Posted by: gdevi | June 27, 2014

I, Cloud

You are overworked, my friend said. Tell me what you see around you right now, she said. Not-summer summer, I said. Paper paper everywhere, I said. It is all work, I told her. Grants, articles, books, paper. When I sleep, I plan recycling trips in my mind, I told her. But I want you to call me and talk to me, she said. Oh, I don’t know, I said. I am not the phoning kind, I told her. I think of you, I said, but I am not much of a phone person. I reserve the phone for the water bill and the yard person. Well, how will I know how you are if you don’t call, she said. Send smoke signals, she said! Why not, I said. Smoke signals over Brooklyn it is, we laughed. Or clouds, I suggested. Don’t clouds look like human beings, I asked her. When I look at clouds, I see the faces of people, I said. In old buildings in India, in ruined walls where the plaster is peeling, in the dirt and the grime you can see human faces, if you look long enough. A Gayatri cloud, she asked? Sure. Why not? I said.  When we were kids, we used to make puppets with our fingers and project them on the wall with a light source behind them at night. Dog, deer, bird, I told her.  They are very real even though you just made them up. If you can see Jesus in the shroud of Turin, why not a human being in a cloud, I said. Clouds make wonderful people, I said. Remember that Jimi Hendrix song, “She’s walking through the clouds . . .” You know, for the longest time, I misheard it as “she’s walking through the crowd” and it used to disappoint me. When I finally figured out that it was “clouds,” I was so relieved! Because that divine girl–she is a mythical figure like Isis– can only walk through the clouds, and not crowds. Whew! So think of me in a cloud over Brooklyn, especially, when you need rain, I told her. You can also call me, I told her. I love my house and I will be here.

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