There is a picture of my mother I love. The one where you can see the clouds and sea reflected in the startling clear of her eyes. Her worried eyes which for once forgot their lot in life and luxuriated in a simple moment.

I know my father didn’t take that picture. It’s not because he’s not gifted. Pappa simply doesn’t like to look too deeply into people’s eyes for fear of seeing something rude or revealing. Especially not my mother’s eyes.

We don’t talk about her lover because we don’t have to. Its as if he never existed, except that he still does. The pain has woven itself into all the conversations we have as a family. Not in the obvious, acrimonious ways you might be imagining reading this. In this family you won’t see shards of insults flying at supersonic speeds across the dining table. There are no bloodstains on these sheets.

We worship at the altar of Keeping It InThe Family and have sworn to haemorrhage internally till we die. We even spit on it.

Words have a special place in a family where everyone writes for a living. Or you would think. Yet here, in our rooms, these melancholy alphabets struggle to string themselves into coherent sequences. They writhe in embarrassment at having had to be uttered and wish themselves dead on arrival. They have lost the struggle to construct meaning or feeling and lie there, disjointed and broken. They were littering the floor, so we’ve swept them away now.


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26 responses to “Words

  1. So much pain in your words. It’s relieving to get it out, isn’t it? Family secrets shouldn’t be kept. I know…how much damage they can do.

    • Mom Gone Mad

      @Starry: LOL!! Please check the “fiction” tag. No basis in reality. My mother would die if she read your comment:-)

  2. Mom Gone Mad

    @Starry: In retrospect, very tasteless of me to LOL at your sensitive comment. I’m very sorry if you have experienced anything remotely awful.The damage these situations can do, I can imagine(with painful clarity). I’m still glad its not written on my body though.

  3. When does one spew vs sweep them words? Good writeup. 🙂

  4. Mom Gone Mad

    @AJ: Hmm. I think you have to be less broken to be able to spew. Sweeping away is so much easier when words are hard and bitter – and can hurt. No?

  5. See I didnt know what to make out of it as well. next time, can you add a disclaimer ITS FICTION! In big bold letters.

    It was a good one though

  6. Mom Gone Mad

    @Sraikh: Thanks! This is why I have tags and you should check them;-)

  7. HARRRRRUMPHHH! *blushes*

    I agree with sraikh…you have to put in a dislaimer…this is the second time you’re taking me in totally! I mean…who checks tags??!!

    *looks wide-eyed* If I Google you, will I find out you’re actually a best-selling author or somethin’??

  8. @Starry: Best-selling author?LOL.. no,apart from these small attempts, nothing of the sort.

  9. Wooohooo looks like I am the only one who checked the tag before reading the entire thing! 😀

    But this was a good one MGM! 🙂

  10. Commenting here for the first time, love your blog and this post which captures beautifully how eloquent your brevity is.

  11. ha ! ha ! you really caught me on that one ! i dint read the tag! Thank God ! I read the other comments before I wrote my own !

  12. No one checks tags, now everyone will think your mother has a lover. Most will secretly envy her.

  13. But loved it. I do hope its some kind of a dipstick chapter survey of some book you are working on.

  14. i ‘happened’ to see the ‘fiction’ tag as I scrolled to the comments section! 🙂

  15. Mom Gone Mad

    @Miss M, Nandita: Thank you:-)

    @Rathi: tch tch. tags must be checked:-)

    @June: LOL!!!hell, I’d envy my mother if that was true:-)And already fielded the indignant, “What are you writing about me?” phone call. I had to break her heart and tell her she wasn’t THAT interesting yet;-)

    And no. No book. Not yet.

    @Richa: 🙂

  16. I read it and said to myself, ‘This has to be fiction’.
    I’m so glad that it is:)
    Your tags are too tiny for us mortals!

  17. zeno

    Moral of the story:
    Read u’r tags first,and stop readin ur blogs so early in the mornin..
    U certified nut!!!

  18. chuchu

    loved it…read it and then quickly checked the tag…clewer,no??

  19. Chuchu

    sorry ’bout that-submitted my comment twice as I couldn’t see it the first time…so I’ll say it again….your fiction rocks!

  20. maidinmalaysia

    i already got tag-conned once in an earlier post…

    so i check your tags first…

    v. bookerly. MGM

  21. Era

    Great post, but I concur – No one has time to look at teeny tiny tags.

  22. Mom Gone Mad

    @Nat, Dipali, Chuchu and Era: Thanks, guys! And yes, tags are loserly. Will remedy situation next time I get creative:-)

    @MiM: Bookerly? Too much!:-)

    @Zeno: Keep your brekkie down, girl:-) And really, *never* read me first thing. Hop straight over to the happiness project or somewhere where they spread sunshine:-)

  23. even if it was not fiction i would not do a Muthalik on you or do a Punjabi Aunty Haw Hai kitney besysharam logs,
    I will still be friends and share my tiffin in school ok?

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