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Kriti Khurana

Drama Tragedy

3.9  

Kriti Khurana

Drama Tragedy

Tale of a Forgotten Guitarist

Tale of a Forgotten Guitarist

6 mins
430


The guitar I own is so old that the dust layers it is covered with, from being abandoned for years are enough to form a multi-layer dust cake. I haven't touched the instrument for 5 years now, it's not that I don't want to. The fact that it brings back foul memories and makes me feel uneasy is quite enough to push me away. The last time I played my guitar was when I lost my mother, she got a stroke while listening to my first self-made composition, everyone was there, all the people I call family, my father, my brother and my grandfather. I have dark brown hair and I'm the only one in the family who does after my mom passed away that day.


After that incident, I'm the only girl in the family too and my father has indirectly conveyed to me that no strumming the strings shall take place under his roof, he made it clear to me by giving away my strikers and my notes from the guitar classes I used to take, only the guitar remains and that too for it was a gift from my mother. If she were here, she'd have never wanted me to stop playing but she's not here and this golden brown guitar is seen as the guilty culprit by my father. I have a voice capable of attracting the people on the street and gaining a few pennies through busking, but only the voice and no music to accompany is not the ideal situation, this is what keeps me from rocking on the streets, especially when you live in a town like Los Angeles, talent oozes out of the streets of LA like oil out of Russia. 


My brother has encouraged me to pursue my musical ambitions in secrecy but I don't think any success will be celebrated properly if it isn't with family. "Jolene, get to the table, dinner's ready" I hear my father call out from the kitchen, I walk out of the storeroom and lock the door shut behind me, that guitar is just a fragment of who I used to be in the past, it can not mingle with my present. I have to accept that, no matter how much I long to play and do what soothes my soul. "Beans and noodles are today's showstoppers" Dad exclaims with a sense of pride in his cooking skills. "It smells amazing Nate" my Grandpa said in pure appreciation. "Yes, it does" I add, more out of obligation after my brother Harry shows up from the kitchen wearing an apron and bringing forth a tray carrying stuff which smelt like rotten pork and spoilt beans with a dash of an unwashed sock worn for 2 weeks.


My brother is a horrible cook but he doesn't know it yet and we try to let it be that way and act like the loving family members we are, putting our stomachs up for sacrifices. Everything has long turned back to normal after my mom died, it's foolish to not allow me to play and keep accusing in vain. We all ate the noodles made by Dad and tried to gulp down the beans without allowing it to touch our tast buds. The dinner was done but my appetite was for something else, for awakening the guitarist in me, for going upstairs, grabbing my guitar, cleaning it up and playing it with all my might. Those 11 years when I played my guitar before my mother passed away were the best years of my life.


I sometimes play the guitar kept at my friend Olivia's place, she has a black one which looks extremely royal and as regal as a muscular black horse with its muscles popping. She loves to hear me play and sing, everyone does, all my friends never leave a chance when they can probe me to it and extract entertainment out of my neglected passion. My father has always supported me in all my decisions and made me who I am, the only thing he asks from me is to not touch that instrument but playing it is what ignites the fire in me, makes me feel alive. I'm standing in front of the storeroom again, staring at the knob with conflict in my head, should I do it? Should I break the rules?


Now that I think about it, they've taken the form of shackles, I opened the door, went inside the small and dingy room, full of stuff we didn't remember we still have, in the corner sits my precious guitar, covered with the dust of disregard. I picked it up, ran outside to the staircase, went to the room just across the lobby, which is my room, grabbed an old T-Shirt, dusting my guitar on the way to the terrace while climbing the stairs, my heart was beating extremely fast, I wasn't sure if it was all the running or if it was out of the fact that the guts I had suddenly developed in the form of my rebellious actions were real and being executed.


When I finally reached the terrace, I couldn't believe what I was doing, I dusted my guitar with the damp cloth, sat on a chair facing the City spread out beneath our house, I started strumming one of my favourite melodies, 'Somewhere Over The Rainbow', Mom loved this one and sang along every time I played it. As the song was nearing its end, my tears were on the verge of giving way to an emotional breakdown, playing this song made me so happy and for a moment, I forgot that my guitar had anything to do with my mother's demise. As I finished the song, I was an emotional wreck, my tears and snot were all over my face but just then I heard an applause, people were clapping somewhere, I turned around and saw my family standing behind me, big smiles embellished on their faces with tears streaming down their cheeks, even my Dad was smiling. But why were they all here?


And then it hit me, it's Sunday today, bonfire night, I mentally face palmed myself for being so stupid. "That was wonderful Jolene, why haven't you played in so long?" asked Grandpa. I looked over at my Dad whose smile had turned into a frown, the one which signifies deep thinking, "You can play whatever you want, love. It was a silly idea to keep you from doing something that you love, even more idiotic was my theory of connecting your talent with an unfortunate event, which wasn't your fault or your guitar's." I couldn't believe my ears, I could play my guitar again! I ran into my father's arms and that turned into a group hug with the whole family clutching me tight in their arms, I couldn't breathe but at that moment, everything felt right.


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