(image credits: google)
“Grandma, will you tell me the story of the rainbow again?”
She reclined back in her armchair, the colour swirls of her cotton dress nearly merging with the grey of the chair as she sank in. Patting the dark grey carpeted ground next to her, she nodded to the young boy standing shyly in a corner.
He moved to sit next to her and tucked himself into the crook of her arm, glancing out of the window at the monochrome world outside. He let his eyes sweep the horizon, watching a familiar dark ball – nearly black – rise from the sea and paint the sky in hues of grey.
“The days of colour, those were the days of the past.
There was red, the colour of passion and love
The colour that once exploded out of the sun
At the break of dawn and the time of dusk.
It was the occasional blush creeping up your cheeks
That involuntary release of adrenaline
When you face mortification, or … perhaps a potential partner.
But it was also the colour of blood
The red streaks that stained the earth as countless civilians fell
Collateral damage from a war long past.
Next came orange, a mildly truculent connotation
Of enthusiasm and mischief.
It was the energy of childish innocence
A stamp of optimism in our lives.
Orange was a balance between red and yellow;
Between hot-headed intensity, and the warmth of faith and trust.
Though there was burnt orange too,
A putrid intensification of our pride.
It was the colour of rising tensions attempting to break the surface
Somehow managing to restrain, to keep the cauldron boiling.
And then we had yellow,
The brightness of sunshine and the hope that likely followed.
It was the dandelion in the spring
Dancing in the shadows of morning light.
The colour of the ribbon tied around a tree,
The joy and happiness of a new shot at life.
Yet a mustard shade of yellow
With its dull caution and deceit
Soon plagued the minds of people
Sharpening the knives we often twisted
Into hearts that aren’t ours.
Green was the colour of all things in nature
Especially the grass, just after a burst of rain.
It was the colour of the traffic light
That signalled the safety of the roads.
A four-leafed clover amongst the forested lands
Denoting days of good luck, soon to befall mankind.
But if you looked a little closer,
You could feel something a little more sinister
For green was representative of the concept of jealousy –
The bubbling envy you feel against another better.
Our dollar notes were green, for the colour too meant money
And ambition and greed, easily consuming human thoughts
Destroying our lives, bit by bit.
B is for blue, the colour of the sky
The first thing you would have noticed perhaps
When you gazed intently above.
It was also the colour of the sea
The calming waves of quiet anticipation;
The symbolism of intellect and power
Of nature’s tranquility and composure.
But as the intensity increased, it was the raging storm inside
A turbulence of emotions, shattered glass bits of peace.
It was the colour our skin tone changed
When we couldn’t breathe
A common cause of a chosen death
Suicide of young and old.
And then there’s indigo – the deep midnight blue
A powerful show of love, of sincerity and service.
A rare and valuable crystal, a spiritual realization
A colour rarely used, but nevertheless strong
For it represents integrity, a value once respected
And even till now – a moral compass is needed.
Indigo being the colour of mystery,
Fortune-telling tents were painted that way.
Humans being humans, we easily fell prey
To the mystical trances that claimed of clairvoyance
But more often than not, merely led to depressive moods.
And finally there was violet
A colour unrelated to precious metal
But symbolized the last step towards
The end of the rainbow, towards the potted gold
And true that was, for violet means destiny and fate –
A future of imagination, a future of dreams.
Yet however inspirational violet may seem
Her immaturity and cynicism was bound for trouble.
Associations with royalty created delusions of grandeur
What power she had, would eventually corrupt.
And so the gods realized
Their underestimation of colours
With the power to control the minds of all beings
Alive or not, their implications were too risky
And so with determination,
The colours were removed.
And thus today we live in a society of grey
Of black and white, of conformist uniformity.
With only these 3 colours left, our stories are dull
But what they didn’t realize
Was that though the colours were gone
The memories were not.
So here’s the story of the days of happiness,
The days of sorrow, and the days of anger.
The days when the world was still a beauty
A whirlwind of colours, a pretty kaleidoscope.
Those were the days, of a better world
Sometimes ravaged by war, but nevertheless
Certainly much more meaningful than now.
That, my dear, is the story of your rainbow. Those were the days I deeply miss and cherish, for it was a definite shock to wake up and find everything lost. I hope you’ll learn to love your life now, for it might not have colours, but at least it has love – a transparent language – and for us I guess, love is enough.”