being able to tell which was Sunday and which was Friday; or maybe like a desert with no landmarks telling you where exactly you are. At least my days are like this. I am still paralyzed in my bed, I am still drowning in the heat.
   The air conditioner is not working. My clothes are sticking to my skin and I can’t feel myself anymore. I need to breathe and I can’t tell whether the air has been sucked out my lungs by summer or by my heart. I am still confused. I forget to breathe. Breathe, Try to breathe. One tear escapes my eyes. I want to cry more but I can’t. I try to pull the tears out, but it seems like sweating consumed all the water within me. Summer has sucked the life out of me. No. Do not think like this. Maybe I am exaggerating, but I still can’t breathe.
   I open the window and stand. Behind translucent windows lives go on. I am the an audience of one to that theatre of life in which the fourth wall has been brought to the ground. A mother is shouting at her daughter. Two couples are fighting. Someone is talking on the phone. Do they realize someone is there seeing them?  It strikes me as peculiar.
   In my bedroom, I turn the T.V on. Was the idea of movies inspired by that person watching you behind his window? All holds no interest to me. Many times a fleeting thought of my life turning into a movie crosses my mind. And I wonder, do we follow the order of begging-climax-end?  No we do not. What if they create a story about someone, much like everyone else, much like myself, who wakes up, lives, sleeps? And in between, there are those moments, those scenes, that begin with the eye sand crystallize in the heart then reflect on the face; moments detached from everything, moments that last no longer than a moment. Things happen in life, major events you might want to call them; movie-makers kill the moments and focus on the days, forcing that second line of thought which has no relation with events, the one that comes from the self to fade. When someone dies, and his wife is mourning, won’t she notice if a woman wearing red blouse and green skirt passes by her in the street? Won’t that second line of thought even force a hint of marvel at her heart before her surroundings sink in again drowning trivial things away. They’d never capture that part in a movie, it has no influence on the plot.
   I fill the bathtub with water, icy water, then strip myself out of clothes. Hesitance pulls me back for a second. At first, I let one leg touch the water, then throw myself in, all of me in. It stings at first, but then I get used to it. I close my eyes and pretend it’s winter again. 

15 comments:

Desert Rose said...

You know Maha,i did like you last night at 4 am in the morning! my AC was not working too! and just reading this magnificent piece,i feel refreshed..:)
amazing how you interpreted movies and scenes..i know now why i feel your writings so much..you remind me of that little girl in me..ten years ago..:)
P.S we fixed the AC today..:)but i still flee to the window for the breeze..

Cloudia said...

Imagine!




Warm Aloha from Waikiki :)

Comfort Spiral

Stafford Ray said...

Hi, I tried so hard to read your post but couldn't because, at least on my screen, I couldn't get the type to stand out from the background.
However, it did get to see it by opening the comments, where I could see the original post and glad I did.

Your comments on the stuff that never gets into the script, the ongoing lives, is the way it is with Hollywood I guess, unlike arthouse movies.

But all that aside, ten out of ten for bravery... leaping into an ice cold bath!

mahaprasad said...

Summer has sucked the life out of me. No. Do not think like this..-i think this exactly....
Thk U Maha.

sorry
___________________________

yeah Aber right..wish u all the best dear

Brian Miller said...

i am shivering at your close...smiles.

Sam Liu said...

A haunting and chilling tale, Maha. Your words, as ever, have a profound power and a solemn poignancy. You are a master of the human mind.

THE BEATY said...

I love the idea of veiwing someone through the window. And the waking up in the heat part. That has happened... it was awful

Helen said...

Enjoyed this, immensely! I've experienced those AC-less nights too. Movies! They're why I prefer theater.

Magpie said...

There is so much in this piece, Maha. I love the description of the summer...it's how I feel here right now. Then your feelings about life and how we miss the moments...wonderful...lives as movies. Great job!

kathew said...

a twist on a hot steamy bath- clever you. I liked this!

Oddyoddyo13 said...

Ugh. Heat.

I relate.

Try it being ninety degrees at night with the air broken upstairs, sleeping on a mattress in the living room.

Now THAT'S where room for thought comes in. :)

Loved this, btw

(Sorry, I was rambling wasn't I?)

Claudia said...

..close your eyes and pretend it's winter again…beautiful Maha - enjoyed reading this (even if i wished we had some more heat this summer in germany…)

Tumblewords: said...

Chilling, yes! Well crafted...

kavisionz said...

What a story!!!
I particularly liked the part where you make the mention of that widow experiencing that momentary flutter at the glimpse of the "outsider" ... such peculiar thoughts have crossed my mind too... thoughts like, does anyone else EVER see the exact same things as we do, at a given instant? And my mind says, the answer is NO... but...

Anyway, this was an excellent read, Maha..
But why the cold bath?!?!?!? Brrr...shivering! A cold shower is imaginable...but a plunge into a cold tub...phhheewww.. I got cold sweat thinking of it!

Ed Pilolla said...

i felt that blast furnace heat, and the pain in my heart here.
nice!