About Songs · Love

On ‘Saiyyan’ by Kailash Kher

The disconcerting clamor of the wide, incomprehensible world slowly subsides. No more can you hear people telling you to do this and not do that, no more can you hear all the intrigue-ridden dialogues of some existences for some others, no more can you hear expectations, rebukes, taunts, helplessness, regret, jealousy, antagonistic attitudes, crestfallen voices and innumerable other such sounds that have made you loathe the world and all in it… Because amidst all this comes something that can nullify all these negatives – the voice of Kailash Kher.

In his pure, earthy, strong and heart-rending voice, he sings of unconditional love, of complete devotion, loyalty and completeness that one feels for his beloved. Singing as a female, he sings of how not all riches of the world but just a single touch of love is worth an entire life; of how the face of this lady’s love is what she lives to see and can die doing the same; of how immense an elation she acquires in his embrace; of how he and only he is the be all and end all of anything and everything. It’s a slow intoxication taking him over bit by bit, a slow ascendance to heaven as and when he comes into view, a realization of her absolute devotion to him just as a disciple of a prophet, a slow falling and consequent rising…

He in his song ‘Saiyyan’ prompts a rebirth of Sufism, presenting love in its purest and divine form, raising it from the level of a pain-giver to that of a prompt of an everlasting ecstasy. Just like the provisions of the Sufism, he talks of a communion with the Almighty by giving love a permanent place in one’s heart, of placing love above all to reach the one who is above us all.

The nearly a minute long interlude that comprises of a mellifluous play of the Harmonium, the Drum, and the Guitar (or maybe the Mandolin) transfers you to all new levels of mirth and excitement. You begin to feel the presence of that intense love within yourself. If you love someone, it just aggrandizes your feelings for her, and if you don’t, you long to fall in love. Kailash Kher has that innate quality of presenting love, through his voice, as something so ethereal, so desirable, so deific, and so pure that you tend to forget all the bad things you’ve heard or experienced about romantic love. No more do you remember those gashes that love has left on you, no more do you think of those infidelities, you just want to fall, fall and rise to those levels that he sings of.

An all-time favourite of mine, I can simply spend all my day listening to him…

Contemplations · Love · Random Thoughts.

Down The Love Lane…

“Loving you has made me love myself”, “He cared”, “He just let me be me… That was the most important thing that brought me close to him”; each and every word in these lines bombarded against the walls of his heart, and brain. It all circulated in a whirlwind in his head, converting all that was in it into a tumultuous, chaotic piece of crap. Loud explosions, deafening explosions, created such a harsh situation that he almost gasped in that so open, abundant with air highway which he had been walking. His walk lacked the brisk pace that was its characteristic; he lacked the vitality that had always been his constant companion. Devoid all physical, mental, and emotional strength and balance, he just moved. He had read it all, read it last night, read it innumerable times since then, and each time he scanned that letter, he was even weaker; but this self-torture was what- according to himself- he deserved. He deserved to be obliterated into innumerable unrecoverable granules such that his body, mind, and soul seized to exist. The letter had come to his as a revelation, or rather, as a realization of the infidelity of his soul, his opinions, his observations, his very existence. That day he was just a block of mud, moving but not walking, looking but not seeing, saying but not talking. He reached home and found his sister humming the song where the singer congratulated the love of his life on being successful in love- in her love with a man, who was not the singer himself, and he found the burden just too heavy to carry, his sorrow too widespread to conceal within his corporeal frame, but he had to. He just let his lachrymals activate themselves. Maybe even that was a mistake, for he soon found tears too abundant to be allowed to exit his self. He was soon sitting squeezed up on his bed with a sense of fear, and defense; but another fear made itself prominent- the fear of becoming an object that prompted widespread questions. He feared being questioned, he was sick of lying- first lying to himself about the existence of an intense love for her, then to everyone who saw a possibility of that love, then to the depressing aura, saying that he was good and such things happened. He was sick now; but wasn’t it pitiable that he had not a single soul to share his excessive melancholy? This thought proved all the more intense a stimulus for his lachrymals and he could hardly control his groans.

Hours later, he was just sitting there, still frightened, but now on the lane of time, back into the memories of when he was happy.

