“You filthy kid. Come back. Dare you go and play with those stinky puppies, i will throw you out of house with them.”
Well i grew up like this. With my mom saying this every time she finds me playing with street pups. Some day she would run with stick in hand scolding and yelling. Me in front she behind. And thus how time went on . School college job then marriage.
Today mom will be coming to home.
Busy in chaos of households. Sylvia said from kitchen,” your mom will probably won’t like mutt. She still might possess that old hatred for dogs.” I was quite busy in cleaning house. Finally doing something for which Sylvia always yells over me every day. I stopped and thought of Mutt my 1yo Rough Coolie. She has been with me and Sylvia in our marriage. I don’t think without Mutt we would have ever fallen in love. While we were going in phase where we were slowly loosing charm in life there mutt came out like angle. Mutt is one of those thousands reason which binds us together.
I went to the kitchen,Sylvia was standing in Front of window cooking, occasionally swiping sweat from her head. I watched her rice bran complexion face illuminated by sunlight. I went forward and held her by the waist. Gently placing my face over her shoulder I was about to kiss on her neck, she twitched my thigh. “You idiot, your mom is coming I m here sweating and you away from doing your stuff are irritating me. Instead of thinking how should I impress her, and you are busy in your childhood. When will you grow up” She said screaming over my face and she fell over my chest huged me. ,” Ginger,I m freaking out” I patt on her back giving her some relaxation and kissed on her hair. Watching paratha being burned on tava. She and her these idiot habits had always melt my heart.
5 years ago when we first met, I remember how she took whole restaurant on head for missing her phone, which was later found in her pocket. She gave a beautiful smile which was mixed with charge of guilt and cuteness. She looked beautiful as Keats poem or like Eric Clapton’s guitar I was confused. All I could was just stare into her lips. 2 parabola meeting at a point and lower lips slightly open, tender like petals.
Even after 5 years she still looks same.
She pushed me aside and rushed to turn off gas. “Offo, you always distract me now go away before I throw belan over you,” she yelled. She is like this only unpredictable sometimes fire sometimes ice.
Mutt was making rounds of me licking my foot, these dogs are like this give the A grade food they will still lick your feet. May be their way of showing love. This tickles me. I carried mutt in arm like baby and kissed her on nose. I will never understand what made Sylvia choose mutt.
That night is still fresh in mind when those reports were in hand, Sylvia saw them and broke. She fell on her knee with avalanche of tears. I stood staring her. Once she told me not to ask crying person to stop crying. I was crying inside my deficiency would leave Sylvia devoid of kissing someone of her own flesh and blood. She can’t have a baby. Not because she cant bear it but I was impotent. That night was followed by hundreds of sleepless night. Nights in grief and helplessness. For next 4months moon never appeared. Blackness in sky was nothing in compariosn to the darkness that has taken place in our relation. Our river finally hit a block. Lily would wake up every morning lifeless. She would stay late in night, her eyes were ridden with dark circles. In her nature of being powerful. She never shared what she was going through. She would work and come back. Many times on our visit to local mart, I would see happiness in her eyes when she sees little kid. Those sparkling eyes were soon taken over by blackness. She would play so much with Ms Sen’s daughter and then all those laughter gets lost into oblivion when she remembers that she can’t have someone like that a baby to play with, a baby to grow with.
Sylvia devoid of one love she must have tried to provide all her love to mutt. She carried Mutt when he was injured, I still remember on 4 th April evening when lights were out we went for a walk down the lane. We bought ice creams and then by the broken sewage we spotted brown and white dog,with long fur. rough coolie but a good healthy one. Most probably might have got displaced before she could say me to do anything she folded her sleves and jumped to save mutt. I could just keep stare her in awe. I pulled her up. I saw a deep love in her eyes as she washed Mutt and bandaged her foot. She was talking to her like a mother does. We made an enclosure for mutt as she couldn’t take her home. Every morning I would bring milk and she would feed mutt just like a mother. I would keep staring at those glittering eyes and sly lips as they kiss mutt. I never saw her happier that much after that clouded night. She cared mutt much like her own child. I wish she could have her child too. My heart gets overwhelmed with the grief of guilt not be able to give her that gift of life. I could only thank mutt for keeping Sylvia in good mood and heart.
And then when I was thinking of all this Sylvia arrived from behind wiping off her sweat . Mutt gallop away to other room as if giving us a private moment
Sylvia came over me, we sat at hall overlooking the silver glittering mountains reflecting emerald green hill side lake. Through the large window. Every distinct corner of this hall was decorated by her, from paint to the nail on which flaunts timeless paintings by her and thoughts of love in pictures on yellow wall. Sofa in centre which opens to the view of bonsai grown with love by her. She slides her arms over my shoulder which felt like soothing ice. Her hands were cold it drifts over my warm body it was enough to sooth and calm the cyclone of my mind. She had always been there in my every up and down. I might have died 5 years ago had she not been my saviour. She Always been so understanding. Accompanying me like fragrance follows deer. She has been integral part of my life. Today when mom is coming she can read the silence on my face. She knows kind relationship I share with mother, she knows everything about that dry season. She has acted like a black cloud to bring rain to this stray heart. Today its more like her test but still looks as calm as full moon. I always wonder she is same girl who once said she wants somebody to understand that when She is hurt, she would speak them out loud whenever feel like. But the times she choose to be silent, it’s not because she want trouble others, it’s just that she is trying to introspect herself and figure out her fault. Sometimes, she try to deal with her mess herself. She is like universe expanding in her on force though unguided though in pain but she knows how to deal with it. I don’t know have I ever proved any good to her , She has been my inspiration and today she is my love.
