I sit on the terrace of my flat and I see the stars shine brightly. After so many cloudy days the clear sky is a welcome sight. I am reminded of that childhood poem:
Twinkle twinkle little star
How I wonder what you are
I remember reading somewhere when I was a child that when a person passes away, he/she becomes a star. I know now that it is not true and yet the child in me still clings to the thought. I see so many stars shining above and I like to believe that they are people who loved me in their lifetime and come out each night just to see for themselves that I am happy and doing fine.
I see my grandpa. I called him “Dasa”. I know most people remember him as a very strict person and they feared him, though I spent very little time with him, I remember that every time I was near him, I felt loved and protected. Beneath his hard exterior, I often glimpsed softness, a vulnerability, which was endearing.
Dasa, I may have never said it to you, I loved you.
I see my mom in law. I called her “Masi”. Whatever the difference of opinion we may have had, fact is, she took up for me whenever someone tried to bring me down. She was my shield and her passing away left a void.
Masi, home no longer seems like home without you.
I see my best friend Nisha. She was the sister I never had. I miss her phone calls, her constant messages, her calling me a “dofi” when I goofed up, her anger at anyone who dared criticize me in her presence. Hell, I even miss her loud laugh, her bad jokes, and her drinking and calling me just to piss me off.
Nisha, you left too soon. Sometimes, I pick up the phone and dial that number and my heart yearns to hear you say hello..someone does reply but it is never you..I hang up. I know your family sold off the house you lived in. I’m aware that the phone number is no longer yours..and yet at times I call you..
So many people, so many stars. They all come out at night. I gaze at them lovingly and I know I’m loved.