It had been some time since he had written a word. There was a growing feeling of creative deficiency inside him as life took systematic turns. Society, he thought, had finally purged him off his angst and the nausea attacks, which would only subside once he had written something; had ceased to occur. He did not know if it made him happy or sad. Was writing really important to him? Wasn't it normal for the young to confuse idling with passion, musings with creativity? Age eventually pacifies the deliriums of youth.
"Even if you were in a prison whose walls would shut out from your senses the sounds of the outer world, would you not then still have your childhood, this precious wealth, this treasure house of memories?" He continued reading his favorite book.
Yes, he thought...he still had his childhood. Childhood...when imagination triumphs reason. Curiosity dominates acceptance. Innocence blurs ego. He lit a cigarette (after a long time) and sat thinking about his childhood. Images conjured in the blue smoke he exhaled.
His home, his room, the Sundays he would spend there, the afternoons when he would hide as the house slumbered.
His favorite hiding place was the Gulmohar tree just outside the boundary of his house. It was a young tree, not old enough to have a graceful circular shape of mature tree but old enough to have blossomed once, in the last season.
He used to climb to the highest part of the tree and sit there as inanimate as an extension of the tree. His limbs sprawled as dangling branches of the tree. He used to stay extremely quiet, not utter a word, sway with the hot wind that rustled through the branches and counted the time before his mother would notice his absence and call for him. Meanwhile, he would remain extremely still and even allow a train of ants to pass through his hands and not flinch an inch.
What if nobody noticed that he was gone? What if nobody found him? Would his parents file a missing report? He had read story of a cat that climbed up high on a tree but would not come down as it was too scared. The neighborhood had to call a fire brigade to take the cat down. Surely he was not afraid of coming down and obviously a fire brigade would create quite as scene. He always got down sooner or later. He preferred an anti climax for a melodramatic end.
He sometimes, used to carry a book with him on the tree and sitting there with his book he would create a miniature world of his own. He would read his story to the tree and add a few twists of his own to make it more interesting.
He opened his eyes and took another drag. He had not changed much over the years. He was still conjuring a miniature world of his own through the books he had been reading. He was living many lives in this cosmos. But his creativity had no place in reality. Reality as such is too harsh to co-exist with art.
Books were his favorite hiding place these days.