“What is this life if, full of care, We have no time to stand and stare. “- William H. Davies
And yet life presents such majestically beautiful forms that a lesser mortal like me can’t help but stare. Even in the humdrum of busy Gurgaon life, peacocks wake me up daily and dance, flashing their majestic blue and I stare mesmerized, losing track of time. Now you seat yourself opposite me during vapid business meetings, engrossed on your business phone, oblivious to your own incredible good looks, a unique blend of features. A plain white shirt. Plain black trousers. A blue tie with a small yellow pattern. Black shoes. Nothing that calls for attention and yet I can’t steer my gaze away. You decide to jump in the conversation, gesticulating with your long hands. I am mesmerized with the gestures and gaze on as you fondle with your tie infinitely before managing to tie a successful knot.
I speak but not what I would like to. Unspoken words hang in the air; speech has always been elusive, never my forte. Even as a child I remained absolutely mute till the age of three when my fingers found expression through the stroke of a pen, only then did some sounds manage to break through my vocal chord. Even today my pen moves interminably, through lines, contours and words, undeterred by comprehension of the onlooker or the reader, but the spoken word remains grossly inadequate.
You meet my gaze and flash me a genuinely impish smile that lights up your eyes, miraculously producing three deep lines around the contours of your eyes running all the way up to the boundary of your wavy hair. My hands twitch to feel the texture of the waves and capture the playful colorful smile into my own black and white rendering, erasing the highlights, soiling my hands and clothes in black charcoal dust. I look at my hands- marred by far too many lines, some deep, some superficial but overall too clean. Charcoal has not left an indelible impression on them. Not just yet.
I look at my clothes. Too immaculate. Too formal. Too insipid. Too impersonal. Completely obscuring the person underneath. The unwritten laws of professional conduct tether my action. But every experience is personal isn’t it?