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Chaperones of sadness, fear, despondency, sorrow were by my side whenever I asked, “Why me?” retracting to the very corner of solitude in my heart, the cold slab of plastic alloy.

It was loneliness, or rather abandonment. “Why choose me to face the dark side of life?” The common question that repeated itself in my head. I was complaining too much about the bane of my existence during the coming of age because I learned about the most detestable facet of my life, not pain, but hopelessness.

Every moment that I spent breathing in this planet, there would be someone worrying about me, feeling the pain that I had to endure. After countless encounters with doctors and specialists, they deemed me to be ‘unsavable’, or ‘need a miracle’. The comments were pure dejection, plainly because they were stating the obvious.

Eventually, my parents cared less about me because they were divorced. It was utterly because of me- my status of being incurable, making the silver cord holding our lives together shredded into fibres of nothingness.

I followed my mum after the divorce, continued with my life, prone to suicide, but not yet, almost. There were a few times that I was brave enough to pull out the kitchen knife unto my pulse, but my heart was not ready to do so.

An inner voice reverberated against my thoughts, there are so many things in life that I have not achieved yet, I dropped the knife, What is life when you do not make the most out of what you got? A sentimental pang hit me. I knew, I did not make the best out of my fragmented facets of life. It felt bad when I wasted one more day thinking about suicide rather than taking my life seriously, given the time was not on my side.

My mum did not really care about me after all this ruckus that had happened, she just left me with a fair share of cash, and asked me to live life for myself, she pre-arranged almost every accommodation in my life, including my education and some of the knick-knacks for my birthdays. I lived by myself, in the heart of Brooklyn, leading a banal life, without any definite aim to live.

At my 15th birthday, I was given a DSLR, equipped with some lens. I peered into the aperture, looking at the world from a whole new perspective, I was simply fascinated by the fact that I could freeze time, capture that particular moment, from a specific angle which depicted an inundation of words of my mind mantled in a picture, a memoir, a record, a mirror. I want to capture as many things as possible before I pass on.

As I was browsing through the album of my apparent lifetime, my lifeline just fluttered across my mind. In a split second, I found myself at the very aperture which greeted me to appreciate life again, seizing the very frame of having the skies suspended under the metallic wings of a plane. After taking several shots from my seat in the airplane, I found myself dissatisfied- my old self showing her ugly side, but I disregarded my imperfection, I told myself that I could do better, and proceeded back into my reverie.

Sinking back into the good old days of my burning heart for photography. I took hundreds of pictures in a day, completely ignoring the fact that I had the disease inside me. I participated in a handful of photography competition. They were disdainful, but I participated just to get even the smallest spot in the gallery.

In a stroll through the The Pulitzer Prize for Photography (Pulitzer), the most prestigious photography award. It was the best platform to revolutionise the photography world, I noticed someone who was shortlisted for a couple of consecutive years, but stopped completely two years back, as if something had happened to him. He was an incognito, the quiet child in class who always aced. I want to know him, he reminded me of my younger self with the problem of perfection despite living in the imperfect world, but honing much more potential than I did.

There was a year in the Pulitzer Prize, both of us got shortlisted, his picture was his tour de force, he almost won the award that year due to some under-table issues. But, let me illustrate, it was a picture that managed to capture the ardour of someone playing his violin, the devotion into presenting his work, the magnificence that he presented on stage, his augmented ethereal demeanor, his acumen posture, the minutiae of that moment, everything at that moment was impeccable.

He did message me about his fascination about my work, I gave him the same feedback, and “Hope we would meet each other someday.” appeared in my chat-box, my heart did a little somersault.

But, we did not contact each other, until now.

Skrr..chh.. “Ladies and gentleman, welcome to Kuala Lumpur International Airport, the local time is 2 p.m. and the temperature is 30°C with a little drizzle…” Finally… this is unfathomable, the last of my days spent on this land of wonders, with the irony of politics, hope I can make this count.

 “Please check around your seat for any personal belongings you may have brought on board with you and please use caution when opening the overhead bins, as heavy articles…” A view of the fly ways caught my attention. It was rather normal, but it was at the right angle, lighting, everything was right in place. I frantically grab my camera, it slammed against the rear of the arm rest. Shit. I looked into the viewfinder, found a cobweb splashed on my view. My finger moved by instinct, hitting the shutter release, capturing a shattering moment for me and my camera, a broken lens.


Previously : Broken Lens #2

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