The Blue Sparrow | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, December 22, 2018 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:04 AM, December 22, 2018

Fiction

The Blue Sparrow

The blue sparrow is about to fly away; it flaps its wings. I stare deep into its eyes in a rush and whispered, “Take me with you, please.”It accepts my request. Under its wings the blue sparrow takes me in, my sin, my soul and all of my unfulfilled aspirations.

Morning is near and the dawn is about to die. Birds have started to leave their nests to travel through the earth.

The world is as it always was: with the same colourless wind, the same blue sky, the same ghostly sounds of leaves rustling as they dance with the breeze.

The world my eyes rest on is still, as if the silence in the creations is singing a requiem at the funeral of all desired redemptions. Everything is the same since the beginning of my life, perhaps since the birth of the universe.

I flip the curtain to have a glance at the waking sky, just to be sure that it is morning and I am still alive. Earlier my macabre imaginations were surrounded by death and only death. But now, although I knew death, I am not sure what fear means. Nor do I have any morbid thoughts about existence. In short, I feel devoid of characteristics that indentify a creature as “HUMAN.” 

Life is uncertain. I can actually die any day now. Of course, I would have to die even if I weren't living with melanoma. But now I know for certain that my time has come; I can no longer ignore the fact that death embraces every living in its ugly, suffocating grip. It is way different than the moments when I knew I would die but didn't have it written on a paper. Now I know that my days are numbered.

The sky is waking and a sparrow appears beside my window. It has been coming here for the past couple of months, since I have started taking chemotherapy. It sits on my window-sill, pecks at a crack on the wall, for worms perhaps, and it stares at me, tilting its head a bit, before flapping its wings to take flight into the eternal trail of the firmament. I return its gaze by staring deep into its little eyes. And I get lost in a realm of magical existence. I find myself to be in all the places the bird has ever explored, to observe all the sights it has ever witnessed. The moments are precious to me. It is the only life that doesn't remind me of my disease.

These days, my friends and family members treat me in such a manner that reminds me that I am about to leave them forever. Their overfriendliness and acts of sympathy appear to me sadistic and kill me every time they do that. But this little bird of three ounces never makes me feel like that. It has never done anything other than filling me with wonder. And I want those experiences of this little bird even though they were not meant to be mine.

Absurdity is the only treasure we have and maybe for this reason we are the most pitiable creatures in the whole universe. All our melancholy aspirations are nothing but desperate desires to live someone else's life other than our own. And I am desperate to escape the existence I have and the bird is right now my only means to live another life.

Whenever I gaze into its little eyes I see a sky, different from the one stretched out above me. I don't know if the bird feels the same way or not, but it is something that I feel every time I stare into those little eyes.

Today, the sparrow is blue- blue like veins that run under the skin of dead infants, like the continuous rune of fabrics of time being torn into infinite pieces.

Blue like a barren, empty womb craving for an existence, like hunger for death and life and all that lies between. Is this how life is? I wonder….

Today, the sparrow is blue like the resplendent sky that calls out to me…

The blue sparrow is about to fly away; it flaps its wings. I stare deep into its eyes in a rush and whispered, “Take me with you, please.”

It accepts my request. Under its wings the blue sparrow takes me in, my sin, my soul and all of my unfulfilled aspirations.

 

Abdullah Rayhan is a student of the English Department at Jahangirnagar University.

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