I walk through the empty house. Like a ghost of yesterday. But still breathing.
Everyone is gone. I am all alone.
The sons got jobs in the city and took their families with them (only wife and kids that is, that's what they consider family these days). I see them once a year.
The daughter was married to a wealthy family in another village; they don’t allow her to visit us often.
If i were to die today, no one will know.
A real Ghost, I will be.
But what difference will it make?.
The fever singed his whole body. Delirium enveloped him. Patterns alternated inside his head. White. Black. White. Black. Floating above the silky white clouds. Through the black void of space. Powdery white peaks. Bottomless black hole.
“Go to Rahim bhai and get his potion. Only he can save you,” his co-beggar warned. He hauled himself up the steps of the mosque. Did he see the patterns again? White. Black. White. Black.
He spotted the silhouette of Rahim bhai yonder. A wave of relief engulfed him before he passed out, content that he would live to see dawn again.
She ditched him for his fair-skinned friend. Nahida, the love of his life. As Ahmed was climbing the stairs of the old mosque near the Madrasa, he started to think. Why did god create him this way, dark and ugly? Everything was OK until that ill-fated day when he expressed his love for her. Ahmed stepped on to the ledge on the terrace and looked below to see the familiar black and white tiled floor. With a silent prayer on his lips, he took a step forward. Blood splattered on the tiles, both black as well as white..
It was the best shot. The camera captured the spontaneity with ease. The black and white checkered tiles complimented the turquoise walls. The mortal was captured right in the middle of the door heading somewhere. The picture was perfect. The reality, not so much. Stopping time to collect the right shot meant the inconvenience of starting the time again. It took considerable energy to reboot the space-time continuum. Energy from the living breathing object. Energy from the living mortal walking who was captured heading somewhere. But art is worth it. And so is the perfect shot..
This locale had always offered him utmost solitude.
He would come to his 'Allah' to seek eternal peace.
But today, the floor here had turned into a mirror for him. The black tiles reflected all the dark, itchy side of his life that he always wanted to get rid of and the white resembled the bright future he always wished for.
For Jihad actually meant, 'The spiritual struggle within oneself against sin'..
There was a time when people visited this place which represented peace, tranquility and spirituality, to acquire and gain high level of sanity. But today when I walk around this place wearing the colour of purity, I feel the absence of sanity, absence of people who believed in sanity. Today the air is filled with doubts at this place, whether peace and spirituality has any virtue. Today these white and black tiles remind me that in this war of good and bad, the essence of place is demeaned by the greed to have materialistic happiness rather than spiritual..