The rain falls

19 Apr

The shares are down quite badly. The financial sectors have taken a hammering. His debts are biting back and the monthly payments are growing like tumours in the imagination. It is the night and the rain is falling outside. He sits with his Koran, chanting. He rides the waves of the Arabic in the undulating strain of a Bangladeshi reading God’s tongue. Each undulation rises to a tuneless crescendo, as if he seeks to wall himself in with his voice. The dull song floats out of the gaping windows, into the darkness and the patter of the light rain.

It makes him feel as if he is not sat imprisoned in his house and debts but flying. The Arabic is crunched through his throat without much grace but he is still moving. Even better, he is crushing the vegetation as he charges. His strength is too much for the world.

His roars grow louder. There is no shame in God’s tongue. No-one can complain, not his family nor the neighbours. A frenetic rage urges him on, rampaging through the page of strange sounds. He detests music but he is making it. Music is a refuge from the hunt of thoughts. This is where he is scampering like the hunted fox.

Nextdoor creak out into their backyard and the tinkle of their dog’s collar can be heard. He roars the Arabic even  louder, daring for them to doubt its sound. There is silence in which the neighbour cowers. The dog quivers with a whine and then a growl. Then, it starts barking up at the window violently. Shhh… the neighbour whispers. The dog barks, he roars Arabic and the rain falls.

Then, in the silence, the trickle of liquid can be heard between his recitation. The dog is pissing and, in the tomb of night, it sounds loud, as if the moon is melting. The door creaks shut, as dog and neighbour return indoors and he continues to recite, his voice rising and falling. He is looking for escape from the world but there is none.

He is my father.


Posted by on April 19, 2012 in Abu


2 responses to “The rain falls

  1. hugo batiste

    April 20, 2012 at 5:33 pm

    This is really excellent. I’m envious that you are able to pack so much intensity into so few words, while yet keeping the words from shouting their meaning. Bravo.

    • shahjahanwriter

      April 20, 2012 at 6:44 pm

      Thanks, Hugo. Just so you know, I find the honesty in your writing mesmerising.


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