The Sun Shall Rise Again!

Ibrahim Waheed “Kalaavehi”

(“Next to God, you!”)

A flaming, burning orange sun, appearing confident in its existence as the supreme lamp of the day, but afraid in an unknown dimension, looked at the solitary human being standing on the soft sand of the beach and saw his long shadow on the now golden beach sieving through the half-flowers of the tender scaevola into the thickets of the heart-leaved thespesia where vague shadows appeared to swallow it up. Heaving a gentle sigh of relief, the reddening sun expressed itself in human words, “You, who was once only the shadow of who you are today… For your reincarnation I am grateful!”

Not apparently as confident as the bright orb of the sun had been the man. He had come to the beach, following the golden rays of the sun that had enticed him, first in the imaginary fluttering butterflies of light filtering through the thick-leaved breadfruit trees that enveloped his small hut, then in flashes of elusive red like the mythical tree-dwelling handi of folklore, later like pencils of precious metal through fragrant queen of the night, and finally as the clear, pure, soothing bathe of radiance on his face. But now he knew that he had to reach out to the sun if the world, in all its glory, had to become a rational whole. For he was a scribe, a writer, the person who possessed the faculty of fixing the passing ephemeral into the permanency of stone, parchment or paper.

But the confidence of the sun was only a patina, a surface gloss. It had its inner turmoil, its inner insecurities, its inner fears and devils. These inner storms had no connection to the argument that the sun was masculine in the language of its current setting locale of the Dhivehi Raaje but definitely feminine in the lands of the Arab to which it would soon show its setting glory. But the inner devils rode only deep and strong unlike the writer whose heart dangled at his cuffs.

Darta Hoon Likhtey Likhtey Ye Kaagaz Na Jal Uthey
Sheron Mey Dil Ki Aag Ye Kaisey Utaardoon
Sooraj Ki Har Kiran Teri Soorat Pe Waardoon
Dozakh Ko Chahta Hoon Ke Jannat Pe Waardoon

The writer spoke to the sun, “O, you bright star of the day! Writing is a lonely game which, if taken in any measure, not only cleans the soul but also drains it. And, since I am the kind of guy that no longer subscribes to licking my heart wounds till they heal in a lonely den, I need a soul-partner who exists, lives, breathes, eats, dreams, star-counts, works, writes, and sometimes goes to the corner shop or to bed with me, while the both of us grow together into a stronger force. Yet, I am a proud one and the world is my open screen! Fate brought us together and what my pen writes, you shall co-sign or else my world is done!”

“When Fate played its dice to bring us together …” the sun began saying to the man, explaining, perhaps the futility of the cold stone of the earth going round in eternal circles around its fiery captor, “You were only a man whose soul bore the burden of an obligation to create a world on his own insecurities and pain. Through a marriage of two silence-crazed-souls who find the strength to face life with a piece of stone, what can we do to make this sunset such a hopeless event, giving way to a night of darkness?”

Deep in her fiery heart, the sun hid the cold, dark fear that haunted her every burning second of existence: Her nights were filled with a horror so bittersweet that its calumny was almost like deep, gut-wrenching love, yet so calm and almost natural in its sheer perfection. Every day, as sunset heralded the onset of night, a bright shadow rose from the bottom of the ocean and engulfed the sun in its all-possessing, selfish embrace and carried her down into a bottomless pit of loneliness. Even from as far back as the days of Tutankhamon, the island of Lesbos, or even Atlantis, the world saw it only as the reflection of the sun itself, in color, form, and spirit. Even the more daring of poets saw it only as the fragmented form of a false sun that had to join her when she went down in the sea for the night. And yet, this bright reflection-like shadow possessed the sun so selfishly, so completely, carried her so deeply into the darkest of nights where no stars shone and where dark deeds were unseen in the gloom, that the sun shuddered to even think of one night of sweet wisdom or free breath.

And then, one night, the man enticed the sun into a dream of what a night without that shadowy reflection could be. They stole a night and sat on a secluded rock near a ubiquitous and convenient scaevola tree and looked at the stars. They conversed in words that either of them could have spoken, of affairs of inconsequence like of a dragonfly nymph shedding its skin onto a stem of a plant or a blade of grass, and emerging as a dragonfly, and the reason why the skin is left behind. They spoke of the wonders of absence and the feeling of one missing another and yet carrying one within the other where missing someone badly was the sweetest experience. They spoke of craziness and sanity. And they woke up together into a new morn.

At dawn, as the muezzin called the faithful to prayer, somewhere in the distance where fishermen dozed, where bats dangled off trees, where the imaginary handi still dwelled in droopy trees, they heard only the sweet, joyful ghazals of ishq , lilting on the cooling breeze. Gone were the songs of pining for love; banished were the bitter words of enslaved hearts.

The writer realized that if Fate did not place a flaming, charming, living soul in the form of the sun beside him soon, not in the shape of the Holy Ghost of Christianity but as a real corporeal being, who sometimes put her reassuring hand with his on the handle of life, his pen would dry up into a scratchy scream, his pencil would snap brittle at every stroke. He knew that despite the fact that she was made of fire and he of the clay of the earth, despite the eons that separated them, his eternal succor, his sweet salvation, his living spirit and soul, lay with, or even was and would always be, the sun. Next to God his Creator. What he had been looking for was the sun and only the sun itself. And not her likeness, reflection, copy or imitation! And dropping all restraint due to politeness or courtesy, he wanted to tell her so!

The sun realized with a cosmic clap of eye-opening thundering wisdom, that if she looked in the right direction she would see the length and breadth of the shadow of the man reaching through the half-flowers of the tender scaevola, into the thickets of the heart-leaved thespesia where vague shadows appeared to swallow it up but did not and could not! She would see the shadow firmly cross the little coral islet, forge over the shallow turquoise, emerald, sapphire waters, glide over the abysmal jet of the seas and oceans, and all the way round the sphere of rock and water called the earth. And if she saw that happening, and if only she realized of what material that shadow was made of, she would soon feel his strong arms reach out from under her, cradle her entire body tenderly, and take her through the bliss of every star-studded night, to rise to a new sweet morn every day, into a world full of new-found hope and freedom. And she wanted that to happen. Free from fear, entrapment, guilt, shame and remorse.

But who shall tell whom first remained for the new day to decide and the sun shall rise again.

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Comments

  • mysterystar  On November 19, 2010 at 3:03 pm

    This is beautiful story. Thank you very much.

  • sukhsohit singh  On February 11, 2011 at 11:13 pm

    that is so breathtakingly astounding description of the “lovers dilemma””

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