Arthur looked at the guitar. It was a gift from his dying grandfather. “It possesses unspeakable magic. Don’t play it too often.” Arthur remembered his grandfather’s words. Carefully, Arthur struck a chord. He looked around. He waited. Nothing happened. “Sure, it is magical. Good sense of humour grandpa!” He went on playing. On a distant planet, 13 light years away, tiny colourful creatures rose from the ground. One creature per chord. “Three hundred sixteen to a billion.” A voice beamed from the dark sky. Soon there would be enough of them to take on the universe.
“Why the long face kiddo?” “This frame is so hard. I am feeling utterly blank.” “Come, let me show you something.” We walked to our attic, and for the first time in my life, I found a section, I never knew existed before. “Wow dad! These pictures are purely magical. You were a rock star!! Why didn’t you pursue it further? What went wrong? Do you still miss it? Did you have a break up? Do you miss her....” “Isn’t your story supposed to be in less than 99 words?” “Dad! I can never win with you, can I?”
The auditorium resonated with thundering applause after his performance. Some even gave a standing ovation. A handful of grumpy audience felt otherwise... "Anyone can play guitar!" "What is he hiding behind those black eye shades?" "What's so special about him?" He stood silently on the stage, breathing in every moment. A content smile garnered his pale face, as he carefully placed his guitar inside the case. "His soul tunes-in to the magic woven by his fingers." "The eyes have seen it all." "He is special!" Unaccompanied, the guitar hero walked off stage with his wooden cane.
Band dissolution and academic failure made Gavin neurotic. He wrecked his guitar, pledging not to play music ever. Months later, one evening, he went to nearby old-age home with his mother to deliver dinner. It was someone’s birthday. Everyone seemed cheerful. Birthday boy made a wish “I wish to learn playing guitar my friend left for me!” Awkward silence followed. “I can help!” They turned towards Gavin. He came forward, picked the guitar and grinned,” Savvy?”Huge cheer erupted. Gavin played some songs. Everyone danced, sang and celebrated. He’d broken his guitar once, but all the strings were still attached.
He sat there, that evening, at the back stage. While the crowd outside waited with excitement for their superstar, he just sat there, reminiscing, running his fingers through his guitar. But he felt nothing. Those strings spoke to him no more. For his fingers now remembered her, only her... It'd been six months since she'd left. And this was his first comeback attempt. But then, he sighs to the crowd, "I'm sorry. I'm done." The crowd goes silent, shocked at his words. And there she stood, at some dark corner among the crowd, sobbing, "I'm sorry baby."
“Rakesh, don't you dare touch that guitar”, Ravi had scolded his little brother for the umpteenth time. Rakesh would frown and curse him and sit in a corner with teary eyes. While Ravi would calculate the month's savings in his mind. The irony of working in a music store yet, not being able to afford buying that guitar, never failed to miss him. Today, sitting in a corner with moist eyes, he watched his brother perform in front of a huge audience.
Dhruv K. Few knew what K stood for, but the name definitely evoked the image of a rock star. Teenagers adored him for his skill and coolness he exuded. Having risen only through sheer talent and hard work, his was a story that evoked awe and respect. He was a role model even parents didn’t mind for their kids. The clean image had other benefits too. His guitar was retrofitted along the neck with heroin for him, but his clean image, prevented his guitar from any airport checks. He never lied when he said “Music gave him a high”.
Hoping to strum that pain away, he tries again, but in vain. Oh, how could he forget the warmth, the smoothness he felt upon that hold? Something ever coming close to that curves on her body? He loved her for making him believe in magic, he hated her for making him realise that it can be lost too. He worked the string wrong. Blood poured out. "Ah, these bitches eh? Guitars can be nasty, dude!", someone cried. But his Jenna had been a badder bitch. Her strings were sharper, more penetrable. Her maroon body startling his blood ever since.
His photo was in the papers after a long time. His father was a famous star and he was the wonder boy a musical prodigy. Wrong option, wrong kind of company never let him use his talent, and a drunken night made him handicap, and now after years he has been clicked in the background as his dad strums a beat for nostalgia's sake.
