Far away in the realms of Middle Earth.
Rested a small region called Hobbiton.
And in a small corner lay a little town.
Known as the Shire, by all and one.
Where chimney smokes rose, white as snow
And trees danced in the music of the winds.
Here lived in a shack young Bilbo Baggins.
With tales up his sleeve that none would know.
One midsummer’s night as he sat in the fire,
Smoking his pipe and making round rings.
Staring with intent at his lone window pane
As he watched them trickling, the drops of rain.
As the fire crackled on through that hour.
The clouds thundered on as though turned sour.
The clock at his bedside ticked with each second.
But then from nowhere came a sound unheard.
It was a croak or a crack, he knew not which.
There was one and another and one more !
Whether it was a beast or just a little insect.
He had to find out, for it was now his itch.
The clouds had ended their tumultuous spell
But the mysterious noises refused to cease.
As the door opened, out came a figure all in black
It was young Bilbo Baggins, exiting his shack.
A lantern in his hand, he traversed through the mud.
In search for his beast that he sought to slay.
In the light of the moon, shadows danced on his face.
As the moths wavered about in their time of play.
His ears at his legs, he wandered on ahead.
The noise grew louder and more in number !
Was he alive and awake or deep in slumber ?
Nevertheless, he proceeded to meet his fate.
Soon he found himself reaching a small bog.
Enveloped in the sounds of different sorts.
There were chirps and croaks and hoots too.
He knew not where to look and what to do.
So he closed his eyes and raised his arms up high.
And in a heartbeat, the cacophony came to a halt.
Struck with the silence, he couldn’t believe his ears
With his head tilted to the stars, he opened his eyes.
And then he slowly looked down at the bog as it was.
But now he felt alone and afraid in the dark night.
Had he been abandoned due to fear or due to anger ?
Maybe his presence was an unwanted sight.
He lowered his arm to take leave when came a sound.
A chirp could be heard and then came two, no three!
Witnessing this ensemble, he smiled and waved his arm
The chirps waved too, rising and falling and moving around.
Then he waved his other arm and followed suit the croaks.
Waving his arms about along with the sounds of the night
He loved each moment of this strange and lovely escapade.
He was now a conductor and this was the choir he had made.
Climbing atop a rock, he looked down and heard them sing.
Which was once a racket had now turned into music!
As he stood there waving his arms in the moonlight.
The moths joined too, hovering above his head in a ring
Young Bilbo was there all night with his new found friends.
He even chose to sing a lore or two that he found to love.
And then danced a little too among the croaks and chirps.
Under the stars of the night he wished would never end.
Sunday, June 29, 2008
Far away in the realms of Middle Earth.
Monday, June 23, 2008
I was woken with a jerk as the bus pulled over at the bus station. I hadn't realised when I had fallen asleep but I sure wasn't happy to be woken up. It's hard to sleep in a rickety old bus that has to travel for 6 hours and stop at every point to pick up people. I didn't mind the bus company making its living but flooding every inch of the bus with human kind wasn't my idea of making profit. Anyway, my legs were all cramped up and I had to move out of this temporary prison of mine. Descending down the steps, the cold caught hold of me and went straight to my nose resulting in a loud sneeze. Achoooooo !!! I sneezed, cursing the cold. Wiping off what was left of my sneeze by my sleeve, I proceeded on to the bus station (or what was left of it) in search for food,warmth and a place to pick up that much awaited long distance call of nature. With a stretch of the neck to the left and a quick glance to the right, I found myself right where I was with nothing. The cold was getting to my throat and more importantly, on my nerves. Comfort was what I was looking for in the middle of nowhere and I was just getting poked by the spring of the sofa.
Out of the corner of my eye, I caught the glance of something rising up to the air and vanishing into the dark sky. The view drew me closer and closer like a moth to light and when I was finally there, I saw this man wrapped up in everything he owned, peering out to the crowd with the only opening in his ' attire '. His eyes seemed to be old even though he seemed to be much younger. And there he was, serving tomato soup for a meagre 10 Rs. Tempted by the thought to help him and the more tempting thought of savouring soup. As I took the glass from his woolen glove, I let out a slight 'Thanks' and left him with a brand new 10 ruppee note, just to give that extra happiness that may give him warmth on this cold night.