She says keeping her head over my shoulder,” don’t worry ginger, have faith on me.” I trust you more than my heart beat, i spoke kissing her palm. Gentle kiss as distant mountain changes colour from every emotion just waiting to be plucked.
… And then door bell rang. I stood up with shaking legs. Sylvia held my hand. Go” she said. I walk down the lawn thinking of everything like how would she be look li, or what will she say or what if she doesn’t like lily or mutt. Thousands of questions were making ruckus in my mind. I opened the door to an silver haired women. Wrinkled face of experience and time. Spectacle ridden eyes bearing insomniacs nights and waiting. Hands which were holding a side bag. Broken skin with hundreds of mark. I saw her and kept staring. For a moment earth stopped moving. It would have irrelevant to say time stopped. No it has actually moved to fast. Smooth skin which I left were white and broken now. Much like our relationship of mother and son.
I bent to touched her feet. And took her bag. She was behind me. Taking each step slowly. With heavy heart. Her eyes goes from gulmohar tree to bonsai. That small pond with colorfull pebble and lotus. She waves her hands over trimmed rose shrubs and plucks one. Blood red one. What was in her mind, I wish I had something to read minds.
When we entred. Sylvia was there. With her head covered with stole. Her vermilion was red striking over mid of forehead where her hairs divide. She was looking bright. Wearing vile over head. All these things are something which she never approved of before. She had always this rebellious feeling against society. No wonder that was thing which drove me to her. She bent to touched her feet. Mother waved her hands over her and said long live. Sylvia welcomed her and asked her sit on sofa. Mothers eyes were fixed over paintings and pictures. Going frkm green lamps to painting lancscapesColours of our romances. Her got fixed over a photo of mom and dad. Which was out there esp on Sylvia’s request. She was silent. Sylvia and my eyes were talking . We both were equally confused. Sylvia gathered some confidence and asked mom breaking an ice to get fresh and have food.
We both were at table when mom arrived . She sat between us with me on left and Sylvia on right. We were about to start when mutt jumped over. She jumped from floor directly on mother’s lap. We got horrified. Sylvia dropped spoon in terror. I thought now mom will scream again. She won’t like being here. She would go. Mom jumped of for once But something strange happened. Mutt was licking Mother vigorously on face on hand. Strangely mother laughed. She waves hand over mutts collar and kissed on her nose. Me and Sylvia were wet in sweat. Mother looked towards Sylvia as she cuts a piece of roti and offer to mutt. “What’s her name?” Sylvia hesitatedly “Mut mutt.” “Such a beautiful name” moving her hands over mutt, “just like you” mother said looking towards Sylvia. I was trying to figure out what was happening. How’s this possible. Did mutt do some magic on her? Sylvia and mom were talking through eyes.mom was smiling something which I always wanted to see. And today finally best day of life may be. Room was full of colours but today they were popping out. Mother looked at me and said,” When did you learn to make your life choices? Gemini kid, who couldn’t even select between green lays or blue lays is running house today. With such wonderful wife, and adorable dog. I wish I had been there to see you growing up. Things can’t change right? But see I can do something”, she leaned forward and placed kiss on my head. Chapped lips but most bless full ever. There were tears in Sylvia’s eyes. We crossed our legs under the table. We knew misson accomplished. We finished food. Sylvia was magician when it comes to cook. And I could see in way mom ate. Licking fingers. Sylvia and I were smiling. Mom got up and touched Lilly’s cheek and said “you are angle gifted to us”. She went out with Mutt to lawn and sat at door
Me and Sylvia stood by the wall. Wrapping arms around each other.
“safe safe, the heart of the house beats proudly. long years and finally found it here, I murmured. in the garden reading. laughing, rolling in the loft. sun light lifts the lid upon our eyes. The pulse of house beats wildly. i wishpered to her eyes, is this is our buried treasure? the light in the heart’.
stooping holding wall watching silhoutte of mother, patting mutt and taking her hand over the fur of mutt like a mother carcasses her new born child. Her eyes were fixed on gulmohar which was on flame for first time since we planted. the wind flew, the flame blew away. Wild beams of orange red sunset hues came through the window sill. it fallS on warm bodies of loverS, looking into eyes of each other, crack and broken skin brimming in red, eyes meet with each other searching hidden joy in each other. slowly their breath synch and love rests upon our lips. the gulmohar dance in distance, gently knocking like pulse of heart.