After the intensified bidding session finally,i was able to get hold of original picture of finger's hendrix strumming the guitar for the last time, before the fatal day.
Subodh pulled newly bought lighter out of his pocket and held the flame up as the band continued playing the cover of 'Rape Me' by Nirvana. "Such a wannabe." Adi screamed in his ear. "Not wannabe, well prepared, Look around, everyone is doing the same." "Forget them, you don't even dare smoke now since your Mom caught you smoking and thrashed you publically. Mama's boy" "Very funny, Coming from the guy who got dropped at the venue by his Mom." " Shut the f*** up or else you are not getting lift back home with us."
Sunny: Hey Charly, beautiful photography buddy. I loved the use of rule-of-thirds and depth of field in it. You really are a brilliant photographer. Charly: Thank you buddy. Sunny: The only problem is that watermark in the middle of the picture. It’s an eyesore. Charly: It’s coz nobody should steal my work. You are also a photographer. You should also do it with you photographs. Sunny: Nah! If someone steals my photos I think it’s a highest form of compliment for me. Moreover, they can steal my photographs, not my talent. ?
Its hand was strange upon the musical instrument.... the tune and lyrics invoked blinding freedom and entering the mysterious nothing beyond gods final flourish.. so the hand gripped the instrument...not for me to think of dissolution, the dark energy throwing everthing apart faster and faster.....that purpose belonged to mild schizos and witches ....and maybe burrowing worms... dissolution....the only grace the dead old souls would ever accept.... the musician smiled....seems there is a dream of death for me too..
As he stood there under the lights, hands on the guitar, memories and emotions rushing through him. The first time he held the big guitar his size as an 8 year old, balancing it on his whole body but managing just rumbling noises out of it. And now the same boy, all grown up and a master of the guitar;standing in front of a crowd. Finally the moment has arrived which he'd been waiting for years, to prove his worth to his family and the moment to win the world. And then he began...
In the flickering light - Almost a shadow - Playing a reminiscence of past - And lilting solitude patiently moving to his arms - His nimble fingers - Wavering on the chords of guitar - With a silent promise of life - Just like a hummingbird - As, if he stopped - He would engulfed by his own rhythm - Every time his crafted voice floats - He discovers himself at the edge of partition in 1947 - He was rooted out from his very lullabies then - Now he plays whenever his inner child urges to sleep - And the echoes - of his sinking pulse reverberate as - World’s kryptonite.
Tentative music wafted from the old building as I sat composing CV for Finance Manager’s job. The notes became a little less tentative; my CV became crisp: I no longer looked after the finances of the Company. I managed utilization of financial resources. The notes went up an octave. I didn’t audit expense statements. I promoted ethics. The music suddenly reached a crescendo and crashed like the waves of the sea front. Mom, who’s the musician? - a polio stricken girl. My CV crashed, when I re-read the advertisement: Only Chartered Accountants need apply. And me mere B.Com.
He was the hero of her dreams. The guitarist of the famous band. She was a diehard fan. The international band was performing in India for the first time. It was her birthday. After the concert she followed him to click a picture. She told him how excited she was and it was her best birthday. “Let’s make it more special. Meet me in ten minutes at Gate E”, he said, nonchalantly. As she walked exhilarated and anxious towards the secluded Gate E she knew that to this there won’t be any strings attached.
With every string he touched; he felt pain. Pain of the world failing to recognise him. Pain of the helpless millions who play on streets. His voice choked on the lyrics as the indifferent faces ignored him and walked away. Slowly it started to rain. As the street became empty he put down his guitar. A Mercedes pulled up in front of him. He picked the few pennies lying around and stepped in. "You are a nobody" he smirked as he flipped the magazine with him smiling on the cover page.
He was collecting empty bottles as usual at Station but today was different. He is nervous and excited at the same time. He is going to live his dream today. It may change his life forever or may be not… but he is hopeful. As the clock stroke quarter past six he rushed and took a train towards CST, reached the venue to become a part of the live band as guitarist who were about to perform live at Gateway of India. He was performing like a professional. But his hands were still dirty with the rags he picks.
