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Tuesday, June 28, 2011


There is an apple tree outside my window.
It is a proud tree with a sturdy trunk covered with whitish brown bark; long, thick branches sprout from the mid-base and taper into thin twigs. The rain often beats down on its jade-green leaves. Clusters of tender leaves in lighter hues of emerald grow at the tips along with the young fruits.
The baby apples are like little round balls of crisp flesh right now, enclosed in light green cover. I often watch the tree from my window and listen to the rustling of its boughs in the breeze.
Today, it has rained and the leaves hold the precious dew drops like a mother cradling her new-born baby. The sky is grey and looks like it is going to shower down on earth again.
I have watched this tree grow since winter when it was nothing but a barren shrub. It was cold every morning and the frost would settle down on the withered plant, rendering it the quaint air of a man old and huddled over with age.
Then, spring came and the tree gained a life of its own. Tender green sprouted from its twigs and soon it was covered with white, fragrant blossoms spotted pink from which the bees and butterflies drank richly. The birds would hop from branch to branch and declare its glory.
Its flowers would scatter in my courtyard or a lone petal would get entangled in the web a spider had spun outside my window pane.
It is a wonderful sight to see the apple tree every once in a while and sip a cup of aromatic tea, contemplating the changes that have come over it.
Soon, the fruits will ripen, turn rosy and sumptuous, and will be harvested.
Then, Autumn will arrive with its winds and a lonely shroud will envelop the tree. The leaves will blow away in the wind, curled up and a golden brown. Maybe the spider web will catch some of them.
Then again it will be accosting the freezing winter with its feathery snowflakes; the surroundings will transform into a mini Ice-land.
I am changing, too with the seasons. And I often wonder whether it is progressive or regressive but the apple tree always revives in me hope of a new spring and the beauty the world holds.

Saturday, June 18, 2011


I see her by the window always. She is past her mid-twenties but there is a certain vulnerability and naivety in her childish face that makes her look much younger.
Today, she is wearing a beige summer dress with frills and her hair has been arranged into a loose bun with the help of a polka-dotted brown clutch. A few strands are loose and they fall by her face blown by gentle gusts of wind.
I see her most of the time looking out of the window with a far-away look in her eyes. Sometimes, she is watching the peach trees blossom, sometimes her eyes follow the pale yellow butterflies feasting on the blossom-nectar and at times, I see her stretch out her hands to touch the rain drops as they fall.
At times, she sits by the window, deeply focused on a book or scribbling something in a blue-bound diary, a forlorn melody or song emanating from her room.
She is always alone and lost in her own contemplations.
Someone once told me her story.
She was a woman who had loved and lost.
As a young girl, she had been something of a recluse but as time passed youthful and worldly fancies occupied her. She opened up in college to a certain extent and then when she finally got a job and became independent, she belonged to the world at last.
However, her upbringing had always been conservative and she had never fallen in actual love except for the usual school crushes.
Then, when she had blossomed into a full, young woman, he came into her life.
She gave him everything – her heart, soul and love.
But it was not meant to be.
One day, he left for a distant land saying he would return and take her with him.
He promised her they would have a wonderful house to live in and he would treat her like a princess.
Oh, how she loved him!
She waited for a fortnight but he did not turn up. Then she waited for a month but in vain. Then it was months of loneliness and then years. He never came back.
She returned to her old habit of reclusiveness. Solitude became her sole companion. Her heart had been broken and the bloody tears it shed soon dried up. Her heart was replaced by a stone – unfeeling, unknowing.
She had lost the ability to feel, leave alone love or hate.
Her old parents gave up on her and they soon died leaving her with a tidy inheritance.
She left her job and now, she never leaves the house or the window.
A maid servant does her shopping and chores for her.
There is a dullness in her eyes as if she is looking right through you or at nobody in particular.
If you pass that cottage and look over the threshold someday, you will see her; watching the sunset or the birds flying over her garden.
She will never see another human being again.