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Archive for the ‘Tales & Fantasies’ Category

Wandering towards her. Looking slightly lost but masquerading considerable assurance. He stood out somehow. Maybe, it was his appearance. His solitariness. Or perhaps, something less tangible. Like the sense of a secret purpose in his gaze.

His skin was like dark honey. Like caramel. His hair was neatly trimmed. He was dressed simply, unpretentiously. And even though, there was a boyishness about his clean-cut face… there was a subtle sense of readiness too that belied his years. He looked like he would make things happen.

She addressed him. He looked a bit startled, as if drawn away from a private interview. And then, a kind of recognition settled over his strong features.

His face was a study in seriousness. He tried his best to not reveal anything that passed through his mind. In fact, he almost succeeded in being inscrutable. But, for that look of great attention. She saw that she had captured his interest.

For some time, she shrank from his scrutiny, his overpowering regard. His deep gaze burned her. She felt shy and nervous. Her face felt hot… singed by the intensity in his eyes.

She retreated from his touch like a startled deer. He was tall and broad. He stood so close that it was difficult to breathe or think. Let alone, talk intelligently.

Slowly however, her confidence grew. It was not hard to feel splendid while being made the object of such open and assiduous glances. Such a thoroughly pleasing consideration. As if she was a thing of wonder and resplendent beauty. She laughed.

She noticed the disquiet beneath his calmness… something almost feverish in his ardor. And, instead of being alarmed, she felt a surge of power.

She felt a femininity stir deep within her. Felt alive and beautiful and deliciously womanly. She was Sleeping Beauty, waking up from her prolonged slumber.

Earlier, she had existed in romance literature and fantasy. In hopes and distant dreams. In poetry and drama. Now, in his warm and undeniably solid presence… she was unshackled and unleashed. She felt love awaken like a great, big, sleeping giant, deep within her core.

“So this is how it is”, she said to herself and smiled.

She heard him speak words of self-revelation, admiration, and expectation. She understood his need to do so. She was not required to do anything but listen and absorb the immediacy and significance of those moments. So, she mostly kept herself, wrapped in a comfortable sort of silence.

When he gently drew her head and let it rest on his shoulders, a feeling of rightness just swept over her. He was the virtuoso and she was his violin. And their togetherness was fraught with silent harmony.

Silence is a language too. He spoke softly to her, but his deeply fascinated eyes spoke so much more. His glances caressed her gently, searched her innermost thoughts, and lanced her soul.

His eyes held a thousand questions. His solidity, on the other hand, his firm touch responded to her questions… those that she had not even framed in her mind, with any degree of coherence.

“Who was he?” She wondered again.

How could she actually find herself in the dark eyes of a near-stranger? How could her entire life suddenly seem poised on the brink of an immense, dramatic change? Did such things really happen?

There was a sense of wonderment, of course. But, there was also serenity and an undercurrent of excitement. After all, life was greeting her. Whispering promises so miraculous, so utterly enchanting…

No matter what the future held… she knew, she would keep the memory of those delicate yet powerful moments, engraved fondly in the imperishable depths of her heart.

Copyright © 2015 [Violet Dolui]. All Rights Reserved.

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Deeper into Melancholy. Bearing the fragments of my heart. Embalming myself with my own hands. Burying my soul, one inconsequential inch at a time.

I would be like those red autumn leaves… falling silently to the ground. Almost glad to die. I would know how to cease to be.

I would be a ghost that sees everything without participating. Without contributing. I would feel emotions through a veil. Nothing would touch me, except like a light farewell kiss.

So disenchanted that reality would seem like an illusion. I would walk like a phantom through the mist. A body without substance. Without thoughts. Without heartache.

I would gaze and gaze… without being perceived or pitilessly dismissed. I would cry, clamour, sigh, or laugh… like a storm petrel lost in the clouds swirling over the sea.

Cocooned in my own invisibility. Impregnable. Invulnerable.

The blemish on my face, the squalor of my person, or the poverty within my soul… would not be of any import. Because, I would exist high above these fallible human concerns.

