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Writings

Another world… another dimorphic dimension… carbolically cleansed environs… silvery contraptions… winding transparent maze of wires and tubes transfusing importunate fluids and gases… Crisp white uniforms… fluorescent flickers rhythmically dancing… to intermittent melodies of a beating. A forlorn figure lay motionless within the glass bubble… a lone nurse moved about with surgical precision… writing data… adjusting switches… and knobs. Eutha was in great pain… but was thinking… hideous faces loomed occasionally… the blinding lights penetrated every pore of her body… she felt spasms… convulsions… she was crying out loud… pleading for attention… the white starched figure sailed out of view.

 

Firik sauntered amid the iron enclosures. The moonlight glistened on his sweat-soaked body. The animals whined and purred in his towering presence. A congenial air of camaraderie hung above the silent night. Firik patiently listened to their woes and whispered soothing soft words to comfort them. The animals sought solace by confiding in their saviour… the messiah with unmatched beauty… who kindled their free spirit… and inspired them to linger till the opportune moment… when they would rise… sail above… and transcend the mundane shackles of servility… imposed by creatures that took pride in denying others… Firik understood the animals… they understood him… a language not tainted by words… a pure tranquil transfer of emotion… without the venomous veil of crafty intentions… a language that every entity on this planet is born with… but some squander… Firik picked up the shovel, swung the pail over his right shoulder and strolled off… humming a soft jovial tune…

 

People flocked from places far and wide… just to catch a glimpse of Eutha. She was of exquisite beauty… she had everything a man would want. Honey-coloured, satin smooth skin… luscious lips… and an hourglass figure that evoked lustful arousal in every eye. A body… masterly crafted by an adroit… surreal… sculptor… accentuated mounds… lissom curves and a wholesome svelte demeanour. When Eutha sashayed down the aisle, men fantasized her naked body… entwined with theirs… drenched in the sweat of riding the tumultuous wave of primeval bliss. A gentle sway of her hips… a mischievous smile… and men would swoon with deep sighs… Traders, magicians, artists, poets, laborers, landlords… Eutha had lost count… of the men who had proposed. She spoke the language of oomph… Loud, raucous screams erupted from the audience every time Eutha performed with Zord on the trapeze. Men stared open-mouthed… salivating at the gyrations of her supple, youthful body… defying maxims of gravity… and narrating an ethereal aerial ballet.

 

Dr. Juq had come to visit. The patient had been in coma in the past four days… a misshapen remnant of a limp human body lay within the incubator… the sanguine smell wafted across the room as he lifted the glass casing… to apply his stethoscope. The contorted body was frail and pale… the only signs of life were the slow rhythmic beeps… and the flaccid pumping of the oxygen bubble. Eutha was shivering… she gnashed her teeth… she screamed at the top of her voice… kill me… Her throat was parched… her shrivelled limbs lashed about wildly… kill me… please… Dr. Juq closed the glass lid… took a glance at the limp frame and proceeded towards the exit. Eutha sank… words seemed futile… she sobbed hysterically. A dark ominous mist was descending… it was ironic… all her life… she was afraid of death… but now… she feared life… every moment… every breath was replete with morbid pain and morose suffering. She prayed for release… entreating death to grant her liberation from this excruciating existence… The once-supple body was now a twisted, broken arrangement of putrefying flesh and crushed bones. No one seemed to heed… she convulsed again… her life raced at high speed… in front of her eyes… hurtling down a bottomless pit.

Eutha ears echoed with obtrusive bestial wailing… reverberating screams of a wounded soul… It was Xena’s idea…

 

No one knew where he had come from. Numa, the circus owner’s wife had once stumbled upon him. That stormy night… she had set out to investigate the strange, eerie sounds from the animals’ cages… and found him. A dark, emaciated baby wrapped in a dirty rag… lying at the entrance of the sty… making gurgling noises… and calmly staring at her with large round eyes… The travelling circus was about to set out for their next destination… she had picked up the waif. That was thirty years ago. The child stayed on with the travelling circus… as an errand boy. But the others in the troupe always ridiculed and poked fun of him… they tortured him with inhuman tasks. They used to slap him, beat him and kick him around. Eutha and Zord, the trapeze artistes. Fifi, the stripper. Kolk, the knife thrower. Joko, the clown. Fura, the flame-eater… everyone mocked him… no one had ever said a kind word… He spent a lot of time around the animals… he lovingly cleaned cages, fed the beasts and tended their wounds. The people in the troupe treated him worse than the animals… they had relegated him to the realm of the unfinished… the oblivion of limbo… but still he never uttered a single word in protest…

Firik was an ugly three-foot tall deaf-mute.