Ryan told his friend, “I am posing with the guitar. Click some swoon worthy pictures”. His friend nodded pulling his DSLR up. As he continued to pose, Kailash kept looking at the view sitting behind, dejected. Only if he was able to afford one, he would have beautifully honoured the chords. His dad taught him well before leaving him alone and indebted. But then he knew, he never got along well with life too. “Like father, like son”, his conscience roared.
In the labyrinth of bygone memories, a lively,bright child, flying in,like little birds' chatter, and after decades have passed, she is contactible only on twitter; but enkindling dreams, swept,buried, lighting the flicker of hope...... in minds weighed down by indifference. so, that is why people crave children, when even hope receds they are all who matter.
The first thing he remembers ever wanting since he was only a boy, was to play his guitar for the world. But his world changed when he watched her die; leaving their infant daughter in his arms. He was left with a choice. He chose her. It's been four years. He has had to make compromises. But as he watches her sway gracefully to the melody, he knows. That even from that tiny stage in the pub, he's doing exactly what he set out do all those years ago. He's playing his guitar for HIS world.
Meena hummed to herself all the time. While others thought in words from languages most familiar to them, she thought in songs—words sewn with music and rhythm. But she knew that she sounded horrible when she sang. She was aware that ‘sur’ and ‘taal’ were missing from her singing, Her love for music grew with her. She heard someone play Raag Maulkauns on the guitar one day. She was inspired and that day Meena found her ‘sur’, ‘taal’ and music in the strings of the guitar.
His dexterity on the strings garnered a huge applause. At the end of the performance, his fingernails were frighteningly pale. His knuckles were dark and bruised with years of working in the sun and the hard soil. The music he created tonight was akin to the music one hears in a movie when a murder occurs and the killer leaves the scene of crime, nonchalantly. The only give away of a life gone is the music one hears in the background. No one knew whether he had murdered someone or had planted a sapling before taking the stage.
The abomination seemed to whisper, "Let it be, let it be..", as Sam threw it down a waterfall. He had stolen the cursed guitar from the room of his deceased music teacher. "Deceased", that should have been his cue. One by one, it butchered every guitarist who crossed his path. Later that evening, a familiar jingle fell in his ears. "Let it be, let it be..", a rag-picker sang, while playing a guitar at the bystand. Seconds later, a truck hit him. A terrified Sam drove on, crooning in a resonant voice, "Let it be, let it be.."
It wasn't a mere musical instrument for him; his guitar channelized him to dance with the spirit of legends, ride on the rhythmic swirls of musical waves. It was merging of distinct worlds; beyond time, ego and human melancholy. I often saw him playing his favourite tune amidst open sky where blinking stars, the moon; ah! Entire milky way was his audience. And today, when I grab the guitar's pick, I feel my fingers guided by his; my own choice of tune influenced by his touch; incredible! I rejoice the innocent reminiscent times spent together. Miss you brother!
"Are you out of your mind, Mithun?", fumed his bestie, Alok; by all means he wished to help his friend out. How on earth was he going to explain it to him, the simple fact that the broken strings on the guitar can't be replaced. He still created a scene outside his shop, till his patience wore thin. Finally he blurted out, "The material from which the string is fabricated belongs to medieval era, do I say more?!!". Dumbfounded, he smashed it to pieces. No one answered, when he pressed the doorbell of her bungalow. The witch was dead.
He’d come here straight from her office. He looked again at the guitarist’s fingers on the chords and listened to the voice made of rusted metal, stale cigarettes, rotgut. Sick of politics - for the rich Sick of power - only oppresses Sick of government - full of tyrants Sick of school - total brainwash He walked out towards the dark road. The car screeched around the corner; caught him in its headlights for a moment before smashing into him. The singer sang on... Sick of myself - don't wanna live Sick of living - I'm gonna die His psychiatrist would always regret releasing him.
She was smitten by his music and the glamour. She attended all his concerts. He also observed her regularly. Slowly they came closer and he took her along on a foreign tour. She was on cloud nine dreaming of a life full of music. After the tour, he stayed back on the pretext of some urgent work and sent her back with his personal guitar. On landing at the Mumbai airport, the custom officials searched her and found pouches of drugs inside the guitar. The breaking stings of the guitar sounded the death knell of her dreams.
