Pandora's Box

Isn't it unfair, that you have to take certain decisions in life by yourself even when they affect more than just you? I've always wondered about the possibilities of life - the decisions and their snowball effect.


There's a mind-boggling movie I chanced on - Everything, Everywhere, All at once. Ludicrous movie really, but man did I love it. That, as a good movie should, stayed with me. I get the 'message' - love wins, of course - love always wins. (Oh, no the movie is actually about a lot more, but this is the only spoiler I'd allow myself) But is there some kind of love that just loses? Or are there just some people who inevitably lose in love. And what do these people look like?


The man that sat across from me that one time in a metro, with black, narrow set eyes furrowed in a faraway, far-too-important-for-banal love look. The almost woman that comes by everyday, silently and diligently finishing our house chores, with a blank look of dreams wiped many times over. The grandmother with Alzheimer's, who can't remember her long deceased partner and now is paranoid about her offspring and their 'deranged' behavior over a paltry sum of money. The friend, who seeks love but ends up settling for the easy kind of it, and has made peace with laughing with couples at their inside jokes with a secret hopeful longing. The young girl who thinks love can be bought, but is in for a world of disillusionment and distress in as many years as her lucky extra finger can count. The ever hopeful, who desires more than love only to end in vengeance over lost potentials. Or maybe a dichotomous girl hurriedly penning down her thoughts to fill in the empty silence in a rather chilly night.

What's even more intriguing is the not knowing. I mean could I ever accurately project all that is possible in my imagination with you? Would we ever be sitting around a warm fire - you on your 'art project' and me buried in my book, sharing a glass of wine just because our fingers touch briefly in this intimate moment with ourselves? Would we just be bitter, exhausted in our projects of chiseling away till the other person looks like the person we thought we wanted, but are now repulsed by? Maybe we'd be the two people always sharing weird jokes at parties and laughing at one another's moves. Or could we be the eccentric couple that talks about spirituality interspersed with nihilism just so we could talk about them to someone other than ourselves, and have something new to tell each other when we routinely cuddle later? Would we be the kind of couple with a clear dominant partner and another that always lets go till one day, they've had enough and our lives break with this unclear, new dynamic never taking shape like the child we could never then have? Would we keep thinking of what the other is thinking and lose ourselves in this mystery box? Or worse, would we live in our own echoes, only knowing what we think and constantly perplexed at the other's inability to catch-up? Or maybe, we would balance each other out so much so that our shadows are irrevocably interspersed in a pattern impossible to unfold?

How do we ever know, what is going to be, and what is, is what is? And in the midst of this, how do we decide that we that want different things, or maybe that we want the same things, but only one of us could really get them? (Coin-toss maybe- just that I'm terrible at getting lucky.) Or maybe 'things' aren't the way we decide at all! Maybe we know, but the knowledge is so terribly comforting, that we seek answers to questions that are just circular references.


It's an overwhelming thing, this unwarranted paralysis. Too late, and it is a wound that could forever remain wide open, maybe even grow cancer and take our entire lifetime into its vortex, devouring our dreams and us. Too soon, and the gangrene of regret would creep in to suffocate the next partner with the compensation the past deserved. Is there ever a perfect time? Is there even time, or is it just a see-saw of memories weighted according to length and frequency of replay till the see-saw creaks with rust and the playground is forsaken to be looked upon only as a nostalgic memoir? Maybe that's what Pandora's box has - answers. Could any riches, ill-gotten or deserved, be better than answers to these thoughts we never speak to one another as we lie in separate time-zones on the same bed?


I'm tired of asking questions and having them neatly arranged on screens, forgotten till the next time I chance upon this meadow of memoirs.


I'm searching for Pandora. If I find her box, will you open it with me?


___

So I wrote a prose, and then got pretty carried away with the subtext to the prose. So I decided to just go ahead with the subtext and leave the prose out for another night. In this subtext to an original subtext, I just want to warn you about the dangers of mistaking a thirty-minute, almost fictitious ramble born of a rather interesting catch-up with a friend, for a full-fledged life! Also, believe it or not, this prose had started off with a very different theme, but ended in love, pretty much a fitting metaphor to some kinds of love itself. Hope you had fun. And don't worry, I'm probably sticking to prose. :P

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