Parvati sat atop a riverstone. Rubbing her skin with turmeric. Scraping off fistfulls of turmeric paste from a leaf of taro. She massaged it into her face, her neck and hands. Her silver toes. Which sat dipped, beneath the stream only glistening from the surface, like silver. Parvati rolled off balls of turmeric from her body and carved them into shapes. She dried them in the mild Himalayan sun. Later, those shapes gained life. The virtue of life, the sole cause of all our anguish, all our ecstacy. Everything is because, we have taken life, after being rolled off from Parvati's limbs as balls of turmeric, and the dirt of her skin pores. 

One day, Parvati had built a Ganesa this way. But very unlike him, we grow not to be Gods. We float down that turmeric burst yellow river by which Parvati bathes, to the plains. We build homes, fall into and fall apart in love, wreath in our own decisions, scream from our own traps. We, Parvati's ungodly children. Wait for her every October. During the north east monsoon. When the kasatandi blooms. On our plains, in our backyards, and beside roads. Parvati metamorphoses into Durga. Descends with her children by her sides, taking Ganesa alongwith.  

And we, balls of dirt and turmeric, jinxed with the virtue of life, wish and pray that she redeem us. Reabsorb us into her skin. Reclaim us.


Enigma said...

I did not know about this particular story before I read your post. We, the ungodly children of Parvati; just clumps of turmeric that have been "jinxed" with the "virtue of life". Very thought-provoking and very vivid.

Blasphemous Aesthete said...

Such beauty in terseness, it is a beautiful, beautiful piece. :-)

But (because there is always room for that, relativistically speaking)

Ganesha had to lose His head once to be reclaimed by Parvati and Shiva, isn't that a heartening thought that the Mother will reclaim us sooner or later?

Wish you a happy Navratri!

Blasphemous Aesthete

Anonymous said...

A very beautiful piece indeed!

Gayathri Baskaran said...

I imagined reading this in my head with a narrator's voice and I am mesmerized i must say !

Ankita said...

beautiful! the thought as well as the language :)