The House You Cannot Put Colours on | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, September 05, 2020 / LAST MODIFIED: 01:27 AM, September 05, 2020


The House You Cannot Put Colours on

It was a big window, like an arched doorway. It creaked loudly the first time I opened it. It sounded angry, upset. I wondered why?

I placed a couch in front of the window. Often, I sat here with a book in my hand and gazed outside. There was a mango tree, a banyan and a wall green with moss and weed in the backyard garden. I watched sparrows, ants, rain, sunshine, stars and a lone moon on lonely nights. Sometimes, a white cat sat under the banyan tree.

The cat reminded me of Mini, the white furry one I had when I was little. It reminded me of anther life. And whenever those thoughts came rushing back, I shook my head hard. I didn't want to remember anything, whether good or bad. It unsettled me. I needed to get overhimto move on. To fall in love with my husband, Akram.He was a good man. It made me feel sad, sometimes a bit guilty, too.

I tried to focus on the house we moved in here right after our marriage.  It had high ceilings andmosaic floor and the walls looked dull and drab. I wanted to give it a fresh look.I put colourful curtains on the windows, painted the walls, put roses in the vase, sprinkled jasmine scents here and there.

A year passed by. Akram was happy and on rainy nights, he whispered in my ear words of love.  He'd often ask me if I were happy! His gentle voice, kind words seemed assuring. The little dimple that played at the corner of his mouth every time he grinned, looked cute and I wanted to love them.  I ran my fingers on his chin and kissed him hard because I did not want to lie. I did not want him to know that no matter how many colours I put on the walls; the house still looked ridiculously blank.


Marzia Rahman is a writer and translator currently based in Dhaka.

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