Friday 15 June 2012

Flash Fiction 2012 Longlist, Aaskti Panjiyar

Let Them Be

Priya was as usually roaming in the nearby forests when she accidentally tamped somebody’s legs. She almost tripped but somehow regained her balance. In a fit of rage, she turned back and was about to shout, but couldn’t utter a word. A voice said, “I am extremely sorry. I was tired of walking so  just slept down in the tree shade.”  Priya took no time to infer that the guy was blind from his countenance. But the guy had something charismatic.

Even later, no matter how hard she tried she couldn’t take her mind off him. She once again went to the place with the hope of catching a glimpse of him. She found he was picking up some herb. Astonished, she asked him how he recognised the plants. With a endearing smile on his face, he explained how each plant species had a particular smell that helped him to distinguish them. He effortlessly went on describing and Priya listened through all. She herself was surprised because she never had been such a patient listener.

On one pretext or the other, she kept on bumping him until finally he once offered her to accompany him to his village. Priya was all excited. But her excitement turned into sadness when she saw that each and every person there was blind.  She decided to marry the guy and become an eye for the people there. Since both of them knew each other for so long, neither the family members nor the villagers had any objection. Every day she went there and described them about the beauty of nature, the lofty mountains, the colourful flowers, the serenity of rivers and many more such wonders that eyes could behold.

Once, just like every day, when she was coming, when she overheard two people discussing that the village head had passed on the judgment that the new would-be bride, who had the disease of seeing things would be cured on the next full moon. They had unanimously agreed upon removing her eyes off.

She didn’t wait to listen more, just turned her back and mutter, “Let them be...

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