Short Stories >> Yugantar >> Amoli (Amoli)

Short Stories

Written By: Smt.Sundri Uttamchandani

Touching the Rose flowers to her lips, he asked, "My fragrant flower, do you know whom does the man select?"

The gentle touch of the fragrant petals had brought on a contented smile on her lips. She could have replied, but...

"Man chooses only that woman who loves his principles. In that case, the lady chooses first..."

The woman gave a slight jerk- ‘Then the pride of being called fragrant flower was nothing!' she thought to herself.

Barely few months had passed after the marriage, when the woman, in the same bedroom, was gently running her fingers through his curly, black and soft hair, but her lips were left dry and thirsty.

The woman forcibly turned his face towards herself.

"You will not get me this way..." The Universe of emotions shook.

"What do you mean?"

"Just look at my eyes, they are full of dreams".

"But I have hardly seen you sleeping. Often you stay awake, reading books. So, when do you dream?"

"There's an age for dreaming Amoli! At that age I was jobless and actually there was so much left to be read. Even then, looking at my family's needs which were like hell, I felt the need to immediately get some job. For many days I left home and kept wandering. Some friends provided me support. Living in different houses is like drinking water from various wells.

There were certain opportunities, but to make meaning of this meaningless world only the sound of ankle-bells and that of running water is not enough. I had a desire to study further but the parents didn't allow, so I was filled with anger and tension within my mind. Strange houses! Either poor or very rich, but both types very unhappy! I did not find any completeness in anyone. Not a single human with a vastness of vision! I found many like me on the path, who had also faced struggles in order to fulfil their needs.

At that time, a dream surrounded my mind! That you have first to fulfil man's needs in order to make him fully human..."

The woman said, "I have been feeling that every single cell of my body is bowing down before a great power. But my dear, the kind of level you are thinking about human beings is possible by songs, reading books in libraries and establishing small organisations in the lanes and by-lanes of the neighbourhood. Before that one has to become ordinary and humble and create a vision of a new world in the most ordinary of the ordinary person. Such thoughts of yours have attracted me towards you and I have come to your feet. I have been meeting all your needs as an ordinary wife in a decent way".

"Uff Amoli..." Feeling really helpless, the man turned away.

Her Emotional world was in turbulence and the entire night, sparks from that fire kept stinging the woman. She went and stood at the corner of the verandah and swept all the mess and threw it out. The Moonlight shone on her fair body and it was shimmering. There was fire in this house that was separated from the entire colony only by a wall, and inspite of that the colony was fast asleep-Yes, it had slept after much struggle of meeting their needs!

When did sleep overpower the woman, she herself did not come to know.

When she awoke, she saw that the colony had woken up long ago and the one who valued her, was missing from the bed. A message on a small piece paper read, "Absolutely simple and ordinary cannot be the princess of my dreams...You will not understand this pain that has been tormenting my mind...My conscience has been biting all this while. Until every human being does not fulfil his basic needs, till then there is no hope of progress for mankind...!"

Her body was already on fire since the last night...Meera's call was heard -

Oh Sage, don't go' But her self -pride refused to become an obstacle in someone's path. There were too many restrictions on Amoli at the time of her marriage- she could break off relationships and friendships but when it came to her family, Amoli could not gather courage to let go the love and attachment of her family. With great love and respect, she simply kept it aside. Even now she said, "I am Yashodara and it is not under my control to stop Gautama's feet..."

Even then she took the dust of Gautama's feet and put it on her forehead. There was a helpless smile on her lips and she thought, "Sometimes even wisdom and knowledge lose their way and become emotionally weak, Oh traveller...!"

A lonely house- Beauty-Innocent age! A mishap was quite possible within the four walls.

Amoli now disregarded all boundaries. The whole colony came in the grip of her friendship. A singing class somewhere, new patriotic songs and melodies with old music came echoing. A library was established somewhere. There was already a school and Amoli called a meeting of the teachers and handed over new fertilizers in every gardener's hands. A new world was established in the colony. A world in which there were more thorns than flowers. When someone looked at her with pity, she felt her identity being lowered. But the envy and hatred of others would fill her being with a glow. Some even said, "This is how she is, that is why her husband too has left her".

At such moments, she would listen to all these taunts, covering her ears, but at the same time she would feel Goddess Sita, coming out of Earth and offering her support with her two fingers. As if she was blessing her and saying, "The husband of India is a devotee of principles even today, as always".

Amoli would tell the dream-like Sita, "That is why he is immortal...But even union is a blessing. Otherwise how could Luv-Kush have come into existence?" At such times Amoli would hold little Deepak to her bosom and grow silent.

Suddenly one day he walked into the house but Amoli did not turn her face away like Shakuntala nor did she ask the support from the Earth, like Sita. She put little Deepak in his lap and softly asked, "You have come back?"

He kept watching Amoli silently. The bedroom nights were rekindled again, even then he laughingly said, "You are not surprised to see me back after so long?"

"Even King Dushyant saw Bharat after so many years". Amoli's gaze was fixed on the ground but her shoulders were erect.

All this while Deepak was involved with the pen and pencil in his father's pocket. Father's attention went towards him only now. Kissing his head, he said, "Oh, that is why..."

The jolt after that-Oh that is why, was a proof of his feeling of making a mistake.

But Amoli knew that after that night's burnt-out woman, nobody's mistake remained a mistake. She had already forgiven everyone for everything.

Amoli could not gauge the efforts her husband put in for building an economic foundation and returning humanness to people of the country, but she had gone through great struggles to build a balance between principles and economic conditions in her domestic life. After her husband had left, she had spread herself so much that now she faced difficulties in taking care of her husband and her son Deepak. At times the shirt buttons were broken by the washer-man, or the handkerchief was missing, and at times the meal was not ready...

Her husband had been appointed as the Principal of a school where he had got many opportunities to spread his principles and they bore results. One day, he shouted at Amoli saying, "Please close down your outer world affairs and come and sit at home...There is so much disorder...!"

Amoli could not help laughing. She kept staring at his face... Her husband again started shouting, "Who can call this a home? There are so many cobwebs..."

Amoli asked him, "When you left the home for your principles, at that time you did not even notice the cobwebs that were filled in my mind...Now my principles have taken all my time..."

"Is this a competition of principles?"

Amoli failed to give any answer. Her heart overflowed. Even then, looking at her husband waiting for her answer, this lady who had faced hundreds of storms in order to fill her loneliness, somehow blurted out, "Now, perhaps I shall have to renounce an ordinary simple, husband..."Saying this she felt as if her home, her colony and the whole world was shaking due to an explosion.

After centuries, the principled Ram felt that the principles are worthless if they are not standing on support of human love and respect. This was proved by Sita, not by going beneath the Earth but by standing over the Earth.

Ram kept looking at this woman of new consciousness and then, taking two steps towards her, keeping his hand on her head, he said, "No, now it shall not happen!"

- Translated by Arun Babani

The End


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