Once upon a time there was a mother whose only child died. She cried for it unceasingly. Once she was out in the field and crying again. Suddenly she saw an entire band of lovely angels flying above her, all of them young and beautiful, all of them happy and cheerful. Then the mother thought, "Oh, if only my child were also such a little angel!" And she looked to see if she could not find her child in the band. But she could not see it.
Then from behind there came a little angel. It was very sad and was carrying a heavy black jug in its little hands. It was the mother's child.
The mother asked, "My child, why are you not with the happy little angels?"
"Mother," it said, "as long as you are crying I must collect your tears and cannot be happy like the others."
From that hour forth the mother cried no more.
June 26, 2006
Rains seem to elude. Skies are cloudy, open up rarely. But there is no reprieve for mothers, they have been crying all over. Yet another kid died, this time due to the negligent doctor. At least one kid gets killed every day. A kid run over by a lorry, father cutting the third daughter into pieces, a kid raped by a neigbhour, negligent doctor letting an ill child die. It seems to me, all mothers secretly dread in their sleep, living in nightmares of untold, impending accidents. Fathers, too, breathe fears, sniffing at probable dangers that his child might encounter. The other day, my son lost control and fell into the well in the backyard -- in a nightmare. I couldn't sleep for the rest of the night, sweating profusely. But , for mothers it is still more difficult. They can empathise with other mothers. So, they are more worried. Seems, some unknown force is out on the prowl, crushing the buds. Kids are being run over by vehicles, swallowed by manholes and succumbed by brainfever and malaria. The Government blames the officials, officials blame the school managements, school managements pass the buck on to the traffic cops, traffic cops show their finger at auto drivers and hooligans who steal manhole lids. It is fathers and mothers of the dead and living kids that suffer. Who cares? Secretly, I wish I could go to all those houses and console the kin, take my son there and let them play with him for some time.
June 25, 2006
“Only those who truly love and who are truly strong can sustain their lives as a dream. You dwell in your own enchantment. Life throws stones at you, but your love and your dream change those stones into the flowers of discovery. Even if you lose, or are defeated by things, your triumph will always be exemplary. And if no one knows it, then there are places that do. People like you enrich the dreams of the worlds, and it is dreams that create history. People like you are unknowing transformers of things, protected by your own fairy-tale, by love.”
- Ben Okri
- Ben Okri
Whenever I am sent to New York (or, any other such global city) on an assignment, I make it a point to do all the tourist s...