Walking

Walking and, Without Looking for it, Finding Narnia

Coverage

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But as they went on walking and walking – and walking – and as the sack she was carrying felt heavier and heavier, she began to wonder how she was going to keep up at all. And she stopped looking at the dazzling brightness of the frozen river with all its waterfalls of ice and at the white masses of the tree-tops and the great glaring moon and the countless stars and could only watch the little short legs of Mr Beaver going pad-pad-pad-pad through the snow in front of her as if they were never going to stop. Then the moon disappeared and the snow began to fall once more.

Chapter 10 – The Spell Begins to Break

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They were pretty tired by now of course; but not what I’d call bitterly tired – only slow and feeling very dreamy and quiet inside as one does when one is coming to the end of a long day in the open.

Chapter 12 – Peter’s First Battle

Dear Godfather,

Though not in Narnia – oh this wonderful secret burns brightly within, always showing the way through whimsical times – but in this not-so-glaringly-magical world, there is something that reminds me of Narnia and that is – you’ll find it strange – the act of walking.

Yes, walking and especially in the woods, but also just walking you know, in the garden or any rough road, walking silently, worrying less and losing myself in the surroundings, walking transports me, like every step walked on the land of Narnia did.

Hmm… It seems ordinary, especially when I think, compare, weigh, measure, imagine and get emotional. But when I don’t, when I simply forget to do any of that, I am able to simply walk and that is when the joy of walking makes me feel so sweet.

Do you know, only that day, I lost myself when walking aimlessly towards my house, landing safely, feeling light hearted and cold but in a gentle way.

My journeys on foot in Narnia were plenty, full of dangerous adventures too, but I believe it connected me to the pace of the magic unfolding, for magic was routine there, and so was walking, on the snowy land to the grassy ones through the woods and across the streams, one walked to keep the magic alive within.

Godfather, is it one of the reasons for the Witch’s downfall, for she walked less and used the sledge, until, of course, Aslan… oh, I miss Aslan.

But I don’t feel dismal about it, dear Godfather, I long for Narnia, but I don’t cry, could be because I walk, via lovely pathways, wardrobes, parks, and in the town too, and through the village roads, whenever I can…

Thanks for the most wonderful gift one could ever give a goddaughter!

Love,

Lucy


Author C.S. Lewis, Illustrated by Pauline Baynes

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C.S. Lewis dedicated the book The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe from the Chronicles of Narnia series to his goddaughter, Lucy Barfield, who very much was the inspiration behind the character Lucy Pevensie in the series.

And indeed, Lucy Barfield, a spirited bright person, an artist, loved the book.

“What I could not do for myself the dedication did for me. My Godfather gave me a greater gift than I had imagined.”

Diagnosed with multiple sclerosis at 28, she led a life under restrictions, nevertheless, she continued to shine and must have again walked and, without looking for it, found Narnia for that is what a robin sang about to me.

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Author C.S. Lewis, Illustrated by Pauline Baynes

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Regina Spektor’s Musical World and the Ephemeral Moments of Joy – Part I

Coverage
Delicate dance anthem…
[Source – Pixabay]

Walking down the street with old heavy memories, frozen and hazy, not bothering for a while and the unknown liveliness of the fresh sounds greeting us from all around – the dripping thaw, the golden sunny warmth, the tiny twittering birds, the ‘oh my god’ honking of a dashing car’s ghost that passes by, the hearty smiles and laughter – we blush with hope teasing us, giving us bright ideas, gleaming as we experience our quiet, still mind-pond.

These ephemeral moments of joy, so true and innocent, are hard to capture, harder to sustain, probably that is what makes it so special for and loved by all.


Regina Spektor, the star singer, songwriter, musician, the starry-eyed star, the star magician, knows how to hold such moments very well. She doesn’t capture it, na-na, she only knits a pretty, sweet and soothing melody and then soaks it into such warm moments, letting the melody take this ephemeral colour.

To this colour, she adds free-play, emotions and her pianist-self and, voila, a Regina Spektor song wave is ready.

Listen to “Ne Me Quitte Pas (Don’t Leave Me)” before reading further –

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…And down on Lexington they’re wearing
New shoes stuck to aging feet
And close their eyes and open
And they’ll recognize the aging street
And think about how things were right
When they were young and veins were tight
And if you are the ghost of Christmas Past
Then wont you stay the night?

Ne Me Quitte Pas, Mon Chere
Ne Me Quitte Pas…

Regina Spektor

She amalgamates it all so well, life’s experiences, cut both ways and so gently she allows herself to smile an honest smile. How beautifully this song captures time and lets it go.

And she loves Paris, especially when it rains there and so do we all (at least the rasiks* do).

Listen now to “Dance Anthem of the 80’s” –

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…I’m walking through the city
Like a drunk, but not
With my slip showing a little
Like a drunk, but not
And I am one of your people
But the cars don’t stop…

Regina Spektor

This is nothing but a memory, cold, harsh, but funny in retrospect; one that glares until you glare back at it, acceptingly. And Regina Spektor handles this mixed emotion so peacefully and at the same very eagerly, probably eager for it to evolve.


Also, listen to the live performance of “Dance Anthem of the 80’s”, how sweetly she thanks her audience.

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Here, at Chiming Stories, the blogger will be covering Regina Spektor’s musical world in the coming posts, trying to live and relish her songs in your company, so dear readers ‘ne me quitte pas mon chere’ (don’t leave me, my dear).


*A rasik, in Hindi language, is a passionate and thoughtful being.


