Monday, June 27, 2011

The Edge of Sorrow's Blade

          In 10th grade we did a poem in school called “The Soul's Prayer” which talked about a person wanting to experience every joy, every sorrow- every single emotion that life can mete out.

                   “Spare me no bliss, no pang of strife
                    Withhold no gift of grief [I crave]”

          Why, I wondered then, as did most of my classmates, would anyone ask for so much pain? If you are going to receive what you ask for in full measure, why not just ask for the happy bits and live a complacent life?

          I wondered much the like when I heard a song  where a line went

                   “…And when I’m at the edge of sorrow’s blade
                     Show me how a heart breaks”

          I pondered over the meaning of this line, each successive time I heard the song and my views on it changed gradually, from finding the songwriter raving mad to being more and more intrigued and enamored by the melancholy in the line. Call me a mush but any song lyrics or poignant lines in a book that talk about hearts breaking move me to an almost teary state. Somewhere along the way I’ve starting wanting to feel those very emotions I read and hear of. I don’t know if I’m just being morbid when I think so, but tragedy and the utter……despondency you read about or see depicted in films is rather attractive at times. It draws me into its soul and sifts through my mind until I can no longer think straight.
          Every so often, I think all of us sit with earphones on, listening to a sad song, reflecting on the poignancy in the words, making a music video in our mind about the situation, around it and the part you play in the tragic melodrama.
          Maybe the reason why pain, sorrow, heartache-all of them, fascinate us so much is because all of us want to see how far we can all go, how strong we can prove ourselves to be, until what point will we be capable of going before falling completely apart.
          But we never really will know how much we can bear and how strong we are until we face it, will we? The human spirit never fails to surprise its keepers.A line from the book "PS-I love you" really shows you how, when Holly tells her sister Ciara-If your husband died, you would cope if you had to. There’s nothing brave about it, there’s no choice involved.
          And that’s the way it is, whatever pain that’s meted out to us in life, you learn to cope with it if you have to. Because there’s no choice involved. And because survival is our primary instinct. So really, pain should not scare us that much at all…

-Nirmitee Mehta


green ink said...

My husband doles out a line from Star Trek a lot on this subject. I think it's when Kirk has the chance to have all the pain of his past erased from his memory so he will no longer be haunted by it. But when that moment comes, he refuses. "I need my pain," he reasons. In other words, it's made him who he is. Removing the pain would remove his essence, and perhaps good things that have come about because of it.

It's a good reminder for me, much as I wish some painful things in the past hadn't happened to me, they have been character building but also bumps in the road that have led to some amazing places.

It's also ying and yang - without pain, how would we know joy and happiness? One cannot exist without the other.

And you do cope, when you have to. It's amazing what the human spirit can survive.

Lovely post :)

And PS, I Love You is one of my favourite books!!

Nirmitee said...

That is so do need pain to be able to appreciate life when it is rosy.
Thank you :)