A rusted memory

I vividly remember the smiling faces, the incessant chatter and all that baby talk. You had arrived. How can I forget the amusing look in your eyes when our eyes met for the first time?

I guess you were more intrigued than anything else. You were hell bent on scratching and patting the bonny little baby in front of you. And you learnt to be friends. We became friends. And such good friends! There is something so organic about childhood friends, no pretension, no expectations , no baggage. Even though I ended up carrying all the baggage our relationship endured over the years.  What was just a give and take relationship blossomed into a beautiful bond..And without my knowledge I became your friend and confidante. I kept all your secrets, safe in my heart. It is not my nature to give away so easily unless I am pushed to the limits. And pushed I was, how badly…

Have I ever let you down in all the hide and seek games we had with your friends? Haven’t I always shown you the best inaccessible corners of the house? Was it my mistake if you decided that day to sneak into where you sneaked into? Was it my mistake your buddy shut those strong iron doors and hid the key? How would I know what started as an innocent game would turn into such  breathless, manic attacks! I was the scapegoat again. You hurt me friend, you did that day. You hurt me from inside. And your parents, they thrashed me to ends. With a broken heart, I was banished. You knew the truth, why didn’t you utter a word friend? May be I was expecting a tad too much for my own sake. As someone said, make friends with equals, and I was not one with you. Not with any of your friends, not with your kind.

And you come back now? Why? I was never a part of your life after that incident (which I reiterate was no mistake of mine).You graduated, got your first job, married. But I was jinxed forever. I was useless. Until you welcome the bright little thing in your lives. A bundle of energy he is. I see your reflection in him, a friend that I lost long  ago. A friend I wished to grow old with. Irony is he loves me the way you did once, but I know for a fact he won’t betray me ever. Life has come a full circle for me. I share the same secrets with him now that you once did. I don’t know with my weak memory how much of that I will cherish, but I love him to bits. And he adores me. I am happy like never before.

I don’t want to see your face anymore , old friend. I detest your emotional banter about our troubled childhood together, it was troubled for you, I was always pure and honest with you. I hate you patting and hugging me. I hate you showing  me off to your better half as your first-ever friend. I absolutely despise the idea of moving in with you ! I dont trust you !

For I was not. You just loved yourself all the time, never me. In me, you just saw your own reflection. In me you stored your dearest memories and with me you shared your greatest joys. You just used me to your needs and finally left me in the lurch !

Rusted I am now, but come and see your reflection in me. The mirror is still intact on my walls. You will see how nasty you have grown over the years..

Thanks  but no thanks, please leave me alone..

Your rusty old cupboard …


© “And Life Unfolds” and Subhendu Mohanty, 2014. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Subhendu Mohanty and “And Life Unfolds” with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

10 thoughts on “A rusted memory

  1. Surajit Panda

    Not sure i dare to understand the depth of it dear, baffled if this is a true story or some narration of self reflection in mirror…

  2. Pradeep

    As usual Subh at his best. Love to have face 2 Face discussion on this, to have a deep understanding. Till we meet, let me enjoy reading all this.

  3. vozey

    An interesting story. I really enjoyed this story. It has a nice balance of reflections and previous events. It is a sad piece. I can feel the narrator’s resentment for his own deed, but I can tell he did not find it grounds for the end of their friendship. Even later in life, he cannot forget that memory. The mirror adds more depth to the story and makes the reader questions whether the narrator was really a mirror. The middle of the story, though, doesn’t seem to support this idea, though. Maybe that is my suggestion for further refinement of this piece: fix the middle so it relates more to the mirror.

    Nice work. I will have to read some more!

    1. subhmohanty

      Thank you so much for your like and comment..Yes, the cupboard with the mirror can be a metaphor really…I agree with your point about middle of the story, I originally thought of it as just a cupboard with a mirror, which loses its value because of one incident (boy getting locked up and then it being broken open by his parents and abandoned thereafter) and how it finds a friend again in the little son of the man he is unhappy with. The father when he was a boy used this cupboard with the mirror as a playmate, hiding place and a confidante, storing play things etc there. When he has a son he does the same with now old and rusty cupboard. I added the mirror to add bit a of reflection on the story to show human nature and then while writing realised that this could have multiple interpretations too.
      We attach our memories with inanimate things, what if these things have feelings and did the same to us?

      1. vozey

        It is an interesting story, well-written, and I look forward to reading more of your stories.

        I, for some reason, didn’t picture the mirror having a cupboard, namely because those types of mirrors commonly have a higher ledge on them. If this the case, how did he play with the window so much when he was a child?

        I think if you mentioned that a cupboard was there, it would make more sense.

  4. subhmohanty

    Thanks very good point..Yes, the narrator, at the end of the story is a rusty old cupboard ..I threw in subtle hints like “carrying baggage of the relationship” ,”storing secrets” ,”mirror on my wall” etc..But I would like to thank you for liking this and I am sure your suggestions, comments will help me improve my skills. Hope you enjoy my latest post..

  5. gillandrews

    Very moving story. I also wonder whether it is all fiction or based on personal experience… I’ve never had a childhood friend. We moved too often. I always wished I had one though…

  6. subhmohanty

    Thanks Gill, its part fiction part experience. Well the story here was obviously about a cupboard with a mirror not a real friend. You know the “point of view”..

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