PERSONA

M was aware of the uniformity in all the faces made up by one make up man. The regular matinee idols catered to the unfulfilled longings of a common man, being at the top of the heap always. The women centred roles often gave a free vent to the masochism latent in women, the heroine undergoing unnecessary travails in all gusto, with both her and the audience shedding copious tears. When it was all over wondering why everyone cried so much! Padmini specialized in depicting such roles. Padmini was a plain looking woman, loved by the camera. Looking at her M learnt that being beautiful was easier than appearing beautiful. Art was appearing beautiful, not necessarily being beautiful. That was the painful lie, behind that beautiful mask.

Contrary to her filmy image of a demure, fragile, tearful helpless epitome of chauvinistic ideals, whom every young man of those times would want to marry and take home to meet his mom, Padmini was a querulous, loud mouthed, insufferably vain woman bossing around the sets.She was acutely uncomfortable with M, who could not be impressed with loudness. She looked upon M as an old inmate of a prison looks at a new entrant, a right mixture of repugnance and empathy. Padmini was a sacrificial goat that had lost its blood eons ago and is currently a free spirit, sheer talent undressed of all identity springing out of false relationships except that of an actor towards a non existent self. She was so restless without attention, loudly calling out to the director for some inane reason. It was as if she feared she would stop existing if no one noticed her. That famous identity needed constant reassurance about its fame, only then the private miseries would be under control.

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2 thoughts on “PERSONA

  1. like Maya Angelou infers in Phenomenal Woman, much of a woman’s beauty is innate – a confidence borne out of her intelligence, mysticism and mystery. when you have this, t’s easier to face anyone or any situation. you capture this excellently in these lines “… being beautiful was easier than appearing beautiful. Art was appearing beautiful, not necessarily being beautiful. That was the painful lie, behind that beautiful mask.” all the make up in the world won’t take away your inadequacy once you strip yourself of both. brilliant post.

    Like

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