This is a picture of jazz instruments displayed in a music store that's closed. I've used jazz to symbolize life and to talk about how art intrudes and causes chaos. Hence the image.

I’m leaving, and I doubt I’ll come back, but you know how the flick-knives of fate are, pushing you into a room with an empty canvas, the brush and the paint beckoning you to paint again. But I’ve learned that a stroll in a picturesque park can do away with the urge. Writing was never my life, and it’s my life that needs writing: pages and pages of musical notation with an odd time signature; piano jazz with light touch drumming with a Brad Mehldau or Triosence feel to it. Something ethereal and delicate that’s becoming this acquired taste that I can’t get enough off. And don’t look for me in my lines, or between them or in the minutiae spaces between the syllables. They never made me anyway. Don’t look for me in pictures posted on social networking sites. They’re just simulacrums of what’s there. A picture speaks, but doesn’t allow you to smell the soft earth, feel the breeze, or taste the sweet dew coating the leaves. I guess I was wrong about so much, and right about so little. And my mistakes taught me that this tobacco hazed room with its books and notes scribbled isn’t really the jazz that’s life. There’s so much more bebop in meeting people, light conversations, runs and swimming, so much exhilaration and thrill in listening to concerts by the local indie band, so much to perceive by just getting out there and watching somebody hum ‘Freedom,’ by Mingus rather than listening to it, resting against the headboard of my bed with my iPod on. There’s so much more fusion of senses found in places other than the local bookstore: maybe a bar with beer, where I’m just hanging out with a few old friends, and the girl I crushed on in college, or was it after college? And will I juxtapose art and life like cool jazz, the alto saxophone being life and the piano art? I don’t know and honestly, I don’t care. I want beauty, love and should I go far and say infinity? Not something esoteric, or out there, but just the infinity of each moment.

© Nitin Lalit Murali (2019)

8 Replies to “Art and Life”

  1. And don’t look for me in my lines, or between them or in the minutiae spaces between the syllables. They never made me anyway. Don’t look for me in pictures posted on social networking sites. They’re just simulacrums of what’s there. — just a few of the lines I loved.

    1. Thank you so much my friend. I’m glad you liked those lines. This was a bit of a confessional unlike a lot of the fictional stuff (that some weirdos think is real!) I write. Lately I’ve been wondering if all the sacrifices we make for art is worth it. Must I go out there and forge a life for myself that I’ve missed out on or should I continue writing?

      1. I recently had this conversation with a blogger friend about how some people take literally what we write. Oh, well…

        Confessional or not, this is a great piece of work — as is always the case with your writing.

        As for the dilemma: I am not sure of the answer, but I know that if you ever stopped writing, it would be a loss. I mean it.

      2. Yeah I get you. I’ve had some people target me on WP because they think my posts are all confessional. I do a bit of both, but they don’t seem to get it! And I don’t know if I’ll quit writing, but I don’t like a few things that are going on in the WP community. Contact me and I’ll tell you the details. And thank you so much for your words of encouragement. They inspire me to keep at writing even if things are difficult.

      3. I’m sorry to hear that. In every community there are some people who have nothing better to do than bother others, and WP is no exception.

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