Sunday, July 24, 2005

There's balloons and balloons, and one for everybody

The sky was an azure blue. Heraldic and tinctured. The woods were dark and must be cold. What do you choose? Which direction do you take?

You were one of the many balloons that were tied with a cotton string. Held tightly in the dirty fist of the little girl who’d saved up all her money to buy balloons. Handing over the grimy coins, she was told she could choose eight of them.



You’d never seen a happier child. A dirtier one too, but well, happy anyway.
She began choosing them one by one. She had all the time in the world. It was then that you knew when you saw her shining eyes that you wanted to belong to her. While the other times you hid behind the blue and red ones that got picked first, this time you strutted forward, “Pick me. Choose me”, you nestled closer to her hovering fingers.

When she touched you, you know for sure. It was a touch that caressed. You’ll keep the air longer for her, bounce merrily in the wind for her… stay alive longer just for her.

When she held the string that tied you and the others tightly in her fist, it hurt a little. You knew but that she held it so, because she didn’t want to lose you. Her eyes still shone with the joy and you skipped happily along with her. After all, one is made to bring joy to the others…

It was the first thing she ever bought. Out of her own hard earned money; chores around a wedding that happened, running messages between lovers, selling flowers... Every penny that she’d saved, she’d done so to buy you and when she puffed out her chest and showed you off to her friends, you puffed up a little more too and beat a tattoo with the wind.

You stayed so for three days. Longer than the other seven. You wanted to stay longer… but the strength and vitality no longer was taken for granted. Even balloons grow old…

You were her favorite and you felt good about it. She played with your every night. Carefully so, so that you wouldn’t fall and prick yourself on the nails on the wall, on the sooty lamps that were around or fall a prey to her envious neighbors.

Your strength left you each passing day, but you did your best. When she untied you and blew her hot breath tainted with spit, you could have popped with joy. Or you didn't pop because of your joy.

You worried over the pennies that she was saving again. You worried over the smiles on her face when she counted her savings everyday. A foreboding feeling. Even balloons have feelings…

When she came home with glass bangles on her wrist, you knew you’d been replaced. How could balloons replace bangles or vice versa? Ah- we are talking about attention here. The red and golden bangles on her wrist made her eyes shine. Every night after she came back from work, she would put them on and watch them shine in the light of the sooty lamp. They would clink merrily and roll on her arm. You knew you’d make a better bangle, because you’d be redder and clink louder without breaking; but just for her.

Love is such a silly thing. Even balloons have a heart…

The cottages were at the side of the woods. All of them looked alike. Shabby, dirty and cluttered. And full of life.

It was the boy next door, who’d always pull her hair who’d cut the string and carried you to the field, walking till the edge of the woods.

Bright colored balloons dotted the sky. You could see them.



When he let you go, you weren’t really sure. It was painful living on seeing her rub her red bangles with the same love she once touched you with. But go where? You were tired already. Watching your love go unnoticed is exhausting.

You’d never reach those bright ones up there. You’d even faded in color from what you once were. Dull and lifeless. Almost.

The woods were lovely dark and deep. Ah- that was almost poetry. But for sure some poet must have said that already. The best ideas were already taken...always…

They were dark and deep. Lovely, you really didn’t know.

You fluttered slowly towards the woods. You didn’t want anymore heartache and pain. No more love and no more loving.

Pine needles are sharp. It hurt when it pricked your almost saggy body.

Everything’s just rubber and air ultimately.

With a tired sigh, the air inside you joined the air outside. A sigh of two people who’ve been apart too long… There are lovers everywhere.

And they lived happily ever after.

32 Comments:

Blogger mannu said...

its here again.. "Watching your love go unnoticed is exhausting."

12:14 AM  
Blogger Pleomorphous said...

This is beautiful.

1:31 AM  
Blogger Bratrat said...

Whoa.....soooober! have I said that before?! ;p
hmmm...to hang onto a love without any hold!!! hmmmm.....very interesting!!!
Lovely writing... ;D

3:22 AM  
Blogger manuscrypts said...

wonderful stuff, i say!! :)

6:18 AM  
Blogger Jasmine said...

Hey... wow, beautiful. Except the ending kind of let me down a bit.

6:35 AM  
Blogger Kraz Arkin said...

Red balloon against a blue sky. But that was in the sadder part of the book, wasnt it?