As I blew on the soup as lightly as possible making sure sure not to spill any, I tilted my head upwards and stared into the night sky. Many a times I would do this without any reason or purpose, always search throught the deep dark voids for something. Not a UFO or an undiscovered planet, but just for soemthing, maybe I searched for myself. I could see only a handful of stars and always wished to have a telescope to uncover this blanket of darkness and reveal the cosmos to my eyes.
At that moment I realised that I had something with me, my new pair of specs that my mom had insistently made for me. I hated them the moment I put them on and swore never to wear them while I can see the number of fingers on my hand. I took them out of the case anyway and put them on. There werent any giggly girls or nosy bullies to mock me, it was just me and the night, embarrasment was a milestone far far away that said " Far far away 0 km"
As I took a sip from the hot soup and looked up into the night sky, an emotion came to life in me that started from the tip of my fingers to the tip of my nose. It was mixed with the tangy taste of the soup and the sight of watching thousands of stars so clear and alive for the first time in my life. It was like little white dots had sprung up out of nowhere and even though they were millions of light years away from me, I felt like i could pluck from the sky and place them on my cheek as glitter. I gazed and gazed and gazed a little more, it was a wonderful sight to see and wondered if anyone else ever tried this while at this bus station. It was an amazing feeling to be out there in the cold and yet be radiating with warmth that came not only from the soup, but from every cell in my body.
I stood there till the bus sounded its horn for us to depart and get on with the journey that lay ahead. As the wheels of the bus went round and round, I closed my eyes (still laden with my specs) with the image of the stars pasted in my mind and the taste of the soup hovering over my semi-burnt tongue.I enjoyed the rest of the bus ride happily ever after.
Wednesday, June 18, 2008
How have you been ? Hope you are in the best of health and are taking care of your mother. Do fill me on the details of her condition. I am very proud in the effort that you have been making in taking care of your mother despite how grave her situation is. Just have faith and pray to the almighty that she starts to feel better soon.
As for me, I have been reassigned to a post known as Ghungar Pass, it is a post that has undergone a lot of heavy firing from the enemy territory. It is much colder than my previous posting and life is a lot more tedious. The nights are the worst when all you have with you are your clothings and a thin sheet that hardly proves to provide any comfort. I wish no person has to ever endure this torture. The facilities are really poor and for food, all we are given is a mixture of rotten milk and stale wheat. Sorry, I didn't ask about the food at your end. I hope you are able to purchase enough with the money I send you. I don't know why I am writing such a letter to you son but I have no one else here to talk to except the snow and the dead trees. I suppose fathers are supposed to be an inspiration and a role model to their children but today as I write this letter, I myself seem to feel out of place and am looking for reasons to feel proud and love my life.
I hope you are able to cover your studies well and are attending school regularly. Education is a very important part in one's life and I regret not giving it that much attention in my own. I want you to be the man I could never be son. As for this war that I have been entangled in, I have no idea how long it will last. Last night, I heard from the senior corporal that it might take months. I feel like I'm living an endless night where there is no peace, no sleep, no sweet dreams, no moon and no stars... just absolute darkness and I feel the shadows creeping in closer with each passing day.
I do not know when I shall be able to send you another letter but always remember son, never lose hope in yourself, one can always make something of himself in no matter what state he/she has been put in. Just remember to keep that hope alive in yourself. Live your life to the fullest son. I fear that I may never be able to share your first beer with you or give you the keys of your first bike. But promise me that you will never forget who you are and remember that I will always love you and be there for you. Maybe in your prayers or in your dreams, I shall be watching over you. Whether I return at our house's doorstep engulfed in happiness or wrapped in a flag, embrace me like you never have and welcome your father back.
Take care son
Your Loving Father