April 15, 2013 Off By Kanchan Bhattacharya



She surfaced from time to time to her real-time world of terror!


She had OD-ied again today, wondering if that would bring her sleep- of any kind, may the long one- she was not afraid. She was staring into the PC screen, wondering if she could talk to someone, unaware of the blank look in her eye!


Damn it she thought, why? What was seeking expression inside her? She wanted her friend to come up on the net- he was another character- rather unusual. He talked, suggested and brought out things that were inside and was gentle with her…


It was with a start that she realized that she was here for the last thirty minutes, in a daze, wondering whether she should hit the key board! She had a turmoil ravaging her soul for the past twenty years, and her “Friend”, as she called him, would have something to say on that!


She was wondering – strangely she resented why recalcitrant Death would not take her- she needed sleep!


My mind rolled fast- I was trying to link up what she had told me from so far away, halfway across the globe. She said I had a solution for everything- I was one who hated chaos in any form, even nascent, baby chaos was abominable to me- I wanted solutions to every problem, even to this lady that I was counseling, she was an anomaly I wanted to solve quickly, and get on to my ways!


“I am not looking for solutions, Friend,” she had said- “I want to live like this”- when I had suggested that she move out to a seaside resort- take long walks and break out of her cocoon.


I thought I would like to bring her out of her melancholy, and walk with her. She was vulnerable and frail… looked so, and definitely felt so…


Inside his mind I could feel the cogs whirling- thinking out fast, trying to fathom my mind. I have this uncanny feeling- how does he know me in just two days of acquaintance- I have a nagging doubt- I have told him so many times, I am not trying to walk out of my life as of now, nor am I looking for a solution. I liked his own saying- nothing lasts, no problem lasts, nor the solution- everything erodes like stone does with the wind.


Dust to dust…


Why then do I worry- is he my savior?


Would he take me on walk, a long one, and recite his poems again- poems of the midnight hues- I just know him by his voice, and his fast typing at the speed of thought


Talk to me,

Till there is no more to say!

Walk with me,

Till we reach the sunset,

And through the night,

Into a new day!

Hold my hands,

For I am your friend!

Speak not of love,

Nor of other chains,

But of the moment that is,

Forever now, again and again!


Somehow, I am drifting- I guess it is the OD that is seeping into me, looking into Friend from so far away, wondering why you came into this parched desert awake for an eternity…the days of dreams, the nights of tossing in nightmares


Oh! The roar of the sea

In my island heights

The breeze in my face

Midnight hit me

On the white sands

At sunrise,

I would be asleep


In my dream

High above in the sky

Tossed hard in the winds

On wings

I see

That sleeping near-dead

Drugged one asleep

At long last

I let her be

In her youthful play

Gasping for air

In the blue bubbles

Spanning the horizon

Where the clouds meet the sea


I had told her sometime back that she should try to dream, and how to get those through thought control. She has a habit of regressing into negative thoughts- she has not yet told me why she stays with her past. I am thinking hard- what is she up to?


Friend has this habit of analyzing problems, his cogs are fast- he is into his analytics again, 2+2=2, 4, 22! No, fatal error, the 2+2 tablets are not 4,… they are sleep- Friend I have found a solution, right? It hardly matters. Friend you know me- I am my alter ego, I am me… whatever that means, and I am drifting away from my soul- Oh he is here too, am I hallucinating- I cannot see his face, but he is touching me again with his faraway poem again… Friend loves reciting Neruda


I want you to know one thing.

You know how this is if I look,

At the crystal moon

At the red branch

Of the slow autumn at my window,


Friend, I shriek, why have you stopped, I am lost here staring at the blue sky- living within the pit, I can still see that the sky has you, and you have the sea. The window sill is where the dust settles and I see your foot prints leaving imprints every time you go away. The only thing I know sometime, is when you walk into my world and say- “Wake up J, it’s me” is I see the face of heaven!


If I touch near the fire,

The impalpable ash

Or the wrinkled body of the log,

Everything carries me to you,

As if everything that exists,

Aromas, light, metals

Were little boats that sail

Towards those isles of yours

That wait for me!


I hear the bubbles swarming past, I wish my love would come and ask me for a dance, maybe he would take on where Friend left off, oh…


Well, now, if little by little

You stop loving me,

I shall stop loving you

Little by little.

If suddenly you forget me,

Do not look for me,

For I shall have already forgotten you.

If you think it long and mad,

The wind of banners

That pass through my life,

And you decide to leave me

At the shore of the heart

Where I have roots,

Remember on that day,

At that hour I shall lift my hands

And my roots shall set sail for another land.

But if each day, each hour

You feel that you are destined for me,

With implacable sweetness,

If each day a flower

Climbs up your lips to seek me,

Ah my love, my own

In me all that fire is repeated,

In me nothing is extinguished or forgotten,

My love depends on your love, beloved,

And as long as you live,

It will be in your arms,

Without leaving mine


I want to scale the sky, I think Friend’s mathematical skill does not add up to all those things I want, because there is just one me, and two souls, one that was killed of love and one that wants to fly away. Hell, Friend I feel your gentle whispers telling me, yes, I can fly… yes!


Friend can you bring my world back? The rainbows and dreams? I can take on the clouds even as rain wets my wings heavy, the thunder buffets me, the birds plummeting ground wards look for their nests, and I soar with the four seeds of death, racing through my blood.


The phone rang.

“I am J,” she says, “you know me, I am J, Friend!”

I am stunned. I said, I would be with you in a jiffy! I ask her to dress up- I would take her for a walk by the white sand beach! She gasps-


It was raining hard when we reached the beach. She was silent- and crying in whimpers. I made no effort to console her- “Friend, why do I have to cry?”


I see it all now, Friend is with me, reading my mind, I want to walk when the rain stops- I would walk into the sea, alone, with only Friend watching, as the sea swallows me. I have found my answers. May be I would be caught by Lucifer- for the sea is a desert too- sand below, water for a sky, am I a mermaid to be?


I dream, Friend is there walking with me too… he never touches my skin, he is inside, like my soul. He knows.


Friend stands still at the edge of the beach, waving me bye! The water is strangely calm- the sky is a bright blue bubble in my red dream.


I walk on!

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