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A Work of Art

Discussion in 'Snippets of Life (Non-Fiction)' started by ktg, Feb 28, 2010.

  1. ktg

    ktg Senior IL'ite

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    As the last rays of the sun took a plunge in the deep orange sea, Solomon put the lid back on the pen and kept the folded drawing book back into his bag. He was not satisfied with any of the sketches today as he felt that everyone around had some façade on and no one was really genuine in their expressions anymore. Slowly he started walking towards his bike kept at a distance, his head hung in deep thought. There was a familiar tea stall where he normally used to have tea on his way back. He sat down and called out for his preferred cup of tea.



    Solomon was an artist by choice, not by profession. His sketching skill was a god’s gift and he utilized it to its full potential. He would normally go to some crowded place and sit down quietly somewhere. From there, he would keenly observe people and their expressions and whenever he would like a particular expression he would capture that in his book by making a sketch of it. It was a self-satisfying experience for him. Generally he didn’t share this passion with anyone else and very few of his friends actually knew about this facet of his personality. His best work of art till date had been a young woman in her early twenties sitting at a coffee table with a steaming mug of coffee and her face delicately nestled in the cup of her right palm. Whether she was in some deep thought or just waiting for some one was unknown to him but her expressions in their vibrant best had surely caught his fancy.



    That was around five years back. As he flipped through the pages of his book, the different facial images of his subjects came alive. There was this young bride in an animated discussion with her husband. While she talked non-stop, the expression in the husband’s eyes was nothing less than that of a dedicated affection. Then there was this sketch of a kid looking wonderstruck looking at a crab running across the sand. Another sketch had an old man sitting with his grandson on the bench beside the sea, together watching the sun go down. The little hand of the child kept so carelessly in the big, freckled arms of the old man had so much meaning to it. One depicted an end of an era and the other, the genesis.



    Solomon shut the book and looked around him. The joyous faces around, the laughter and the gaiety all seemed so hollow. In this world of rat race, people seemed to have lost the pleasure of just being happy. Even during the time when they are apparently spending the time with their loved ones, at the back of their mind somewhere they are closing business deals. Even the children are not spared, mounting loads of pressure and work at the schools and colleges have snatched away their smiles too. He yearned to get a look at one genuinely happy face. He couldn’t get any.



    He paid the tea vendor and left. The beach was lit up with different stalls selling their wares. There were some people crowded around game stalls and having fun. There seemed to be mirth everywhere around him but not what he was looking for. He stood near his bike and lit a cigarette.



    Just beside his bike, there was an orange seller and he noticed an old couple buying. There was nothing unusual in that. But he found something interesting in their body language, which he was unable to fathom. Since he had to finish the cigarette before he could leave, Solomon decided to wait and watch. The couple were in their mid sixties probably. Their faces were partly hid in the dark, due to the way the bulb was positioned. They seemed to feel the orange and then decide by saying something to each other and then give it to the shopkeeper. This way they selected five or six oranges. They reached out for the purse, which the husband was carrying and gave the money to the vendor. The vendor, who seemed to know the couple well, took the change and carefully put the money into the gentleman’s shirt pocket. After a polite thank you, the couple stepped out of that light. That’s when Solomon suddenly noticed that their hands were interlocked like that in a chain and they wore a satisfied smile on their face. He was amused to see such show of affection in public and a sheepish grin escaped his lips. He continued watching them.



    The couple walked another four or five steps together and then stood under a streetlight. The husband reached into the bag for something, while looking at his wife smilingly. She reciprocated the smile. The hands were still locked. When the man took his hand out, there was a little white stick in his hand. With a deft movement of the wrist the stick expanded and the shocking realization came to our artist’s mind.

    The couple was blind. They couldn’t do without each other so they had their hands locked with each other and the smile was because they were the world to each other. So what if they couldn’t see the world as we do, their other senses acted as their eyes and had led them to believe them that life indeed was beautiful. They didn’t need any help or support to lead their life, they just needed the love to carry on. Perhaps the light from the street lamp couldn’t take away the darkness from their life they still had discovered real pleasure of life in the company of each other. Slowly they started walking and soon disappeared in the darkness. Solomon felt a burning sensation in his eyes. They had become moist.



    For a moment he grimaced, as he couldn’t draw them, but the next moment he smiled. These were the faces he was looking for and he could draw them even without them being in front. The time had come to replace the young woman at the coffee shop as his best work of art with this old couple.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 28, 2010
  2. susri

    susri Silver IL'ite

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    Re: An Work of Art

    :wowDear Preethi,
    What a great narration. Solomon, may be a good artist whether he is doing it by choice or by profession. But the way, you have introduced the old couple in your story......you have proved yourself a great writer. Excellent :thumbsup. Good work. Keep writing.
     
  3. ktg

    ktg Senior IL'ite

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    Re: An Work of Art

    Thanks Susri,

    Your encouraging words gives me the boost to resume writing...

    Hopefully i will meet you soon with my next creations....

    Planning to post my small tamil kavidhais in Snippets itself....
     
  4. radsahana

    radsahana Silver IL'ite

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    Re: An Work of Art

    vow beautiful narration. how finely you have taken us through the artists yearn for his sketch, till the end, when the old blind couple, who where happy in each others company, blissfully unaware of the watchful world!!!:thumbsup
     
  5. ktg

    ktg Senior IL'ite

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    Thank you Radhika. I used to write lot of things during my college days. But most of them are found missing.

    Not able to recollect even... :cry:
     
  6. susri

    susri Silver IL'ite

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    Dear Preethi,
    There is a separate forum for poems.... you can post your tamil kavithai there. All the best. :thumbsup
     
  7. Tubelight

    Tubelight Bronze IL'ite

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    Hi
    A beautiful story, like a work of art itself.

    The old couple, happy by themselves, helping each other are really God's work of art.

    I loved the idea of the picture showing the end of an era and genesis together.

    Solomon's inability to find a genuinely happy face left a niggling mark on my mind. Why has the world become so dreary :-(

    Well narrated. Good to read. Do keep writing.
    :thumbsup
     
  8. ktg

    ktg Senior IL'ite

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    Thanks a lot TL...

    (By the way how to address you? Tubelight???)
     
  9. Tubelight

    Tubelight Bronze IL'ite

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    No prob. if you call me Tubelight or TL or Lakshmi.:)
     
  10. vivbass

    vivbass Gold IL'ite

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    Dear KTG,
    wow, very touching nice story,eagerly waiting to read more stories,kavithais. :thumbsup
    great keep going,all the best dear.
     

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