Sorrow would be a kind of happiness. Soft and soothing. A self-indulgence. Not angry raging, tears that drip like corrosive acid into the soul. It would be a pool of sadness that is deep, dark, and calm.

And, happiness would be a kind of gentle sorrow. Not filled with desperate hopes and tainted dreams. It would be surrender and acceptance.

I would not possess. I would not know the crippling fear of loss.

I would not be possessed. I would not be abandoned.

How would it be to escape this vale of human dreams and grief? This cup of agony? This utter and complete loneliness? This devastation of the soul?

I would not wish what is good in me to become the instrument of my undoing. I would not want love to turn into despair. Longing into spite. High regard into malice.

So, I would refuse the sweat and blood and crushing repercussions of life.

My melancholy is not defiant or redemptive. It is merely a departure to keep the bright images intact. It is an attempt to protect that which should not be mutilated.

I would sink below the distant horizon… beautiful like the dying sun. Beyond the reproach of human emotions.

I would be an angel again.

Copyright © 2015 [Violet Dolui]. All Rights Reserved.

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cot1

Young love as depicted by Pierre Auguste Cot

He saw her walking towards him. And the world turned into a wash of smoky light. People and objects became dark smudges on a trembling white canvas. All colors and content, all shades and significance converged inside her.

He looked at her, dazed and dazzled. As if she was covered in light. There was an engagingness about her, a pleasantness, a grace. She was an angel in repose. A flower in a desert. As sweet as a lullaby. As lovely as dawn.

He parted his lips to speak. But, his breath was caught in his parched throat. He was like one submerged in a molten dream.

She looked at him and her true gaze traveled into his soul. The shine in her kohl-lined eyes, the shy smile tugging at the corners of her soft mouth, her slightly inclined head… kindled hope inside him. His hooded eyes glimmered softly like ash-covered embers.

He wanted to sing. Songs of love and ecstasy. He wanted to be a poet for her. To compose Keatsian odes on her beauty and winsomeness. Instead, he spoke only in muted tones… and her simple replies infused him with warmth and laughter.

They walked, not going anywhere in particular. The busy thoroughfare was like a grassy vale. The tall buildings were snowy mountains. The overhanging cables seemed like wispy clouds floating about. The chaos was only like intimate silence. So lost was he.

He was engrossed by her presence. Every tiny movement seemed to say something. Her lowered eye lashes meant wordless acquiescence. Maybe. Or, it meant a delightful confusion. Her smiles hinted at abiding promises. Maybe.

Her words held him in a thrall. A slave to her comeliness, her intelligence, her charm. He felt her strength, her spirit… sincere and free. Her need to be herself. He also felt her vulnerability. He wanted to be her shield. Screen her from profanatory eyes, discourteous speeches, from all ugliness and turbulence. And, sadness.

He crossed book stalls and museums, food stores and cafes, with her by his side. He walked under the beating sun without feeling any discomfort. He saw everything anew and felt everything with more vividness and depth. Those moments acquired a preciousness in his eyes and he wished to hold them in an unyielding grip. He wished to never let them be swallowed up in the mirage of time. To keep her by his side, forever.

Where could he bury his happiness? So that, no one would steal it. And, it would remain as big and fresh and magical as it was, on that day.

He led her to a seat, under the spreading branches of a tree. Their bodies brushed against one another. Burning awareness coursed through his veins. Yet, he had never felt so peaceful, so at ease with another person before. She was like an extension of his body. He could tell her everything and she would understand. Together, they watched the world go by.

Gently, he reached out and she rested her head on his shoulders. It felt natural, inevitable. Their hearts whispered to each other. They built a bridge between them, with words and silences… while understanding and compassion flowed into them like a broad and placid river.

He did not kiss her. No. Commitments, novel undertakings, excitements, realities could wait for another day. Dreaming of sunny skies, beautiful sunsets, and starry climes… experiencing the endless drizzles, the gentle zephyrs, the delicate mists could wait. That day was reserved for observation alone. For seeing fully. And, for allowing oneself to be seen.

