"A profound unmitigated loneliness is the only truth of life"
- R.K. Narayan




Midsummer Sunday afternoons, when the wife's out, are an abode of peace. After a hectic week, I couldn't appreciate it more that she decided to meet her friends and leave me alone at home. I needed this unwinding - a repose by the balcony on a calm afternoon after a sumptuous meal. I wasn't particularly sleepy so decided to pamper my poetic sense by indulging into the intricacies of the moment.

I began savouring my environment, dwelling upon the natural gifts around me, one at a time. 
 
First, it was the afternoon breeze, as it whiffed by my ears, whistling and tickling. The wind that carried with it distant fragrances like memories starving for attention but refusing to die out. I loved the way it whispered to me, like it was trying to share some divine secret but, also at the same time, withholding it out of shyness. Maybe it wanted me to chase and play hide-n-seek. Oh! was I too lazy to get up; yet I smiled and then, took a deep breath, as if to say "let's play right here."
 
Yes! I love the whispering of the wind, and I thank God for it.
 
Then, it was the rustling of the leaves, both the dry and the live ones. The dried leaves gently screeched as they danced on the pavement - sometimes huddling, sometimes scattering - as if trying to outshine my digital fractals. The live green leaves hung on the branches and watched the dance below. They chuckled as the wind shook them, in gentle soft breaths like a mother's lullaby. And when the wind was gusty, they sighed collectively as if they wanted to join the dry leaves too. I enthralled myself at that orchestra of rustling dry leaves and sighing audience green with envy.
 
Yes! I love the rustling and sighing leaves, and I thank God for it.
 
Then, I watched the fountain in my neighbour's garden. The water fizzing through the fountainhead like excited children running out at the school bell, and as the fountain reached its zenith, it broke up into drops. Each drop, for a moment, gleamed in the sunlight like an athlete's flourish, and then joined back the falling stream babbling and gurgling like a baby waiting to be breastfed. 
 
Yes! I love the babbling fountain, and I thank God for it.
 
Then, I shifted my attention to the sounds of man-made things. The brushing of the curtains against the window sills, bicycle horns of excited kids on the street, thumping beat of a motorcycle passing by. wind-chimes hanging in my porch below, faint prayer call from a mosque faraway, the hesitant creaking of the joints of my own armchair as I shifted position - all these held me in rapture as I found, in each of them, voices that spoke in a tongue which was present somewhere between their individual and collective pining.

Yes! I loved all those random sounds, singing to me in diverse frequencies yet one voice. and I thank God for it.
 
No sooner had I begun to sway to that midsummer afternoon concern that she came. My wife!

She stole up behind me, gently closed my eyes and whispered something naughty in my ears. "There goes my peace" I thought. The noise was back - like thunder in the wind, barrage in the stream, and a bomb explosion in the city.
 
Yes! I hated her formidable voice, and I cursed God for spoiling an afternoon that was just beginning to get beautiful.
 
 
 
 
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