Sunday, July 25, 2010

The Morning After

There are good days, and there are bad days. Last night was one of the worst. It was one of those days when you feel sick of life, when you want to get away. I did. I came alone and sat at the beach, at the edge of the sea.

It was a starless night, a little cloudy. A small sliver of the moon played hide and seek behind the silver clouds. The night perfectly reflected the color of my melancholy.

There was a sudden crack of thunder. Great, I thought. This was all I needed. In moments, the clouds became darker and steadily began to envelope me. Then it started to rain. Not a sprinkle or a droplet. But cold, merciless torrents slashing and slapping against me. I began to realize how small I was. And I felt even more helpless, powerless.

‘This would be a good time to go back inside’, said the smart voice in my head.
‘NO. Stay put’, said a deeper voice. So I stayed.

By now, I was drenched to the bone. I was shivering. It was getting really cold now, almost unbearable. But not yet. And I sat there at the edge of the sea, perhaps trying to kill myself out there.

Lightning flashed in front of my eyes again and again. At first, they were just flashes. Then I began to see them as if they were incidents of my life, sharp and painful, against the dark picture of my life.

It was one of those times when you feel a little bad about something.Then, as if from nowhere, dark thoughts burst in, flood you and begin to take you down to drown.

Each flash was followed by a painfully loud clap of thunder. And I began to see things. I began to see moments of my life that I had forgotten about, that I had locked away deep inside. I didn’t want to think about them, let alone speak. But here they were, playing across in front of me. And I sat watching.

It was the darkest, blackest, coldest moment of the night. And this was the darkest, blackest, coldest moment of my life. I could feel myself sinking deeper. If there had been a time when I had more depressed in my life, I do not remember when that was. But this one was right down there.

My face was numb with the ice cold drops of water precipitating there, and I felt two small tears form in my eyes. They oozed out gently, and began getting heavier as more painful thoughts seemed to weigh them down. And then they spilled, flowing down my cheeks, mixing with the rainwater somewhere along the way.

‘This would really be a good time to go back inside’, said the smart voice in my head.
‘NO. Not yet’, said the deeper voice.
‘Do you want to die in the cold?’ scolded my smarter half.
‘Yes, that would be nice. But not yet.’ insisted the deeper half.

So I sat still. By now the cold began to chill my very blood. I could feel it.
It was beginning to pain now. Even my breath came in short wheezes. But I obeyed.

I closed my eyes and gave a quiet sob. I quickly opened my eyes and looked around. There was no one. So I gave another sob, a little louder this time. Two more tears dropped down.

At that moment, it was as if my whole life was coming crashing down on me. It brought in all the moments when I had felt the weakest, the most vulnerable and all hope was lost. I let go. I closed my eyes and howled into the night. I cried my heart out.

Not for me, for I wasn’t a bad man. But for the world around me.
All I could see was a dark, dark night that refused to end.
All I could see was a thick curtain of rain that refused to yield.
All I could see was loss, pain, tragedy and suffering around me, inside me.
Not mine, for I wasn’t a bad man. But for this world around me.

I do not know how long I was there, but when I came to my senses I was lying down. I had probably fallen asleep. The rain had stopped and it was a little warmer now.
A trickle of water at my feet from a small wave woke me up.

I was lying at the edge of the sea. With a start I got up to look around me. It was still pitch dark, and had stopped raining. But that was not what captivated me.
It was the smell in the air, probably of everything the rain had brought in.

A sudden movement caught my eye.
In the pitch darkness, a slight tinge of yellow moved somewhere.
Almost as if it were shy. Almost as if I had made a mistake and not really seen it.
I blinked. Yes, there it was again.

The rain was gone, and a sudden gush of wind came in.
It swept my hair backwards and smelt strangely sweet.
I breathed in deeply and even dared to smile a little.

It seemed as if cracks were beginning to appear in the dark blue canvas of the night sky, and yellow rays began piercing through it. So this was it. The night had ended.

I tried to remember what I had been crying about, but just couldn’t recollect.
Maybe the rain and cold and darkness had washed it all away.
A lightness seemed to spiral up my chest. What was it?

As if in answer to my question, the dark blue of the sky began to disappear altogether. Bold yellow rays seemed to stretch across the sky as if it were a painting board. An invisible hand continued to paint yellow strokes until I could see a neat outline of the horizon.

The dark blue turned to violet, and then, after a second in transition, became bright blue.
Like last night, this was another big moment. It felt as if everything that had ever made me feel alive was coming together in this grand finale- the love, laughter, and joy seemed to fill me with such strength that I felt I would burst.

After the darkest, blackest, coldest moment of the night, sunshine was upon me.
But it was a second later that the real miracle happened.

Far, far away, at the very edge of the horizon, an orange dot began to appear out of nowhere. It was very faded and seemed to blend with the purple that was around it.

The wind stopped blowing. The water stopped moving. My heart stopped beating.
We were all holding our breath to see what was going to happen.
It was as if none of us knew that the sun rose every morning.
It was as if, forgetting about this one simple fact, we had come forth to behold this one astounding miracle. The birth of a new day.

