I really don’t understand who a soul-mate is. I always believed a soul-mate to be a quest rather than a person. But I have a story to share…
We met on the first day of college. Me – big chatter-box, pampered princess, fresh out of an all-girls school. He – complete introvert from a modest family, fresh out of an all-boys school. Conversation was awkward until we realised that we read the same kind of books. That triggered a great friendship.
We never really dated. I was brought up with the constant warning – girls from good families do not go out with boys alone. We hung out as a gang; within that gang we bonded.
At some point he professed, ‘I think I love you’.
Ever the pragmatist, I had a dozen reasons why that was not a good idea. Sensible reasons like we are too young to conservative reasons like our families will never agree.
For the next 15 years we did not speak.
We met again at our batch’s 20th reunion party. A smile was all it took and we were friends again. We would meet up for coffee about once a month. The comfort was there. Conversation flowed easily. We shared our life stories. Whenever life hit a bump and we needed a friend it was time for coffee.
Ten years later he professed, ‘I think I still love you’.
You think that time heals all wounds. You think that the dark chasm of grief that you had once imagined might consume you has closed. You think that the pain of loss has receded.
The jokes on you.
Along comes a seemingly innocuous prompt – The sound of silence. A few of your fellow wordsmiths talk of their own struggles with hearing loss. And suddenly you are hit with a tsunami of emotions.
I cried for this prompt. I cried for the sound of silence in my father’s room. For all the times that I chided him for his hearing loss. For speaking too loud, for speaking too low, for speaking words and walking away without checking if he had heard. The sound of silence that he must have heard is now my burden to carry.
It’s been five years, yet it only took one innocuous prompt to open that chasm again.
MLMM’s Tale Weaver prompt invites us to write from the perspective of someone who has lost their hearing. I still have my hearing. Yet I cannot hear the voice of the man who was my first love, my hero, my counselor, my strength. I long for him. But all I hear is the sound of silence.
As soon as she stepped into the room, she realized that this was going to be one of those days.
Mister Numbers was scribbling an elaborate polynomial equation that he evidently believed would get them to their destination more efficiently. The professor, who was more of a traditional homotopy theorist, looked on amused. Neither acknowledged her presence. She did not expect them to. Once he was involved in his quest for the more elegant solution, a quarter or even half the day would go before he even noticed her presence. The professor’s presence would only exacerbate that.
Some would be aghast at his indifference, especially considering that this joint would not run without her. But not she. Their relationship had a unique texture, one that she was comfortable with. She knew without a doubt that he was destined for greatness. She also knew without a doubt that it was her handling the nitty-gritties that would make that possible. His math may be solid, but he was frothy as air when it came to the everyday stuff. Every super hero needed a sidekick. She was his.
Yesterday’s file in hand, she stepped out and closed the door quietly. He needed the grant and she would make sure that he got it.
Why? Because we did the blue planet thing – it was a man’s world. Housekeeping was bad (no pun intended), we could not sustain, and it all went to shit. No point in seeking forgiveness… we just need to seek better.
Time to think pink… and rainbow.
That’s the accord. The patriarchy had a marathon run. It’s time to mix it up. Erase old prejudices. Think out of the box. Forget he/she/they/them… too confusing. Let everything be it. Human kind, animal kind, organic, inorganic – let it all be it. Drop this assumption that mankind tops all other species. Develop a more sustainable and fair model of existence.
Let the world after have an after.
Written in response to Tale Weaver of 5 Aug 21 that asks us to imagine The World After; using words from the daily prompts Fandango’s One Word Challenge (sustain), Word of the Day Challenge (scarlet), Ragtag Daily Prompt (marathon), The Daily Spur (forgiveness), Your Daily Word Prompt (accord) and My Vivid Blog (tops)
A father must not have favourites. But she was mine.
She was my gentle beauty. Her brothers were boisterous dare-devils. Getting into brawls, breaking the neighbors’ windows, breaking their own bones. My wife credits them with her premature grey hair. Her sisters were just a little better. Demanding more clothes than any girl could possibly need, sneaking over to their friend’s houses to try on ridiculous cosmetics, and watching the trash that passes off for movies nowadays. No doubt all three girls had inherited their mother’s good looks, and I thank the Lord for that, but she was the only one who had inherited her mother’s modesty. And wasn’t a woman’s true beauty her modesty.
But the devil had come calling and my naïve little girl had been way-laid. She had failed the Lord’s test and brought dis-honour to the family. And in so doing she had put me to the test. As the head of the family I had to be firm and to do what was right for the entire family. I had two daughters who needed to be wed. I had grand-children who had to be raised in the path of righteousness. Two wrongs do not make a right; but an action taken to right a wrong cannot be considered a wrong. To salvage the honour of the family, it had to be done. For what is a man without his honour?
The Lord had put me to the test. I did what I had to do. And now we shall speak of her no more.
We shall move to a new town. This family shall have a new beginning.
I don’t believe in utopia or the promise of forever. If ever I did, then the last twenty-five years have burst those bubbles.
Yet your amazing zeal for life and the picture that you paint of a possible future together as a couple have made me almost wonder. I surmise that whatever mysteries or suspense or even battles that life holds ahead it would indeed be a far nicer ride to share it with you.
You treat me like an equal. You treat me with respect. Not merely a pretty face with a callipygian derriere. With you I have felt like a person of worth. I feel free and at peace around you.
Today you stand patiently waving goodbye, not knowing if I will return, glad that I’m off to have my grand adventure, with not a speck of grudge. Suddenly I feel those bubbles of hope burst forth again.
I guess, sometimes it takes a goodbye to find an answer.
I’m off now, my love, but this chicken will definitely come home to roost.
Written in response to Mindlovemisery’s Menagerie Tale Weaver Challenge and the following daily prompts: The Daily Spur (couple, chicken), Fandango’s One-Word Challenge (surmise, utopia), Your Daily Word Prompt (zeal, promise), Ragtag Daily Prompt (suspense, paint), and Word of the Day Challenge (callipygian, amazing).
It was rather difficult to sport a professional expression when in fact she was buzzing with anticipation and glee like a kid in a candy store.
Her first live fashion show. The very reason that she had become a student of journalism.
As a teenager her interest in fashion had been insatiable. She had devoured every fashion magazine, spent hours dressing up and walking the ramp in front of her mirror, worked summers at the mall just so that she could befriend the girls at the cosmetic counters and get free makeovers. But as a size 4, she couldn’t possibly fulfil her dreams of becoming a model and her dad had refused to help pay for any ‘frivolous studies’. So, journalism it was. Then when it was required to pick a specialization, she didn’t require a second thought.
The lights dimmed. The music and strobe lights came on. She was in paradise.
The show was fabulous. The costumes were over the top, but the models looked truly divine. With their classic slender bone structure and silky bronzed skin, each was a goddess upon earth.
Late that night the dormant monster reared its ugly head again. Mary Luis Jane went to the washroom, stuck two fingers down her throat and brought out her entire dinner.
Written for MLMM’s Tale Weaver #299 – Over The Top using words from the daily prompts: Ragtag Daily Prompt (anticipation), Your Daily Word Prompt (require), The Daily Spur (student), Fandango’s One-Word Challenge (insatiable), and Word of the Day Challenge (monster).