It is another evening. Nobody has cared to light up the house- because there is no one inside. Thick layer of dust lies on the stair handles. The winds carry words like whispers. I have passed this house for many a times. No one lived there I thought.

Then on some other days I see visitors coming out of the door. Why so messy then! The first question that pops in my head. Sometimes I find myself stare at the door and wonder how beautiful it might look if the glass windows wouldn’t be covered in dust, if the trees in the garden would be alive! But it’s not my house. I leave!

Yet on the next day I find myself in front of that gloomy door again- staring at the window- trying to picture the happy life inside. Because I have heard the neighbours say- “there lives a really happy couple”!

I have clouds all over my face- as if it is always raining inside. The weather gets worse. It’s freezing outside but I don’t try to get in. It’s not mine, it’s not mine!

On some other day, the door opens while I am standing on the staircase. I slowly walk inside. Let’s have a look around, I say to myself. I won’t stay, I won’t stay!

I don’t find them there. The house lies empty with all its windows open. I walk through all the corridors. The paintings lie hanging everywhere. Portraits, photos of celebration- I stare at them. How bright, how full of life- yet covered in dust. There used to be happiness once, I think.
I walk around for a while.There rests a cup of tea on the table as if inviting me to get comfortable. I sit on the couch and take a sip or two. It tastes different. The air is heavy here. It smells different- of guava and roses and loneliness!
So deserted yet so overwhelming- the burden of all these memories. I find myself lying beneath them. Oh they choke me, they choke me! I feel suffocated. The feeling of nausea reaches my throat all of a sudden. My eyes try to console me by reaching for the face. But there is no tear, not a single drop! I wonder why can’t I cry!

I sit and sit there trying to find the strength to get up. I must leave, I must leave! But there is no way out. The doors are open and the windows are open but I can’t get out. There is no one to stop me. There is only emptiness everywhere. Yet I can’t get out. I can’t get out, because haven’t you understood? I have made my home here- unknowingly! I have been living here- haunted, deserted and lonely.

Another Ghost Story

The stare does not stop. I still gaze at the road outside my window crying over that life I dreamt of once. They say “let go”! I still don’t know how that works. I still fall in love, still paint my whole future with that person and somehow the whole thing starts crumbling down!

I can not fall in love without a long shared intimacy. People I have shared my stories with- all the madness of childhood or all those meaningless affairs I had, or the songs I hum, the poems I write- those are the people I fall for. So each time they break my heart, they take away with them pieces of me as well. And I feel lost, I feel like I am not myself anymore.
Yet again, unaware, I start hoping again. Again I fall in love.

This time it will be different. I shall be protective. But I have never known how to love with my guards up. So, without even realising I give the key to the lock of my heart away. They get access to the house. They run and walk through corridors.
Sometimes they come across a blurry portrait of someone I painted long ago. They ask questions about it. And they keep walking. Even though the whole house lies empty they get scared. They get scared by the remnants of the last tenant. I assure them of how the deal is no more. But still fear the ghosts. “Ghosts are here” they keep repeating- proving me to be some crazy woman living with lots of ghosts.

But there are no ghosts…only dead bodies. I know. But I keep silent. I don’t tell them how many times have I died in these same rooms, how many times I got stabbed on the back. They could get scared, I figure.
I open more cabinets, more secret passageways to them still. Sometimes I myself wonder how vast this place really is! Almost like a mansion!

They get a little at ease. But the loud cries come at night. And there are days I sit all day long staring at the window. “Ghosts are here” they think!

They don’t leave yet. They don’t leave yet. They try to figure out this place for some time more. And they fail. Again and again they fail.

We watch my favourite movies together with blankets covering our toes. “This scene is my favourite” ,I tell them. They look at me, trying to see those ghosts in my eyes. They fail. We eat home made popcorns. They don’t hold my hands. Yet we laugh about my favourite scene all the more.
And in that moment, I know. I get to know I am preparing myself for another death.