*from Metaphor and Psychoanalysis: Containers, Mental Space, and Psychodynamics, by Bent Rosenbaum, David Garfield December 1, 2001.
From: A Fine Balance (1995), by Rohinton Mistry:
“But for Mr. Kohlah, long, solitary rambles were the great pleasure of his life, especially after winter, when every outing was graced by delicious uncertainty – what lay round the next bend? A newborn rivulet, perhaps? Wildflowers he had not noticed yesterday? Among his more awesome memories was a mighty boulder riven by a shrub growing out of it. Sometimes he was the victim of a sweet ambush: a prospect of the valley from a hitherto unseen angle.
Nowadays, every stroll was like a deathwatch, to see what was still standing and what had been felled. Coming upon a favourite tree, he would stop under its branches a while before moving on. He would run his hand along the gnarled trunk, happy that an old friend had survived another day. Many of the rocky ledges that he used to sit on to watch the sunset had been removed by dynamite. When he did find one, he rested for a few minutes and wondered if it would be here for him the next time.
Before long they began talking in town about him. ‘Mr. Kohlah’s screw is getting a little loose,’ they said. ‘He speaks to trees and rocks, and pats them like they were his dogs.’
When Maneck heard the gossip, he burned with shame, wishing his father would stop this embarrassing behaviour. He also boiled with anger, wishing to slap some sense into the ignorant, insensitive people.
On the fifth anniversary of the new road, the local punchayet, dominated by a new breed of businessmen and entrepreneurs, organised a small celebration, inviting everyone to participate…”