Copyright © 2013 [Violet Dolui]. All Rights Reserved.

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Mist

‘I would imagine that the deep and dark/ May fall apart and that a soul in prison/ will flame upon the mountain-side/ above all life or tragedy or heart,/ O, that the deep and dark will fall apart/ so that the spirit knoweth whence it came/ and where to it soon goeth, fire to flames…’

I imagine myself- standing on the edge of an abyss- an unfathomable depth- as fiercely savage as the subterranean hollows, depicted on canvas, by the likes of Salvator Rosa or Piranesi.

I behold the terrible chasm- remembering life and thinking almost unconsciously of death- and my mind is filled with a dark terror- agonised by the fear of the unknown.

In the first numbing moment- sheer trepidation reduces me into a shapeless mass of unrecognisable matter- my soul like an abject worm grovels in the dirt. Weakly, I close my eyes- no longer able to resist the wave of chaotic unreason that overwhelms my rational mind, as I stand subdued- in the dreadful presence of the incomprehensible.

Time stands still but despite my secret wish- I cannot pretend to be unresponding and unseeing forever. Gradually, therefore- quaking with barely-suppressed horror and revulsion, I reopen my eyes…. And to my infinite eyes, instead of the precarious slope- I gladly see the morning-mist… rising from the unseen depths and unselfconsciously reaching out for the heavens above.

The mist slowly enshrouds me- like an enormous cape- from head to foot- and what lies before undergoes a metamorphosis. The reality that like an octopus had spread its tentacles around me- is converted into the substance of vapour.

I enter- willingly, into this warm cocoon of illusion and etherealised sensations.

I scarcely view the events that occur in a world- which, is now only a foggy dream- obscured by faint memories or perhaps by a desire for forgetfulness. The strange sounds- I strain my ears to hear are almost unearthly- because they seem to arrive from an unimaginable distance.

Ugliness fades away- warts and wounds disappear- the world appears beautiful and unreal. There is, of course, pain and suffering but there is also a realization of the insubstantial nature of things.

Unembodied time ceases to matter. Nothing is distressing enough to threaten my ephemeral dreams- no hope of immortality- no lasting desire for glory or fame.

There remain just momentary illusions- nursed for momentary pleasure. Perhaps- this is why- poets, sometimes chase those ‘wind-enchanted shapes of wandering mist’- and yearn to escape to their distant lands of enchantment on the ‘viewless wings of poesy’- Rapturous at the thought of begetting feathers, in the manner of these men of unbridled imagination- I, too, allow fancy to play upon the surface of my vision.

Consequently, as the clouds of paradise descend upon the lowly ground, trees become giants, shacks become fortresses, and, men become gods.

The world is invested with such incorporeal and awful beauty that I seem to breath and exist in a trance- and my apprehension grows dim with wonder- I dizzily fall on my bended knees to worship life- that has become as exquisite as poetry.

Nothing is commonplace for I recognise the spirit encapsulated within the shadowy form and as I look at the darkening sky- I suddenly realize that I do not feel indifferent- any longer.

I wonder why? Maybe, I have learnt at last- to seek- the essence beneath the romance; the eternal truth beneath mundane reality.

The mist has endowed sight to my soul.

The caverns become visible once again, below the sky flecked with stars- I look down into the mouth of the bottomless chasm and this time- feel no fear.

Slowly, silently- I raise my arms- spread them like wings, and allow my relaxed body to fall over the edge- into the gaping void- I fall and fall and this sensation of dropping- almost floating on air continues…

Memories rush back but I recollect not the single incidents or the isolated moments but the integrated-coherent whole and the insignificant planet grows and grows in understanding to ultimately equal the illimitable universe.

Time flows past, like the liquid sky and the innumerable moments attain a sort of timelessness.

Everything is draped in epiphanic rejoicing for the stars- burning like flames of fire- in the open heart of the abyss tell me that I am a part of legend- a part of eternity.

The deep and dark has finally fallen apart and the end has become the beginning.

[Another article that I had written for my college magazine.]

Copyright © 2002 [Violet Dolui]. All Rights Reserved.

