नवीन प्राचीनका ३ कविता र नयाँ उप्रेतीको कथा Waves

एउटा लामो दुरी पार गरेपछि फेरि त्यही ठाउँमा आइपुग्नु तर यो कुरा थाहा नपाउँनु र पुनः यात्रामा निस्कनु र उहि ठाउँमा आइपुग्नु यात्रा हो कि होइन ?

सभ्यताले तय गरेका , पार गरेका र प्राप्त गरेका गन्तव्यहरु ती नवीन छन् ? अथवा प्राचीनताकै बाटोबाट हिंडिरहेका छौं हामी ?

खसिरहेका पातहरूको नियती के हो? महायात्रा हो सागरसम्मको? कि हो कुहिएर माटो मै विलाउँनु या हो जैविक प्रक्रिया मार्फत पुनः पातकै रुपमा पुनर्जन्म प्राप्त गर्नु ?

कुनैपनि अस्तित्वको सुरु, मध्य र अन्त्य कालप्रदत्त प्रक्रिया हो? वा कालहिनता नै अस्तित्व हो ?

नरहेको/नरहिरहे जस्तो भएको भइरहन सम्भव छ कि छैन ?

हरेक आरोहण चुचुरोको समाप्तिसँगै समाप्त हुन्छ । यद्यपि , मान्छे किन निरन्तर घिस्रिरहन विवश छ?

जीवनमा साहित्यको र साहित्यमा जीवनको के कति भूमिका छ ?

“शनिबार – साहित्यबार”को यस अंकमा हामीले यस्ता केही पनि प्रश्न कवि नवीन प्राचीनलाई सोधेनौं !

किनकी , हामीलाई “थाहा”  छ – काव्यमा आफ्नो अलग चिन्तन र शिल्पका माध्यमबाट कविता लेखिरहेका, प्रश्नलाई नै प्रश्न सोधिरहेका एक अलग कवि हुन् – ” नवीन प्राचीन !

भर्खरै “प्वाँख” लिएर आएका उनका कविताहरु बिना शीर्षकका छन् ! तपाईं हाम्रो जीवनको नियतीजस्तै !

कवि नवीन प्राचीनका ३ कविता

हृदयको खल्तीबाट
अलिकति आयुको तमाखु निकाल्छ

जिन्दगीका पीरहरुका चुना दल्छ

एकछिन माडेर
धुलो उडाउँदा
सत्तालाई हाछ्युं आयो भने
या कसैले
अलिकति मलाइ पनि है भनेर मागे
ऊ खुसि हुन्छ

ऊ त अम्मली हो कविताको
तिमी आसपास भए/नभए
उसको लत रोकिदैन

आऊ, एकछिन बात मारौं
बिना कुनै उद्देश्य,सन्दर्भ
नियमहरु बन्ने नियमभन्दा पर

आऊ, एकछिन बात मारौं
बतास टेकिहिँड्ने
बादलमाथी दौडिने
आकाशभन्दा परको आकाशबारे
जंगली फूलको सुगन्धले लट्ठिएको
कुनै फकिरको
अर्धचेती सपनाजस्तो

मेरा कविताका कोमल पैताला
भनिरहन्छन् सधैँ

म एक छु
जो हरपल
नियमका दाम्लामा बाँधिएको छु

‘किन सधैँ मौन तपाईं ?’

लामो मुस्कानले जवाफ टार्न खोजे,
नसकेपछी अन्त्यमा मुस्किलले ओठ खोले

‘शब्दहरु मोती हुन् भन्ने थाहा पाएपछि
लोभ बढ्ने रहेछ ।’


  • Naya Upreti


Happiness is kind of like waves you know? It comes and goes at its own pace, and I can’t really wrap my head around this fact.

I keep thinking that having a ton of money would make me happy all the time. I mean, who wouldn’t be happy if they could quit their lousy jobs and do whatever they yearn for? But the thing is, I’ve never had a burning passion for anything so, I’m stuck about what I want to do or be. Day in day out I drag myself to this job that makes me feel like I am turning into someone I don’t even like.

