Eid Special: Shades & shadows

Shadow birds

Shadow birds

THE temporary au pair, Mina, had shifted to Naureen’s house two weeks earlier with a small suitcase, a fake leather handbag and a shy but eager smile. Naureen was a volunteer for the church group that had rescued the maltreated Bangladeshi woman, and she had prepared herself to deal with a broken and depressed person. It had been a relief when it turned out that the girl in shalwar-kameez, though thin and fragile looking, had a serene face and a cheerful air about her despite her unfortunate history.

A family practice

A family practice

‘YOU have to see this!’ the little girl races up to me, a tangle of limbs lengthening out of babyhood with reckless, heartbreaking speed — matched only by the equally reckless sparkle of mischief in those big, dark eyes.

Companion

Companion

ROSEMARY sprang up on her bed as soon as the table clock alarm rang at 7:00am. She hadn’t slept very well. The reasons were twofold: today was Howard’s third death anniversary and, by a cruel irony of fate, it was also her birthday.

Bay window

Bay window

AASHU opens her decorative bay window in her sunroom, when she sees the sunlight peeping through. She discovers her geraniums are in full bloom outside. This is the beauty with the perennials. Only the first two years one has to work hard. Once it takes, one can enjoy the beauty of this toothy foliage for many summers. There are repeat blooms throughout the season. Today Aashu notices the geranium bushes are particularly looking lovely. Aashu smiles as she continues to look out the window. Today is her eighteenth wedding anniversary.

The spider

The spider

RURKI Rahim and Obaidul Odud finally got married. For both, it was their second marriage. Rurki’s husband had been killed in a car crash two years ago. Obaidul’s wife had been in a mental asylum for the past ten years. Obaidul had first met Rurki at a party. He had been alone, wifeless for the past ten years. And Rurki? Her life had become different, with her late husband’s big fat insurance, profit in share business and hefty bank balance; she looked thousand times glamorous than before. As if she had become part of the rich elite overnight. Her body and face looked classy these days — like a glowing scented candle in a dark room.

Lost and found

Lost and found

CHILDHOOD memories are not something I generally visit very often, mostly because I don’t really remember my childhood very well, but also because of what little I remember, everything seems surreal, like a fantasy, as if I was living in a dream. Naive and silly dreams, the kind only a little boy of 5 would have. But there are a few memories that I remember as if they happened just yesterday. Relatively speaking, those events seem far recent than my latest year in university. These memories have become little cautionary stories that guide my judgement and aid my conscience. Overtime, most of these memories have become diluted, abstract, almost mythical, but there is one memory I can recollect better than most others.

In my solitude

In our daily life we come across
so many people. Some of the faces
from them always draw our attention.
A few of them are so pleasant that
you always feel happy about them.

Uninvited guest

Uninvited guest

I WAS startled as I felt something at my back. I was preparing for the professional exam of anatomy late at night with my table lamp on. I shared the room with two other senior girls. As I turned around, I saw Rita with hair spread all around her face. She had a strange look on her face. Her hand was travelling down my spine.

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