“If I Keep Walking” – Nayana Nair

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From wherever it may be,
if I keep walking straight
and try not to think of the destination,
eventually I feel the pavement turn to dust.
Slowly, stones dating to the oldest dates
in the recorded history of my life
start appearing one by one.

They sprout new mouths, they learn new words,
they grow into roads, into pillars,
into gateways, and into the walls of the places
where I am no longer welcome.
The fabric of present, my strange choice of words,
my skin that doesn’t belong to this time
all such things make me an alien, make me a pitiful stranger
in a place I know more than myself.

My laughter lives in those places,
with people who can’t find their way to me,
just like I can’t find my way to them.
I hold onto the walls when my tears start killing me,
I tell myself, it will be fine, if I just keep walking.
I tell myself, I will eventually remember my way out of this moment,
as I always have.

But now I can’t. I don’t want to. Maybe I am not meant to.
Maybe the answer lies in never forgetting,
maybe that’s the love I am meant to have.
Maybe waiting is the answer that will suit my weak heart,
since pretending can only get me this far.

I sit on the benches of deserted parks with with my bloodless heart,
and I imagine melting here in this imaginary sun.
I feel happiness might have been something like that,
but I can’t remember it, even though it was once mine.

“Resemblance” – Nayana Nair

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Have you heard about the lady that sits two seats away.
They have an awful lot to say about her.
I have never heard her speak,
but what I hear about her
is so much more interesting
than what she could possibly tell me.
No, I do not participate is spreading lies
or statements that that are as likely to be true
as they can be false.

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Some days I end up feeling more than I should.
I think of all the days I was her.
Now I am not, nor will I ever be again.
But once I was
and that makes me feel sad and then angry at her
for showing me something that I do not want to see.
If her story and her life
could have existed somewhere out of my sight,
I could have afforded some sympathy.
If I didn’t expect her to do all that I should have
and all that I couldn’t,
maybe I could have taken into consideration
that weakness that all of want get rid of.

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Rest of the days
I keep my eyes open and try to see her
apart from what I know of her,
apart from what I see of me in her.
And what little resemblance to my sorrow she had
vanishes as quickly as it appeared,
telling me to look for another mirror,
preferably not a person,
to see and regret all that I can’t blame myself for.