Tuesday, September 14, 2010

The Epilogue To A Sleepless Night

The windows brought a pink glow into the room.
He had just opened his eyes, after the hundredth round ofday-dreaming in the dark.
Laid on the mattress-less bed, on his back, his legs resting on some pillows, and hands spread; he moved his tired eyes and glanced outside the window.
He clenched his teeth in an effort to stop himself from shrieking out loud.
The iron fist returned to its favorite hobby of gripping his wind pipe.
There was no respite from breathlessness.

There was a man in white shorts and white socks who jogged past his ground level window.
There was a faint sound of some religious bells somewhere in the neighborhood.
There was a rickshaw, whose puller pressed the air-pouch and sounded the horn in the half-lit empty road.
There was a group of shabbily-dressed women, with a red powder shabbily smeared on their foreheads, all of whom half-ran with nylon bags clutched in their hands.

The fan spun noiselessly, over his head.
He scratched his forehead, and ran his finger around the corners of his nose.
The facts, the feelings, the faces, the words, the waters, the pain, the pleasure, all blended together into a blurry collage and he groped about with an imaginary hand, for something constant and concrete.
There isn’t much to do, he realized that, and he wasn’t the type who ever complained.
He always believed in making use of the moods.
But now, he thought to himself, the very act of dragging himself up to the desk, and turning the computer on, wouldn’t count much.
He was tired of being ruthless with himself.
The old tricks didn’t work anymore.

His eyes never left the window.
The outside brightened up gradually.
From the bed, he could get a good view of the road that was two feet from the window. Vice-versa, he thought, but that never bothered him.
More people. Busier people. More noises. Busier noises.
Did they really pretend to have trouble-less-existences, or did they have their heads trapped in un-resolvable thought-webs too, while they went about their routines?
Did it matter in the end?
And if it didn’t matter, why did such times and days occur, when nothing else mattered?
Was escaping duties a bigger crime than escaping worries?
He stretched his hand, and reached out for the packet of cigarettes, but he remembered the coughing fits, and paused.
More questions. Lesser answers.

He jerked himself up.
He wore his slippers, stuffed the wallet into his pocket, and left the room.
He left the cell-phone behind. He walked out.
There was only one way he could escape it.
Total oblivion.

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