That night Jaka, the circus owner had announced a bonus to the staff. The circus was a roaring success and was making huge profits in this part of the country. There was great revelry and inebriated merriment in almost all the tents. At a small canvas shelter, Eutha, Zord, Kolk, Fifi, Fura, Joko and Rusa were having a party. Alcohol flowed… narcotic stupor loomed… and all inhibitions were unfettered. Men and women were in their element… the raw unclad recesses of their souls lay bare… bawdy jokes and loud guffaws rent the air… Firik scurried along… tent to tent… delivering all that was ordered. Fifi and Kolk cuddled in a corner… oblivious to all… jerking in unison… surfing the threshold of ecstasy… exploring each other within… Xena eyed them occasionally… her heart pounded hard… she felt a surge of sweet stirring… her nostrils flared as she saw visions of Zord’s flexing muscles… sweating… she shivered with anticipation… Just then Zord hollered for Firik. They had run out of ice… Firik scampered into the room… Zord flung the icebox that hit his forehead… Eutha and Xena laughed merrily. Xena looked at Fifi and Kolk… still lost… Then she had the idea… Xena hatched a plan… to heighten amusement… to explore the unknown… they plotted… Eutha was chosen… she relented…

 

Eutha saw shapes… the bitch… the conniving slut… she had her arms around Zord… she saw hazy outlines. Her heart was pounding. She saw Zord and Xena… dancing with merriment… Xena held aloft her proud trophy… Eutha cried out to Zord… their love had transcended words… she pleaded… kill me… please, Zord… I don’t want to live… She saw movement… Zord peered down the glass casing… then marvelled at the array of apparatus strewn around the room… man had advanced so much… Zord… please… it’s futile… Eutha screamed… every muscle in her body cried out in pain… she wept at her helplessness… In his pursuit of excellence of the body… man had forgotten his innate drive… To what avail… machines that prolong life… life that disregards the soul… More shapes hovered above her… crisp white shades… was it the angel of death?… the saviour who had descended to end her horrendous existence?… The nurse continued writing… the promising mist of white had settled… hurtling her further down the void…

It felt as if ages had elapsed… since the day her hands had slipped… on the trapeze…

 

Firik was overjoyed… with gasps of pleasure he announced the good news to his friends… The lioness roared happily… the elephants danced… the chimps clapped with glee… the horses did the trot… Firik was congratulated by all. Firik proudly spoke… of how his princess had professed undying love… how she had spoken of his beauty… and how she had promised to come along with him… to their world… A world that respected integrity… worshipped purity… and communed within the sacrosanct tutelage of nature… Firik spoke eloquently… how his princess had defied everybody… and chosen him. She had beseeched for his company… for their timeless journey… to a whole new world… of charming… colourful… and charismatic proportions… Firik addressed the rapt audience and exulted in relating his princess’ divine design of traversing together… the serene oceans of bliss… of uniting to bear fruit… and paying obeisance to the sublime gift of love… of pure union… of instincts…

 

Firik gently parted the curtain… he saw her lying back… propped on her elbow… His princess… Eutha stirred… looked at him longingly… with dreamy eyes… her soft tresses fell over her face as she beckoned Firik… her transparent gown slipped… to partly reveal the writhing pink body beneath… The world was awash in a faint golden glow… from the solitary lantern that swayed in the gentle breeze. Firik was drawn into the pulpy enormity… magnetically transformed to a world of myriad hues… A pleasant ride through a helical fortress of softness… and gentle caresses of bare skin… Exploring… touching… grasping… Their skins met… blood rushed throughout their bodies… he reached out… to feel the soft wetness that shuddered within the tenebrous tract… She slithered her quivering fingers… and gently stroked the vibrant purple narrowness… they were drowning in the inviting fluidity… swimming the undercurrent of rhythmic twitching… Suddenly… there was a burst… of ear-splitting cacophony… The whole tent reverberated with piercing screams of laughter… Firik stood naked… surrounded by hysterically boisterous and laughing faces of Zord, Xena, Kolk, Fifi, Joko, Fura and Rusa… Firik let out a painful grunt… and scampered out of the tent…with a shattered heart…