The walk towards my office often becomes the canvas for fanciful daydreams about having loads of money which fuels me with a liberating feeling from all the mundane obligations of my life. Ironically, I don’t even want to work super hard for it. I just want a miracle, like winning a lottery or stumbling upon a pile of cash in the street. Sometimes, I even picture my parents calling and revealing that we are very wealthy, and that I don’t have to work and can come home and they have hid this fact from me and my sibling just to make us humble individuals. I mean how pathetic is that?

I don’t desire an extravagant life or anything. I’d do just fine in a small apartment with a good internet connection and food supplies. It’s not just me I want this money for, it’s for my family too. Even though we have our ups and downs I still love them. But with the amount of money I am making I don’t think I would be able to provide and fulfill my responsibility towards them. I just want to be enough but it feels as though I have an abyss inside of me that  just can’t be filled.

Part 1

I woke up early today, having nothing to do. I laid in bed using my mobile to escape time. Finally, I mustered up some energy to drag myself out of bed and get ready for work.

I’ve loathed this job since day one, but hey, I’m still sticking around for the money.

I feel like I suck at the job, yet somehow I am still not fired. It’s not a bad workplace, my colleagues seem fine with it; I guess it’s just a me thing. I keep thinking if I had someone I knew or could be friends with, anybody, I would be fine doing this wacky job. But since I am unhappy with myself, I am somehow unhappy with everything I do. It’s almost as if I don’t feel anything and everything all at the same time.

While leaving for work, I saw my tenant, so I took the long route to the office just to avoid talking to him. Even at work, I seem to be avoiding everyone and keeping everything to myself. I feel like I’ve done enough introspection to know that if anyone shows enough vulnerability towards me, I would just find myself bawling my eyes in front of them and share every little thing I feel between my bones. But I just don’t engage in any conversation with anyone.

Today was the same as every other day I go to my job; I get bored but still manage to get some shit done, and I come to my apartment and sleep. But today I was more bored than any other day that I almost fell asleep.

Part 2

It was around dusk, and I was just walking towards my apartment, thinking about what it would be like to live in a world where you just don’t have to work. Where you live in peace with the people you love and with the people who appreciate you for who you are, not what they want you to be. Where all there is love and compassion and nothing called being insensitive or rude.

Then I again thought that there just can’t be a world like that; it somehow wouldn’t work. With love, there will always be hate, and they are intertwined with each other, coming as a pair. And as I was living inside my head, I suddenly felt someone’s hands tapping me from behind. When I looked back, I found them being hesitant, so I tried to walk away, but then they approached me again and asked for directions about a place that I hadn’t heard of. I tilted my head, indicating no, and they walked away.

Next thing I knew, I found myself at my apartment, having a vague recollection of talking to someone but couldn’t point to whom I was talking or what the conversation was about. I was so tired, even though I hadn’t done much at my work. I went to sleep and woke up feeling like I had been sleeping for years.

The next day, while in my office, I joined my colleagues who were having a conversation on a break. It felt awkward because I usually don’t engage in any conversation with them. They all seemed to belong to that group and in the conversation, while I was just there, listening to them talking. One of my colleagues, whom I have barely talked to, approached me and asked permission to ask something that he has been asking everyone in the office, and I am one of the few left. So I awkwardly said, “shoot,” and then he proceeded to ask me, “would you live in a house for your entire life for a billion dollars?” Just after hearing the question, I smiled nervously, even though I had gone through this exact question in my head a million times over and knew the exact thing to answer. But still, I was hesitant and shy, so I slowly raised my head when I realized everyone’s eyes were on me, waiting for my answer. So I laughingly said I would do it for much less. Everyone seemed to be a little amused by my answer, but I didn’t think much of it.

Later that day, while walking towards my apartment, a person approached me, saying that they had found the place they had asked me about. I was unsure of what they were talking about and told them to repeat, but instead of repeating, they dragged me to a place near the street, and it was a big mansion, which was fully white in color. It was uncanny that every day I walked past this street and had never noticed this big house. A strange eerie feeling ran through my body while looking at the house. It was almost as if the house was calling my name and had been calling for years, but I was just not listening to it. After that, days went by, but that eeriness still remained in me.