A sweet melody from six strings, She dances to his Tunes with her Broken wings. His guitar is her life's sole symphony. She has always been his Muse & she believes he is her Destiny.
Months of crying did not falter her voice. She crooned beautifully in the same café where he had seen her for the first time on - stage. That night he was making promises to a new girl right in front of her. Striking resemblance of the girl to herself did not really surprise her. 'Coincidence ? I think not. ' She mused. He has a type. But, she did not feel hollow like her guitar, anymore. Finally she noticed the guy on the piano had always longed for her. Feeling less miserable , she was ready to love again.
Not many are found singing on the streets. I didn't have much of a choice too. The constant pangs of hunger were getting worse. I started the day with my usual song. Slowly gathered a small crowd. I grinned at the lady dropping the first dime of the day. Some shouted requests, but I shook my head and picked up the coins. Should be enough for now. I started gobbling up the vada pav as I waited for her to return from her 'clients'. We both were new to this thing. But she chose a different way.
12 year old Aryan, walked up to his dad and said “Dad, I want to learn guitar”. Dad was very happy. “That’s great. What led you to it?” Aryan replied, “Uh, just passion for music” Dad became skeptical, “So who is favorite guitarist?” “Guns & Roses, Beatles, etc” Dad wasn’t convinced, he continued “And your favorite song?” Aryan started getting nervous “Uh, too many dad, that Ibiza song, Macarena” Dad saw through and could not control his laughter when he asked “So who is the girl you want to impress?” Aryan, with his reddening cheeks said “Reena”.
They had been together since forever. “Dude, we really need some action. Noise. Chaos. This universe is too harmonious.” “I like it this way, though I admit my self-sufficiency irks me. This is why I put my forces at work and I came up with this object. I wonder what happens if I touch these chords.” “Boring...” When the first note exploded with a bing-bang, he was so startled that he fell into a pitch black pit. His vision was blocked by a planet, but he could hear the other’s laughter. They finally got something to play with: humans.
It was the big performance day. Eric could feel the vibe in the air. Million eyes prying on him. He knew he was on the spotlight. The crowds had been surging. They were here to see their idol. Hear Eric live. Music had always been his life. Guitar was his weapon of choice. But this was an altogether different ball game. 'Eric..Eric..Eric..' the crowd started chanting. It was showtime. Eric came onstage and said 'Welcome to the biggest show on earth and let's welcome onstage our idol 'Eric Clapton' Eric had his 2 minutes of fame.
I could smell the stench of cheating in the air! It felt like, the sun will never rise again. The night sky was in a hush. The moon frowned and the stars withered. The frame, on the wall was cracked. The letters, he wrote to me, struck my thought. He strummed the guitar, in the best way, to keep me alive. Now that he has gone, the waves of the strings, he plucked, lingers me. I see him..go... I see him sleep silently with his guitar.. I see him in his coffin.. His fingers still pluck the strings of his love!
GUITAR inspired my way of life when I started my guitar lessons. The lessons I learnt are, the tighter the chords, better the music. Harder the life, better the results. When the music changes, the chords change and so will I with each change in my life. I'll be as tough as I need to be and face any problem as it comes, big or small. Finally, you'll just hear me create an awesome music, no matter how hard it has been.
The groom walked up to me, a smile on his face, and asked if we could play Need You Now. It had been our song, and now this stranger was asking me to play it for them. A million memories raced through my mind, but him being our employer, all I could do was nod politely and oblige. As I dolefully pulled at my guitar’s strings, just as she had pulled mine, I realized, there is nothing more painful than watching the love of your life getting married to someone else. Except maybe, playing at her wedding gig.
The symphony didn't last in the blood bath image he left home with. He was sorry for his loss, a kid after all. They called such people orphans. That very thought, struck a chord of disastrous chain of events. He had the signs but couldn't act. His sister cried inconsolable until, he was told she ran away. He couldn't think about his mother's fate anymore. He went back to the day when it was mother' birthday and father played "Tera mera pyar amar...." and they all sang it. What changed? "Sahib, record my statement. I killed my father."