An Ode to Adele – Tanishq Khurana

I butt out my cigarette and stare into blank space out in the atmosphere. The smell of the potted plants, wet soil and the smoke from the nicotine diffuses into the air. My hair moves in waves while my vest dances as the soft wind blows. I increase the volume on my speaker. Adele’s ‘Hometown Glory’ starts playing. I sink back into my chair as if entering a black hole and just close my eyes. The piano intro makes my skin numb to the chilling wind and her voice gives warmth to my heart.

My mind scans through the memories I have of my friends, family, girls and random people on those empty streets.

The sound of her voice hits like a train. All the emotions I had kept inside, the emotions I had stored carefully at the back of my head break loose. They all rush to the front. It’s chaotic but beautiful. It’s nostalgic but beautiful. I bury my face into my palms just when the sunlight starts falling onto my fingers, providing its steady light. I can feel my legs getting colder second by second.

My head’s hurting by now. It’s as if it wants me to go through something less painful but I continue. “I heard that you’re settled down…”, she starts singing again after a brief pause of two or three seconds shy of a quarter minute. I rise up again, stick my tongue out as if trying to taste the wind. But all I am able to taste is the loneliness that is giving me company. I glance at my fingers imagining the first time they truly touched the one I loved. The wind alters its course in the bat of an eye. The warmth of the sun influenced this change and the wind is now a pseudo-loo (the hot wind). I think of her hands, her tender fingers. She didn’t have pretty fingers. Albeit, it’ll be wrong to not say that they were beautiful in their own way but they weren’t apt enough to be called pretty. The reason is quite self-explanatory; she was a premature baby. She wasn’t pretty as a baby but she had grown into a gorgeous woman, I must say.

Oh, I don’t know about Adele but I might never find someone like her.

It is three past noon now and the sun has shifted its direction. I light my 7th cigarette and wait a few moments before taking my first puff. I go through my friend list. Similar names and similar personalities. I always made sure of one thing while making friends: NO DUMB PEOPLE. I could not handle people who weren’t intellectual, you see. “Everybody loves the things you do…”, I grin as she so elegantly stretches her vocal chords again. I think of his grin and how imperfect mine looks compared to his. He was windy with short intervals of sunshine but he was a sweetheart. He did look like a movie and he did, indeed, sound like a song and here I was thinking about when we were young. I went away leaving almost all of me behind in his eyes. I close my eyes and take another puff picturizing my last day at that school. I could still picture every inch of that eventful day. I am not an artist but if I were asked to draw this day down, I’d just paint the canvas with a rainbow in the foreground and a lot of black forming a conventional background. He cried for the first time due to emotional pain. He was crying like a baby and so was I. I don’t think I can ever miss him enough. Our wittiness was nothing out of the box but it surely was unprecedented for me.

There goes my 7th cigarette into the ashtray, which is now looking like a collection.

I stand up now and realise how much my back was hurting all this while. I yawn and clutch on to the grill. The balcony was now short of that violent wind and Adele’s voice again fills with some chords and arpeggios. “You’ve been on my mind…”, she starts singing ending at a high note. I look at the speaker with captivating eyes. “Bloody truth”, I think as I realise how she actually had been on my mind all this while.

My girlfriend and to-be wife. She was surely worthy of holding in my arms.

A professional dancer, a writer, a history enthusiast and a lot many things could define her but this was not how I perceived her existence. She was my “One and Only”. Her body was as flexible as the rubber band-like bracelet my wrist is wearing. The sky has lost its light by now and is now wearing the last remnants of light blue while it can– as, soon, it’s going to host blackness as its guest. I sit back down and with open eyes, I let all the light in and visualise that dreamlike woman dancing. I end up experiencing what I experienced the first time I saw her feet nimble atop the wooden floor, with ‘Set Fire to the Rain’ enveloping the room. Her left foot – she’s a lefty – swiftly moved in to perform a pirouette.

The nicotine finally starts getting to me. From my now diluted eyes, a tear rolls down making my cheeks damp enough for me to realise that it wasn’t just a single teardrop. I had been crying from the second she came to my mind.

<i>Adele has always been an idol for me even though I am not a singer. Nobody in the industry at this point of time has the capability to match her voice. I know this will probably never get to her but I just want her to know that she makes her listeners feel emotions better. It’s as if she provides them with a shoulder to cry upon. P.S. Playing alongside her at the Grammy’s will always be a part of my bucket list.

Thank you, Adele, for making me feel.

 

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