Mushtaque B Barq

Wobbling verses

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Afzal that day had put in extra efforts to prepare his lecture for the classroom. He was keen to administrate something new into the very succulent tissues of his students which had dried due to routine packing of stuff. He started as usual by greeting the students in his unique way by raising his cap and waving one and all. That day he was attired in green shirt and jeans and his cap as usual was slightly tilted, making him an embodiment of baffling creature meant to mend the raw minds in the classroom.

The tongue of his cap was almost touching his right eyebrow, making his peculiar façade something to be laughed at.  The brim of his cap had signed its impression right on his forehead. He was thin at heights and the cap was the remedy to hide the turf.

During those fifty minutes in the class he adjusted his cap times out of number. To some boys his wont was just normal but the students on the last bench especially to Najab who was always bent upon irritating him; it was cause enough to create panic in the classroom to disturb his class teacher who was densely packed with abuses for him.

He would always in Afzal’s class make paper bullets to target the cap which he often missed for the reason the cap would change its posture like a kid changing his choices.

When the lecture was on, Mr. Afzal was deliberating the light on Friction; just then a paper bullet hit him.

He ignored.

Second shot hit right at the spot.

Afzal remarked. “That was a good shot.”

Back to the black board he moved.

Before he resumed, a volley of paper bullets was showered upon him.

He stopped.

His face had the entire pomegranate rush frozen into the narrow lanes of his cheeks. His pan shot spotted Najab with few paper cuttings in his hand.

Before Najab could realize what was on cards for him, Mr. Afzal slapped the boy.

Once ………



Then out of frustration Mr. Afzal abused the boy by choosing the worst adjectives he had in his personal vocabulary box.

“You scoundrel keep to your shoes only.”

Najab lost his wits, his arrogance and above all his grey matter of the skull he had placed over his tough but irresponsible shoulders.

Rest of the class cast sympathetic looks at Najab. Some arrogant boys in the class added fuel to the fire and ignited Najab’s calm but packed heap of uranium to blast the teacher.

Najab reported the entire episode to his mother at home and pleading her to take the teacher to task.

His paternal canopy was already axed by the merciless angel on the commands of the Lord.

She was irritated and stunned to the extent as if transformed into a statue of shame. She was non-reactive, almost devoid of life. She lost the colour as if bitten by the most venomous viper. The poisonous words of Mr. Afzal had reached to her core agonizing her heart like a pitiless blade of abandoned surgeon. She decided not to pay any attention to what Najab was demanding, but Najab read the script from her face.

But then the wind cannot read those prohibited lines on the wall. She failed to hide what was apparent on her exposed cheeks. Najab’s curiosity grew for his mother was no more willing to take any action against the teacher.

At the table that night, Najab denied every request and went to his room without breaking even a piece of bread.

She sighed, “I cannot ascribe any reasons to my silence, you better be pacified—he is, after all, your teacher.”

She kept knocking at Najab’s door but he denied access for the reason he had already unfolded the mystery. His smiles had died; the face of his teacher was teasing him, tormenting him and torturing his nerves for he was keen to kill his teacher for abusing his mother.

In the morning Najab tried to leave a bit early. His intentions were clearly exhibiting what he was going through.

“I will kill that villain.”

Smelling about Najab’s intentions, she decided to take him into confidence.

“Don’t leave, listen to me my son”, she requested.

Najab stopped and closed the door of the hall.

Just then a shriek invited the attention of the neighbours.

Najab had erased the wobbling verses from his mother’s past.

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