As I sit here, surrounded by the familiar sounds of Delhi traffic after an inspiring SOL showcase, I am filled with vivid memories of watching children unleash their inner energy. Witnessing them express their long-held thoughts with uninhibited curiosity and truth leaves a profound mark on me.
In these times of climate instability, where even scientists and the media refer to mountains and sun as mere “natural resources” to be exploited sustainably, Pooja’s stories and her subtle yet powerful way of reconnecting with the world around her serve as a poignant reminder. They remind us that forests and lakes are more than mere entries on an Excel sheet.
When I listen to ZhangMu from Sikkim speak fondly about her dog, who sleeps soundly like a log, or when I hear eight-year-old Nusrat from Kashmir rhythmically express her anger at the injustices she encounters, I am forced to unlearn the way I perceive and understand the world.
Their words create a symphony of experiences, fireworks exploding on paper, and glimpses into the abstract that reveal what lies in the depths of our hearts. These experiences remind me that life’s beauty resides not solely in the complete picture but also in its fragments and pieces.
I remember a group of girls performing a giddha on stage in Punjab. Their radiant joy and fearlessness were palpable as they laughed and sang without inhibition. It was one of the rare moments when they truly felt alive in their bodies. It made me realize how much work lies ahead of us to empower our young ones to grow without fear.
I have encountered artworks that continue to reveal new layers, taking me on journeys of self-discovery and reminding me of things I had lost sight of. Among them are the astounding possibilities held within each language and the warmth and beauty found in the seemingly ordinary moments.
Whether it is children weaving their words into metaphors, spilling paint on canvas, or enacting a brave new world, all forms of artistic expression embody the interconnectedness of our world.
I struggle to convey the profound impact that children and their voices have had on my life. The significance of a child finding their own unique voice is as subjective as our preferences for different types of momos – steamed to fried to tandoori – to each their own!
However, I do know the unmistakable feeling of recognizing a voice when I encounter it. It reminds me that my own voice, like a missing puzzle piece, may be hidden away in a corner, waiting for me to reclaim it once more.
May this year be your most inspiring, filled with memorable art & adventures!
Oceans of Love,