the daydreamer’s Lamp : a Kashmiri mirage

Nestled in the lap of the serene valleys, a lamp from Kashmir found its way to me, a gift from a friend who recently travelled there. It was a lamp with intricate patterns that seemed to weave the very fabric of dreams into its golden skin. Under the watchful eye of a waning moon, the lamp sat on my desk in the hall, a relic from the valleys of Kashmir, with a story etched into every curve of its ancient brass. It was as if a master craftsman had poured his soul into its creation, adorning it with stones that caught the light, turning it into a mosaic of stars. The base, wide and welcoming, rose into a delicate neck.

On a night steeped in the ordinariness of life, my fingers danced over the cold, jeweled surface of the lamp, tracing patterns that might have been inscribed by spirits of the earth and air. There was a warmth there, a heartbeat almost, pulsing through the intricate filigree of metal and gem.

As I sat, lost in the lamp’s beauty, the room suffused with a soft glow, my idle caresses became more purposeful. Without a thought spared for the consequences, I rubbed the lamp, and the world held its breath. From the spout, where no flame dwelt, came a wisp of smoke, unfurling like silk in the still air. It twisted and grew, a cyclone of azure and cream, until there, in the center of my small study, stood a genie of immeasurable majesty. Its form was both fluid and constant, a paradox of the ethereal and the tangible.

This genie spoke not with words but with the very essence of thought, filling the room with a power that hummed against my skin. Desires unspoken twined around my consciousness, an interplay of silent promises and whispered secrets. It was a moment of pure magic, a breach in the veil between the real and the imagined.

But then, as swiftly as it had appeared, the vision began to dissolve. The genie’s form scattered into a thousand motes of light, the room grew dim once more, and I was left with the echo of a presence never truly there. The lamp sat innocently on my desk, just a lamp, devoid of genies and the magic they wield.

The world snapped back into focus, the hum faded into the distant call of reality, and the lamp was just a lamp once more. A smile curled at the corner of my lips. It was but a daydream, a sweet dalliance with the world of ‘what ifs’. The lamp from Kashmir sat quietly, its secrets safe, its stories untold, a silent companion to my reverie. In the quiet that followed, I knew that while the lamp was but a vessel of metal and stone, it was also a vessel for dreams — and in dreams, even a simple lamp could hold the universe.

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