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Bits of Beauty
|by P. G. R. Nair|
Wordsworth in his beautiful poem ‘Daffodils’ rapturously narrate how his heart is imbued with infinite happiness at the sight of a sea of daffodils. For him, daffodils symbolize the joys and happiness of life.
“I wander’d lonely as a cloud
There are many occasions in our life when we are exposed to fleeting visions of beauty that adds enchantment to our mundane existence. I recently read the following passage written by Maupassant in an essay collection and was struck by it. I wanted to utter ‘carpe diem’ and thought to jot down some lines on its import.
“From time to time I experience strange, intense, short-lived visions of beauty, an unfamiliar, elusive, barely perceptible beauty that surfaces in certain words or landscapes, certain colorations of the world, certain moments….I’m not able to describe or communicate it, I can’t express it or portray it. I save these moments for myself….I have no other reason for continuing, no other cause for keeping on….” (G. Maupassant- French short story writer, famous for his story –“The Necklace”)
I believe all our lives are replete with such “strange, intense, short-lived visions of beauty”. Mortal and immortal moments mingle in abundance in our everyday existence. It could be the smile of a destitute, the alluring voice of someone you talked to on a dreary day, the memory of a genuine gesture, the spotting of a full moon as you drive home in a hurry, a tawdry artifact that lingers in your memory on a visit to an ordinary home, the glow a tomato like a red lantern in a vegetable shop. The list is endless. Your mind gleefully captures and retains it to beam before you on a day you search for a blade of grass to smile at. In such moments one experiences something incomprehensible and piercing, both extravagant and absolutely fundamental.
“In vacant or in pensive mood,
We can see such shards of beauty even in some boring films and novels, a vision that visits again, a line that delineates something essential about life. Without these momentary beauties, life could be appallingly intolerable.
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