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‘ Remain thou, thou art so beautiful.’

… Faust addresses the passing moment, in order to capture the eternal essence of a fragment of time. I use these same words to prevent the disappearance of a vision.

I see you… now… as I write… but my pen does not possess the power to convey the strength of your presence. You stand as a creäture of light… dressed in the many-coloured robes of my fond imagination… but you are real, for I see your radiant face… surrounded by your hair, that shimmers softly like the night sky, dotted with strings of pearly stars.

I see your eyes… sparkling like gems… lustrous and gentle, all at once. Your eyes perform the tasks of the ears, the tongue, and even the heart… Unaverted eyes, that listen quietly… Eloquent eyes that speak to me by transforming themselves into a galaxy of words- Eyes, that live and vivify.

You have the elusive grace of a gazelle and even when you are still, you reflect the serene aura of the autumnal twilight. When you are silent, you are like a cool night in the island of Nepenthe… you make me conscious of restful dreams, of pure experience… of peaceful sensations. Thoughts do not trouble me… but I begin to understand.

Who are you? A mortal? A muse? I do not know, but in your proud form lies the essence of eternity. You are the indestructible human spirit- you are the Ideal.

You are the personification of my highest aspirations… the realization of my fondest dreams. Your genuineness- reaffirms my faith in the best in human nature- in love, exaltation, and ecstasy.

Are you a Laura? a Beatrice?… or are you ‘Intellectual Beauty’? Will you inspire me and guide me?

You are still before me, with a mysterious smile on your lips. Your far-seeing eyes and godlike composure unnerve me and yet you fill me with hope. Why do you smile so?… as if you are thinking of something that we can never know… or imagine.

Make me a part of your dream— a reason for you to smile…

I don’t know… how long you will stay… maybe, you will vanish like the will o’ the wisp… but I am certain of one thing… you will have changed my world for ever. I cannot deny my destiny… I cannot escape my future.

You are a glimpse of what I can be… what I should be.

[Another article that I had written for my college magazine.]

Copyright © 2002 [Violet Dolui]. All Rights Reserved.

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The Sound— as if a storm was brewing somewhere outside and was being forced by the demented spirits of the night to beat madly against the tremulous door. Continuous as the unceasing motion of my heart. The meaningless constancy of the act was disturbing and unbearable.

The Darkness— intense and absolute. The Stygian blackness rendered me blind and helpless— yet my senses were so tuned up, that I could perceive impalpable figures all around. The shadows were animated with the infernal light of a strange life. They were visible because they were even blacker than the gloomy night. The darkness was alive.

The cessation of the Sound— without warning it stopped, just as it had begun. Images commenced filtering through the darkness. Innumerable faces— some, devoid of expression— vacant countenances with glazed eyes— as if staring at some distant spectacle of no consequence through my transparent body. The other unknown faces appeared agonized—-  in grave pain— perhaps condemned to bear the terrible afflictions of hell, in a timeless realm of constant suffering and aimless wandering.

I was unable to recognize any of them, although I could see that they were trying desperately to communicate with me. Did they know me?

Those countless, gruesome faces— dissolving, melting, and moulding themselves into a single image, just like a phantom with a thousand faces or manifold identities. Or, probably distinct entities brought together by a common bond— a union of sin and sorrow.

Their lips were moving— enunciating words that could not be heard— chanting phrases of Celtic sentiments perhaps, for they were solemn— as if performing an ancient and forgotten religious rite — to initiate me— I was cold with horror.

The Silence— was pronounced and malignantly still. It was enhanced by the failure – on the part of the nocturnal figures to convey sense through their arduous but arcane gestures. It was likely that they wished to give voice to their thoughts and managed only to send forth a silent cry of frustration or distress. I know not what. They kept moving their limbs in a fluid manner as if trying to ward off some evil influence— beckoning me to join their throes.

My mind was deeply disturbed by this singular visitation. The exhausting experience of viewing the ghastly troops and their baleful presence, was most tormenting. The extreme blackness was now being invaded by a crimson glow— stealing in from an unknown source.

