A Song of Silent Things


The Navarasas, or the 9 moods, arise from the foundation of Indian Aesthetics. These are the basis of emotional experience, and were meant to be universal in nature. Our understanding of them rose FROM nature, from our observations; the colours in the sky, the leaves that fell around us, the smell of the very ground we walked on. We floated through lives and generations, observing, sensing, documenting and creating art around these moods.

In class this time we learned about the secret lives of trees, the signals they send to one another, the processes that go on behind the bark- their emotions, the agonies that pepper the surface of their bark; and came one step closer to imagining an existence of that form.

The idea of this project is to slow down once again, and draw our attention to the various forms these Rasas take in the vegetation around us. The objective is to search for our own emotions in the trees that inhabit our surroundings, in a manner that goes beyond simply projecting or symbolising. To try and understand the emotion of each part of the tree as it feels it, and to become more sensitive to the phenomenon of their leaves, their steams and branches, the roots. The point is to lose ourselves in the poetry of everyday life, and silence our minds enough to hear the songs of silent things.

Once our minds are silenced and we become more attentive towards the things around us, slowing our attention and existence to the moment, we become more receptive to the emotions around us. We become empathetic to the one leaf hanging by a thread, yellow and dried up. Its pain becomes our pain. Therefore, this project becomes a map of everyhting I felt on my journeys through Yelahanka. Every emotion I caught on to and remembered, and every place this happened in.



‘A Song of Silent Things’



They bud, bloom, flower, lust,

Barks – limbs, lips and bust,

Pollen flowers, fleshy mass,

Bud, bloom, flower, lust.




Bare bones, joints creak

Spread, trust, hands reach

Skin stripped, roots dig,

Dying breath blooms seeds.





Wither, wane, husk to dry,

Teardrop dew, fail and cry.

Lush and green, but pity brown –

Sing to me before you die.




Worm rust, velvet moss,

Fingers moldy soil lost,

Forest sweat, days-old grime,

Rotten words this page has crossed.




Dream here, dream when ?

Dream of wonders, petal-sent

Sunlit letters beam on pages,

Petals sing, petals bend.




Leaves balance silent minds,

No thoughts, no weight, no second lines

Soul-full light enlightens kind,

Moonlit breath on darkest nights.




Lonesome gruel, nameless grave

Unbodied steps for feet to take

Creaking bark on silent night,

break, crawl, grovel, save.




Huff-and-puff, wind of morrow

In these leaves there is no sorrow

Rustle, jump, skip and fall,

Stomach-aches, breath to borrow.




Criss-cut, cross clash,

Blaze, blister, burn to ash.

Pound, huff, growl, hiss,

Rumble, jump, claw and slash.


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