How many times has this happened to you? You see a man dining alone in a restaurant. You read the serious countenance on his face. “He must be a hothead,” you speak under your breath. The newspaper presents the plight of civilians in a war-torn land; a pair of tiny legs come running to seek asylum behind your back. You wave your smile and the kid goodbye, and look up…the table in front of you is gone, and so is the man.
My fellow daydreamer, don’t dig your nails into your soft skin, you’re well within the boundaries of reality. You look skeptical. Ah! Did I hear you say: “Whose reality, yours or mine?” Well, my dear sir, even the good book doesn’t hold an answer. Any who, we can’t let the ink dry in the prologue. Let’s move on, shall we?
Do you recognize the bride and the groom standing on the stage? How would you? You’ve never seen them before. Stay with me, at this point things get really interesting. What if I tell you: you were there, when these two souls conceived their love at the first shy and awkward sight? Hold on, there is more to it. You were also there to comfort the lady and ease her labor pain, while racking your brains to find a better replacement to the old ‘Father fainting in the delivery room’ act. If you’re up for it, I can go on speaking in riddles. Judging by the smile on your face, I don’t think I need to.
So, you’re no stranger to flights of fantasy- episodes that target one in a million people. A condition accompanied by spells of creative catatonia, where you freeze in time to set your third eye in motion. It could be that person in the eatery or the sound of silverware, it could be anything or nothing. When a writer’s mind lusts after a story, he knows time is of essence, and mustn’t be wasted on foreplay. He chases characters running late for work, he waits for the hermit till he exits the comedy club. And when the night descends, he points his flashlight towards the abandoned lane of the city- hoping to communicate with the repressed souls, too scared to speak their minds in the broad daylight.
Let me implore your forgiveness, ye great architects of joy and sorrow. I intend not to burden you with my litany, I desire not to scratch your name off the manuscript. One is guilty of conspiring against the tribunal of closed minds, and after years of holding my tongue in silence, I spoke to you from the witness stand.
It’s time to turn the page to another random chapter. But, before we bite mortal pain with teeth of irony or impregnate a stone monolith with the seed of love, let’s lose our hearing aids and glasses of convention. And while we employ this new vision to funnel truth from lies, we continue to remind ourselves that “There is the strange power we have of changing facts by the force of the imagination.”- Virginia Woolf.