The Value of a Touch
It was my second chance, and the last one.
It was the break of dawn. Everything seemed unnatural. There was a mellow, eerie glow to the room I was in. It all seemed unearthly to me – The situation, the atmosphere and myself.
I was different… glowing…
My hands looked divine & lustrous, as though they had in them something that they never had before- A power for a purpose. I was tensed… time was short. Soon I’ll have to leave. Don’t ask me where, don’t ask me how I knew. I just knew it.
I was standing atop a chair, in front of an old fashioned almirah, frantically searching for something on top of it. Papers were thrown all around me. No, I was tearing and throwing papers all around me. A pile that was unimportant to my left and all the important papers shredded towards my right. I was still searching frantically among more and more papers, reading, tearing, shredding and throwing…
I was myself, yet watching me from within me. I tried to make sense of the situation. The papers – I saw them because of a strange light, a candle light? No, Something much more lustrous and divine whose source I couldn’t see – had my writings on them. As the ‘me’ in the scene was about to tear a sheet, I took a close look at it.
They were some writings that had to be destroyed. I don’t remember what they were. But I had intended to destroy them long back. And I wasn’t able to.
One fine day I was no more…
And now I had been given a second chance to destroy them. Else they’ll turn out to be destructive. They were dangerous words, knowledge capable of destroying many. And time was short for me. Soon I’ll have to go- I’ll have to fade out…
I don’t know how I knew this. But I knew.
After a while, my work was almost over, it was the break of dawn. Few more minutes and the last pieces of danger will be destroyed and I’ll be leaving forever. I wished things hadn’t taken a sudden turn like this.
As I finished the last sheet in my hand, I got down the chair, staring at the door. I was tired, very tired… Does the soul get tired too, (if that’s what I should call myself )? I wonder. I looked at my hands with the glow about them. They had been given the power of touch for a while, by someone, for some purpose. I don’t know who , why or how. I just knew that in sometime I wouldn’t be able to touch anything.
And my heart (supposed to be) wished for a little thing. Something that I always had all along my life and never valued. I knew if I got out of the room and turned left and walked straight, it would lead to were my mother was. Probably she was crying still, or cried to sleep. Did she have her dinner? Did she have any food at all the previous day? I never asked her that when I was alive, all my life.
Her room came into my view and I saw her and my sister there, fast asleep. I felt bad for a second, `I’m gone and nothing is changed. They don’t miss me. I’m not a big loss for them. They’re sleeping with no worries’ and the next second I regretted that. I should be happy if they’ve escaped from the reality for a while. I must know that they would have cried and cried when I was gone.
Sorrow, guilt and the yearning to live again clawed me from within. I looked at my hands. With the hope that they still had the life in them, the power in them, I ran into the room, hurriedly climbed on the bed and fell between the two, my right hand on my sister and my left around my mother. I sobbed and sobbed like never before, happy that I could once again touch them- my little wish had come true-, but sad that not for long, It was time. I had to go. There was never another moment when I wanted the power of touch or maybe my entire life back. I was beginning to fade…
As I jerked awake, the relief I felt is indescribable. I lay frozen thinking about what I just witnessed, my eyes brimming with tears. I looked at my watch. It was 4am. I got up, ran to my mother’s room, hugged her and lay there. From then on, I saw things in a new light. From then on, something had changed within me.