Check out the full series here –

Regina Spektor’s Musical World and the Assured Presence of the Antiquity – Part II

Regina Spektor’s Musical World and Perceiving the Emotion Called Love – Part III

Regina Spektor’s Musical World and Addressing the Hero – Part IV

Regina Spektor’s Musical World, the Random Wise Talk and Creativity – Part V.

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Queue to Meet Rossetti and His Friends

Literary Nonsense

Walking in that old lane by the red house, who is that, oh, that is me. I turn left and bump into someone. Someone who happened to be a part of a long queue. Queue to meet Rossetti and his friends.

Don’t push, I said out loud, so that ten people before me and ten people after me could hear it. I said so in advance. And when the twenty some whispered, I shushed them.

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Frontispiece: Rossetti in Childhood.
[Source – Wikipedia]
Rossetti’s Name Is Heard In America.
[Source – Wikipedia]

From the Frontispiece: Rossetti in Childhood to the last one, Rossetti’s Name is heard in America, I maintained the same attitude. I warned and shushed with an irresistible polite smirk on my face.

Walking in that old lane by the red house, who is that, oh, that is me. Allow me to bid goodbye now, I am in a rush, for those twenty some, god-knows-why, are following me.


Read about Rossetti and His Circle by Max Beerbohm here.


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Towards

Walking towards nowhere in particular QJ dared not to stop. For last time QJ couldn’t bear the pandemonium that started within when she dared to stop and nothing happened.

With fragments of that dollhouse in one hand and the key to its door in another, walking often becomes cumbersome and a dull routine.

Only lightning wakes QJ, though her afterthoughts always make an indelible note to herself to wake up before being struck. QJ later laughs loudly looking at her scars.

Lightning in full glory.
Image by Anja, from Pixabay.

Walking towards nowhere in particular QJ glanced at her umbrella. Tap! Tap! The umbrella changes its colour yet again, confusing its owner for a dash time.

Fill in the dash with a pleasant-sounding time period, a warm moment, and a lovely realisation. QJ wonders why she never tumbled while gazing up at the umbrella or the sky, maybe she should have stopped and asked the path.

Instead, QJ makes a funny face, fidgets, and gestures to no-one around her that… oops, she almost fell. Click! Train of thoughts leave a compartment at a station at this moment.

QJ ate dreams, but not the ones that came true. Work makes you hungry for more work, it makes you kind towards your dreams. And this is your prize.  

Walking towards nowhere in particular QJ is joined by the others. All assuming it strongly that everyone knows better than them.

QJ didn’t agree or disagree for hours full of ages and once upon a time when she did, they all left her immediately to follow someone else.

Just a mangy, horribly plump in the middle, slow dog stayed with QJ. It smiled (or didn’t), but those remaining teeth, all-dancing in opposite direction made her feel that every 21st-century disease, malady, sickness was represented by that slow dog.

Hell yeah! QJ cried for the dog didn’t die, but just slowed down further and sat on the path, resting, waiting. Hell lingers.

Walking towards nowhere in particular QJ thinks about faces, veneer in fashion, layers, surface deep dialogues, and her reactions.

A trap! Superficial flamboyant messages received and sent. Afraid of any change, she blindly accepts repetition.

Walking towards nowhere in particular QJ takes out an empty map and begins to draw.

Lines start to run and form a track. QJ retraces her steps and finds her first direction.  

Towards the first direction.
Image by Oliver Mbrax from Pixabay

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Opposite the Nadir

Short Lyrical Prose
White cloudy raga plays… and I am still walking.
[Source – Pixabay]

The igneous surface I am walking on has a tremendous sound stored in it, but in a dense state so that the land appears dead.

The colour is thick black; it stains me anew with every step that I take, entering breath by breath within.

Smog-heavy mood, like heavy chains, has made me hunchbacked. Hollow quietude stays along, walking next to my faint shadow.

I utter nothing, nothing at all – all noise is of the wind; the wind ruffles around greasily, overwhelming me with dullness.

The mind is whimsical, I tell myself after some days’ journey; I continue ahead.

Where to, I ask, am I going?


That was the last I heard from myself.

But I am still walking, walking towards what lies opposite the nadir.


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I Dare To Stop And Watch

When time stopped for a moment…
[Image by Jagriti Rumi]

In the rush and hustle bustle,

I dare to stop and watch.

“Just like a painting”, I declare,

“Just the normal, routine, everyday affair”,

They say, and break my heart.

I click a picture and start

Walking towards where others are going;

Feeling strangely happy, but not showing.

I’ll read the painting when alone,

Savouring its rhythm and its tone,

A soulful visit, now and then.

Who cares for where and when?

In the rush and hustle bustle,

I dare to stop and watch.

… there was joy.
[Image by Jagriti Rumi]

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On A Foggy Day

Whiteness rules a foggy day.
Image from Pixabay
Walking in the whiteness with silence around me, I kept searching. The moment stayed for a few minutes as I moved forward.
 
Caught in the fog I felt happy and I knew I wasn’t alone. The wet freshness flying everywhere made me alive.
 
With every step, I came close to nothing. The road was dark grey and blackish; it was also wet. The grass that was visible was blooming and beaming, full of life.
 
I turned back once, just to check. There was only nothing.
 
Rejoicing and smiling I walked steadily. I was dizzy. I don’t remember the reason for my happiness now. Probably there was magic in the air.
 
In this joy, confusingly, I was looking for something. Maybe that’s why I didn’t stay there for long and I kept walking ahead.
 
In a minute or so, I was able to see the surroundings; trees, cars, buildings, lamp posts, shops, people, and me.
 
The moment of joy passed so quickly that I felt I didn’t enjoy it properly.
 
No one teaches us how to relish things, to realise the moment. I thought I could have done better.
 
But no, I told myself, such things cannot be taught, feelings cannot be caught.



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