By Mir Umar
“Wild is the music of autumnal winds amongst the faded woods” (William Wordsworth)
As the sun appeared over the horizon, scattering its light in all directions, I woke up from the scarcely hard sleep. Sun light was showered all around my room. Lazily, I unfurled the curtains of my room and there was a sudden stroke of light that hit my eyes. But the light had lost its vibrant texture. It was a little intense. Looking at the scene from my window, I felt a cold wave of air seeping through my body. The air had a little mist in it. The clouds seemed to accompany the lonely sun”
I was feeling cold. The trees seemed to be silent and the nightingale birds of morning had migrated to some other parts. Yet, it was an agonized atmosphere narrating its struggle of loss. The nature had a silent tone in its breeze which I had failed to understand. It was hard to gather the things through my misty eyes. A grim silence had so far left its finger prints on my mind. It was a brooding atmosphere. Through my body parts, the cold air was splashing against my skin and my eyes, making them blurry to. “Had nature a tale to tell?” a question arose in my mind. I tried to answer my unusual questions. “Oh! It’s autumn in Kashmir”, I exclaimed.
I made my mind to take a walk. The streets seemed to be deserted. Walking down the muddy lanes in the morning was evocative. I found a narrow lane leading to a small sitting place where I could refresh my soul. So, I took that strange lane. It was small, embodied with the yellow stiffly leaves. These helpless leaves were scattered in all directions. The trees had their dried skin exposed to the nature as if someone had torn up their skin and left torturous marks on their bodies. No birds had made their appearance so far. It seemed that nature was crumbling all around by the tyranny of autumn. When I walked, my feet crushed the flakes of leaves that were scattered here and there. It produced a cracking sound. These leaves had a long pain and that was why their moaning could be heard. Finally, through the thorns, I took refuge in a silent place which was less known. It was a bit like woods which had some l vegetation, zenith thorns and a small carving stream flowing by side and a corroded bench in the middle. I took refuge on that bench.
To the north of that place were the crimson Chinars with blazing leaves of the color of setting sun. It indicated that the autumn had aptly ignited the fire. Mostly, there were poplar trees whose yellow leaves depicting the thorough pain. I sat on the bench and was seeing the bruised atmosphere of helplessness that autumn had created.
I thought nature was the monument which would end my pain but nature had itself an unlimited pain to share. It was autumn and I was an autumn boy.
Nature had a hidden pain inside. Autumn had affected and quenched its fluttering beauty. The nature was burning in the fire of autumn. But for some creatures, autumn was peace. Slipping back from my thoughts, I saw the sun rays giving a slight touch to me. They followed me to the woods also. I observed a bird, searching for food in early morning. I thought it might be searching food for her children whose cries had forced her to face the brunt of autumn. But the bird didn’t bother about the tyranny of autumn. For the bird, autumn was not an obstacle which would stop it from flying. The bird gathered some beans and took it in its beak and flew away. I observed the sun also. It had also a struggle of its own. It rises daily in every situation and sends its rays to reach earth. It didn’t even give up. Autumn was also no obstruction to its rays. Rather its rays pierce the barrier of autumn to reach us. These picturesque filled my heart with a new hope. It resurrected a new life in me.
Nature seemed to be deft with the muteness of autumn. It seemed the nature had been caged by it. Its festivity had also been throttled by the fetters of autumn. But, the positivity was the waters of stream were tirelessly flowing with their best spirit. I got up where I sat and exhaled my pain in the air. It tormented and lit a new fire in nature. Then I smoldered in sky leaving these lines behind,
As the autumn descended
Trees defiled; leaves splashed;
The fire of autumn blazing
For the arrival of autumn boy.
—The author is a student of Literature. He can be reached at: [email protected]