The dilemma of an artist: But who am ‘I’?

Published: December 15, 2013
Email

I give them life, their anguish is my torment, their gloom is my melancholy. They are my mates or are they not? Bit by bit consuming my soul. Then who am I, mere mould in a statue shop?

Who am I?

The wearer of characters,

The bearer of their pains.

My lips vibrate, my eyes rain,

My heart burns in their agony.

Applause.

 

But who are they?

Fragments of a writer’s imagination?

Words scattered on a script?

I give them life,

Their anguish is my torment,

Their gloom is my melancholy

They are my mates or are they not?

Bit by bit consuming my soul

Then who am I, mere mould in a statue shop?

Applause.

 

Ah that applause!

I live for it but what is it?

An echo of emptiness

That will haunt me till my grave.

Oh my life but what a life!

My characters are my shadow,

My muse, my madness, my mourn

My characters are half of me.

Inspiration

At the end of the play “A Walk in the Woods”, while the hall resonated with the continuous applause for the actors Rajit Kapur and Naseeruddin Shah on their marvellous performance, the moist eyes and forlorn radiant face of Rajit unveiled that he is still in the persona of his character, burning in the fire of a diplomat ‘Ram Chinnapa’ and his inner conflicts between his existence as a negotiator and a human being. That was the moment when Rajit and Ram’s souls were unified. But Ram had no existence, he was a character brought to life by Rajit. This is the dilemma of an artist. Characters are non-entities without an artist but the artist is also incomplete without them.

Durre Ajam

Durre Ajam

A student of MA TESOL (Teaching English to the Speakers of Other Languages) at LCWU Lahore, who is interested in World Literature, Language and society, Language and politics.

The views expressed by the writer and the reader comments do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of The Express Tribune.