Seven days ago I painted my feet with henna (you know, the real kind, not that toxic dye that is being purported as henna these days, but let’s not get into that…) and although it was certainly not my best artistic moment, the experience transported me back in time. To an old way of life, with wells of water and herds of cows passing by and handmade ink in small glass bottles for writing on planks of wood, and a little girl looking up at the stars, many many stars blanketing the night sky. It was a simple life, we didn’t have many things, there was a lot of love and there was a lot of pain.
It’s almost June and the sound of spring is still a little disengaged, the cold is intense sometimes, I really am worried. It feels as though there isn’t much time for anything too, but trivial matters still manage to continue at a tedious length. Talk of politics ambush me on my way to work, prosaic routine concerns comprise of chit-chat that is seemingly unending about things that are seemingly important, and something impels me to just get on the next available flight to somewhere far from this despondent state of things, and not return. I only want a little warm weather and to know of what will unknowingly betide, I can no longer handle surprises in my life.
But on another note, I have been experimenting with some coloured charcoal and it is an interesting development in my life.
It is of a particular sky on one eve, but it could very well be daybreak too and that is the beauty of the sky isn’t it? From gold to black to gold, its soft transitions of colours and capricious weather patterns, in the end, it all combines into one disposition. Nature in its essence is a poetic illustration of life: everything ends where it began.
I am allowing some lingering thoughts to surface too, and I wonder of many things and people, there are so many unfinished things, so many things evermore elusive…
I rediscovered my love for drawing. It just happened one day, I wasn’t doing anything particularly memorable. I was probably on the train or walking somewhere, probably, I can’t remember.
What makes people remember a single moment so well out of hundreds? Could it be that the feelings bound to particular memories are what a person cherishes most? Even more so than the actual memory of the time spent?
Anyway, I have revisited some moments for these drawings. Somewhere, during some time, these places were.
I have also rediscovered my impressive lack of patience and my unwillingness to finish anything, but this is not news for me, just something I don’t wish to address. I resultantly have pieces of unfinished drawings here and there, and if you look closely, you can even see where my determination dies in each sketch.
It has been so long, this sinuous journey of mine. It has been unforgiving and dense, but in its slow bends as if in candlelight and a song was playing from the sky, I was in awe from time to time. In such moments, very little mattered.
Somewhere along the way I have learned to see differently. So much has changed so quickly, from one corner of the world to the next very little tends to remain the same, and even less has remained with me. The little things in this material world provide more comfort and solace in the end. The little things are the same people and a few places, the feelings, the portraits yellowing in the corners, the conversations interjecting a favourite song on an old cassette–they always end unfinished, the bottles and vials of thick perfume, the ancient messages on the back of a tattered airmail envelope, a scarf still redolent of a corner in the world, and so on and so on, and nothing more.
In the end,
what is left of this material world? Of the seemingly grand things, the lavish things, the outward things that are so unnecessary. What about you underneath, what will be left of you? A photograph? A poem? A scarf? Simple objects of memory that will unravel the fabric of time just to rearrange everything so perfectly reticulated with an idea, to make someone wonder: look, it will always be alright in the end.
On this journey, the same things seem to go and return, beckoning, abandoning. I have learned that it is a cycle of death and recrudescence and one should expect things to pass as they emerge. So far, much has come and gone and the path grows more rough, more uncertain. I have learned to be patient and content, my journey continues, I feel that I am at a threshold, like when the roads and the birds and the people are asleep, and something stirs in the quiet hum and thrum just after midnight. All the golden things that could be true linger somewhere in the horizon, somewhere beyond the bend, and there’s music.