Oil on Canvas
12″ x 16″
Separation was painted more than a decade back, when I chanced upon a photograph of war-torn people on the internet. Deeply disturbing and moving, this photo remained in my heart for a very long time.
And when I set out to paint, this embrace formed on the canvas. Was it the mother or the angel… who knows. The pain was building up while the brush moved effortlessly. It was painful, not cathartic.
It was difficult to imagine separation of loved ones, of losing loved ones, of the spoils of wars, of leaving children to fate, of becoming an orphan….
Millions of children around the world have been orphaned for no fault of theirs. If losing loved ones was not enough, they even lost their identity, home, warmth, security, love, and the arms that they could always run to.
Wars killed. Widows remained. Children were orphaned.
We then make peace with our conscience by quoting destiny, fate and higher reason.
Why call it their fate when it is the very ordain we write?
Why call it their destiny when we are the ones who make war?
Why call it higher reason wherein could not rise above ourselves?
To paint the life of someone else is to live their life for those moments. And to paint the living soul in pain is devastating. You cannot express. It is felt within. You become one. The painting wraps you around itself – even when you are done.
You cannot cry because it is not enough.
Here is an expression I waited for… from a beautiful soul poet – Ansul Nooreen Khan. There is not a soul who is not moved by her verses. Here is her Ode to the Orphan. It never fails to move me to tears. I cannot find anything better than this ever and probably never will. There is unbelievable amount of hope and faith midst despair. How can it not move you?
An Ode to the Orphan
Oh nameless enchanted flower!
Will my love suffice to give thy scent a name?
Or shall I bestow to thee my life?
Oh aimless ethereal breeze!
Shall I show my path to thee?
Or deliver you from strife?
Oh flightless angel lost!
Shall I kiss thy wings to heaven?
Or paint a newer sky?
Oh tearless eyes that plead!
Shall I fill thy orbs with bliss?
Or drink those tears that died?
Be not silent my little seed,
For in my earth will I sow your fate,
Where you will reap the fruit,
When in eternal sleep I rest.
© Ansul Nooreen Khan
Website: Ruh Aatish
I gifted this painting to my mother. And for every mother who had to be separated from her child, a prayer.