In this brief moment, when the puppeteer above has paused his show thinking about what his next move should be, the puppets below stand still and shocked at their absolute inability to move on their own. For the first time in their lives, they realize how badly they mistook their actions as their own voluntary movements. So, what has their life been? Nothing but a portrayal of some fictitious story weaved by the hands above? Their life has never been theirs. Their reality has been nothing but a performance. What is the relevance of this kind of life? Should it even be called a life? They examine the strings attached to several parts of their body. They want to look up, curse the man who had been leading their lives instead of them but they can’t, not without his permission. In their motionless state, they could feel their mind sinking deep into the ocean of restlessness. They suddenly become aware of the thrilled audience at the front who sat anticipating for yet another wasted show. What joy can one derive from this? From someone’s misery? Are their lives nothing but a medium of entertainment?
Why did the puppeteer pause? They had been living happily in their ignorance! Now, how would they continue breathing with this horrifying realization when every single hope of any possible meaning to their life has been completely annihilated? Meaning of life? Maybe, maybe to be “puppetted” had been their purpose all along. But what kind of purpose is this which is by default, already attained? But this was their reality. This is their reality. Maybe they should just go along with it. But should they not be angry at their pitiable state? At their irrelevant existence? But what kind of relevance would their “voluntary” actions would bring anyway? They would still be on stage. They would be still performing – maybe with a bit of spontaneity but that doesn’t really make a difference! Maybe, it’s good that now they don’t have to carry the burden of making their lives extraordinary. Maybe, it’s for the best that the responsibility of such magnitude has been taken off their shoulders. Maybe things would be simpler now. But the freedom! Aren’t they going to miss their freedom? How could they be so confused, hopeful, furious, curious, morose and even relieved at the same time?
It’s difficult to get out of the maze of their thoughts now. Too late, they went in too far. “Maybe we should simply accept who we are” one of them speaks quietly. Accept who we are? Accept who we are! But who are we? Plastic! Paint! Waste! That’s what our being has succumbed to! And we should just accept that? “Then maybe we should rebel against our own nature,” the crazy man speaks again. What is wrong with this guy? We can’t move a millimeter without this string telling us to and you suggest us to rebel? Are you out of your mind? “Then what should we do?” the man shouts. Who knows! We cannot do anything! Maybe, you are right. We should accept who we are. But it is difficult. It is unfair. It is heartbreaking. It is anything but acceptable. “Okay…Well let me tell you this in that case. Why should we go on about calling ourselves a waste! If we can’t do anything about our situation, then can’t we be happy about the fact that we are also a piece of art? Aren’t we also a creation?” the crazy man says again. What’s up with this guy being so hopeful! We are doomed, my friend. We are DOOMED! “But we had always been doomed. It’s just that we know that now.” Somebody must make this creature shut up.
And suddenly, the puppets find themselves moving again. The puppeteer has resumed his show. They can’t stop themselves from engaging in this dance. They can’t stop themselves from obeying. What pathetic state is this! Can they slip into the zone of ignorance again? Maybe they can. After all, isn’t imagination supposed to be the most powerful tool? And so it begins as the puppets start imagining every movement as the part of their own life – not their performance. Of course, it’s difficult at first. Good things aren’t supposed to come easy. Their minds both protest and comply. But they imagine again. Again. Again. And again until it transforms into an incessant dream of their ideal lives. The strings break away and they dance, walk, embrace with their own will. It’s beautiful! They have finally attained the freedom to pen down their own stories. Who cares about the delusion? Who cares about the ignorance? There’s too much beauty in their independence to think about those stupid stuff! So, they sing! They swoon! They rejoice! They celebrate until…Until the moment, the hands upstairs pause again.
2 thoughts on “The Puppets”
This is really beautiful
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Thank you Ishani! 🙂