2011/09/03

Fugue

It is still dark when the alarm rings . Her heart is thudding - as if she has run a mile or had had a panic attack - an ominous shadow gathering momentum ,bound to hit her sometime later in the day . Her husband is still asleep , huddled under the quilt . Padding to the kitchen she puts the kettle on for a cup of tea . It is 5 am - pitch dark although she can see a light in the house opposite where the intrepid scholar is probably preparing his lessons . As she drinks her tea she runs through the chores for the day in her mind . All on auto really - the lunch boxes , the clothes , the daily wash, the servants , the food , waiting for the children to return, tuitions, groceries , food to be cooked and eaten, Horlicks to be fed , studies to be supervised .
Opening the fridge she takes out a tray of meat patties, around 20 of them , heavy round flattened discs of chicken, bread,onions,tomatoes,pepper and garlic compressed within, and puts 6into the frying pan ;the burger buns on a plate go into the microwave for warming .The milk slowly bubbles and she adds oats, then the  sugar .Takes out sliced Modern bread and the butter from the fridge .
The rich meaty smell of the burgers frying fills the apartment . She hears a sound from the bedrooms and closed the kitchen door gently .Reaching for the biscuit tin she is surprised to find it empty .
Once the patties are fried, the tomatoes and onions sliced , she carries them to the dining table. The smell of the patties is irresistible and she breaks off half and pops it into her mouth where it turns to dust  .

The flat is silent once more . She hates to wake up the children on winter mornings - they look so peaceful sleeping heavily , under their quilts . Her heart fills with tenderness at the thought of their faces - tears pricking in her eyes .
The porridge is on the table cooling .The toaster is plugged into the socket. Time to wake up the children .
It is easy to wake up her daughter who red eyed , clings to her, nuzzling her face in her neck ,wracked by quiet sobs .Another bad dream recurring , she sighs . Gently detaching the child ,she tells her to get to the bathroom.

The door to her son's room is closed , a thin bar of light visible at the bottom. She opens the door , brow wrinkling to find the bed clean, empty, quilt folded neatly at the foot of the bed , the table where he studies neat ,with books stacked at one end.

And then she sits down heavily on the bed, heart thudding   as the universe threatens to swallow her once more .It doesnt help that her daughter and son stand watching helplessly from the door .





13 comments:

hillgrandmom said...

Love the writing EL! Ah that feeling of nameless dread..

Banno said...

Eve's lungs, nice end. Could almost feel the dread in her heart.

The Orange Cat said...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vsQ977u8Wuk

It's strange to be commenting from the other side of gender and age on this post. I'd forgotten just how evocatively you write.

Ms.Nobody said...

Oh my my .. That was fantabulous.. Loved every bit of it. The minute depiction of everyday lil things just kept me hooked on the story .. I wanted to read it more and more .. Amazing !!

Bong Mom said...

Ki shundor likhecho. Last e eshe ektu atke gechilam, title ta dekhe mone holo thik i bhujhechi

DegeSMS said...

Link Of You Tube Oh.

sukanya said...

sorry took me a long time to comment. yet another beautiful piece, M! Loved it.

eve's lungs said...

Hi all - this piece was triggered off by the suicide of a young boy , my younger daughter's age . He ate a burger before jumping off the roof of a city mall in Kolkata . I need hardly say how shattered and disturbed we were .

eve's lungs said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
dipali said...

Yes, I thought it was about that- the horror on reading this post was most overpowering:(

Mamma Mia! Me a Mamma?!? said...

Scary...very scary!

Jane Turley said...

Oh:( So good, so sad. One can only imagine the mother's grief:(

tassu said...

Very scary.Burt only after reading the comments here did I understood the meaning of the last lines of your post.But still what does the last line mean?'Watching from the door'?