He sat on the first bench in his classroom with no partner, none found it amusing to sit with him, he was a different, rather an odd one in that class. His dominating expression of seriousness and contemplation looked annoyingly boring to all such that hardly anyone wished to bless him with a talk. Neither did he yearn for their friendship. He was happy to dwell among the poems that he wrote and the thoughts that he had in mind. He would have been happiest to have his head sunken into his books or his thoughts had she not been in the class. She sat among her ‘new’ and ‘more interesting’ friends on the last benches of the class. Once a great friend and companion-when-possible, she now had new friends who matched her type of merry-making and whom she thought good, and who brought him to utter contempt whenever they could, given his odd nature. He would not bother. All that interested him was she; all that had him desperate was she and the never-expected development of awkwardness between them. He hated that lack of words when the two of them ever came face-to-face. He hated those friends, being conscious of whose watch, she hurried away from him. But his love was not enslaved by the talks or smiles. He could love her by just being conscious of her presence, by being able to paint her portrait in his mind. In that way he was always conscious of her presence, because she lay there within his conscience. He loved looking in her direction, observing her smile at something said; observing her when she put on her glasses, and also when she did not; observing her finger driving all locks of her black hair behind her ears; observing and admiring the face that emerged thereafter. He loved her  because she was his friend, because she was a wonderful girl, because she was all that he had wanted to be- an epitome of virtues, because she was the genuine herself and never wished to imitate anyone. He would just sit in front and look back where she sat, look at her and ensure she was not annoyed, ensure she was not bored- that may sound odd, ensure that she was secure and in a way ensure that he was secure. His idea of love was all about coexistence and responsiveness.

In those days, the days that followed Eid, her absence had prompted him to take to her abstract avatar in the mind. It was the fourth day, and he had been sitting in the classroom reminiscing about their long talk over SMS the previous day when she walked in with her red and black school bag and her metal water bottle, and had his heart pounding. Courtesy the absence of her new and dear friends, she greeted him good morning to which, unexpected as it was, he responded with a stammer. He loved it when she called his name and specifically stressed upon the depth and length of the first syllable of his name which was followed by a smooth flowing remaining part of his name. The day had begun on the highest note in quite a few weeks. The last time when they talked well was when both of them were among the participants of the ‘Commonwealth Day’ debate.

There was something different and positively strange about her ways that day. She walked with a greater elegance and gracefulness, she talked in tones that were lesser in volume than those in which she previously did, she had changed her spectacles and the dark black, full-frame ones were replaced by the frame-less glasses with light supports; right from her elegant mascara to her beautiful hairdo, everything about her prompted an aura of beauty, mirth, positivism, elegance and care. Regaining his equilibrium, he said, ‘You’ve transformed dear! What made you bring out this revolutionary avatar of yours?’ and she echoed the words from one of his SMSs from last night conversation, ‘A woman realizes her true self only when made to do so by a man.’ Things stirred…

Very much logical to a heart in love, he took the man to be himself. The days that followed saw a sea change in her attitude towards him, she had once again begun to talk well to him, share her thoughts with him, laugh with him, yes, he actually recovered his dormant sense of humor as if to realize and make it known to her that it was not he who had gone away, it was just that others had come nearer to her. And months passed with his levels of ecstasy rising each day, each moment. Then he proposed…

Facebook chats one day reminded her that he had once said that there were many people who loved her, and one of them was very close to him. On being pressed further, he had promised to reveal the name by the end of the year. And it was December when she was reminded. This time the requests had turned to be threats, threats of ending friendship. Obviously, he had to yield, he wanted to promote friendship to love, what if the friendship itself ended!

And so it happened that after the Chemistry examination, there she stood to listen all that he had written in that email confessing his love. When he saw her standing, waiting for him, his heart would just not stop wanting to leap! He reached and he spoke, he spoke with fear, with doubt, with stammers, with hope, with love… He told her that his love for her was as pure as the ice on the mountains, as the intentions of an angel… It was not a romantic incarnation of desire but a true expectation of nearness, not a demand for intimacy but an assertion of his wish of never having to watch her go away, not a longing for unison of bodies but that of souls, not a want of imposing his life on her but of sharing it… He made her know that what mattered to him was the beauty of the soul which was more abundant in her than the abundance of happiness in heaven. He once again spoke out his heart, spoke till the very limits of his equilibrium, spoke before she finally said, ’I am dating someone since the last six months.’

She spoke much more, spoke how she cherished each and every moment that she had spent with him, saying that she was sure that he would get someone better than herself, saying much more, if only he was conscious enough to hear it…

That was the first time that he had experienced devastation prompted by his misunderstandings, the faux pas of opinions and observations had left him azoic. He was shaken when she told him that her man was five years older than her, lived in the U.S., worked for an esteemed firm, and earned in dollars, and that both their families wanted them to be together. Blunder number two, he took her decision to be submission to the will of her family. He respected her even more; but he decided to maintain distance, not a distance of talks or smiles, but a distance of emotions…

This letter, the one that prompted this remembrance had made it just so worth blaming himself! It told him that it was not submission but real love that endeared her to the American and dragged her away from him; it told him that he had been stupid enough to think that she ever was near to him… He now knew that he deserved obliteration!