Tears are Words that need to be Written


D.H.Lawrence, the English novelist writes, “One sheds one’s sickness in books.” True are his words, as most of the literature is cathartic and therapeutic. When our only child, our son, left for higher studies to a far-off place, we faced empty nest syndrome. After dropping him off at Manipal Institute of Technology, when I opened the lock of my home at Yamunanagar with misty and moist eyes, I couldn’t hold my tears. Gradually we came to accept the fact that my husband and I have to learn to live alone, looking forward to our son’s occasional visits. It was only then that my tryst with creative writing began. The first few write-ups that I wrote, which also got published in distinguished newspapers, were basically tears that got transfixed as words on paper. Words polished and broken, scabrous and sad, rooted and torn; words grew on me like leaves on a tree- the tears and words came together, they never seemed to stop coming from silence somewhere deep within. Apt are the words of E.M.Forster “Let yourself go. Pull out from the depths, those thoughts that you don’t understand and spread them out in the sunlight and know the meaning of them.”

Crystallizing my tears on paper, and purgation of emotions led to the epiphany that every tear is the raw material for words. All of us face ups and downs in life. There are times when we sit alone and cry, not feeling like sharing our anxieties and agonies with even our dear ones. Then I believe we need to share our grief and tears with paper because the paper has more patience than people. Our story may enlighten or mitigate the sufferings of others.

I have been very close to my mother and when she left suddenly for her heavenly abode, I refused to accept the bitter truth of her demise. Words of Kamala Das from her autobiography ‘My Story’ echoed in my ears all the time, “My heart resembles a cracked platter that can no more hold anything.” Hysterically I cried all the time. Finally, I mustered the courage and wrote about the grief in which I had drowned myself. I felt light by sharing grief with people I had never met. It made me strong that whatever has happened to me has happened to many others. There are people who too have lost their parents or sibling. When someone wrote that I sobbed reading your piece I felt it is normal to get depressed, lost, and cry. Inscribing tears into words on paper led me to a timeless zone where I cherished cupboards of memories with my mother with charm. I realized that the write-up and the poems that I dedicate to my mother have immortalized her.

Through words we create an imaginary society with authentic people, inscribing ourselves to a larger community and getting an opportunity to meet or say goodbye to our loved ones. We endeavor to seek a world where we can share our pain, a world full of warmth and emotions.

Well, tears create a world of words where we share empathy and elation with the dear ones that take us to a world where souls achieve immortality.

Every tear is writable if we have the guts to do it and the imagination to improvise. Tears are but mirrors of a pool of thoughts that haunt us. Let not tears become a deluge of mud and scum that settles at the bottom of the ocean of our hearts and spoil our peace of mind. Let us allow our tears to flow in the sea of creativity by writing.

Pertinent are the words of American author Joshua Wisenbaker, “Tears are the words that mouth can’t say nor can the heart bear.”

Ritu Kamra Kumar