Part 3

I was again walking on the street near that house, as it is my everyday route, when I found myself looking right at the house. It seemed to be calling me. I looked around it and its gate seemed to be open. I peeked through the gate and saw a big fountain and garden in the house. I felt like going inside just to look around it. I thought to myself if I had this big house, I wouldn’t worry about anything. My problems would somehow vanish like a faint memory of childhood. I rang the bell, but the main door of the house was also open, so I let myself inside and started looking around. There were so many luxuries in the house that I had never seen. It was as if I went to another dimension through that door. That this house was in another universe than the one I lived in, and somehow this universe had no problems at all, almost like a utopia.

I looked around the house hoping to find someone, but no one was in the house. I thought maybe they were outside in the garden or something, so I tried to open the door, which seemed to be locked from the outside. Firstly, I thought it was nothing, but even after numerous tries, the door didn’t seem to open. I started panicking, then I saw a button near the door, which was red in color, and right below the button, there was a badly written text saying, “click here to start.”

I thought maybe this house was greatly made and it had technology to open the door. When I clicked the button, it didn’t even make a sound, but instead of opening the door, the button seemed to shield all the windows, and the items and furniture of the house were shifting their places. I was just stunned and couldn’t speak anything when suddenly someone started talking, and I couldn’t even fully hear what the sound was saying. I slowly came back to my senses, and the voice was still there. It kept saying, “You have been chosen.”

I started walking towards the voice, and since it was a big mansion, it took a while to find out which room it was coming from. I checked all the rooms when I stumbled upon a speaker in a massive hall-like room, and the speaker was announcing that I have been chosen. I had never seen a speaker like that, and it was now announcing my name and address in a loud sound.

Part 4

I felt a brief moment of comfort in the fact that I had been chosen, even though I didn’t know what I had been chosen for. It felt comforting because I had never been chosen for anything. I was always the second choice, the second sibling, the backup friend, the second best at school. So, the fact that I was chosen for something gave me somewhat of a comfort.

I started looking for a button to turn the speaker off, but I couldn’t find any button in that speaker. The speaker now was saying that it was my own will to stay in this house, that I can go out if I want. I couldn’t understand what was happening. So, I asked the speaker, thinking maybe it can listen. “Why am I here? Why couldn’t I open the door?” I didn’t know if anyone could hear my voice, but an answer came back, and it told me that I would get enough supplies for as long as I want to live in this place.

My heart was beating so fast, but I calmed myself down, thinking maybe it was a joke done by that person I had previously met who had shown me this place. Maybe I was dreaming or something, but it felt real, so it must be. I started thinking of all the movies I had watched that started like this. I thought maybe this was a game that I had to play.

So, I asked who are you? Why do you know so much about me? Is this a joke? And the speaker replied that I was chosen from a big corporation to be an experiment. I now really thought that someone was pulling a prank on me. I mean, why would I ever believe that some big corporation would make me a part of their experiment? I’m nobody. I am just a speck of dust floating around in this universe that no one can see. I mean, I am looked at but not seen. So, why would some big corporation even know about my sheer existence? I kept thinking this must be a joke.

So, I started playing along and asked, “What is the experiment about?” Then an answer came, saying some rubbish that they wanted to see if anyone could survive in a place for the rest of their life. They were searching if a human is capable of surviving without another human. I thought maybe this wasn’t a thought out prank, what a silly reason whoever this is has given me. Even if this was a legitimate experiment why wouldn’t they do this research on babies? Why would someone choose an adult who has been living with humans all their life to experiment on.

I again asked, “What is it that I am getting out of this if I live my entire life in this place?” Then they replied that my family will be well off, and I would get a billion dollars if I spend my entire life in this place. I thought, “What’s the purpose if I get the money after I’m dead?” But then I again thought, my family will be well off, and even if I’m dead, my other family would be able to access it. I then asked, “Would I get the money if I walk out from here in, let’s say, 10 years or if I killed myself here?” Then they replied that I would get that money only when I have spent my entire life living in this place.

