An Ekphrastic Journey

Kadambari is a chotta sa poet and painter. She has been an educator most of her life, but there was always a nudge within that directed her to poetry and art, albeit unknowingly.

She has never been a writer or a painter, skilled or trained. But she found herself in the art world. Once standing in an art exhibit, she wondered how she arrived there, for she had never consciously planned. But now it is this world she passionately wakes up to every morning.

The alive world of visualisations within her was carving itself, first inside, and later, a path appeared where there was none. To quote Michelangelo,

“The sculpture is already complete within the marble block, before I start my work…I just have to chisel away the superfluous material.”

Divine intervention has chiselled the superfluous, but now the tool is in her hand. She needs to carve more. It is still unclear where the path would lead her, for she sees several digressions along the course. It confuses her often, but she is assured that all ways will lead to her destiny. She may veer off her path, but the higher power will redirect her course again and again.

Kadambari is happily busy, finding joy in simple writings and half-baked art. She continues to walk ahead, for she has realised there is nowhere to go but she has to keep going, unconcerned about the destination.

She is working on accepting her flaws, and now she tries to focus on the good in life and others. One of her friends once reminded her, “All humans have goodness in them; you only need to see it.”

Sometimes she falls, but now she gets up sooner than earlier. Flowers have begun to bloom on her path, and she is lost in inhaling their fragrance. However, she is still searching for the One fragrance that was the sweetest she had ever inhaled. She also knows the flower is somewhere above and beyond her reach.

The flower had been in her ever since her creation. She knows the flower, yet she does not know. It is her reflection only. She cannot say if she will be able to bring the One flower’s bloom down on earth in this lifetime or not. Until then, she has surrendered to the higher power. She enshrines the flower in the purest space in her and weaves verses and art.

I was born in a fragmented universe. I tried to put it back together piece by piece, but I couldn’t find some of the missing parts. I painted them in colours and scribbled them with words. I did not know then that in my convoluted meanderings to fill in the missing pieces, I was creating art.


Writer’s Note: Kadambari is a name that has stayed with me forever. In every story that I have written, I have been the protagonist. Kadambari is just a name. Eventually, all that will remain is namelessness.

Alka Balain

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