6:35 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

coming up with a pin... *evil grin*

6:49 AM  
Blogger TinTin said...

tch tch...mind your spelling girl...there's nothing worse that ruins a good peice of writing than making one small spelling mistake ;) (porety)

6:53 AM  
Blogger funkysmell said...

interesting

7:42 AM  
Blogger Disophisis said...

That was really quite inspirational. I've been writing a spot of poetry for the last... almost a year. This piece... pulled me in, as only very good pieces can. It was soothing, I must say. As I read, my nerves calmed down, and I was genuinely enjoying it! :) Thank you for that beautiful writing.

7:46 AM  
Blogger Poornima said...

Mannu: Cant seem to be able to mask that!

Pleo: Thank you.

Bratrat: Well, you have said it before... but go on! ;o)

Manu: Thank you, I say!

Jasmine: I wanted to write something with 'They lived happily ever after' for a long time... Let me indulge myself!

Kraz: The whole of the book had that intangible sadness... But yes, 'Red balloon in blue sky' was in the second and sadder part.

Fadia: Dont prick!!!

Tintin: Damn! My spelling's terrible! Err.. typo!

Funkysmell: Hmmm...

Xymus: Poetry... I've been quite roped by that of late...

7:56 AM  
Blogger tcr_79 said...

All I remember is that cartoon in DD which had a song like

"Main gubaara gol matol
Chinnu ke haathon se bhaaga"

2:24 PM  
Blogger Poornima said...

Krish: Lol! You really don't have to do this! You've proven you're friend enough!!!

9:19 PM  
Blogger hope and love said...

aiyyooda..
;)) sooo cute and sad..

1:21 AM  
Blogger pallavi said...

i am in awe! *bows down*
make way for the new blogger queen!!
hail poornima!

3:47 AM  
Blogger Poornima said...

Hope and love: Two very contradictory things!

Pallavi: If you can give me your email id, I'll send you a couple of links- of people who can be called that term you called me. Am serious here. No, am not being modest or anything.

5:35 AM  
Blogger Jithu said...

balloons fly up under the hope that its free.. bt when it go up, its bursts in the hot sun...

9:10 AM  
Blogger pallavi said...

leave them on my blog...will love to check them out..although i'm not quite sure on whether they're better than you...

11:33 AM  
Blogger Poornima said...

Jithu: That's another train of thought...

Pallavi: From where I see it, Kraz and Phantasmagoria are. By far...

11:12 PM  
Blogger aks said...

hey poornima....ur mind seems to churn out emotions so beautifully..hats off dear

3:31 AM  
Blogger Pleomorphous said...

You missed something Tin Tin. It is spelled 'piece' not 'peice'. ;-)

4:29 AM  
Blogger Praveen said...

Beutiful, poignant, captivating I havent got many other words to describe the post.

9:40 AM  
Blogger Poornima said...

Aks: If you are who I think you are, thank you- you've always said kind words. If you aren't, well, thank you again- you've always said kind words on my blog!

Pleo: Lol! My english teacher was at a loss for words when she heard me speak and also when she read me!!

Praveen: More than enough!

8:58 PM  
Blogger silverine said...

The innocous balloon, so pretty and light and like a splash of happiness in the sky. How I loved them as a kid. Still do. and this tale you have weaved around them is so .....cannot get the right word but brings back lots of memories. Of being at a loss for words when I was handed a balloon :))

2:26 AM  
Anonymous JW said...

Beautiful

3:40 PM  
Blogger aks said...

aks said...
hey poornima.....if I am who u think...well aint it one abstract statement....and about writing good things about u....well wat else can i write about such a wonderful person as u...if u think iam who i am....

6:21 AM  
Blogger Poornima said...

Silverine: Balloons were always special. They still are...

JW: Thank you.

Aks: Lol. No one, I repeat NO ONE would say such nice things except you. So now I know who you are Mr. Pilot!

9:01 PM  
Blogger aks said...

hey poornima...Mr Pilot....i like tat...u are good..and as always..i love u

3:49 AM  
Blogger Poornima said...

Aks: And as always, I love you too.

4:04 AM  
Blogger sparsh said...

Dear Poornima...I am addicted and you are to be blamed. I absolutely loved this one!!! I wanna buy baloons now...who knows one might fall in love with me too:)....

4:20 PM  
Blogger Poornima said...

Sparsh: This story was published in a magazine called 'Platform'. My first 'publication'! :)

9:51 PM  
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10:31 PM  

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