An initiation

Few long years ago, when I’ve started taking baby steps into the world of literature, an initiation happened. And the details are….

Bharathi was introduced to me even before I started crawling.. For my favorite lullaby was the song written by him.. In the early class, for school competition, I frequently dressed up as Bharathi and secured prizes every time. So that’s the prologue for this following incident.

My dad was leisurely lying next to me and we both were chattering away. Across us, on a line, two cloth hangers were hanging empty and swaying. They were sort of perpendicular to each other. A hit on the left edge, made them sway on the right edge. Hence, they were on some kind of perpetual motion.

My dad pointed it out and said, see they were chattering and playing with each other. It was fun to me, to see how that non-living thing came to life.

And that’s when my dad picked up a small bound pink book and read out something in the perfect voice to amaze a kid with those little sound effects.

It was about, how two strings hanging from rooftop are given name, life, romance and how they alternate between life and death, by the power of wind.

And without even recognising, I fell in love. With the wondrous words of Bharathi for its simplicity and the imaginable story believable by the kid. And also it felt so important, even though I couldn’t fathom the profound meaning of it, by then.

To this day, whenever I see something fluttering in the wind, I remember that day, when I kept looking at him, as he kept reading out the story, in awe, for the story, for Bharathi, for the time well-spent, for changing something mundane forever.

Just like, as the drop of stone, has no inclination of how far the ripples caused by it can reach, that day had nothing extraordinary to know, it’s going to impact my life huge decades later. For that was the same prose-poetry, I took up for translating and felt a pride for my translated work. 

The story, original + translation available here.

So what do you remember of the first step into a long journey?

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