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Saturday, January 5, 2013

Over The Cliff

This post has been published by me as a part of the Blog-a-Ton 35; the thirty-fifth edition of the online marathon of Bloggers; where we decide and we write. To be part of the next edition, visit and start following Blog-a-Ton. The theme for the month is "...and the world was silent again"


He was where he shouldn’t have been; over the cliff.

Tired of climbing the steep, he paused to steady his panting and wild heartbeat. Two more labored steps and he was on the top of the jutted out edge, overhanging the full flowing river hundreds of feet below. 

Exhausted by the physical effort of climbing, he slowly looked up and was struck by the mega-picture that lay across his vision. The clouds were blushing red, orange and at places deep purple across the sky as if feeling ashamed in admitting their half- hearted attempts to cover the sun and hide its brilliance. The more they tried to block it, the deeper red would they blush for failed attempts. Accepting defeat, they finally grinned in silver hued line across the blue.

The recent memory of conflicts and internal family squabbles failed him momentarily. The lucid interval extended as he drank through his eyes. All senses with heightened awareness suddenly opened their pores to receive ethereal inputs. For a moment, he was lost in the beauty unashamedly unveiling before his eyes. Moss covered stones and silhouettes of hills meditating across the sky took his breath away. A forest on his left extended to infinity. The planet had conspired to seduce him at that moment. The cacophony of daily living was slowing being replaced by the universal silence. It started to seep into his soul.

With a heavy heart, deeply inhaling fresh air, he looked sideways.
Holding glistening droplets of water were tall Canna leaves on the side. Gently swaying in the mild breeze were few bright yellow dandelions reminding him of his vivacious pigtailed daughters. They jostled for his attention, competing for every second of his time. Slowly he remembered why he had climbed the cliff.

Everything was picture perfect in his house but then came the market crash sucking up all his savings. This in turn sent his personal life into an uncontrollable spin. The pink slip only added to his woes. With his wife’s accusations on his foolhardiness, the black hole just got bigger drawing him into a whirlpool of miseries.

The madness of Reema only compounded his unrelenting depression. They both became unmanageable. Thirty lakhs loss became insurmountable with lenders queuing up to realize their loans. “Go to hell,” she shouted grinding her teeth unable to hold intact her crumbling world. Unkempt and preoccupied during days, she sobbed in her sleep. Their daughters looked on petrified with uncertainty of the protecting walls crashing down around them.

Deep down, he heard the roaring river gushing water through narrow channels making its way headlong without a care for the world around. Nothing could hamper its onward journey to its purpose. Mocking impediments on its way, it frolicked along serpentine bends only to encounter steep falls. Joyously it hurdled down in ecstasy to feel the thrills of its adventure. While jumping down the heights, it spread a thin mist all around helping weeds grow at peripheries and flowers bloom. Its delinquent race ahead caused him to internalize his own rash decisions.

His smile slowly turned into a grin and then broke into a laughter that reverberated across the valley below. It was carried by the wildly running water to far off mountains, and echoed back though winds on double speed. The priceless pleasures, strewn across horizon nudged him to live.

He remembered the fresh early mornings when he would get up stealing stale kisses from Reema’s lips; the hotchpotch of waking up kids and sending them to school; the festivals and their arguments about entity of God and its greedy wish to be idolized; life littered with broken promises and their making up with new ones.

The enormous system made his problems look trivial. How could he, a grain of sand in that heap full of mound not know the significance of them both? They were integral part of each other. How could one be without the other? Where would be the mound without the grain?  A sound needs air to travel but air needs sound to carry it on its wings. Where is the discrepancy?

Standing inches from the edge, he took a deep breath realizing the folly of his reckless decision. He would go back to life and make another mound, merrily course through life like this river and shine like this sun and blush like this cloud on its foolish failed attempts.

Before stepping back, he once again looked at the afterglow of the golden orb and then bent down to say goodbye to the frolicking river. For a fraction of a second, the depth caused his head to reel and his foot slipped.

The world was silent again….

The fellow Blog-a-Tonics who took part in this Blog-a-Ton and links to their respective posts can be checked here. To be part of the next edition, visit and start following Blog-a-Ton. Introduced By: Panchalibolchi, Participation Count: 01
Madhvi's Mindscape - Over The Cliff


  1. Just goes to show one can't take life or death for granted. Once you are a step from death, even a decision to return to life sometimes seems far. All the best for BAT.

  2. Dr Madhvi....
    - awed and spell bound! Yes a mere superficial glance does not do justice to a landscape- there is so much life quivering under cover and overt as well!
    I think you painted a much bigger picture than you pasted, and I thoroughly enjoyed
    the entire story. Very hard hitting, but soooo true....
    ATB for BAT !!
    Your link is not opening properly...:((

  3. Thanks Leo. Yes, at times we realize the significance of life too late.


  4. Panchali
    Thanks for dropping in. The link is not opening at all. Its okay. I just took it.'


  5. When we are very much alive, death seems to be just an escape from life! But when we approach death, we will know how it is! The best way of escaping from life is to live it :) Nice one :)

  6. Yes. Don't we trivialise Life till we have it and plead for it when it slips away? such is human nature.
    Thanks for the response.


  7. Yes. Don't we trivialise Life till we have it and plead for it when it slips away? such is human nature.
    Thanks for the response.


  8. Very well narrated story. Makes me think about the story again!

  9. Thank you aativas. Glad you enjoyed it.