Thursday, February 27, 2014

(4) IT HAS REALLY BEEN A LONG TIME…

Author: Rizwan Ahmed Memon


Village Akil,
Larkana, Sindh, Pakistan
February 20, 2014


Dearest Angly,

When a person waits for someone to come, and something to happen, every moment to him or her seems to have no end. A day looks like a decade, a night like a century. However, it has really been so long since I saw you.

The New Year has come, and you have still not shown up. The winter has set out, and the spring has set in, but there is no portent of your coming.

Now, I can’t hold back my tears. I am tearing myself into pieces. Your long absence is killing me. My notebook has no blank paper in it on which I can write more poems to express my longing. There is an end to everything, but why not to our separation? I was reading some novels, just to keep myself busy and amuse my heart, and the novels have ended, but why has this distance between us not ended?

I waited for you, I am waiting, and I will wait, but I now have realized that this separation, this longing will soon end this waiting and it will take my life. I won’t be here to see you come back because the merciless time is stabbing me so hard in my body that I can’t bear its pain, and it will take my breath out of the body.

If we can’t meet in this world, I hope we will meet in the Hereafter, in a perpetual world. I will wait there for you to come in that world, and finally end this separation.



Yours ever,

Rizwan

Monday, February 24, 2014

Everything is where it was, but you…



Everything is where it was, but you…
Author: Rizwan Ahmed Memon




Village Akil
Larkana, Sindh, Pakistan
January 30, 2014


Dear Alan,

After four years of my university, I’ve returned to my homeland, and I see everything is where it was when I had left. The flowers are in the fields, the waves are in the river, the trees still sway in the wind, and the birds sing. The one thing that has gone is you. 

I was expecting that you would be at the station to receive me. I always thought that you missed me, my friendship, and my company. Where have you gone, Alan? I looked for you on the levees, on the streets, and on the banks of the river where we often sat and you made me laugh with your jokes. 

Villagers say you have changed. I tell them that Alan might have changed to you, but he would always be the same to me. Isn’t that true, Alan? Come back, my friend. I want to see you. Guess what? I have become a writer! I write stories, essays, biographies and poems. I want you to read me my poems. Oh, I want to hear your jokes, go for walks, and walk on the sand on the bank of the river. 

I have often written about our friendship in my writings; this way you were always with me. Now that I am here in my own village, why is there so much distance, dear? I remember you could never spend a day without meeting me. What has happened to you, Alan? I just want to know everything is all right. My friend, wouldn’t you congratulate me on my graduation? I would like to show you the pictures of my university life. When I was far away from my homeland, I missed every tree of my village, every field, every levee, the river, the streets, the singing birds, the herds of cows and bedfellows. I am happy to be back; this is where I belong, but your long absence makes me sad. 

Oh, Alan, February has come. The trees have turned yellow, the leaves have started falling. Oh, the salubrious wind has started blowing. Let’s be together in this spring, on the open grounds where the villagers play cricket and the boys fly kites. Oh, my friend, let’s walk on the bank of the river, which looks like a desert when the water has dried because of the wind. Come back, Alan, before the month of February ends. Now that the winter is about to end, the woodcutters have started going to the forest, the birds have come out of the forest, and they sit on the bank of the river and near the pond in the fields to catch the fish. I look forward to your arrival, dear friend. Let us spend our lives together forever.



Yours friend,
    Rizwan

(3) IT IS VALENTINE’S DAY


Author: Rizwan Ahmed Memon





Village Akil
Larkana, Sindh, Pakistan
February 14, 2014


Dearest Angly,

It is Valentine’s Day today, and I had planned that we would get married on this day, but none of my plans worked out. Half of my family has got separate and has moved to the city. As you know, we are dependent on our parents when it comes to our marriage. February passed, leaving us apart.

My family was ready, too, but your father told them to wait until March. Now, my family has its own problems, so they are not paying any attention to our wedding. What can we do? All that we can do is wait.

By the way, I brought a rose in the morning and kept it in the book I am reading nowadays. The rose was as soft as your hands and smelled like your hair. Every time I looked at it, your face came before my eyes, and the moment when we had seen each other for the first time came into my mind. I have seen you only few times and have hardly heard your voice. Oh, Angly, I don’t know when we will be together forever, and I could watch your face for hours and hear your voice.

