Friday, July 15, 2005

The joy of being a Libran!! Starting to wonder whether the Linda Goodmans' I dismissed as garbage in my me-the-brilliant-intellectual schooldays did in truth contain pearls of wisdom....
Dispersed sanguine advice on 'college relationships' to a fellow Libran and JU-ite today. Those two things are all he and I have in common, as a matter of fact, the stars we were born under and our university. The poor boy hankers for a classmate who pays him no attention and is inescapably cloistered among her female friends. The two have nothing to talk about, he gets irritated by her every action and mannerism and yet he craves her as his friend. So I sat him down and asked him how he would feel when her only response to his emotional or intellectual outpourings would be along the lines of, "sedin o ki bollo janoto...."(you know what he/she/it said that day...) And he looked gracefully embarrassed as he acknowledged that within two weeks he would probably tire of her attention. (He said two weeks, I'd give it half an hour, three hours if she's really pretty!) But the inescapable fact remains that no matter how logically he may consider the whole matter of his "crush" and reason it out, he still wants her exclusive eternal attention.....at least until he gets bored of it!
And that remains the truth about us Libranz.....incorrigible spelling, but incontrovertibly popular among star-struck [literally] teenagers......no matter how popular we are, and we usually are charming, popular spot-light holders......counting me as an outstanding exception [umm.....this being my modest streak on display]........we still continue to expect/exhort attention from those who don't pay us any. Nothing and I repeat absolutely nothing gets me more interested than men who seem disinterested!! So the sublime irony of it all is that no sooner do I get close to that oh-so-inaccessible man he becomes boring! Is it just the two of us or are there other librans out there who actually feel the way I do?
This is where I'm strongly reminded of Scarlett o'Hara.

For those who raise their eyebrows in ignorance please please find the time and read Gone With The Wind. I have heard it described too often as sentimental/romantic. If any of those adjectives appeal to you, read it because it's like that. Or if you want the truth, read it because it's a heart-breakingly brilliant portrayal of war.
For one thing it gives a Southern perspective to the American Civil War, and for those who've read, say Little Women or Uncle Tom's Cabin; the former glorifying the Yankees and the latter black-balling the Southern slave drivers, Gone With The Wind is an eye-opener. Don't get me wrong, I'm not speaking out for the slave trade or taking sides on the issue of the civil war. No doubt the slave trade was a great evil against all humanity, but then again what is war? I'm reminded of a poem by Wilfred Owen and I will digress further and print the whole poem because I find it so stunning (though to get the full impact, you should read it aloud)

Strange Meeting
It seemed that out of the battle I escaped
Down some profound dull tunnel, long since scooped
Through granites which Titanic wars had groined.
Yet also there encumbered sleepers groaned,
Too fast in thought or death to be bestirred.
Then, as I probed them, one sprang up, and stared
With piteous recognition in fixed eyes,
Lifting distressful hands as if to bless.
And by his smile, I knew that sullen hall;
With a thousand fears that vision's face was grained;
Yet no blood reached there from the upper ground,
And no guns thumped, or down the flues made moan.
"Strange, friend," I said, "Here is no cause to mourn."
"None," said the other, "Save the undone years,
The hopelessness. Whatever hope is yours,
Was my life also; I went hunting wild
After the wildest beauty in the world,
Which lies not calm in eyes, or braided hair,
But mocks the steady running of the hour,
And if it grieves, grieves richlier than here.
For by my glee might many men have laughed,
And of my weeping something has been left,
Which must die now. I mean the truth untold,
The pity of war, the pity war distilled.
Now men will go content with what we spoiled.
Or, discontent, boil bloody, and be spilled.
They will be swift with swiftness of the tigress,
None will break ranks, though nations trek from progress.
Courage was mine, and I had mystery;
Wisdom was mine, and I had mastery;
To miss the march of this retreating world
Into vain citadels that are not walled.
Then, when much blood had clogged their chariot-wheels
I would go up and wash them from sweet wells,
Even with truths that lie too deep for taint.
I would have poured my spirit without stint
But not through wounds; not on the cess of war.
Foreheads of men have bled where no wounds were.
I am the enemy you killed, my friend.
I knew you in this dark; for so you frowned
Yesterday through me as you jabbed and killed.
I parried; but my hands were loath and cold.
Let us sleep now . . ."

Gone With the Wind portrays the pity of war. Anyone who tries to exalt the book or for that matter degrade it by labelling it the greatest love story in the world will be very vehemently opposed by me. I know the entire novel superficially revolves around the story of Scarlett O'Hara and the resolution seems to devolve on her as well. But for Christ's sake!!
There are two universally famous lines in the novel. One is Rhett Butler declaring,"Frankly, my dear, I don't give a damn" and the other is Scarlett's last gasping thought , "After all, tomorrow is another day". Think about it; these lines apparently fit seamlessly into the love story but just for a moment think of them in the context of the war.........think of them as the two faces of survival, one past caring and the other in the throes of devastation still holding on to a flickering hope of the tomorrow that will perhaps never come....
Umm....this wasn't meant to be a book review. Hmm....this is where I scroll back and see why I started talking about this book in the first place.........Right.
Simple, to the point analogy. Scarlett persistently hankered after Ashley, despite countless people telling her they weren't in any way compatible. And since he didn't give her any patta she continued thinking she loved him. But the minute he showed an ounce of interest in her, kaboom.....all that 'love' just flew out of the window! That at the end of the day is the clearest literary analogy I can find for my life, And oh, my stars! Maybe I'll get married thrice and have three children and lose my favorite child and hanker after one unsuitable man and then discover he's not the right one and realize I was married to the right one(the third hubby) but I never noticed it until it was too late!!!!! Pratchett says five exclamation marks is the clearest sign of a delusional/hallucinatory/insane mind.......Therefore I conclude!!!!! and !!!!! Enough, I shall go to sleep.....too early....I'll go away and play inane yahoo games.....whatever.....I shall just stop writing...beshi bhaat boke felechhi!!!!!

1 Comments:

Blogger mojo said...

i love you for seeing gwtw for what it really is...much much more than just a mushy lovestory..

10:14 AM  

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