Archive for March, 2011

All day I peeped out from the corner of the window, which is now the last vantage point in our apartment, from where we can still catch a glimpse of the sea. The broad marine vista, that same window had afforded us fourteen years back, when we had first moved into this apartment, was now just a fading memory. All we could see now, when we looked directly out of it, was the parking lot and a row of buildings. My blues and greens, were now definitely greys and browns. There was however, one little grace still left; From my chair by the window, I could see diagonally to the left and catch an undisturbed view, of both trees and sea, and this is where I sat, especially on good days, and enjoyed the view.

Through the day I had admired its myriad shades of beautiful blues. But by the time we finally made it to its shore, it had lost its glorious promise of beauty and looked dull and listless, as the sun began descending. Nevertheless, we sat down in the spot we seem to have claimed now as our own, as no one ever comes there, though people do picnic nearby. But that particular bit of green, bordered by bougainvillea seems to have been left exclusively for us. We come here by unspoken agreement whenever we decide to go out at the week-end or sometimes even during the week-day, when it is especially beautiful.

It is a pretty spot; the ground is covered by a creeper that has begun to turn yellow in places, but whose verdure we have enjoyed for many months. People walk or ride cycles on the curving promenade that circles Green island right around, but few glance up, to where we sit. There is a wall above us that encloses a small piece of ground, which can be used for bar-be-cues or picnics, but rarely is. Tables and chairs are plentiful all over the island and we just have to pick a couple for ourselves and carry them here.

As we sit here while the evening grows, the setting sun turns the sea behind us to rich gold. Behind us is the city, with its skyline of monolithic sky scrapers; hungry to gobble up the sky greedily. Before us, touching the horizon, lies the sea, so often beautifully clad in regal blues, that we feel we can stare at it tirelessly, for hours. The promenade is lined by trees, and rows of trees grow everywhere, to justify the island’s name.

It is a quiet sea, that speaks often in hushed, respectful tones to the shore. It is a rare day when it rushes in blue green waves, to spill its excitement and exuberance upon the sand. We sit in the shade of a tree, the whisper of its leaves in the breeze, plays a soft, soothing note on our consciousness. Busy sparrows chirp in the boughs above. Once in a while, one of the numerous bulbuls, bursts suddenly into the sweetest song. The only other companions here are the cats, lying stretched out on the ground, or walking through the bougainvillea bushes, or mewling pitifully besides us, if we have brought food for that rare picnic.

Once in a while, the peace is disturbed, not unpleasantly by a jet ski or two, or by a motorboat going past, close to the Island. some times we smile as we hear laughter of unseen children playing close by somewhere. Huge container ships, sail gracefully in the distance. Sometimes we can spy a white sail of a boat, that is content to drift languidly, with the breeze. The gulls and cormorants fly past us, swooping down to the sea. No conversation is required, and we can sit here for hours in a companionable silence, that drains off completely the tensions of the work week.

The bougainvillea bushes that lie just a little ahead from where we sit, are almost bare now but just a month back they were a riot of pinks, reds, oranges and magenta, a rare and brilliant sight in a place that is mostly desert. The bulbuls like it here and many can be found inside them or sitting on the branches.

Beyond them is the tree with twisted arms yet a strange beauty. Another stands close to it. It is hidden from where we sit but when we walk down, we can spy it. It is always bare, empty arms outstretched towards the sky. Its brown branches, silhouetted against a deep blue sky, glow orange as the evening grows, and sometimes as night appears we can see the moon shining bright, through them. A stranger in this, all surrounding green beauty, it still holds a fascination all its own.

The idyll is so perfect, it is hard to tear ourselves away as the evening grows and the wind increases bringing with it an unwelcome chill.

Note: I have many pictures of this place but wished to paint the picture simply with words.

I have reclined ‘neath trees
woven with yellow green leaves
or silhouetted bare and stark
against deep cerulaen skies
besides undecided waves
changing shades constantly

I have watched gulls dip and rise
and fly off into the distance
heard sparrows sing in harmony
with melodious bulbuls
in late afternoons
as the sun warmed our backs
and lavishly gilted dancing waves
so they chuckled with golden laughter

I have imbibed contentment
from slow crafts sailing lazily
from the whisper of the breeze
the soft answers of the leaves
the sage nodding of the boughs
the blushing of the blooms

I have heard I have seen I have felt
I have been content
I have been happy
I have lived

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