It was a long time ago when I read all the Russian folk tales , my father used to get. It was a yearning for the next book, and the next book, and the next. There was a small exhibition that used to get organised in my city, diligently every year. And for me it was a delight, piles of books, with their hardcovers, beautifully illustrated competing for my attention.
I was drawn to the lucidity of the stories, the simplicity of the imagination and the strong voices of the protagonists. Or was it my state of mind as a kid which made me believe , everything is possible. The dragons breathing fire, flying through the vastness of the sky and the feeling of getting transported to this world, effortlessly,sans television, sans video games.
To me , the illustration of the dragon, was killer. I still remember their faces , those jaw lines, those fierce eyes which had a kind twinkle and the tail that was resplendent and magnificent. Today, when I go through my daily humdrum , challenges and struggles, reliving those reading moments give me a kick. It still makes me believe in dragons, in lands beyond our realm, in adventures inexplicable and I realise again ,it’s my state of mind.
What is that we lose when we grow up? We lose the innocence to believe in stories, we lose the confidence to read another one next time, we lose the openness to understand imagination and above all we lose the importance of our minds.
It is the greatest place we can rush to when we are feeling ‘not so good about it.’ It is the greatest beach we can relax on when we are in troubled waters. It is the most refreshing drink that we can have when we want to soothe our nerves.
For me, the dragons never left my mind, they are still living in it,telling the stories they first narrated to me through those Russian folklores. In the hectic pace of life, most times it helps to revisit those dragons , fairies and pixies you left behind.
They are not just memories, they are tales of our growing up in a world that ‘could’ and not a world that ‘couldn’t’ .