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 Post subject: The Nurse
 Post Posted: Wed Aug 30, 2006 12:17 am 

Joined: Sun Jun 04, 2006 12:28 am
Posts: 3
Location: Aniwatta West, Kandy, Sri Lanka
The Nurse.When Wounds Appear to Heal

Polly nursed my broken heart during the long August evenings. The human welcomes change. Unwittingly or else, with perfect wit, they bow to mutability. So, by the time of the Cold, the nursing was through and proper versing begun. Some broken hearts never mend. Other broken hearts do, with sufficient reason.

I blew out purple rings. Blowing out rings and I mesmerized. Where was I leading and where was my life being led? Do I have an Identity; is my identity of any worth? They identified me as a prodigy. Some used the term out of sarcasm, others did not. A third party lulled the term, knowing not what it actually meant in the first place. The recent General Election had made me rethink. It made me ponder over not my political stance, but of a policy which came out of the oral cavities of certain politicians. Some politicians spoke about National Identity.

“You stand for petty Capitalist-pork” Polly admonishes.
“Shoo, Polly!” I correct her. “All policy-making is Capital-friendly in reality. In that sense you can call me Capitalist-pork….but I’m not petty.”

It was the Winter of my life. Such Winter is no stranger to me. It only meant Spring was close by. Abiding by this Keats-thesis I conversed with Polly. There was one foot and one third of a foot between the two of us. This I dedicated to the Decency which we practiced with precision. My eyes were alight. I undid my specs, so the light would be better seen. Polly’s eyes couldn’t be observed. I didn’t have my specs on. I evaded hesitation. She evaded my eyes. Maybe the light was too much for her. I should have had my specs on. Then, I could’ve observed her eyes and she needn’t have evaded mine.

She listens well, absorbs little. Laughs at my pieces of humour. She doesn’t laugh at my intellectual jokes. She doesn’t apprehend them well. So, I do not crack the serious-jokes with her. Even when I do, it is out of sheer error. To err, they say, is human. To forgive is divine. No wonder we are of the former and not of the latter. National Identity. My spoken Sinhala is terrible to the ear. My spoken differs only a little from the written. It has its own oddity, which is devastation. She hides her smile behind pursed lips as I speak. In an extreme case, she openly laughs. I’m not proud of myself, but am happy when she is happy. I’m forced to use my written-Sinhala. She entertains no English. National Identity, so she says. I don’t believe a word of it. Maybe her English is not as fluent. So, she laughs. So, I’m laughed at. Nowadays, she doesn’t laugh much. She’s used to it, or else, she is through laughing. Someone suggested that love tends to loop odds and errors. This last supposition, I like it very much.

“Have you e’er lost in love?” the time says noon, so the question is rather queer.
“Well ” says I “ cannot say I have, because I’ve never won in it ….”
Intellectual joke; so my mistake. She shakes her head and murmurs “Oh, I see”.
Simple and straight: their values were born in the village. Their virtues were bred in Heaven. My more advanced relatives not allowed in their recreation clubs. They drank with drunk girls and danced to the command of a drunk disk-jockey. They would jeer at Polly. Polly would wait for days and days and days and days. For days and days she would wait for me; for me to come and dial and call her up at a remote destination. Ten minutes. Ten minutes , nomore. Then we met as if we do not meet. No touch. No exhibition. No leisure page. All calculated moves and a foot and one third of a foot in between. There was life outside Popular Culture. There was life outside Colombo.

And they said yo to the Global Theory. The Global theory rid Fathima of her burkha. Fathima was told to be happy; that she was at last free. Only a Tweetledum would measure freedom by a burkha. To rid the burkha is to rid culture. It is to rid Identity and to become a convert. When there is only one global standard it is all the easier to govern matters. The most powerful of nations would dictate this governorship. They would continue stripping Fathimas to set their stumps. Then, we’ll be thrown the ball and we’ll be hammered around the park, till death do us part. Only a Tweetledum would be fooled. We all see our Wonderland in the Global Theory.

