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              Volume 11 |Issue 14| April 06, 2012 |


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A little Missive of Love

Syed Badrul Ahsan

My dearest Mongoose,

On the frontier between light and shadow, the feel of your hand as it grazes mine only accentuates the romance in us. The evening lengthens itself into the splendour of youthful night as you clasp my hand in yours, the fingers holding on to one another in fear of impending separation. Ah, but that moment is fleeting, even as the universe coils itself around us as the reality. The sun takes a dive, to take a closer look at you, unaware of the passion which reveals itself in the stream coursing down the silken smoothness of your neck.

There is certain strangeness about daylight when it brushes against the primeval softness of your skin. I touch you, swiftly and meaningfully, and a wreath of smiles bathes your beautiful face. You are soft, you tell me. Sometimes I wish I could give you a huge hug, you tell me as I offer you my handkerchief to wipe the magical perspiration off your neck and shoulders. That handkerchief becomes a treasure, symbolic of a dream, a dream of you. In that honey-dipped skin, butterfly patterns weave a path to pleasure. I stand close, behind you, in temptation of touching, of letting you know in lyrical tactility of the thrills we have gone through in all these times we have gone into rediscovering each other.

Go away, you tell me. And I know you are asking me to stay, to come closer. A little worm works in the innermost recesses of my mind. Must you go so soon? The question is mine. Darkness falls soon, you say with that naughty smile playing on your lips. I watch the nose, the lips a touch of which has been a new journey to the doors of paradise. The wind is still and the sun hurls fire on the helpless streets. You stretch out your hand, your eyes brimming over with tears. Eight days more, you whisper in a near cracking voice. Eight days before you go away, you say softly as you glide into my arms. Under that silent, sun-burnt tree, I touch those folds of being in you, deeper and deeper, to muffle the sounds of tears in you.

In our holding on to each other comes a tale of the long journey we have made from there to here, from the seedling to the tree. We are, Mongoose, well into a quietly frenzied journey into eternity. In the stillness of the night, as the stars swirl around the earth, you tell me in romantic, almost sensual desperation, 'Read to me.' I turn the pages of the Bhagavad Gita and read, as the asteroids and quasars and stars rush past you and me. There are old battles of antiquity, of legend to speak of. As the rains hit the windowpane on a fast rushing monsoon, it is Susan Sontag and her intellect and her legs I enlighten you on. Strange, isn't it? You ask. In our part of the world, woman's beauty is deciphered in her face, in her eyes and her tresses. In the West, you note even as I play with a gleaming strand of your hair, it is always the legs of a woman that are the measure of her charms. It is all a matter of culture, my beloved. The words are mine. That warm scent fluttering about in the rain wind is of the woman in you.

Seduction is in the air, my Mongoose. It is in the way you walk up the steps to have a wider glimpse of the sky. It comes in the manner of my leading you by the hand to the pond where shines a world upside down. The fluttering of a bat, the orchestra of crickets, the sound of our feet as we traipse over fallen leaves in the silence of the night suddenly assumes the dimensions of endless time. Seduction is when you turn the pages of the book I have asked you to read. It happens when I spot history in that faraway look in your eyes. It comes in your eyes coming to rest on flaws and fault lines in writing. Where was the editor of this page when this word turned out misplaced in that article? You ask in righteous indignation.

And there's my world made . . . in the fury rising from the profundity in you. I recall the summer when life's crossroads brought us together at the centre. There was hint of wickedness about the smile playing on your lips. I stood watching the classical elements of ancient literature shaped into a woman, into you, as the clouds threatened to explode on the grass. It was not just the clouds that would explode that day.

Yours, in rain and shine,

The writer is Executive Editor, The Daily Star.


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