“O Dastaañgo, aik panna aur kholo, aur kaho…”
And we all saw, more than 1500 of us, how a relationship so fragile, so precious, so battered by an unforgettable sense of wrong, as that between Draupadi and Yudhishtira, was revived by a simple act of friendship. An eponymous long poem by Pavan K Verma, adapted into a play in simple, relatable Hindustani, by the master wordsmith – Gulzar – had me gaping in awe and wonder, at the layers of meaning, communication, beauty, and complexities, of language, and relationships.
How precious, how primary, is this relationship – of being friends, before being any other. Acceptance, perhaps, forgiveness, comes easy, when it is a precious friendship at stake. How wonderful could all relationships become, if one was friends with the other! Did I indulge in wishful thinking? You can bet! Did I see a quick recap of what I had and what it could have been, and what I lost? Yessir, I did. Will I do something to make the change?
No, my conscience is not so grand as to actually practice what I find beautiful in the spirit of a poem, or a play, but I recognize a great, abstract feeling, emotion, when I see it, sense it.
When I got over the daze of actually being in the same room, breathing the same air, as the poet, the man I’ve admired for the past decade, since I became aware of Hindustani poetry, I experienced the joy that makes one go ‘Wah!’ at a sentence; someone else whistle, and Gulzar sa’ab take a moment to ask, “yeh seeti kisne bajayi?” as he reads from his poetry.
I remember, earlier that evening, as I flew down the staricase in the office building, and ran to the auditorium, my heart said to me, “Eid Mubarak, Salonee”.
I’ll leave you here, with words I carried back with me, from that magical evening.