The Letter

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Painting by Salvador Dali

 

I had spread myself over the sheets of blank papers. I emptied ink wells onto myself. I heard the old Banana seller selling his rotten bananas to the old stones of the ruined religious place. I could hear the screams of angels. I knew this place so well that I could picture everything. Demons had tried to rescue angels as there was no humanity left; no trace of human souls. I watched the demons run with the angels, battling their way to the outer-world. I watched the death of humanity perish in the hands of humans. I watched gods flee this place to save themselves.

I was a writer. I wrote, but my readers were blind. I was left with no pens, but with blank sheets like curtains and many ink wells. I felt compelled to record everything and pass my writings on to the next generation readers, who I hoped would not be blind, but before everything, I had to write a specific letter to a specific reader who I had never met. I did not know whether this person was also blind or whether they would be able to read me, but the tales of history and the atrocities had to be retold. With my paper curtains, but without my pens, I had decided to wrap myself up and deliver myself as the letter.

The odour of blood was nauseating, but I could never figure out where it was coming from. The banana seller irritated me by his eccentric ways. There was time – a lot of time. The letter could wait. I peeped from the window. The banana seller played with stones in the same way any normal man would with toddlers. A few stones were on his lap. He cuddled them, kissed them, and tried to feed them to his rotten black bananas. He wanted to trade; to reciprocate. His white shirt was torn. His eyes spoke of unseen tales while his frail hands trembled and seemed to melt like wax on fire.

It was very hot. The heat waves travelled fiercely. It seemed the sun would never cool down. The nights were absent. I felt nauseated at the sight of that old man and his bananas. I licked the dust from the window. I was still wrapped up in my paper sheets, stained all over with black ink.

Some tiny creatures began to nibble at the threads of my thoughts. I was delirious with certain questions that lingered around in my mind like sticky strings. Where do religions take a man? How protective can the gods really be? How ruthless were humans, really? I thought that maybe if religions didn’t exist, the world could be a peaceful place to live in. If politicians were not such vampires, we all could get our food. If corporations and commercialization were not the leaders in this world, the true artists’ could get their canvases in colour. If literary agents preferred the works of true art, the robots could use their thought-machines to explore new horizons of imagination. If only…

I made my living by giving my words to those blind people. I had to write a lot.  They, in turn, had given me meals of ignorance, mockery, poverty, competition, and comparison. I had survived by feeding on whatever garbage my patrons had felt was within their decaying hearts to give me in return for my writing.

I watched the banana seller and his stones for a very long time. Not far from them I saw a cream coloured light. The stereotypical microorganisms began to multiply. They were everywhere in the heat of that never ending sun’s glow. The parasites were feeding on everything that came in their way. They tried to break into my window, but my maggots of insanity repelled them. They never came near me.

A cheap copy of Salvador Dali’s La Persistència de la Memòria began to melt. I knew it was time. Those stereotypical parasites had consumed a couple of centuries already. I had to deliver the letter after its completion. I jumped back from the window where I had been peeping and landed on the floor, still wrapped up in my paper sheets. I crossed my arms, held them against my chest, and closed my eyes.

I heard people shouting political campaigns outside my window along with other religious chants. I could never differentiate between the two. All political parties seemed the same to me, though never equal, and so did all religious groups too. I began to shrink as I sunk into the blank paper sheets that covered me. The situation became ethereal. I sank deeper into the abyss of my letter than I had thought would be possible. On my journey, I felt the presence of something behind me staring through the back of my head and into my face. I turned to see what was happening. The presence was that of a man who introduced himself to me as an unsuccessful artist whose works were stolen. He died out of hunger. After his death, society had auctioned off his work for millions. I wondered what he was doing beside me as I was sinking in my letter.

We discussed at length. We even fought. We pulled each other’s hair, scratched each other’s faces, punched one another in the eye and nose, bled, and embraced each other as we wept together. During our weeping session we heard a thunderous clapping. We turned and saw many people weeping and cheering as they watched the two of us in our embrace. I was dazed by the gamut of people in my letter. They all were killed; each one of them became the victims of injustice and a cruel society.

The letter began to stretch itself. It had expanded. We were floating in a limbo of eternal uncertainty. The black ink got mixed with our blood. I had two colours. The sheets led us through the silent streets where we met corpses feeding on shrouds. I had no idea where we were heading. I had lost my mental balance. I was introduced to insanity. The letter broke the silence with its laughter. The people inside of my letter formed a chain as they formed words. I was left alone, covered in blood and black ink. I wondered how my face looked. I must have looked hilarious. I passed through rivers and trees until we reached a drowning cemetery. I was still wrapped up inside my letter. There was a rusty mailbox that stood near the cemetery gate. I tried to fit myself in. It wasn’t happening. Somebody came and saw my struggle. They picked me up and ripped me open. I felt a sudden chill race through my spine and break my cranium into two. I was frozen. In my last moments I saw a shadow appear and it began to read me. It nodded slowly as it read. It was blind. It finished and tore me apart. This blind shadow then carried me and tossed my pieces into an open grave whose tomb had been engraved with my name.

 

…End…

7 COMMENTS

  1. Oh my goodness! The author definitely is the genius of this century. I’ve never read any work like this by a living author ever. An intelligent approach.

  2. What words could be chosen. …Chosen by a literary genius. …
    A man with his own unique style..A rare talent that for me resonates..Originality at its best…Outstanding. ..

  3. STREAM OF CONSCIOUSNESS “next”. Ahmad styles his own requiem and bids his audience to put one foot in the grave and another to wake up the corpse .

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