About Me

I have done a lot of things in my life and have also worked in many different jobs to make a living and to experience life. This blog is just some of my musings, sometimes funny, sometimes inspirational, sometimes sad, sometimes angry, sometimes simple but all the time, it's just me.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

The body, it crumbles; grace and vigor, depart.

What do you see people? .......What do you see?
What are you thinking......when you're looking at me?
A crabby old man, ....not very wise,
Uncertain of habit ........with faraway eyes?
Who slurs his words ....... and dribbles his food.
When you say in a loud voice....."I do wish you'd try!"
Who seems not to notice ....the things that you do.
And forever is losing .............. A sock or a shirt?
Is that what you're thinking? Is that what you see?
Then open your eyes......you're not looking at me.
I'll tell you who I am ....... As I sit here so still,
As I do at your bidding, .....as I eat at your will.
I'm a small child of Ten......with a father and mother,
Brothers and sisters ......who love one another
A young boy of seventeen ...........with the burden of his family
Dreaming to be a doctor ......... but working in a dock.
A groom soon at Twenty four .........my heart gives a leap.
Remembering, the vows........that I promised to keep.
At Twenty-eight .......... I have young of my own.
Who need me to guide ...... And a secure happy home.
A man of Thirty ......... Another young one comes early,
Bound to each other ......... With ties that should last.
At thirty-two and thirty-four .... Two sons come after the daughters
At thirty-five, my young daughters ........have been sent away,
But my wife's beside me........to see ! I don't mourn.
I drown myself ..... in my work and earning money,
Hardly ever able to .... spend time with my sons or my daughters.
At Fifty-three, once more, ......... my Son's leave the home,
Further their studies ....... Away from home.
Four years later ...... one son returns,
And another son ........ remains away forever.
Dark days soon come upon me .......... My wife is now dead.
I look at the future ...........I shudder with dread.
For my young are all away .......in lives of their own.
And I think of the years...... And the love that I've known.
But sometimes dread ..... of the love I have not shown.
I'm now an old man.........and nature is cruel.
'Tis jest to make old age .......look like a fool.
The body, it crumbles..........grace and vigor, depart.
There is now a stone........where I once had a heart.
But inside this old carcass ...... A young guy still dwells,
With hope for my children ...... and love for them all,
Soon I hope ..... God will unite me with my loved wife,
And life will start again ....... for this soul of mine.
~ Anonymous and significantly modified by Nil

This is among my most difficult post and the poem says most of it. It is not easy to write a complete story and hopeful I will do justice in this post. Hopefully, it will get a bigger chapter in one of my future books.

I stand in awe of my father, sometimes I stand in fear and sometimes in anger. However, most of all, I stand in front of him with love.

My father was born in 1934, and for a 77 year old man, he is relatively quite healthy, independent and strong.

When he was 16, studying in high school, apprenticing with a medical doctor, he had dreams of becoming a doctor himself.

However, due to the war, and misunderstanding between his father and his uncle, his father (my grandfather) retired early.

The burden than fell on my father, being the oldest in the family, to go out there and start earning and supporting his parents and young brothers and sisters.

He started working in the dockyards in Calcutta and soon made his way to the dockyards in Penang, working for the same uncle that cheated the father.

My father's earlier working life has been one of being cheated or being deceited. He worked with his uncle, whom cheated his father and eventually my father felt cheated too.

Then he worked with his "mamma", another sort of uncle, a friend, they started their own business. He got cheated there too.

He decided to go back to India but was persuaded to come back after 1 year. He worked as a proxy director in MWE, here he thrived but it was short lived.

Then he worked in Patel Holdings, again, he was cheated over here of income and other monies owed to him.

For a while he was without a steady income, and started something with the late director of Kamdar where he was also somewhat cheated.

Finally, he went to Alka Ria, where he remained a director for a long time until his retirement. At the same time, he was a silent director of another wholesale carpet company where he made his money too.

While he has been cheated in many companies, mainly run by Guju's, he has always made his money, somehow. His luck has been good.

That was his work life, in brief.

At home, when I was 11 months old, my 2 older sisters were sent to live and study in India. This was due to a "big event" that shook the Guju community in Penang. That is a story for another time.

When I was growing up, my dad would be working so hard on weekdays and even Saturdays and sometimes even Sundays, that the most I saw him was likely on a Sunday.

When we went to school, he would be sleeping and when we went to sleep, he would not be back from work yet.

But on Sundays, we had fun, we had picnics, we had family outings, we did stuff together.

My father was always strict but he never really raised a hand on us or beat us except for that one time I got slapped.

My father was always kind but after many years of being conned, I think he became hard, his heart became hard too.

My father was always a generous man especially with food, and again, I think because of his past and his karma, somethings have changed over time.

When my mother died in her sleep suddenly about 12 years ago, my father changed. Some for better and some not so.

Despite all the hardships in his life, he is a wonderful person, and he has been blessed with many miracles in life.

And he will continue to be blessed with many miracles in life before his time is up, and God has not decided yet when that would be.

He has gone through a lot of challenges in his life, yet through God's miracles, he has strove and he had done well.

I do love my father, dearly and with all my heart. I am sorry for the hurt I have cause him. I seek his forgiveness. And I thank him for being there, when needed.

Once my father lives passionately, loves completely, learns humbly, he will definitely leave boldly.

Take care and be well.


Derland said...

Seu blog e excelente, seus textos também são ótimos, vou tentar me inspirar no seu blog para melhorar o meu, se quiser depois e só da uma olhada o link ta logo a baixo: http://derlandreflexivo.blogspot.com/

Anonymous said...

Great writing talent! Discussing family details in public is not such a lovable or polite or civilized action, especially between husband and wife of another soul living in the same hut...

One must start truly loving and forgiving not simply subscribing to ideals.

Everyone gets crappy, washing dirty linen in public is not what anyone who has a tinge of morality does...

Blogging is fine, respecting others while we blog is a very clear line that should not be abused.

One Guju To Another One

PS Gandhi was a Guju. Espounging global ideals but not accepting ethnicity is either an inferiority complex or plain hypocrisy!