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  • Writer's pictureSemesta Cruinne

Once together - participation

Through the pandemic I participated in a project by Artist: Ina Kaur called Once Together in which I contributed two works, one painting and one poem. To know more about it check out the link: Website link

‘Once together’ allowed me to demand my feelings about the pandemic out of myself and respond to them artistically, it is difficult to express because there are just so many emotions and yet so little to say and even lesser when (from where I stand) guilt is subsequent to complaining.

Title: Reflections Medium: Watercolors on paper Size: 20*20 cm Year: 2020

A great part of me is simply thankful that for once, with a huge wave of change there was time to get accustomed to the new things, much more than usual. Of course, keeping in mind the privileged position from where I speak, where I don’t have to worry as much about changes in my lifestyle based on what my family can and cannot afford. But, as a young person with mental health issues, a person who takes 10 times more time to adjust to changes, the ‘slowness and halt-ness’ that people are experiencing right now has been a perfect pace for me. I needed and wanted this time. It even gave me time to figure what more to do to improve my mental health other than just do what I felt was necessary and had been craving for a long period. I was just planning a little time off and then some time for sorting thoughts but unexpectedly I ended up finding many topics to reflect on and I did.

Through this pandemic, one thing that has happened a lot is – reflecting. Reflecting on my past, rethinking about my relationships, reopening some, slowing some, constantly analyzing my co-habitation with my family and trying to find out how to make the most of staying at home. Reviewing goals and having enough time to talk to people who were ones very important in my life but got

distant through the busy years. I have thought through many parts of my life which I never thought of or realized were connected.

A lot is to be healed, I realized, but a new process has begun as I become more and more angrily stubborn about making my life mine. My first work is based on the first step (currently the most recurring one) and the step that I think goes in infinite loops, in various contexts in different ways – reflecting.

Title: Circus Medium: Poetry Number of lines: 20

Year: 2020

The second work is a 20-line poem in which I have used imagery to describe the on-going situation. I have symbolized the circus as the world with Covid-19. ‘I’, here is the middle-class population of our country (India). The two little boys away from visibility represent the lower-class people, the migrant workers, the people who are getting more so crushed in the system through the pandemic. Laughing (in the poem) is crying and clapping is a method of participation.

I think I’d stop explaining here, you interpret it your way.

Just that, in my view, the pandemic just like the circus is filled with controversial subjects, hidden truths, and masked humans.

Circus Sitting in the chair I clap along When the clowns enter And begin to perform Left to me, I hear a giggle from under the seats Two little boys wriggle Sudden increase in the volume of the musicians and the entering act of acrobats takes my attention back to on the artists on the grandstand Odd it feels, in my gut, watching I wonder how others feel Time so slow for rope walkers Too fast for the jugglers juggling I feel semi-lucky, to be a spectator all I do is view from where I sit Contagiously, at times I laugh Usually, I am a captor, but here I am a captive.

Semesta Cruinne

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