Can’t remember the first time you shashayed to tinkle bells inside my heart. Felt like drum bells. When was it, I first encountered your gaze on screen or adorning the pages of glossy magazine bought feels like rocket science and tough nut to crack. Love at first sight…the first dekho of you. How can someone be so perfect and designed with pure, unadulterated love?
I was growing as a teenager in the 90s and the only solace to escape my anger or rebel openly declared to the world was Hindi cinema, movies coming on TV and magazine with pocket money saved, some coins stolen from Dad’s pocket. How could someone be so perfect, alluring beauty, the flawless twacha, vibrant beauty, deeply intense and beautiful peachy eyes glittering love? You are a Goddess coming alive on screen, flawless and pure that would pull a stop to earth’s orbit.
Ah! Those fresh memories and an appearance on screen would make the heart flit like the twang of guitar that wouldn’t make me bulge from admiring and worshipping you so much that I dreamed to marry you. Never thought that angels could traipse on earth to capture the hearts and this one smile flashed like the twinkling stars in the sky at night. Your voice is a lullaby to the infatuated teenager in me so much that was immediately love struck to any girl whose name is Sonali and found them instantly attractive. I blithed in your voice that would charm the cooing birds off the trees, secretly wishing and imagined to be in place of Kunal romancing you in Dil Hi Dil Mein. The age of internet and chatting, falling in love with someone online and my generation swooned, completely fida over mifc chat! You were this girl, I knew it! The innocence, purity of love, empathy, sensitive heart….this what guys like us would look in a girl and wouldn’t flinch in worshipping the dazzling beauty that you are so much that a friend yelled at me, ‘How can you look so many qualities in a girl?’ You were that girl Sonali.
They don’t make such smile anymore, effortless, divine and with no pretense. My love letter to you as an infatuated teen must have never reached you in the then Bombay and must have been thrown in the bin giving company to thousands like them, a declaration of love. There was something cheaply available called airmail. Yes! My handwriting sucked and it still does….can’t even faintly remember what I wrote but was a love letter, straight from the heart, fida over your beautiful eyes glittering like the dappled sun that they would pop out anytime out of the postcards and sprawling posters to caress my soul.
Ok! Let me try with this love letter. What I loved most about you? Faraway you were, out of reach and must be dating a boyfriend….but who cares. A declaring of mad love…call it what you may…ah! Your hair that felt like silk stroking my face, the satin saree, colorful dresses, white skirt that defines perfection sitting on you like cloud in the sky.
My love for the Goddess in the song decked in golden blouse and red lehenga with the beautiful anklet, a flawless Queen adored by her subjects in the Kingdom. ‘Kajal kajal teri ankhon ka yeh kajal ghayal ghayal kar deta mujhe ghayal.’ I always dreamed of such a bride to make life too perfect to be true. Your love made me a sensitive soul, reveling into the age old romance and courtship to woo and win your heart. Why you are so far away from me acting in movies with all those tall or short heroes! Already seething in jealousy and wishing I was them. Playfulness, coy and streak of joy in letting your hair down as if in a trance…how you do that my love? Teach me some to beat stress at school when I don’t do homework. I am drenched in the Prem Taal….your Prem Jaal…mom and Dad don’t know I am writing a love letter to you my Goddess, feeling the ferocious heart beat! Must be your love and not the scare of Maa and Baba who would tear this letter into tiny pieces for if they do it won’t be paper scrap but my heart crumpled into tiny pieces. The beautiful and red Salwar Kameez, colorful saree adorned in gold and Anarkali….how can someone say angels live in the sky.
The magic of love, white skirt dress and dress wore in Deewana Mein Tera Deewana song, flowing with breeze and legs flailing in the air. That was English Babu Desi Mem. God must have created you with petal of flowers and its fragrance wafting and piercing my heart.
The love letter was penned and felt a little stupid but the next day, carefully hid it in the school bag, once the clock struck dashed to the post office to slid the precious words in the letter box. I almost cheered for myself to declared my undying and unrequited love, proposing marriage, perhaps the first girl to whom I ever wrote a love letter. You must have laughed it off, stupid, idiotic fan what with the remote chance of you reading the letter! Dola dola dola dola!
Tons of crushes on Hindi film heroines but none sparkled like you did to my heart, leaving traces of love so much that after you said taa taa to movies, I bought a poster at FC Road in Pune which was stuck inside my room. I was in first year at Fergusson College and one of the girls was in love with…nah! Her name wasn’t Sonali but she ressembles you loads.
Hey tigress! Cancer is shit. You know what? You are not just a beauty with brains fiesty lady but an amazing fighter who valiantly strode like a warrier declaring war and saying that you taking it heads on. You know what’s your biggest strength? Fighter you are! Every step you take is a mark of victory with your kick-ass attitude. Like in the movies you acted and won hearts, conquer and emasculate this cancer into tiny bits, destroy every might of it and taste this victory in the hard-won battle.
Distraught I was reading your letter and came as a jolt. Of all people, not it cannot be true about Sonali. Stupid and dumb cancer. But, then every Goddess have to wage their fight, destroy the demons for not every revered woman is confined in temples. Go ahead and punch this evil straight on the face. March ahead, O’ victor, warrior and the vanquisher. Writer that you are and time to write a new best seller script for happy ending comes after a hard fight.
The love of your child, husband, admirers and stupid idiots like me believe in the fighter and march on like the angry Goddess.