“They never even let me attend a function without an osari.” : This is way too much.
-- “Really?....” the pause says it all.
“Well, what can I say, than say I am not that terrible ….” I believed in moderation. I was no extremist – not in all matters.
-- “I don’t dance!” I exclaim.
“You don’t dance?” she stresses. “You don’t?”
-- “No, I don’t.”
“You’re lying.”
-- “No, I’m serious.”
“But, why?”
--“I don’t know …” I say. “Maybe I’m shy.”

She laughs. I, too, give a baffled grin.
“While at school I’ve always danced for the guy-part.” She tells me.
I listen.
“I’ve done the waltz with Thilini akki and even the cha-cha… Ramani has also been a guy, can you imagine?” she wants me to imagine. To imagine I can. Yet, my imagination lacks the sense of direction. She looks ahead from a past. I look ahead from the present. One has to get a message across and one needs a vehicle for delivery. I’ve done no delivery-service, but man bows to change.


Once my heart was better, I made myself believe I was in love with Polly. I made myself believe everything was running new and original. Not that life had skipped a loop; that it had fallen over a precipice and into the flow, gone down and re-surfaced somewhere else. I appreciate computers. Once you’re through a File, you press the delete-key. To your delight, only the sweeter bits and bytes remain. Life is different. Once wounded scars stay back.

“This mark over here —” Polly is baffled by how certain marks have arranged themselves up on my soul. “What’s this mark?”
Tricky situation: Polly and sundry were brought up like flowers and petals. I strongly advise parents not to bring up your children in the Missionary text of life; your girls have no Mission to perform in Society. But, parents are good and Polly was taught to love once, one man and for better or for worse. We believed in being out-of-the-News; Never seemed to admire any of the fast-cases. Never entertain guys across the limit. The teaching of limitations and the proper border-lines happen early. Early the better. Knowing the border helps. For instance, take India and Pakistan.

So, you should not have had any intentions elsewhere. Not that it’s a rule, but you better not have had, anyway. Makes it easy. Makes a difference. We revere Virginities of all kinds – both physical and mental. And I dawn upon Polly halfway through my existence. If Polly was the first, then I was not normal. If Polly was the first, then how am I to account for all my scars? Scars don’t come from stars.

“This mark” says I, “comes from loving too much.”
“Who? Whom did you love too much?” she stays calm. Yet, her eyes beam with excitement. This time I have my specs on. I can see her. I see her well.
“It was some time ago …. I was deeply committed there. Had my prospective future in blue-print, as well. But, she had to walk away.”
Polly looks at me. Polly looks at me. Polly looks at me. I raise my brow.

“You want to know who it was?” I venture out.
“Can I ?”
“Yeah, sure … but maybe it’s better left out.”
“Maybe …”
My life is an open book. I see it as vanity to conceal a past, broken or not. I accept my past with humbleness. It’s my present which I conceal.
“It was Ramani …” I express.
“Ramani? You mean Ramani as in our Ramani?”
I give her a broad grin.
“Why, you sound surprised!”
“I might have known it, little rascal!”
We all fall in line with Change. The sun never sets upon the British Empire, so they quote. The quote has only a sentimental value. Her own fair cousins across the sea have now inherited the joy-stick.

Here I were, only a patched heart to lead me to the morrow. Luck with hiluk is no luck. God never cast his vote for me, so I was forced to believe. Lennon says, God is a concept by which we measure our pain. Polly tells me, have faith in Faith. I never disbelieved Lennon. But now I’m converted. Now I follow Polly. God never cast his vote for me. But now he has given me the vote itself.


Now that I’m cured I await injury. Fate is what you have won and lost by your last day. Hence, Fate is immeasurable as long as you’re alive. Once you’re dead it doesn’t matter anyway. I lived in dreams and my castles were sand-made. They weren’t hand-made. See the difference one consonant can cause. I’ve lived through 1/ 3 of my life and have gained very little of worth. If at all, I’ve gained a will to see life differently and to rejoice my successes. My will is such, I repent defeat.
“There’s a beauty in everything … but, not everyone sees it.” Polly tells me.
“But others do, Polly.” I reassure her.

Sparrows mark the fresh fruit trees. The light comes serener. The meadows are greener. Spirituality passes under the awaking brook. Humming-birds sing and boys, girls and good laughter fill the lane. It’s Spring again.

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