Clouds spread like watercolour on a grey-blue canvas, emerging from behind trees to say their nebulous hellos. Or goodbyes? Only the skies know the answer. All is uncharacteristically still, but rain is in the air. The leaves feel it. The windows pulled shut scream it. The watercolour clouds are soft, floating past buildings with their gentle, wispy caress. The white and green building is touched by the darkness of dusk, and its colours blur to make one big expanse of grey and black. But even then, even now, as horns blare and the city rolls on, the grey is not dull. It’s quietly beautiful, more beautiful in the knowledge of  its power. Clouds and sky melt into one and I can hardly tell which is which. Leaves stir, like their eyes have been coaxed open by the monsoon, the smell of damp earth rising into the sky like smoke, fresh from the last rain. I’m not quite sure what periwinkles look like but the word drifts into my mind, as if on its own, as I watch the skies change through the window.

When I was a child, I’d take my brush and mix all the paints left in my palette at the end of class, just to see what colour they became. It was a few quick seconds, but I loved the surprise of creating something new. Something unknown from the carefully separated splotches of colour. Back then, I hated when it all turned into one big mess of grey and blue. I favoured bright colours, the reds and pinks and oranges. But back then, I knew not of the sky, and the way it churns all our stories into one big mess of grey and blue as lights flicker on in the streets, as I ache to open the window but the mosquito bites erupting on my legs warn otherwise, as tiny golden spots peep through leaves and tease the darkness.


7 thoughts on “Skywards

  1. Wow, beautiful, ethereal metaphors. As vulnerable as it might seem, I would love to hear a snippet of your personal, real-life experience that produces these images for you. I can’t say that I’m very courageous about that, either, but it’s always powerful to me to meet people on that common waste-land between our ideals–getting real and helping each other right there.


    1. Thank you for your support and interest! I’m working on articulating my experiences— but I think this particular post is inspired by my childhood, growing up in Calcutta and watching the rains for months and months. I now study abroad, and I miss the rain terribly, mostly because it reminds me of home. I’m not sure this answers any of your questions, but it’s the best I can do in a short comment! I’ll try to talk about my experiences a little bit more in future posts, but I find sometimes metaphors are just easier to write. Again, thanks for your insights!


      1. Haha, yes! I thrive on metaphors. Giving yourself or readers a familiar vision is efficient and beautifully effective. (I find that writing the details and explanations are exhausting–and people still look at your like…huh?) My son, who lived in Pune for a year, marveled at the way “locals” almost revered the rain. I get it. Water is life. And you can always close your eyes and go home. 🙂


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