"So far as I am able to judge, nothing has been left undone, either by man or nature, to make India the most extraordinary country that the sun visits on his rounds. Nothing seems to have been forgotten, nothing overlooked." - - - Mark Twain
I woke up and looked out the window. I looked out the window through half shut eyes and I sighed. It was going to be a difficult day. It was raining outside! As I slowly claimed my conscious, I could hear the faint rumble of clouds and a familiar drizzle outside. Ribbons of liquid stained the glass - twisting the images and distorting my reality. I woke up and stepped out to the patio and let myself be soaked - soaked with wave after wave of cold water. And against my will the water washed away my numbness bringing afresh the longing, love and lust - I had so carefully buried away.
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Rains have a way with me. I was born and raised in Bombay - where rains are the life of music and music is the life of our bodies. The bond between rains and our rhythms is deeper, more mysterious and more intricate than anyone can fathom. It reflects - in part India's dependence on monsoons and in part its need to create art. Art to express that which we wish but we can't. Over thousands of years of evolution the rain drops have absorbed themselves into our culture. They fuel the breaths of our soul as much as our blood fuels the beats of our heart.
In the west as the countries industrialized and reduced their dependence on seasons so did they lose their connect with nature. In India, that connect survives as a faint but distinct hue in our identity. Hence while people in the west have lost their fascination with rains - in India - they still hold sway.
Years ago the farmers from barren villages gathered and prayed to the skies. They begged and pleaded - they scolded and cajoled the clouds above. To this day the first rains are celebrated with the same relief and joy as those parched voices did upon a barren soil. The rains are an innate part of our films and our songs. Even today they behold and move us - a whispered reminder of a time when masters like Tansen would sing Malhar and command the heavens to cry.
I stand drenched and wet and cold and let myself go. The rains have a mind of their own ....
Rains, Rains - These rains carry with them many memories and times.
They have a way of entering your hearts They thrill you and play with your thoughts
Drop per drop they symbolize and encapsulate the elixir of life.
They fall from the sky and unite on the earth.
They are precious they are dear.
They are transient they are immortal.
Some drip as scented pearls from a girl's hair.
Some glisten as beads of sweat in passion.
Some trickle as salted rivulets of sorrow
Some remain untold and veiled behind silent eyes
Some relish, as drinks of pleasure from a lover's lips
While some are drunk as poison in anger, anguish and hurt
Rains, Rains these rains, they have a mind of their own
I am swept clean now, I stand exhausted, spent
The rains have brought me back to life
They are my repent, and they have let me absolve A part of my past ....