Books Reviews

Story: My idea of beauty

By: Mohammad Anas


“What an awe-inspiring beauty” an old familiar voice exclaimed with joy.

I was sipping my coffee just behind her table in a cafe. After a while, got a rough sketch that she was talking about her friend’s ear rings who was accompanying her on the same table. But, I got stuck to the word ‘beauty’. My mind slipped into an ocean of nostalgia, swirling with images of the past.

A blurred picture popped upon my eyes, when I heard this word ‘beauty’ for the first time in my uncle’s voice. He used to narrate a story where a beast imprisoned a beautiful girl into his castle and this famous bedtime fairy tale was – Beauty and the Beast.

A second memorable encounter with this special word was, when I went to Okhla Bird Sanctuary with family. The first sentence that came out from my mouth with an exclamation mark was “What a beauty”. It was not because of the different colours of birds which I saw for the first time or my love towards birds, It was because of their colourful wings, even in the cages they were trying hard to spread their wings and fly high in the sky. This was the first time, I felt for their freedom and wanted to stretch my hands to match with their wings in order to escape high in smoky clouds.

Since then my hungry soul started exploring the real meaning of beauty blended with my own life experiences.

The most important and touching experience from my school days, where I called a dark-skinned girl ‘Black’ in front of the whole class. The most embarrassing moment of my school time, I realised my mistake that night only. Then, decided to face her on the very next day with a rose and a letter written ‘sorry’ on it.

“Thank you for this beautiful rose” that same familiar voice replied me with a smiling face. Her melodious voice washed my sin and soaked my unsaid words into her glittering eyes.

However, as time passed by tasted more perplexing art forms of beauty. During college days developed a habit of reading books, novels, poetry from almost every corner of literature.
During college days one of the greatest gifts of all was that literature happened to me accidentally while exploring the beauty of writers, poets, novelists. Therefore, started capturing pictures that were portrayed by various poets in order to enhance the beauty of word ‘beauty’.

“Shakespeare is weaving his comparison of beauty to a summer’s day beautifully in his sonnet, Wordsworth is constantly searching for beauty in the eyes of nature in his Lucy poems, P.B Shelley is blowing odes into the poetic atmosphere of beauty, Rumi is throwing sacred light upon his dark and mystic beauty through his words, while Ghalib is drowning in the beauty of love via his Kafirana verses.”

“What a gracious, beautiful flashback!” I whispered while revolving the doors of my wet eyes.

After a bit of silence, started questioning myself. There was no one to listen my loud scream full of guilt, no one to wipe dust over my dusky soul, no one to reply me with uneven, unhappy, unwanted, unfavourable and unsatisfied answers, no one to share brews lips on a high caffeine conversation, I was left alone with my idea of beauty holding the cold cup of coffee in a pensive mood.

Categories: Books Reviews, Fiction

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