I was smiling, thinking how childish this joke was. But somewhere in me I had a feeling that I was just telling myself this is a prank to calm myself down. I deliberately came here myself and there is no one around so how can this be a prank? Then the speaker talked again and said that I can talk to anyone I want for one last time. The speaker also told me where a laptop was, and that the laptop would not be able to access talking or calling other people via any media after that. I then asked who was coming to make that happen, then the speaker replied that every change around the house will somehow happen without my knowledge and that if I were to accept to be a part of this experiment, I will have to just be okay and adjust to every change that happens around the house. I then again asked if the speaker would be talking to me after I agreed to be a part of this experiment; then, no reply came back. I assumed it was a no.

Part 5

I went to the room where the speaker said the laptop was, then I thought I would jokingly call my parents about this, then if this was a prank, the person who is doing this would come to open this place, and this would be over. Maybe all they wanted was a reaction out of me. After I finished calling my family, who were very surprised at what I was saying, I went to the other room and asked the speaker about how clothes and food and other entertainment materials would be provided, and the only answer that came was, “Without your knowledge.” So I thought, even if this was true, I would be fine to stay in this house forever.

I mean, I’ve been staying away from my family and living alone for almost five years now. And between these years, I’ve only gone back to my country once, so this time I would be living like I was always living, but I wouldn’t have to work, and I would still get money. If it was true, then I would be living in heaven or something. I mean, I am not a religious person or anything, but this just might be heaven as a concept.

So I started roaming around the house, and there was enough food in the freezer to last for a week, and all the food was of my preference, and the clothes were somehow my size and style, and also the movies and video games were as per my preference. A chilled feeling ran down my spine so, I calmed myself thinking this just might be a coincidence or if this was a prank the person who is doing this might know me.

I started remembering who is that person who knows my preference in this place . But no one came to my mind. Even the people I went to university with, whom I briefly interacted with, didn’t know me enough to know my literal dress size. I got this eerie feeling that this big corporation thing might be real. That I was somehow chosen to be in an experiment. Maybe they had been following me for a while to know things about me, about my likes and dislikes.

I again went to the main door of that house and tried to open it, but it was completely locked, the same as it was an hour earlier. But the writing below that red button was different now. It stated,” If you want to leave, you would have to say it towards the speaker, and it would open the door. You would be compensated and whatever the money we have been giving your family would be cut off. And you would not get the hundred million dollars.”

I started running towards the speaker when I realized that no one else had come inside the house, so who wrote that near the door. I thought I would stay in this house for a day and check if this thing might be real. I mean, what could go wrong. Even if I lived in this house for the rest of my life, my family would be rich, and I would also be fine with all the games and movies. So instead of saying let me out to the speaker I went and said, ” I agree”.

Part 6

It’s been 3 days I’ve been living in this house; now I’m somewhat sure that this is not a

prank. I watched some movies; turns out this house has a theater room. I tried some video games. I did a bit of searching, and there is a big library in the house with the type of books that I like to read.

How come they are giving me everything I like? If every day is like this, then I would never leave this place. All things are more comfortable here. I’m sure that nobody would even remember me from my office. Everybody is so self-centered that they can’t even think about creating a normal human connection. Everybody is in this rat race, but they don’t realize that nobody wins in this race. Everybody becomes a victim of it.

I think I can easily live in this place for the rest of my life. I have everything for entertainment and I am used to never feeling fully happy. I don’t have any desire to get married or anything, so this is like a perfect life for me. I guess the corporation chose the right person to experiment on. Someone with no social life and a dislike for living.

Days are slowly going by, and I am being adaptive to this new lifestyle. My family would be wondering by now why I haven’t called them. I used to call them every time I felt lonely, which was most of the time. But I didn’t tell them anything in particular about my life here. I didn’t want them to worry about me.

Having no human connection and being in solitary most of the time isn’t an ideal life, obviously. But I was getting by somehow.

I don’t know how, but food has been appearing in this house just randomly. I don’t see anyone going in or out, but after the food is finished, it’s restocked as per my taste. The big corporation must have some great technology, I guess. I don’t even want to put my mind on whether I’m being watched every minute or not. If I am part of an experiment, then I am definitely being watched, but the temptation of money is far too much for me to even consider that.

Part 7

I think it’s been a month now, and I am completely used to this lifestyle. I wake up, use the internet, and sleep. I have been going in a loop like this. I sometimes feel lonely, but guess what? I was more lonely being with a lot of people than I am now. This lifestyle is definitely better than the one I was living.

