She’s an artist by religion and a mother by profession and that’s what she’s been up to lately…..trying to keep both the ‘hers’ alive. She tried to learn sculpture (that’s how she chooses to put it!) at the Maharaja Sayaji Rao University, Baroda, with the Fine Arts Faculty’s Sculpture Department, between 1989 and 1995.She was graced with a Masters and a Bachelors degree in the same. After which she taught for two years at the same university but had to discontinue soon after due to the university’s lack of posts (their loss!) as they put it and she would like to believe.
A few days back, I came across her Facebook status that struck a chord with me. Apparently the status was a reaction to her neighbor’s ridiculous and persistent requests to her to fell the trees in her garden, which shed leaves on their side of the courtyard. This status was a snippet of a poem she had written with regards to a piece of art that she had rendered previously. The magic of those few words only tempted me to dig deeper and bring out the entire poem from her. After reading it and understanding the context of her work which the poem was penned for, I felt it would be unfair if it wasn’t shared with a larger audience. With great pleasure I let Zaida take over the post as she talks about her background and shares the work and the poem that she’s written, which reminds me of the exquisite scent of the Parijaat flowers (called coral jasmine/night flowering jasmine in English) which have been her muse in the work seen below.
Let’s hear it from Zaida as she describes herself in her own versatile ‘pari-doxical’ manner!
I was brought up in a world where childhood meant, running about chatting with people, with dogs, cats, cows, chicken, ducks, insects and trees and most often with my parents and elder sister. And this was done when I wasn’t in school. Schooling happened because it had to and I was educated at best as the ‘Konkan Education Society English Medium School’ could ….in a class of eleven students.
All the same I grew up more, and to my dismay I realize that one doesn’t grow up after 30, you start growing old. And as I grow older I realize those big trees that gave me shade, a nest to fly out of, fruit to eat and roots to hang on to……will leave soon… some have already left. And the world left behind frightens me by its bareness…..its multistory concrete nests, food and lots more.
My helplessness fills me with a feeling of futility in living on, but, sometimes urges me to create and sometimes to write, to seek ears that will lend voices, if there is hope to be heard.I share with you this earnest hope that trees will make flowers forever, a hope that might bring back a childhood for children, of my children and yours….and we will not just wonder at the beauty of a flower after it has fallen, as it sleeps quietly on the ground.
Thank you Vinodini, for seeing, hearing and sharing the work seen below, followed by the poem that was rendered by me in ode to the work seen here.
The context of the parijaat flower for me is that it connects to the way we appreciate something after it is lost…..like we appreciate that flower especially after it falls from the tree.
Now i made flowers for thee
Starry, starry night.