Woke from an unfinished dream by the faint tapping on the window, the pane was smoked and view hazy. The night was wet with light drizzle as if some long lost memory of a forbidden love affair suddenly jolted her tear ducts. Incessant knocks in the still of the hour sounded like a signal for a maiden by her admirer. The setting was perfect for a sinister union that needs to remain concealed.
A pleasant scent filled the ambience, the sacred scent of earthly womanhood and it was nostalgic. On the smoked glass a face appeared, familiar and soothing; it was a ghost from my past, an apparition, a story inscribed within my entire existence but unfinished, left incomplete, and may be still waiting to be written. It was her face, small, elegant, imperfectly conical sporting a spotless smile. “The Rainbow Smile” as I preferred to call it, owing to the shades it betrayed while travelling through the sides of her lips to her eyes and back. Her smile was the road to wisdom from passion, from raw energy to serene spirituality.
At times her eyes would just be still, laid back and relaxed as a child after a plush massage followed by lukewarm bath.
At others, they would talk their heart out. So many tales they would narrate, those eyes, of the misty mornings and breezy evenings, of acute observations and casual glances. They betrayed every emotion and puzzled every guess at their whim. There they were, staring back at me, years had gone by since that happened. An epoch which buried the pain they put me through when they turned away. Whether the pain really vanishes, the pain that seeps through an invisible wound? I was afraid in that instant and euphoric, kind of trapped in the anomaly. A butterfly fluttered somewhere deep inside me and whispered “you’re still in love”. I placed the palm on the windowpane in an attempt to feel her face, her skin against
mine. I still remember her first touch. We had gone for an excursion from our school and we were young. We were going through those years of our life when everything is rosy and full of possibilities; the time when the flower blooms and winds rustle the skirts of dancing trees. The time when lasses began to discover lads and lads, well, they feign ignorance and play the jungle book in order to get the attention. It was a tiresome excursion and all of us were tired. She was sitting right next to me and without any pretext placed her head on my shoulder and took my arm in hers. The whole world simply stood still. I can never describe what I felt in that instant. I was in love.
I longed to feel her touch, the touch that made me content, at peace. The memory of that first touch is still as fresh as a dew drop. In that instance I wanted nothing, wished for nothing, and thought of nothing. It was a moment of pure selflessness, the moment of death beyond which lies eternal peace. I longed for it, and knew there was a wall that I couldn’t cross. It was frustrating and yet the longing was dearer. A loud thud startled me and she was gone. “Daddy” – I heard my angel speak and I rushed to tend to her. I watched her for some time while she slept on my chest with her arm around my neck. She was sleeping calmly, “the rainbow smile” lingering on her countenance. A butterfly fluttered somewhere and whispered “You’re still in love.”