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Monday, 12 November 2012

Story: Burning Chaos



She’d been walking, dancing and splashing in the rain for hours, and to her utter delight the rain went on without a halt; sometimes drizzling and at times coming in heavy showers. Rain. She could stand soaking in it for ages and never once feel agitated or cold. The roads were deserted and yet she could here muffled sighs of people sitting in warm blankets talking over a hot cup of their favorite beverage. It often troubled her how ungrateful people can be; after long sought prayers of rain are accepted and the rain is poured down from the grudging grey clouds, hitting the barren land and driving little puffs of dust in the air. And yet those very people who pray for this blessing hide in their homes looking out through a barrier of glass.  Showing no gratitude. How could they not? She could go about rain forever; the way the ground smelled when it rained, the way it pelted her skin, the way the windows fogged up in the rain and the way it made everything look fresh…
A grin was plastered across her face as she splashed in the low floods brought by the heavy rain. Her clothes and hair were soaked in rain and she shuddered every time a cold breeze flowed. Some instinct kept urging her to go inside and change into dry and warmer clothes but she ignored it and instead walked over to the great ground right next to her house. It was not really a ground rather just acres of empty land, in the evenings kids used to gather there and play but it was said to be left for construction of houses. Beyond the vast empty land was the airport. It was quite close and the noise of aircrafts landing and taking off was normal. She laughed when their guests used to light up at this noise and rush to the windows to watch the planes pass.
The ground was flooded by the rain too, and it made her wish they had a swimming pool close by. She started walking to the center of the ground, taking a familiar walking route even in the dark. Her crazy instinct was forming into a bad gut feeling, urging her to go back, regardless she ignored it. unexpectedly and out of nowhere she heard a single cry of a bird, the sound so saddening and piercing that she wanted to turn back towards street-light illuminated road. But the noise above her head made her stop right in her tracks and gaze up at the sky. The noise was one of the harshest thunder, the kind that made your blood drain, and the kind that made you runaway to your mother’s soothing arms, the kind that made you suddenly cold. It rooted her to her spot and then she saw something big, huge and burning come crashing down on the ground right in front of her, with a horrid sound so blaring that it bellowed and sent her several feet away with a gush of extremely hot wind that knocked the air right out of her, as she landed near the road bumping into the ground several times, yet not registering pain. Her eyes locked to the scene before her.
She was stunned as the immense structure crumbled in the fire, too dazed to move, too struck to speak or yell. Her jagged breath soothed after several minutes yet the adrenaline kept pumping.  After numerous tries she got up, her knees were too weak and wobbly to support her. She couldn't even look about her, her eyes could do nothing but register the sight in front of her as she took small shaky steps towards the fire which had spread across the dry grass.  A huge grey cloud of smoke rose from the fire and as she got closer to the blazing aircraft the smoke stung her eyes, nonetheless, she kept moving only to stop a few feet away from the smoldering form.
The bird wailed again, this time more sorrowful and close. She looked up at the sky, now rapidly going grey above her as the smoke rose, and realized it was still raining slowly. All of a sudden the rain didn't seemed so nice, it made the air humid, suffocating and so thick that it made her cough  several times and rub her eyes to clear out her view. She closed the distance between her and the plane and realized it had cracked open and the other part must being lying away. She looked at the mess of ashen faces and burning mass inside, astonished and wanting to gag. And then her eyes took in something different; a tiny hand rose from the clutter of burning flames and she thought she heard a muffled cry, the hand shook slowly a fraction of an inch here, a fraction there and then all too quick the raised fingers went slack. Tiny little hand disappearing as the fire suddenly caught up with a snarl, sending smoke in her eyes and throat. She tumbled a few steps back and heard the bird screech a third time, all grieve and pain. She heard the din of screams and shouts from the road beyond her.
she cast her eyes over the burning chaos one last time then looked up at the sky as the bird went right above her head shrieking one more time, she threw her head back and wailed loudly alongside the bird; a sound of immense pain, grieve and sorrow.

-Momina Latif.

6 comments:

  1. does that make the rain a blessing or a curse then?

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    1. Oh no, rain will always be a blessing, always!

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  2. The plane crash at Islamabad was in rainy season too. Sigh.

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    1. Yes Lubaina, that is is what the story is about, the event just came flooding back and forming into this story. It's kind of like a tribute to all those people who lost their lives then.

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  3. SAMRA: SO WONDEFUL THIS IS TOO

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