An arid song
That the nature sang;
Through the cold sighs
Of the ocean waves.
‘A piece of art
The fall made,
Reversing the strokes
Of the orange paint;
Like an ascetic,
Though with shedding leaves
Its heart ached,
Yet it withered
In a cold frost flame.
For it has a boon for beauty,
But it also bears a cursed fate;
That it must surrender,
Whatever it claims.’
A song of remorse,
That the nature sang;
The autumn’s sacrifice
For the winter’s fame.
- 'A song of renunciation' by Bhargav Patel.
As the cold breezes of wind invaded through the walls of his mind, Siddhartha paced towards the direction of Ganga. The horse, despite Siddhartha’s best endeavours, was reluctant to speed. Perhaps his master’s acts had saddened him as well. The vast skyline of Kapilvastu faded behind as the magnificent gleaming starry sky revealed itself to his eyes. The silence of midnight was starting to bewitch Siddhartha’s mind with its exquisite melody. However abandonment has its own impacts. Soon the bewitching beauty of night created an illusion to lure Siddhartha back to his former self. Glittering particles formed into lovely faces of Yashodhara and Rahul as they gazed into Siddhartha’s eyes. They seemed full of questions to which he had no answers yet. But the path he had chosen tonight was a pursuit to seek the answers to his questions. And perhaps when this pursuit should come to a conclusion, he might be able to answer those questions as well. However the sadness in their eyes were devastating.
“Grief is certainly not their destiny,” Siddhartha spoke to himself. “But then what is destiny? And what is grief? Parting is inevitable. Then why grieve for what is to come for sure?”
As his mind conquered the mist of grief; those faces, the illusion vanished in the gleam of night. However the conquest on grief is not the ultimate conquest. What about love and compassion? The glittering particles, triggered by the clouds obscuring his mind, formed into a face of King Shuddhodana, his father. His face seemed quite pale, probably longing for his love for his son. His eyes asked Siddhartha about the future of his kingdom, about the legacy he was destined to carry, about his duty of a son. Siddhartha was aware that he was loved immensely by his father and that his departure would crucify him. He was the heir to the throne. An only hope for the people. Why should a son forsake his duty to his father, and an heir-apparent to his kingdom?
“I forsook my duties,” Siddhartha muttered, “in order to seek the greater kingdom. This mortal kingdom would have certainly brought me prosperity and glory. But my mind would not be satisfied with that. It aspires the ultimate kingdom of knowledge. Perhaps one day, I shall fulfil my duty by sharing the fruits of my pursuit.”
The illusion vanished once again, as Siddhartha’s mind triumphed over his nobility. He recognized the path he was proceeding to be the way to Vaishali. The fierce flow of Ganga accompanying the melody of cold starry night was probably the greatest unison Siddhartha had listened to. Soon the night was deep and closer to sunrise and Siddhartha stopped near the bank of Ganga where the water was quiet and slow. He caressed his fingers through the hair of his horse and gazed up at the murky sky bloomed with the twinkle of infinite stars. The most beautiful glimpse of the universe reflected in his eyes as if it resided within them. Siddhartha dismounted his horse while his white shiny cloak fluttered in the wind. He stood near the horse while its glimmering eyes pleaded him against his will of abandonment. Gautama brushed his fingers compassionately upon its flawless face.
“It has been my fortune that you have accompanied me in my long journey, my friend,” he said softly. “And I owe you a great amount of regards for that matter. However your destiny resides in Kapilvastu. The remaining fate of my journey must be accomplished only by me. I have renounced everything I had, including you. Therefore you must return to the city for you belong there. Do not follow me on the path I have chosen. Do you understand?”
The horse did not respond. However its eyes reflected his inconvenience. Siddhartha embraced his companion warmly for one last time. But his friend was not ready to abandon him. Siddhartha turned around to proceed on foot. However the horse followed him quietly, determined not to let him go. Upon seeing its reflecting floating upon the surface of water, Gautama stopped and turned towards his friend. He went closer and said, “Do not make this difficult for both of us. You are no longer bound by your duty to accompany me. However, should you still desire to follow me, take this as my last command! And I believe you shall obey it heartfully. Return to the city and serve to thy king and acquire glory for that thou deserve.”
The horse quietly nodded, still devastated in the grief of parting. Gautama turned around and proceeded on his path. The horse gazed at his reflection floating upon the surface of water. It was illuminated by a divine wheel. A spirit of ultimate enlightenment illuminating upon the mild waves of water. Perhaps, a glimpse of his destiny… A glimpse of his ultimate conquest.
(Inspired by the tales of Siddhartha Gautama)
Story and Image by : Bhargav Patel
|I'm a Computer Engineer and aspiring Digital Artist. I use Photoshop for Digital Painting and Photo-manipulation, and have been enhancing skills in Graphics Designing. Besides, I've been working on my writing skills too.|