The Creaking Chair - Part XXVII


17th October 1988

‘Of evenings that smell of you’

Often times I have written about heavy clouds in an evening sky 
and many a times of winter or summer evenings 
all coming with their own character of restlessness, calm or anger
but there have been only a few instances when I have written of a casual evening
one that is uncharacterized by anything unusual, rather is surprisingly plain
As I remember now, such evenings belonged to you,
beautiful in it’s own serene ways

And such evenings were divided in two phases in my life
one was the phase when I spent those evenings with you 
whether you were physically present around me 
or we were separated by distance, yet connected by spirit
and the other phase is one with memories 
of you, of a distant me and of us 
of reminiscence and stories and letters on the balcony

But most of all I remember the evenings when I felt restless 
and you getting out of your evening bath would come to sit besides me and my chai
and the fact that your smell made me aware of your presence around me 
how that calmed my troubled mind 
I don’t we used to speak much during those evenings
but it was time well spent on the verandah
looking at the children playing in the garden and letting time flow in peace

Even as a kid I used to dislike twilight 
you remember one time, we even had a heated debate on how I don’t “hate” twilight 
rather how I “disliked” it for reasons you could never understand 
There is such a sense of sadness watching the sun go down every evening 
after shining with all its glory – symbolizing that time runs away – sooner or later 
and possibly it excited in me my fear of time running out
maybe that was the reason why I never enjoyed twilight

It may also have been because of how I missed playing cricket in the evenings as a kid
or the fact that I started sleeping around 5 PM and waking up to dusk at around 6.30 PM 
or it may also have been due to the timing of the calls with her – she would know which her am I talking about 
I started using that conversation as a crutch to get over my sense of loneliness during those days
and then we stopped talking making my evenings even drabber 
but with you it was always different, we were never addicted to each other
we lived completely with each other – I guess that was the difference

And maybe that is why I do not write so much about such evenings

~ Ashk

P.S. – In a weird way, the best part of the day for me has always been after the twilight ends and the night engulfs you into its mystique


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