Need a Strong Rope

Quests have defined every past stage of life. Love, perfect grades, popularity, acceptance, better grades yet again, mastery over mathematics, driving away loneliness, seeking togetherness, seeking orgasmic conclusions, time – always time, a child, a desire to live the world through a child’s eyes again, more money, better homes, better cars, better jobs, respect at work, more friends, love again. There are quests and there are quests and they vary by age, by levels of maturity or immaturity. We were born to search, hard wired for searching,for blind searching, our targets always moving, the landscape forever changing and adjusting, moving in and out of focus.

And so we muddle through discontent, seeking greener pastures, higher curves of indifference and constant trade-offs and compromises as we progress through our lives, swimming through a sea of molasses of our own creation. We come to the forks in the road and we take them, laying out a road map or a bridge for ourselves as we go along, or, viewed alternatively, perhaps hacking away at the very branch on which we sit. And life happens to us, without our realizing when or how it happened, it just happens. We collect our share of joy, of angst, we make enemies and friends, we get angry, we laugh and then the sun sets and it’s time for a new day.

Every past experience helps us understand how futile our blind efforts are and how we are mere specks in the grand scheme of things but it doesn’t stop us from writhing in agony one moment and exultant the next, always in disequilibrium and disruptive of the equilibrium when we do manage to achieve it. So what do we do now?

Speaking for myself, I appear to have skated through life in excellent form, each transition from the moment a thought took shape within the nooks and crannies of my brain to the time of execution, all in one flawless motion.

We all suffer from this fear of relishing our good fortune. We are not supposed to talk about how lucky we’ve been as we’ve spun the wheels of life or as we’ve dodged each bullet in life’s Russian roulette, for if we talk about it we jinx it. We must be humble, we must count all our blessings whenever we are faced with misery and woes all around us and say a soft prayer that things work out in a similar fashion for all those who we know and love. I am as fearful as the fellow human beings I describe. For ‘skating’ is never as grounded as walking, as the act of planting each foot firmly on the ground, one after another. Skating has an element of defiance, of challenging Him, thumbing our noses at Him, showing him we are better and faster and overall, immune. It is a refusal to acknowledge that He who allowed us to skate might bring us to the edge of a precipice with equal ease and that the brakes on skates are never terribly efficient, especially when our senses are dulled with complacence.

I wouldn’t be surprised if I have reached this ‘edge’. Any moment now, I’ll see the world drop off into an abyss. Am I on alert, will I be able to see it coming? My quest now is for the wisdom, the intuition, and the reserves that would prepare me for this abseiling adventure. Others have gone before me, many have missed their cues, and many have proven themselves expert rappellers. Where will I land? Will I slow down and stop in time as I see the precipice approaching? I seek a stop sign; I seek a sign that says – “Danger Ahead”. Oh and yes, a rope a strong rope! That is now the quest.


  1. Well great!She's wondering why she doesn't have enough trouble.Some People…..!!!VM

  2. enjoyed this Pragya — including both the quick-fire sequences of image — << … hard wired for searching, for blind searching, our targets always moving, the landscape forever changing and adjusting, moving in and out of focus. … >>, as well as the slower transformation of image (skating into rappling) … understated elements of prose-poetry.

  3. just too good !Regardsvishwesh

  4. Yes, and I fear that precipice is inevitable. Perhaps you begin with a small hole, one you can easily jump over. However, the "holes" will become bigger, reaching a point where you can neither jump over it, or go around it. There is always a stop sign, but we may not notice it, or simply ignore it.We might fall into that abyss, or just jump into it ignorantly… it is then, at the bottom, that we realize it is time to take off our skates and climb up the cliff if we ever want to make it to the other side. Knowing that it is a difficult task, some people will refuse to climb, to resolve their problem. They were slowly, but surely reaching the edge, yet they refused to acknowledge it. A scent of ignorance is kept as they tie knots with the laces on the skates, even if the bottom is muddy and skating is impossible. They try to get up and skate, but they slip. They climb, but the skates slip on a rock, and they fall, feeling pain once again. They give up, staying in that hellish place.Those are the ones that will never find a greener pasture, or a richer existence.Then there are others that will know what to do: one foot in front of the other, your skates on your back, and your arms embracing the cliff as you climb, climb, climb. As they climb, they wish for a rope to help them. Sometimes it will be there, but most of the time, they are on their own, and so they prepare. They build up their strength, so that when they try to climb, they do not fall back again… and even if they do, they will not give up. …This gap is there for us to cross it, not for us to remain trapped in it, or to avoid it. It is a test, to prove if we are deserving of better. Wisdom is not always avoiding that gap, sometimes it is knowing that the only way to keep progressing is to cross it. It is knowing what to do and how to do it. It is confronting this obstacle and defeating it…Bleh, my wording is not the best, as is my grammar.

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