I am taking part in The Write Tribe Festival of Words 8th – 14th December 2013.
Day 3 of the Write Tribe Festival of Words prompt--BOOKS
Start of the Journey
Books have been my constant companions from the time I was just a seven years old little imp. I remember it very clearly when the fragrance of those woody pages took me in their shade and weaved magic on my senses.I was in class 1 when I received a set of books for standing 2nd in class. My joy knew no bound as I held those two books in my small hands.From then onward these friends of mine never left my side.The passion to learn,unlearn and learn again has its own benefits. I have felt it many times whenever I browsed through those sepia pages of some of my oldest assets.
The credit for this passion goes to my baba, who instilled this hobby in me. He was not a very educated person.He dropped out of school when he was in class 9 due to some unavoidable circumstances.But the amount of knowledge he had always left me spellbound.He read everything from Mahadevi Varma to Autobiography of Balraj Sahani, from Glimpses of world history to Discovery of India and all these were in Hindi .I was always inquisitive to know, what was in the pages of those books which made him read them so voraciously that too in the wee hours of the morning or late in the night. Those days we didn't have electricity in most of the houses in Goa and we lived in a small quaint village called Cortalim.So, whatever task was undertaken after dusk, was in the shadows of the lamps which we prepared at home with an old torn cotton saree wicks and an old empty syrup bottle.
The wordy Giants
I was only eleven when I started my journey through real literature.Imagine me reading Jane Austen, Agatha Christie,Dickens,R.L. Stevenson,Enid Blyton, The Famous Five, Nancy Drew and god knows how many more while eating lunch, dinner or late night when everybody were snoring and I lit the lamp under the dining table to read a book :P
I remember one funny incident. This was in the early 80s during the chill month of February.I started reading Austen's "Emma" which i started once all went to sleep around 10pm.The same old method of lighting the lamp when everybody went to sleep :P. It was TIATR( Konkani Drama) season. The Tiatr used to start around 9pm and end in the wee hours of the morning, maybe around 5am. I was so engrossed in reading the novel that i forgot that it was morning as I could hear the sound of the people going back home from the Tiatr.You can imagine my situation when I landed in school at 8 am with red eyes :P
There are many moments where books have built bridges for me in the guise of making some good friends in school among teachers and fellow classmates. My favourite person was my English teacher Ezilda with whom i shared a wonderful bond. She always encouraged me and advised not to give up this passion of finding oneself in the pages of a book.
I am going to share a verse here, which I wrote years back ago as a dedication to the wizards whose words left its footprint on my soul.
Wizards of Yore
Being a voracious reader,
Found a friend, mentor, guide and philosopher
Through long hours of loneliness;
In the mystical world of literature.
The world of books is an ocean;
Churning, mesmerizing, stormy;
Difficult to swim across the horizons
Without whirling turmoil and emotions.
We live in a sheath of nothingness
When there is much to gain
Bounded in the pulpy cushion
Imaginative world within the pages.
A world of literary revolutions
Brought enlightenment to many nations.
Where man of letters,
Changed the course of history and passions.
A novice among an array of erudite,
Mere mortal browsed through their greatest works;
Enchanted in the alluring words
My heart soared
With amazement and awe.
I bow down to the literary giants
For their creativity and abilities
To conjure up images of rare;
Obscurities and absurdities.
Marlowe, Bacon, Donne, Shakespeare;
All the great giants of yore
Full of life and inevitable galore,
Paved a path for a spirited sustenance;
Through pain and pleasure.
Their simplicity and dexterity,
Converged with my mental ability;
Caught me in the maze of wisdom
Drowning myself in the abyss of their,
Gigantic, transcendental,ebullient kingdom.
Gratitude muses for been there for me,
Through the pangs of need.
A beacon of ray, my solace,
In the hours of timeless solitude.
Gosh! what a lengthy write :P forgive me people this journey down memory lane is leaving me breatheless ;)
P.S...Now-a-days I am more into Indian writers. Its Amis Tripathi or Ashwin Sanghi and lately Tarun Tejpal's " Alchemy of Desire" has exorcised me ;)