Today I saw a note near the kitchen which said that I can either make videos or write a journal of my everyday experience in this house. The irony is that there is no experience here; I am just surviving, not living. But I guess I could write about what I eat or what I watched or which games I played; that should be interesting.

I sometimes try to look from the window, even though it is closed. I have poked a hole in it, but there is nothing I can see outside. The only thing I see is never-ending mist. I mean, at some point, the mist clears, but this mist has been there forever.

I think I am three months in, and I don’t even keep up with what day it is. Every day of the week is the same for me. But I have chosen this life, and I can walk out of it anytime I like, so I can’t even complain.

I am starting to miss calling my parents. They must be mortified by now about me disappearing. I don’t even know what these corporations are telling my family. The last time we talked they were just surprised at everything I was saying.

I am remembering the old friends I had back home. The few months when I moved abroad, we used to be in contact, but my friends slowly stopped being relatable in many ways, so we just kinda stopped talking.

I felt like I would make new friends here but I never met anyone who I felt a genuine connection with, so I slowly started isolating myself and started pushing people away because I had created a bubble where there is only me and my thoughts, so anyone who would hinder the space I had created was pushing me to change. But the thing about change is it is hard to accept and adapt. Especially when it is something out of your comfort zone.

The fear that anyone I met wouldn’t be long lasting and would again leave me alone kept me from meeting new people. Even though I know that meeting and leaving people is just a part of life.

Part 8

I can’t even keep track of how many months I have lived here. There is no calendar, no watch around. I am watching new movies, listening to new music, using endless media, but somehow I am not able to create my own content in any of these medias. I don’t know how they have programmed this. It feels like I have already spent an eternity in this place. I just can’t remember when I started living here, maybe I am also being programmed somehow to not be able to remember things.

I think this lifestyle is slowly getting better of me. I keep yearning to see sunsets. I have not even seen the sun for months now or maybe years. I just can’t seem to recall. Maybe this place is a mystery of space and time that’s why I can’t keep track of anything.

Somehow I am even missing my mundane office life, even though I feel like the life I have been living is far better than that. I am missing the few human contacts I used to have, the few glances other colleagues used to give me, the few invitations I used to get because they were obligated to ask me, which they knew that I would surely turn down. But I think this is just a feeling that comes and goes. I mean I’ve been living with no human contact for sometime now so I was bound to be missing people.

I am even missing the dogs and cats I used to see in my everyday life. This house doesn’t even have an insect. There are no flies around, no cockroaches. How can a house not even have a tiny ant walking around? This is so insane.

I am missing the night sky and the formation of clouds that used to be different every day. The photos of the sky don’t help with my want to see the real sky. I am missing the different shapes that the moon used to be. I am missing that I could never keep up with counting stars. I am missing the smell of rain touching the earth. I am missing a cold breeze moving through me on a hot summer day making me feel like a wiser, better person. I miss greenery and how the leaves flutter when a wind blows through them. I miss walking on the road, I miss seeing cars. I miss drinking hot tea in the cold winter. I can’t even distinguish if it is summer or winter here.

Everyday is the same temperature inside this house.

I am missing being in my small apartment, even though this house might be my dream house.

I simply miss everything. Every intricate detail of life.

Part 9

I can’t remember anything anymore. I am getting every form of entertainment I could ever ask for. But still, there is a void in me. I am always thinking of the life I had before this.

I have nothing to do around here; I sometimes cook whatever they bring. I watched 8 movies in a day yesterday because I had nothing to do. I am in bed all the time. I am slowly being bored from all the content I am consuming. “I want something more than this, maybe a new hobby”, I thought.

The next morning, I found some knitting needles and yarn but the thing is I had only thought about this I never went and asked the speaker for it. I guess they can read my mind too.

I sometimes try to talk with the speaker but he never replies. I am writing my journal on the days I remember to write it. I tried to count all the journals I have written and calculate all the days I have stayed in this place. But all the journals don’t have dates in them. I completely remember writing dates in my journals but they are not here.

Everything is so weird.

