Two fowls at two opposite and distant directions desperately cluck to announce the coming of dawn. The sound magnifies a mournful of spiel, so traumatic and daunting to bear. They consistently return each other’s clucking as if indulging in an operatic discourse that’s plagued with itinerant swings of joy and sadness. In my mind, they seemed like harbingers of death perpetually lulling the cockles of the heart to sleep and die with truth. The feeling’s like this when you refuse to believe that someone you loved is at the other end of the line, trying to breathe her last and rummaging whatever is left, few minutes after the pumping of life; memories of important events in her life which includes a bittersweet understanding of a lifetime of sacrifice. A sacrifice devoted to a generation ahead but so close to her heart.
I waited for few minutes at the station for the bus to come. Booked for the first trip and ended miscalculating the time, earlier by half an hour. Everyone has their jackets and sweaters except me. This is the early days of January and the cold front still sets low reaching this part of the country. I don’t feel the cold. My body is numb all over. Smoke comes out of my mouth occasionally because of heavy and deep breathing. It is still dark. Few people roam the streets. A number of passengers boarded the bus as soon as it arrived. Never passed a glance at their faces like I used to. For quarter of an hour until I boarded myself my eyes are focused at only one direction, to the skies. The bus left the station at about .
At , a distraught man was seated at a lonesome bench. His aura effused a certain feeling, so desolate and unknown. The bus maneuvers towards his direction until it finally sweeps the dust in front of him. He was still all the while; his presence pregnant with undefined emotions.
Grief, they say, is abstract until it crosses your path. Unlike any other emotion, grief is seldom felt in our everyday life until someone close to our heart leaves this physical world. When I was on travel to attend the wake of my grandmother, I witnessed the coming of dawn like never before. As the bus runs along lines of trees, paddies and finally the shores along the gulf, the bulwark of the spill of light gradually swallowed up the dark and venomous abyss on the horizon. The beauty of the coming of the new day has never been this overwhelming yet, for a moment, my heart was unable to respond.
For almost a year after her death, I paid a visit to her grave and brought few dozens of white roses. Shed a tear for the wonderful memories and told her that I will never be the same again; like a stolid marble sculpture of a human figure with broken arms. “I suddenly remember you telling me that you will spook me even in broad daylight if I still don’t get married after you pass away. Go on Nay, won’t bother.”