The Apparition— out of the anarchic maelström, arose a figure— more disturbing than the rest— more recognizable. I can recall the man— nondescript— except for the eyes, which were large and round like those of a clown. Only his— were not happy— they appeared distended— as if in recognition of something or someone. He regarded me not with malevolence but almost apologetically, with a look of ineffable sadness.

Even though an ominous shudder of fear ran through me, I remained near him. Something primeval within me responded to his mystical influence. I was a subservient slave— drawn to him— not physically but by mental correspondence. He required no speech— I understood him perfectly— I was a part of them— those doomed figures in the dark.

The faces disappeared— leaving only the silent night behind. Without a murmur of surprise, I realized that even I had lost my shape, my earthly form— my individual consciousness for I too was now an integral part of the night.

The Sound resumes— unexpectedly— the same monotonous, diabolic sound— ravening forces of the darksome world— beating against the doors of homes— to gain entry and disrupt the complacency of ignorant minds— to destroy the façade of peace and security— to drag others into the cesspool of suffering and shame.

Nothing but blackness visible— I could not see even the shadows for I was one of them— the foremost among them— striking with my unseen hands and face and head and form on the fragile barrier that separated me and my kind from— one— other hapless victim— a subject to his own perverse desires and sins and thus condemned to atone endlessly.

 

[I had written this article a long time ago, for my college magazine.]

 

 

Copyright © 2001 [Violet Dolui]. All Rights Reserved.

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She woke up one morning with the memory of his angel eyes deeply embedded in her mind. Her blood raced and heart pounded with the thought of his warm embrace, his wistful smile.
Was it only a dream? Then why did he seem so familiar? Why did his face fill her with such longing and ache?

He was not young. Strands of gray peppered his hair and there were a few lines on his thin face. But something about his dream-filled, distant-looking, all-seeing eyes, spoke to her heart and made her want to be with him. Made her want to erase that look of veiled desolation from his beautiful eyes.

He was gentle. As if he held within his core, something very precious and fragile. And secret. He moved slowly like in a dream, afraid to shatter the moment. He was invariably courteous, like a man from a different, more gallant age. And he was attentive, his faraway eyes never wavering once from her face.

They talked. The intimacy of the words, the thoughtfulness of his manners, lit a candle in the depths of her soul. She saw that despite his earnestness, a gently humorous glint always danced in his eyes and a tender smile played upon his lips.

She gazed into his eyes, those endless pools of liquid brightness. She buried her face in his shoulder and he murmured soft words against her hair. She closed her eyes but she could sense his mouth curving into a smile. It was perfect. Her heart soared with great joy. And yet, why did she experience a strange tug in her heart? A faint premonition of loss?

He caressed her with his gaze. A sweet lingering look that suggested friendship and togetherness. A subtle understanding that made the silences shimmer with beauty.

She turned and leaned her head back against his chest. Kisses like white flowers rained down on her neck and shoulders. He bent his tall frame to graze her throat and cheeks and hair with his lips. She tilted her face towards him and he tasted her mouth, almost hesitantly. Then something flared between them. A deep strong desire that took her by surprise.

Until now, they had sought comfort and affection from each other. But suddenly, it seemed that her soul was burning with desperate need. He trembled a little and his kisses grew heated. And she returned his ardor with feverish urgency.

They looked at each other. His eyes shone with an inner fire. But she saw that he still retained an aura of hopeless yearning. Perhaps he saw things that were at too great a distance. Things that would always remain beyond their reach. His soft, sad gaze lingered on her, trying to commit her face to his memory.

They kissed again, his mouth seeking hers now with poignant intensity. Her heart was breaking with love and sadness. And the painful awareness of a deep and abiding loss.

Then as the night deepened, he faded away. The brightness of his eyes finally dimming into nothingness, his fond whispers receding into a void. And there was left only the memories, beautiful and melancholy. And the knowledge of those incomparably beautiful and hauntingly sad eyes, lodged firmly in her heart.

 

 

Copyright © 2011 [Violet Dolui]. All Rights Reserved.

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