August 25, 2008


It was 2:30 in the morning, on a Friday night, and me all by myself in dad's office at home- bored and unable to sleep!!

The TV was switched off, so I grabbed the remote control and switched it on; having absolutely no idea as what to watch at that time!! The first channel that came to my mind was 'Rotana Zaman", as I have always been a fan of old Egyptian movies, especially those starring Fatin Hamama, Omer Sherif, Rushdi Abatha or Ahmed Mazhar! God how much I love them all, and do not tell me they did not possess the most irresistible charisma of all at that time;) Well, I do believe they did, and to my utmost bafflement they still manage to sweep me off my feet every time I watch a movie for them!!

However- to my dismay- there was nothing appealing enough to keep me entertained in that particular channel, so I flipped through a number of other channels and I finally reached the "Showtime series". At that time, one of the 'Home Cinemas' was showing 'Atonement'. I couldn't help but get excited at reading the title in the middle of my random search, and I thought to myself: Well, this is it!! This is a movie to be watched wholeheartedly!! Of course it wouldn't have been my first time to see it, for I watched it at the cinema the first week it was released! BUT, it was already the end of the movie, with the list of cast moving before my eyes ever so slowly, when I pressed the number of the channel on the remote control; anticipating an emotionally grabbing experience all over again!!

Nevertheless, I did not change the channel, nor did I switch the TV off in desperation!! It was the music that stopped me dead in my track, seducing my sense of hearing; forcing me to simply give in to its charm and just drift away, not caring to know where or in what land I would end up! Indeed I did travel with both my mind and heart, to a place beyond this cozy little office, and far beyond this dreary land; where I saw myself running barefoot outside that cottage on the beach, traveling down the exact path that 'Cecelia' in the movie followed. I was free.. I was hopeful.. and alive!

The same thing had happened to me at the cinema back then, leaving me glued to my chair; mesmerized by that intense beauty of the magical soundtrack, composed by the brilliant Dario Marianelli. I vividly recall how I felt at that moment; gripped by an indecipherable yet an amazing sensation! It stayed with me even till after I left the cinema headquarters and went home. I was miraculously at peace with myself and the whole world!! I loved the movie, I can assure you of that, but the music was a different story altogether. I have something for acoustics, that I admit.

On that night in my father's office, it had happened again; that music captured me one more time, seeped into my very soul; hypnotized my senses; taking me on a journey I did not want to ever let go of! I remember the way I rested my head on the back of the sofa I was sitting on, the way I closed my eyes and surrendered, totally and willingly, to the melody and that blissful sound!

Now that I am here, writing this post and listening to the full atonement CD, I find myself wondering about those great composers of the greatest ever classics like Mozart, Beethoven, Handel, Tchaikovesky, Vivaldi, Chopin, Bach and many others; and I cannot but feel dumbfounded by their genius and that one of a kind splendour of their musical pieces. Nothing can ever compete with the glory they have reaped through their dazzling music. Yet every now and then someone like 'Dario' comes by, and manages to stun us by music such as that of atonement.

You may ask me, what is so special about atonement's soundtrack?

Well, the answer is as simple as that: it is that deep sense of melancholy coming to life with every stroke on the violin and every caress on the piano keys! It is that vigor it possesses, which makes it sound as though it had a life of its own! It is definitely the feeling of inner peace it masterfully implants deep within, luring me and falling on my ears like a chant of faith and pure content every time I listen to it.!

In short, it is that incomprehensible feeling of the act of atonement materializing right before us, through listening and dedicating the most delicate of senses to appreciate the beauty of music; the magic of translating melodies into never ending sensations!!

August 06, 2008


One summer night,
I stood on the shoreline in awe..
Staring at the stars above,,
Breathing in that saltish breeze I know!!

A thought, maybe two, crossed my mind..
Tantalizing my soul,,
Forcing me to open my eyes wide!!

Was it "Utopia" coming to life
before my eyes??
Or the one dream my heart craves to find?!

So surreal it had looked..
So celestial..
So full of grandeur!!

There it emerged..
A Utopian vision..
A sweet temptaion,,
To whom only (I) belonged!!

A bliss it would have been
to embrace the reverie..
Drift afar..
Even melt away..
 That very night!! 

5th August 2008