From a very young age, I suspected there was more to my world than I could see: somewhere in the streets of Istanbul, in a house resembling ours, there lived another Orhan so much like me that he could pass for my twin, even my double.
I suspect that there is another Sam too. I used to call her Kalpana, like the rest of my family. But now she is Sam. Kalpana has ceased to exist, in almost every way except in my mother’s memories.
I don’t think she ever lived in a home resembling mine. She couldn’t have. If she had then she would have been left behind in Hyderabad in 1990. She would be the ghost of the little girl that haunts that beautiful apartment complex in the posh neighbourhood. No. She moved with me everywhere I went in my life. I knew she was there because I have been talking to her. She has an opinion on most things and I try my best to accommodate her views in my decisions. But my best has rarely been good enough.
She is my double. I use her to stand for me when called by the Grand Jury of Conscience. They seem not to be able to tell us apart.
After all these years of being used and stepped on; of being mercilessly silenced; of being a quiet spectator she wrote me a letter. I considered it. She had just the one request: write.
So I did. I didn’t realise it then that her simple need would make me question everything. She was having her revenge and eating it too.
I have decided to answer her back. I have decided to learn the craft of poetry and tell her, while using language in its most sophisticated form, that I WRITE. I need Sam to like me again. I am coming up for trial: the Grand Jury is bound to convene soon.
I start preparing for my online poetry course from tomorrow. I hope you will forgive my lack of attention to your wonderful blogs. I'll do my best to keep up with as many of you as time permits. The starting line of the post is taken from one of my favourite creative non-fiction works, Istanbul: Memories and the City by Orhan Pamuk.