It is evening now and I am upstairs in my room. Though the rose, which I brought in the morning, has almost turned dry, it still has that fragrance. I feel the relationship between the smell and the rose is like our relationship. No matter what condition they are in, they still cling to each other. Our circumstances keep us apart, but our love will always be there like the smell of the rose.


Yours ever,
Rizwan

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Autobiography of a Neem Tree

Autobiography of a Neem Tree
  Author: Rizwan Ahmed Memon

I am large, grown up Neem tree, standing on the levee of River Indus in village Akil, Sindh, Pakistan. I can’t really remember who sowed me and when, but people say I was sown two or three decades ago by a villager. Beside me is a shallow body of water and next to it there is River Indus. As I am on up on a levee, down it are lovely fields and some other trees. I am all alone up here.

People often come and rest under me. Specially, cattle herders, people who graze cattle, like: goatherds, cowherds, shepherds, and buffalo grazers. In addition, people with their friends come and hang out here under me when it is hot day because they get fresh air as I am up as if on a hill. 

I am strong enough to face the wind and rain. I love sunsets and sunrises. Every day I start my day with more enthusiasm to provide my service to human beings in the form of my dense shadow.

Many people in my life have come and gone. One person named Rizwan, has never left me since he started coming to me. Firstly, he used to come with some friends and hang out with them by laughing, joking and chatting, but now he comes alone with a pen and some papers in his pocket. He is quiet and kind. He gently touches me and sometimes climbs up on me to watch village graveyard and see the world from a distance. I appreciate his love and company.

I have experienced many aspects of humans’ lives and have learned a lot about them. I have seen many people in my life from kind and caring people to merciless hunters and hardworking woodcutters, anglers, and from rich to poor. It is an honor for me to provide humans a service of my shadow. I don’t know how long I will live still, or when someone will cut me down. However, I still want to live and benefit human beings.





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Autobiography of a Hostel Room

Autobiography of a Hostel Room
  Author: Rizwan Ahmed Memon

I am room number 18 of the Federal hostel at University of Sindh Jamshoro. I am quite wide and comfortable. I am every year allotted to four new students, so I have chance to meet different people each year. However, some students live in here for two years as well. I have two windows one on my front side and other one on my back side. My temperature is lower than the upstair rooms, since the sun doesn’t shine on me. Wind of Jamshoro town helps me remain cooler. I can’t really remember when I was built, but you can guess by this that University of Sindh was there even before the Independence of Pakistan. University of Sindh is the second oldest university of Asia.

That was my brief introduction. What should I tell you more about myself? Oh yes, I am cleaned every day except weekends by an old man. I call him “uncle”. I have never asked his name. However, he is a kind hard-worker employee; he’s been here for a long time. Let me also tell you about the students who come and live in me. Well, I become friends with them in a very short time. I cry for some students when they leave me, while for others I feel happy when they leave.

One such student named Rizwan Ahmed Memon, for whom I cried, lived in me in his second year of university. I knew he was a different guy. On his first day he cleaned me, this is what some students are not willing to do. In his first week, he was alone in the room, as no other roommate had showed up. Rizwan was a simple, silent, and hardworking student. Also, he was a sensitive person. In his loneliness, I had often seen tears falling down from his eyes. He used to miss his friends and family so. He hardly spent any time with his other roommates and classmates. He lived in his own world. He was in Computer Science doing his bachelor's degree. He had kept his computer beside my back side window where he spent several hours on his chair and table studying. He would open the window and watch the Peepal tree near me, which reminded him of his village trees. Rizwan would chat with that old uncle, who cleans the rooms, whenever he saw him. In his free time, he watched movies based on novels and history. In addition, he loved love stories, and watched many of them. He used to watch those movies when his other roommates were out. They used to go out for eating while he would just eat at the hostel canteen. While watching any love story he would cry. In his days of loneliness, I saw him writing short stories, essays and letters out of homesickness, emotions of loneliness and being away form his loved ones. From his writings it was obvious he had written some in past as well, but it was here when he published his first book on the Internet. 

Time with him flied. I remember the day when he left me. The new students came in and said, “From now on this will be our room.”  And they didn’t even give him the chance to say me good-bye. When he left me I felt as if it was just yesterday when he came in me. Even after leaving me, sometimes he visits me and stands in front of me or goes up on the roof where he spent his evenings to refresh the past memories. It is his last semester now, in four months he will graduate and will say good-bye to university forever. I always pray for him and wish him a happy life after university. Years will pass, and I will miss Rizwan very much.