His princess had betrayed him…

 

Numa had come to visit… Firik had trudged along… he stood near the door… he sniffed at the air… of destitution… of malady… of prayers… Numa peered into the incubator… and could not contain herself… The gentle whiff… of warmth… Eutha experienced a glimmer… she cried out… please… help me… I want to die… Numa reached inside her purse… took out a napkin… and blew her nose… Please… somebody… anybody… Firik cocked his ears… and looked up. He stood on his toes… and got pulled into a vortex… of deafening pleas… of extreme pain… He saw his princess… But… she was a prisoner… chained… within a maze of manacles and loops… His princess was begging to be rescued… Firik let out a grunt… leapt over… and shattered the fetters that bound her…

The monitors went blank…

It was yesterday… or ages ago… or maybe somewhere in the near future…
The cloud of dust on the horizon, the steady trot amid dying percussions. His pudgy nose between large hypnotic eyes. His wind swept shoulder-length hair on a tall, gaunt physique…
He had approached asking for shelter for the night.

It was an idyllic settlement… generously blessed by mother nature with lush green expanses and gurgling brooks. Cherubic kids giggled as they pranced to and from school. The menfolk danced their way to work and women went about their chores with soft tunes on their lips.
Every night people assembled for a pure, unspoiled celebration of life… there were drinks, dances, music and unbridled merriment. They were a self-sufficient, joyous and contented folk… and the arrival of the stranger was met with much trepidation that reflected from every countenance present.
The stranger’s voice boomed in the silent night… in return for one night’s shelter he promised a small gift for every home in the morning…
Needless to say, arrangements were quickly made.

The wee hours of the morning saw a mad scramble and jostling among the people… rushing to find the stranger and his gift. Unwashed sleepy-eyed men, mothers with wailing babies, elders with their walking sticks…
But there was no sign of the stranger.
Sullen faced and grossly disappointed everyone sauntered back home.

The following days heralded an unusual pregnant silence and an ominous lull all over. The once boisterous ambience now lay shrouded in an eerie blanket of potent tension…
Gradually incidents started pouring in…
The stranger had kept his word !

Those who comprehended the stranger’s gift underwent a miraculous transformation. The people seemed to have found their innate voices and no longer quivered in sibilant tones in the face of an option.

A few people started questioning the mediators who peddled their allegiance with an invisible yet omnipresent supremacy conveniently packaged in an aura of mystique. Their dictatory regulations that elastically leaned to cater to a chosen few and belt out untold pain, humiliation and misery to those who opposed. Their crafty orchestrations that axed peaceful coexistence into bits of conception, colour and choice…

The recognition of the supreme was no longer done by hung necks and bent knees through submission… but by the proud act of admission…

Now, they negated and resisted the parasitic maladies encompassing their lives. They could see through the nature and level of existence they had subjected themselves to and resolved to change…

The potbellied imbeciles in charge of governance but embroiled to their ears in amassing prosperity at the expense of the blood, sweat and fodder of the humble masses…
The bawdy upholders of order who had rewritten the objectives of justice…
The tobacco-munching clerks who incessantly hinted at the inadequate grease on their filthy palms…
The callous doctors that persisted on extensive documentations before emergency resuscitation…
The scholastic nerds that tainted temples of knowledge and pimped the goddess of learning…

Life, after the stranger’s gift was never the same again…
… and before you wonder… no… the stranger’s gift was neither a time or labour saving contraption… not a weapon to plant seeds of deception.
It was not a holy new commandment from the broad vastness above or the abysmal depths below… It was neither a fresh new ideological insight nor a steroidal new wonder drug…

It was… what we know … or rather don’t know…

The mirror.