I keep reminiscing a memory from my childhood. When I was around nine or ten years old, I usually used to go to school early, and be the first person to get to the class. And one day like every other day I went to school early and no one was around. I entered my class, placed my bag, and as I looked around, I noticed a twenty-rupee note near my desk. I picked it up, kept the money, but when people started arriving, I shared the discovery with my friends. Together, we decided to go to the principal’s office to hand in the money. Upon reaching the principal’s office and giving him the money, he smiled at my naivety and assured me that he would find the rightful owner. Returning to my class, I felt like I had done something heroic. Later that day, I excitedly recounted the incident to my mom, who just laughed and said I could have kept the money. I just couldn’t understand why I would need the money at the time.

Part 10

I have been thinking of leaving this place. But the fact that my family would get better care than I was ever able to give for them is what is keeping me here. I mean it’s not only for my family, I just wanted a break from my office life too. This was my dream back then when I was working, but this feels like a prison now. But even a prisoner has other people they can talk to. I am in an even worse place than a prison. I am a piece this corporation is toying with. Since I had no life, they chose me to be part of their experiment. I feel like a rat people use in research.

I am slowly turning insane. The money is the only thing that is keeping me. I thought I would be fine here, but turns out humans need humans. There shouldn’t even be an experiment to prove this. This is simply a fact. We are here just to make good connections with people. Have endless conversations with them, create a good life with people you love and who love you. Find meaning in this meaningless existence. Feel content but still want new things. Be a realist but still be an idealist. Be a pessimist but still an optimist. This is how we humans work. We need each other.

I just can’t comprehend how I am even surviving here. I am so tired, even though I sleep all the time. I don’t even have the energy to do anything. I just sleep and think. I think of the life that I used to live. I feel like walking out of this place every minute of the day. I am missing every little thing that I used to do outside of this place. I miss feeling something. I have tried to open the door multiple times, but I come back and sleep thinking about the money I would get.

Part 11

I feel a bit sick today. I can’t get out of bed. This is the first time I have been sick since I have been living in this house. I am missing how my mom used to care for me. Even though it was through a screen, I could still see the genuine concern in her eyes. She used to be so worried and tell everyone about my sickness even though it used to be only a minor fever. I really feel lonely today. Like I’ve never felt lonely before. I am just thinking about the warmth and love I used to feel even through a screen. This house has no open door or a window. I don’t even know how I catched this cold.

I felt like I’ve had enough of this. I have not been feeling anything for a while so, the fact that I even felt lonely gave me some hope. I thought of just asking that damn speaker to open the door. I was having second thoughts but I pushed it all down. I went straight to the room and asked to open the gate. The speaker replied, “Are you sure? You want to give up the money.” An overwhelming feeling engulfed me, and I was hyperventilating. The temptation of money was far too much, but I just can’t sacrifice my happiness for this.

Even though happiness comes in waves, I want to experience that wave fully. I want to immerse in that wave and long for it to come again. I want to feel. I want to love. I just can’t be here forever. I just can’t.

I said yes as a reply to that question. The speaker didn’t reply, so I slowly went down to see if the door was opened. I slowly opened the door; it felt good to see something. The mist outside the house slowly started leaving and when all the mist cleared I saw a computer screen in front of me.

Part 12

I couldn’t remember where I was so I looked around and realized that I was in my office. I was glad that I didn’t go through all that. It was just a dream. A bad dream to be specific. I went to look outside the window; I could see people walking around, having their own lives and feelings. A gentle wind blew through me and I felt alive.

I went to my apartment and called my parents. Even though I was forgetting every detail of the dream, I still remembered how I felt. The thoughts I had. That day, I thought a lot about my existence.

Next day, I went to the office, collected my things and emailed my manager saying, I quit. I didn’t even hesitate. It felt good; it felt me; l was taking control of my life. I came outside of that office and asked the girl who used to make small talk with me if we could hang out as friends. She said she had planned something for today but would contact me.

I felt like the worst part was over. Even though I have no money, no friends, and now no job, I felt good about everything. All I could see were endless possibilities ahead of me. As I was walking down the stairs, a sunray hit me, and I just stared at the sun for a while.

I had the whole day with me. So I took a trip to the nearby ocean. I stayed there for the whole day just staring at the endlessness of it. I let the waves take over me.

The next morning, I woke up with a sense of purpose.

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