A certain numbness, a certain death, has always resided within my soul, and sometimes I can feel its heart beating… feel the numbness, hear death beat with a life of its own- a certain morose, yet regenerative kind of life- lying so close beside the fresh, vivacious, carefree part of me, that to smother one, would be the demise of the other as well..
In this death resides a poignantly beautiful silence- not the kind that deafens you with its noise, but the kind that has a certain patience in it, a certain faith (and the lack of it too), that yearns for better days and at the same time doubts its arrival. It’s a paradox, yes.
I guess it’s a part of the painful process of growing up and going through things that no one of your youth, innocence and ignorance (of the cruel ways of the world, so to speak) should have to go through. No wonder we say we are ‘nearing death’ as each day passes…
The more you see what you should not have seen, the more you hear what you should not have heard, and the more you feel what your heart should never have had to feel – the more you recoil into your cocoon of sorrow, the more socially shy you begin to feel, the more hardened your fragile heart becomes; and what’s left is a cold, seemingly apathetic person… the failed idealists, the dreamers, the poets. For some things can never be unsaid, unheard and unfelt- and even poetry cannot heal some wounds…
The thing is, when a person has been hurt and broken on account of being too trusting, too naïve, they develop a wall of sorts to their fort of emotions, to remain safe from encroachment and plunder- the soul, the heart and the mind shielded against intrusion; impenetrable, protected, secure.
They know they’ll never recover if invaded again- their feelings ridiculed in a society that shames an open discussion of feelings; their heart crushed like the crushing of a frail rose by the wheels of a cart, in an insensitive society where, just having a heart to heart is regarded as sensitivity, fragility, unacceptable. One pauses to ask- Who is really sensitive? Who is fragile? Who is unacceptable?
Thus, one remains within the boundaries of their selves, the sweet notes of their souls silenced by loud noises, ramblings and inhumanity, with slogans like “live and let live”; “Stop judging”; “Love one another”; “Make love, not war”; remaining just as they are, mere slogans. In such a world where love is looked down upon, and war is heralded as a glorious art, what hope remains, dear reader?
And thus, the human within one’s soul begins harboring a quiet, resigned rest… of death; every hurt nourishing it, every painful tear watering it, every heartbreak sunning it, until it grows magnanimous, as large as life itself, and one’s warmth and gaiety are masked behind the raw strength of passiveness, the bliss of forced ignorance, and the balm of solitude.
In the layman’s parlance, we call this “indifference”.
© Isha Garg
Doodle by Isha Garg