Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Color Blind

I drew and you wrote.
   I loved the fluidity of charcoal as it stained the stark white pages with pieces of my mind. Sometimes,  lines would  hug and intertwine forming shapes; quite a lot, they were only shredded pieces of dispersed thoughts. I was more comfortable with the ambiguity  of grey mirroring the mess of me; we both too unruly to be tamed by names  You loved the definitive sense words gave you. In your world, everything had a meaning and whatever had meaning must be a word and what’s not a word is nothing. I was your only exception as you were mine.
   I argued that the first people used pictures and drawings to communicate as scientists found on the walls of caves. You laughed and said that it’s what got them in there in the first place; civilization  began when they started using their tongues in something more useful than making meaningless sounds like animals do. I just shrugged and said that it’s boring to have a word for everything.
Two people couldn’t be more different.
You listened to Debussy and Beethoven and I to KISS and Nirvana.
You wore Armani and I whatever I found not coffee-stained.
You ate at fancy restaurants with a large group of friends and I in the streets observing people from afar.
You planned everything ahead and I just did whatever my twisted brain would suggest.  
You were a day person and I a night person.
You were a communist and I an existentialist; which was, besides shapes and words, one of the things we’d always argue about. You thought that existentialism would mar any human progress because no person could make it as a single entity.  I thought that communism was just another way to cancel individuality using the façade of equality, which, of course applied to everyone but the governor who would suck all the money.  To you, communism was the promised utopia and to me, existentialism was how my life went on.
Two people could not be more different
Yet,  we had one thing in common.
We thought the only reason love made it as far as the twenty-first century is to make millionaires out of movie-makers. We both didn’t believe in love.  Each had a different view . You  couldn’t define it and I’d never seen it lasting. People get married, some get divorced and others stay together for the wrong reasons. Here’s the thing about love, it’s a feeling, and all feelings are like candles. Love being a violent one, the candle melts way  too fast. Soon, you are left with wax without a blaze, but it's enough to remind you that something used to be in there.  So you hold on, wishing for that spark to light you up again. But it rarely ever does.
    We weren’t what you’d call two people in love. To you, I was a special friend because I was different from the other people you knew. To me you were a special friend because I knew no one at all. But, curiously enough, I knew you.
   Many times you suggested to introduce me to the people you knew but I’d always refuse. I didn’t belong to people, or to anything really. I lived in many places, traveled to many countries, inhabited many houses, yet, I could call none home. I was too trapped within myself to ever see anything from the world but a blur of colors. You once joked with me calling me a misanthrope; it was when you saw that I didn’t smile that you realized it was something serious to me. I often thought of it, and came to the conclusion that I didn’t hate people; I just didn’t care for them.
   When I first showed you the stuff  I ‘d drawn, you said I must be color blind. I guess you’d thought I painted with a brush and used an easel. Your statement, though,  had some truth to it; I could see all colors only in shades of grey.
    I was curled up in bed, rather paralyzed in it. It was not tired legs that led me there, it was a heavy heart. I cried. I hadn’t done so in a while. It wasn’t relieving like they say; tears dragged tears and soon, my eyes were too blurred to see the light. I was twenty-five, empty, and alone. I didn’t want to die like this. And I didn’t want to live like this either. I only fitted into my skin, where my grey soul poured, happy for having a cover in the color of glistening masks and thickness of  a shield. It hurt, I won’t deny. Sometimes, the shield was too heavy  and sometimes, it made my lungs close in. Yet, it was the best solution; I was too fragile to last in a world where things didn’t flow the way charcoal  did on paper. I wanted to skip those minutes soaked with sadness to more benign times; and then, all I could see was you. I’d been considering it for quite a while now, calling you. I wanted someone to get me out of here and you happened to be the only someone I knew.
  Half an hour later, at 3:20, you were standing at my doorstep.  
   One of the things I loved about you was how you knew it wasn’t quite easy for me to talk about something painful. So, like what anyone would do, you didn’t just twist your face in pathos, ask about how I felt, and started the whole life-is-good crap. You commented on how my flat should enter the Guinness World’s Records for the most chaotic thing on Earth. I answered that chaos is complex order. You didn’t understand me so I had to explain: Chaos is a word created by us humans as to define things we couldn’t see the pattern of. Everything in life follows an order. Things ‘randomly’ thrown around in my flat were a result of my state of mind. Thus, it was actually mirroring the way I felt in its own complex pattern. When we ‘organize’ something, we are only creating simple patterns for us to be able to follow; and me being the farthest thing from simplicity, it wasn’t strange my flat being like that. You replied that it wasn’t okay for me to live in such a zoo then create a philosophical theory as an excuse for it. You then threw a bag  lying on the ground and said it wasn’t you doing it, just your state of mind. I’d been feeling more like a zombie for the past few hours, but you knew well how to provoke me; mocking my theories was unforgivable. Soon, we were hysterically laughing while throwing everything found on the ground at each other.
I tripped and fell on my head.
    I must’ve blacked out for few seconds. When I opened my eyes, everything was literally a blur. Soon, I could make things out. You were lying right beside me at such a proximity I could see every little detail in your face. We’d never been that close before. And there were your eyes, without the glasses for the first time, looking into mine. I could see you then, clearer than ever and I could tell you saw me too. Your breath brushed against my face speeding  my heartbeats. It was an awkward moment, we weren’t used to feeling like this. But that’s what made it beautiful. I knew that right then we had the same thought buzzing in our heads: we were not just friends. I was the one who spoke it out asking what exactly are we. You answered that it’s boring to have a name for everything.
No two people could be more different.
That was what we’d  thought.

Sorry for slacking off lately!


Brian Miller said...

i liked it the first time i read it...glad you lopped off the last sentence...

Katherine said...

Sometimes being polar opposites helps keeps things in balance... In a personal sense, I know a little bit about this.
Beautifully written as always Maha!

bard said...

Simply amazing writing!

margg. said...

you have no idea how badly i wish i could write like you.

JStar said...

This is so beautifully written

Blasphemous Aesthete said...

Maha, I don't know what to say. I just shared it with as many as I could. I just liked it the way it was.
I dont have words to praise it, no, I am falling short of words I think.

Cloudia said...

Aloha from Honolulu

Comfort Spiral

Mehak said...

this is brilliant! i love the writing and the whole feel of the piece.. it touched something within me.
i'm hooked to your blog now! :)

Tanvi said...

If I had to name it, I sure can't. But thats how it is beautiful...

Stumbled upon it due to Anshul, and I am glad I did :)
You write very nicely, good to see your blog!



maha, very beautifully crafted - loved this piece - thanks so much for dropping by my place, dear lady! and have a glorious day!

Magpie said...

Sometimes knowing where something is headed, doesn't lessen the getting there. Great job!

merc said...

Lovin' this.

THE BEATY said...

wow I just got around to reading this and its extremely good. I love the idea of polar opsites. Also I like the long form. sorry for not visiting so much lately

Eva said...

I loved this. I can feel these people inside and out. My favorite part was how they argued about the need for words, and how at the end you twisted that back in. Very thoughtful.