The girl who dreamt – Rajshwii Bhattacharya, New Delhi

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Part 1
The sky was an elixir where all that man thinks to be magical and enchanting comes to life in various hues and light, whose source is the sun; ever bright and full of life. The sun could have become selfish keeping its abundance with itself having no intention whatsoever to share and uplift the darkness and death that shall reign over the planet if not for its light. A concoction of pink, red, crimson and gold the sky itself was proof that divinity exists and thrives amongst mortals whose ordinary lives crave for something extraordinary till the end of their days. She saw a dragon fly across the magnificence, deriving colours from it as the vast creature flew towards an infinite end.
“I wish to be the sky whose colours shall be my pride and source of all ecstasy man ever knew of”. She gazed transfixed at the sky forgetting her past and future, with only the present alive and in existence; her present was the sky which has no beginning or end like life itself whose existence is determined by one’s karma or in other words by one’s thought and deed. “If only father could come and sing for me. I really want to hear his voice”. She prayed to the sky with her hands joined in reverence. A young man gently caressed her head from behind, and whispered in her ear: “What does your dreams say today?”
“Father, I just saw a dragon fly across the sky”
“Have you?” His smile proliferated across his face.
“It’s colours kept changing same as the sky. Father, I have never seen something so beautiful in my life I really don’t want the stars and the moon to take over”. She turned towards the sky and said pleadingly.
“Engrave the colours of the sky in your mind then, the sky will remain for eternity”.
Caressing her chin with her two little fingers she suddenly burst out in a cheer, “Father, please sing me a song like you did yesterday”.
“Which one you wish to hear?”
“The song of freedom, father” He cleared his throat, and assuming his chest to be the strings of a guitar he started rubbing his fingers of his right hand against the chest.
“Oh, I sing my song of freedom
for freedom is mine.
I’ll give my life so that tomorrow
you shall have your own song my love,
a song and freedom that is yours alone”
She too started singing with her father, their hearts united in a symphony and both played their own music in their minds in order to comfort the lyrics sung by their hearts. The sun was at the last stage of drowning, and the surreal sky was given a brilliant farewell before disappearing along with the sun.

Part 2
“Do you even know how to drive a car?”
“No, but I’ll soon learn”
“If you haven’t yet then why did you tell my mother that you’d be driving us to the picnic”.
“Well, you always wanted me to be spontaneous in my response; so I was being spontaneous”
“You’re dumb, dud and disgraceful”. He bowed his head and stared transfixed at the ground committed to look nowhere else. A cool gust of breeze swept away the beads of sweat from his forehead, revitalizing and calming his restless demeanour. She smiled at him followed by a little laughter that couldn’t remain concealed in front of his frivolous innocence. He looked up at her and reciprocated with a bright smile tinged with a pink shade of blush.
“Indeed, you are dumb and it is not in vain when they say I love a dumb guy”.
“The sky is beautiful today, isn’t it? Its colours remind me of your smile decked with rose-red lips, golden cheeks and blue eyes”.
“This romance is nowhere near to changing my mood; you’re dumb and your poetry won’t prove you to be otherwise”. She shifted her gaze away from him towards the sky, and with a deep sigh let her heart flow: “My father and I used to imagine and sing right here on the roof till the sun drowned and gave in to the stars and moon; our favorite song was the song of freedom that my father had composed. It was during the time of the emergency when freedom was threatened, and our nation was overwhelmed by a form of dictatorship. He stressed on a line which still echoes in my ears- I’ll give my life so that tomorrow you shall have your own song my love, a song and freedom that is yours alone”. Droplets emerged from her eyes and rained down her cheeks, “He died the year I turned eleven”.
In an effort to relate with her sorrow, and console her he started with a whisper then let his words flow like a river which gains pace with time and advance. “I’ll be there for you. When you were a child your father was there for you, and now destiny has made us join hands so till the time of your death I’ll be there for you”. She rest her head on his chest, and closed her eyes in his warmth; the sun was about to set behind them enjoying the last scene of the day before surrendering to the darkness.

Part 3
She trudged up the stairs with despair sketched all over her face; her chest quivered like wild and her mind was in a state of absolute delirium. A little girl followed her with tiny steps one at a time and her life-state was unlike that of her mother.
“Mummy, wait for me”. Her optimism balanced the gloom that emanated from her mother thus, the world was saved from being plunged into despondency. She took her daughter in her arms, and pushed open the door to the roof welcomed by the wanton wind and infinite sky. Her so long held tears broke through the dam of self-control and cascaded down her pale cheeks in a torrent; her vivacious eyes, mind and heart it seems were being drained of all joy this life has offered her till now.
“Why do you cry mother? Is it because father left us?”
She turned towards her daughter and held her firmly than ever, bestowing all her love which she had been denied so that her daughter is never bound to face her predicament.
Don’t cry mother, he will come back”
“No, he won’t darling. I’ll always wish to the stars that he comes back for you at least”. The wind became gentle and felt more like a breeze as if nature too couldn’t take the grief any longer. The sky was dressed in a greenish-crimson dress and one could compare the sky to the sparkle found on the surface of a bubble that drew colours from the sunlight.
“Mother, the sky appears magical today”.
“I have seen this sky coloured in miscellaneous hues right from the time I was a child of your age; I used to dream, sing and romanticize my hours in leisure so that my memories become rich and unforgettable”. She heaved a sigh, and fused her vision with the colours of the sky which were rare in every aspect whether value or nature; even the shine of gold and silver were of no match in front of the colours that had transformed the once dull sky into an unimaginable dream. Holding her mother’s finger tightly she blurted out her heart- “Mother, why did he leave us in the first place?”
“Maybe, because he didn’t earn enough to maintan us”, she sniffed, “But he shouldn’t have left us”. Gazing at the sky in contemplation she consoled her mother with a polite touch on her cheek, “We don’t need father if he is afraid of us though we’re the ones who love him the most. Ma, you should forget him and I’ll try my best to do the same”. She pressed her little head to her bosom and curled her lips inwards unable to decide what to say.
“As long as I have you my world is complete but, your father….”
“Ma, why do you hesitate? The sky will never leave us neither will it lose its beauty though we will with time; enjoy the sky mother, what the world will forever lack is to be found in the colours of this sky!”

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