She sat there, under the canopy of her fluid hand drawings, furiously making notes that were going to prove helpful in the coming exam days. Her room was really quiet. The only sound was the ink pen running freely on the pinkstriped notebook, with no intentions of ending the sentence in a period. Her hair was tied neatly in a bun, flanked with single strands of hair on both sides.

She lit up a cigarette lying right next to the table lamp on the nightstand.

As she sucked in the first drag, the tobacco burned intensely, in agreement with the hand painted words staring right at her from the far end of the wall – Fire, Passion, Release.

The smoke twirled around her pen, enchanting the paper as it spread out evenly on all sides.

She sat upright, reeling in the momentary buzz, and glanced at her pink nails, oddly complimenting the notebook. A sudden roller-coaster of thoughts broke her writing spree. She stared ahead into the depths of her paintings pinned on the walls.

To an artist, intoxication, however transient, is always a stimulating mix of conscious enlightenment and creative awakening. It’s when the demons transform into butterflies and fly in the infinite mind space, sketching rainbow arcs in the stark grayness of idea clouds, exposing the true grandeur of art.

Like the idiom goes – ‘letting the demon out‘.

She broke out of her reverie just in time to keep the blanket from collecting ash. Her phone was ringing incessantly. Taking offence for breaking her chain of thoughts, she dumped the wailing monster under the blanket. She held the cigarette stub between her index finger and thumb, and flailed it in the air till the ashtray felt the familiar coating of “dust”. She was a novice smoker. Her flick of a cigarette often resulted badly.

As the silence engulfed her again, she took a second puff and blew it towards the ceiling. The strands of hair on her neck shimmered with silver reflecting in them. Her eyes caught sight of a pink suit hanging in the cupboard beside the bed. She whisked the thought away when someone knocked on the door.

Her room mate entered wearing pink bottoms. She kept asking her the meaning of a word she couldn’t understand, but her mind was fixated on the color pink. Why? She couldn’t fathom the reason behind this. She told her roommate that ‘Carpe Diem’ means ‘live the day’ and got back to her chain of thoughts.

Isolation is an essential part of an artist’s life. Detachment from wordly affairs, however short-lived, oils the rusty wheels of creative cognition and puts the cogs in motion.

Epiphany struck her so suddenly that the cigarette fell from her hands, making a tunnel, charring it’s woolen sides, as it dug deep into the blanket. A convulsion crept its way from the bottom of her spine and her whole body shuddered.

It’s amazing how the chain of thoughts that centered around her drawings coincided with her subconscious, constantly reminding her of the color pink.

She was at 8 weeks. 
And now she knew she had to push to 40.

Kartik Dulloo

Growth Hacker | E&C Engineer | Spell-Bee Runner up | Part Grammar Nazi, Part Grammar Hippy | Failing Anglophile

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