The orange dot steadily became larger and brighter. Then it became yellow. And then it turned gold. It was getting bright, blindingly bright. It reached a crescendo, and just when I thought I could bear to hold still no more, it happened. The sun broke through. And the night was killed.

Another gust of wind came with that sweet smell. I closed my eyes and took a deep breath in.

At the same instant, everything that had ever held me back or pulled me down seemed to break away. Just like one ray of sunshine had pierced through a hopeless, eternal darkness, something reciprocated inside me. The chains of fear and sorrow that were strangling me snapped into pieces as I flew away, high into the sky.

‘Open your eyes. See around you!’ urged the smart voice in my head.
‘NO.’ smiled the deeper voice. ‘Keep your eyes shut. For you have never been able to see better in all your life...’

I smiled. I knew the deeper voice was right.

-Avinash Agarwal

I am participating in the WeBlog's Sleepy Sunday contest! You may read other participating posts HERE


  1. Avi, Great post buddy, you have a unique way of writing.. Smile.. I accept that you deeper voice was right..

    I wish you a good luck for WeBlog Sleepy Sunday Contest

    Saravana Kumar - Last Wish

    Yours Frendly,
    Saravana Kumar M

  2. Thank you so much :)
    Wish you the same

  3. hope follows despair indeed :)

    good write-up..

  4. Your inner voice makes a lot of sense.

    Eyes wide shut?

  5. Thank you :)

    I've said 'Eyes wide shut' because sometimes we 'see' more with our eyes closed. I believe that all beauty, all wisdom and all joy lies inside of us.

    This post about witnessing a sunrise just reinforced my belief in the same :)

  6. Hi, this is a nice post, very well-written. Unlike a couple of the others u have posted, starkly different.

  7. Interesting post! I loved the environment that you created :)

  8. hey AV ,thanx for te gr8 comment to my post... wel thanx for feeling te poem like u did ! appreciate tat !
    wel to b honest , i havent seen thru my own eyes this act of euthanasia , but i have seen people lying close to death , n i do , evryday ....part of my life...mayb tats why i cud feel te way i felt abt te emotions goin thru in tat prson's mind....

    n i read ur post , nice write-up...nice musing...u hv a gr8 style , keep at it...
    all te best to u too....

  9. Hey AV, the feelings have been expressed beautifully-the countless thoughts that cross one's mind at times like these! But the best part is the positive note that it ends with-how sunrise brings a new hope each day.All the best!

  10. Thank you :)
    Wish you the same!

  11. You have a great way of expressing yourself, Avi. Looking forward to reading more ...

  12. Thank you :)

    And I LOVED reading your post too...i think this is the best part about blogging. It's easy to make Mutual Admirers' clubs! heheh

  13. nice...the morning after, i dint know would be this!

  14. Thank you :)
    N yes, I like to put in a little surprise!

  15. i don think im articulate enuf to praise d way u write! to say d least, its super was lik i was thr at evry moment! the vividity of the description is mindblowing and the feelings tht pour thru r heartwrenching..its a perfect reflection of ur writing :) wat realy takes the cake is the point Behind the story..thank you for bein a writer that takes a reader al the way thru into that space :)

  16. I find it quite hilarious:P

    seriously speaking, you're quite good at this. Its like two extremes in one story.

    And hell, i though the morning after would relate to some not so philosophical stuff ;)

  17. Good write-up Avinash! Loved the imagery!
    Good Luck for the contest ! :)

  18. Like the Divine Lotus that rises from the muddy soil but it is not contaminated (he ain't a bad man. But may be the world around him.)

    It aspires high to daylight and reveals an immaculate beauty it traversed.

    This noble flower signifies the soul of a perfect man (one who listens to his deeper self ALWAYS and not the so called smarter one!)

    Best Wishes!!

  19. Good write up, All the best for the contest.

  20. Thank you :)

    Shikha, beautifully expressed!
    A perfect comparison :)

  21. very vivid description..i liked the writing style a lot..the contrast was brought out really well..hoping to read more :)

  22. Thanks!Very kind of you :)Will keep writing :)

  23. could connect with is ur writing SO felt like i was reading about my own experiences
    loved it through n through :)

  24. Thank you so much :)
    I'm glad I could connect with people through it...

  25. Avinash, this was a brilliant piece of writing! Two thumbs up! I know when I have felt like that. Long months, years...but at the end one gets to smile, feels lighter and blessed.
    All the very best. A truly deserving entry!

  26. Not sure why my comment did not show up!
    This post said to me, "Here Sandy, meet yourself." I know I have been in this place, feeling, thinking, grasping, evolving overnight and this post was inspiration in a very intimate insightful way. I felt totally connected.
    Truly vivid!
    All the very best!

  27. Heyy,

    I hadn't seen it yesterday, so couldn't moderate it. Your comments are here now :)

    You know, I'm glad I've found someone who has connected so well with it. It really is a motivator and humbles me to meet a fellow writer like you.

    Thanks a lot for your comment. Very lavish praise, very nice of you :)

    Keep in touch, and keep writing!

    God bless