“Earphones” – Nayana Nair

.

I cannot paint

your silhouette moving through the rain toward me-
all the blue that lingered in the light rain, on my skin, in the wait for you.

The color that fills my mind when I recall
how your cold hands met mine, my frozen shivering love hungry hands,
and nothing was cold anymore,
nothing was insufferable,
as long as you and me stayed like this,
accepting the ache that comes with staying.

The song, the familiar and strange tune, that became beautiful
by the time it played for 35th time, by the time our cola lost its fizz,
by the time the untouched food looked comforting,
by the time I found that knowing you and your everything
was as painful and liberating as putting myself into words.

The tension
of the stretched earphones between our head and our aching necks,
a moment of sadness, of a great love, of a great end
played itself before us again and we promised ourselves- we won’t ever be there.
And yet as you mocked the world for its weakness
I cried for the same weakness you and me hid in ourselves.

The cold wind that went through me, as you walked past me,
my pride- ground and powdered, spilling out of me,
blinding and confusing people around me,
making me look desperate, pitiful, and empty
as I chased you through streets where we were never supposed to be.

I cannot draw them, so I write.
I write
how we stood together
in every room,
on every patch of earth
for the longest time
and saw within our reach
something that was beautiful and fragile
and no one’s to keep
as long as we saw each other only,
as long as we could smile at what we saw.

I remember you as you stayed still,
breathing carefully
as we let fate make something out of us.
I remember your eyes
asking me with a smile to confirm the reality of what we had,
of what we are.

I wonder how you remember me now.
Now that we are living our lives trying only to prove
that we have lost nothing of ourselves in losing each other.

“River of light” – Nayana Nair

.

There are universes
spinning around us
and they will see
how we break down.
They will not know our names
just like we don’t know theirs.
And when they come for us
falling onto our beautiful blue home,
falling into our storming seas and falling heights,
we will still believe that this beauty will save us
and in some ways it will.
In some ways it won’t.

But for today
the universe around us
inspires us to love, fill our hearts
again and again,
it cradle us tonight,
carries us from one unbearable moment to anohter
through the tunnels of serene silence,
through the river of light.

If this all is an apology for what is to come,
just like the offerings of the sad heart before it broke me once,
then maybe we don’t deserve this kindness,
maybe we are given, gifted, cared for a bit too much
in the name of the eventual end that is waiting for us far ahead.

The Scale of 1 to 10 (part 5)” – Nayana Nair

#enemy_of_hope

On my way to you, there is a world that I must walk through. In the dense fog, through the things truer than us, the steps that I take are the heaviest, the decisions I make the most difficult.

“Rows and flows of angel hair
And ice cream castles in the air
And feather canyons every where
Looked at clouds that way
But now they only block the sun
They rain and snow on everyone
So many things I would have done
But clouds got in my way
I’ve looked at clouds from both sides now
From up and down and still somehow
It’s cloud’s illusions I recall
I really don’t know clouds at all”
“Both Sides Now”, Joni Mitchell

“I embrace the world and take a quick, deep breath
The stinging air that fills my lungs says it all
Yeah, I who wanted to escape countless times
The long times I suffered through, becoming numb
Right underneath those times
Everyday I pray
that I can be a little better grownup
And everyday I stay
Because all humans and all the pains eventually die
We have to face the wind to become numb”
“Everything Goes”, RM

“As much as my heart flutters, I’m just as afraid”
“Serendipity”, Jimin

There is a sky that sometimes waves at me, sometimes sings to me in rain, sometimes reminds me why I must stop. I have followed rivers as blue as this view to find a feeling resembling love in me, I have created a version of myself softer than these clouds so that it is only me who is hurt in the stories that I tell you when you find it difficult to find sleep in this world. Stories that you recite back to me, on the days my heart refuses to beat for anyone, even for you, even for me.

“Just when I thought a day
As beautiful as everyone else’s
Was about to start
Clouds out of nowhere
Gather to pour down their rain”
“October Rain”, 10 cm

“If I was only by myself
If I didn’t know you
Maybe I’d have given up
Lost at sea”
“Heartbeat”, BTS

There are steps made of stone, a corner store selling smoke to kill or to cloud my heart when it gets unbearable, a house falling apart with a kid gone lost, a kid falling apart in the reckless pursuit of something better than the safe shadow of easy peace. I pass by them to the next road, pretending that I do not know the possibilities of great failure awaiting us all, especially them – those who wait for change with a heart of hope.
I walk a bit faster, just as you told me. I do not let my shadow, the sound of my restless steps reach them. I think of you and keep my pace. I think of you who will make me forget this unpleasant afternoon, this misfortune of seeing myself before I was wrecked.

“I see Pinocchio wearing a poncho
That’s me some time ago.”
“Tokyo”, RM

“Maybe I got stronger
Maybe I got indifferent
I used to cry only once or twice a year
But now tears are coming
On this hidden path”
“Nosedive”, Dynamic Duo ft. Chen

“If I keep walking around reality, impotently
Sometimes, I feel like a ghost
Loneliness is like a grave
But you always take me out of it
You’re like the chorus of this song”
“Nosedive”, Dynamic Duo ft. Chen

“You’re my painkiller
When my brain gets bitter
You keep me close
You keep me close”
“Painkiller”, Ruel

“You seem like the whole of this world to me
Harder and more painfully embrace me”
Best of Me, BTS

My heart is an enemy of hope.
My hate for hope rises more and more everyday. It rises like a child filled with helium and happiness, it flutters like a flag of a nation I do not recognize and can no longer love. My hate for hope, runs through the carnivals, through the fields of futile dreams that my feet trample and waste away. It runs into your arms of firework filled with love. And you, you smile, confused if it is okay to have such a stubborn single-minded love born out of hatred for the world, wondering if you are bad for me.
My heart is an enemy of hope that never wanted you, never dreamed of you.
My hopes still sits beside me, telling me about the things I could have had and loved instead. Sadly, my hope never dies.

“I began to change,
began to fall, and be steady..
since I have known you,
I have started to move toward you..”
“Hasi Ban Gaye”, Humari Adhuri Kahani

“I can’t sleep, homesick, babe.
I just wanna stay right next to you
If I could choose my dream
I just wanna stay right next to you.”
“Tokyo”, RM

“What kind of soul do you possess
to have something that ties me to you like this?
Even though I don’t even have old nostalgic memories of you?”
“Seoul”, RM

“Yeah, even if I want to fly, I don’t have any wings.
But your hands become my wings.
I want to try forgetting the things that are dark and lonely
together with you.
Even though these wings sprouted from pain,
they’re wings that face the light.
Even if it’s hard and it hurts
if I can fly, I’m going to fly.
Can you hold my hand
so that I won’t be afraid anymore?
Because if you and I are together
I can smile”
“You Never Walk Alone”, BTS

I force myself up the uphill road. I cling onto railings and walls decorated with moss. I am never alone on such roads, I become everyone I face. I almost become someone you could never love. I am army of possibilities, an army raging against your reign. I become the person who, even under your closed eyes and soft breath, cries for all that ended up dead just for me to love. I become the person who placed his ears on the ground above your ribs, searching for a way out. I again become the faceless heartless entity enchanted by the the glitter of masks that demand a sacrifice, of you and me.

“If I could make sense of it all
All the hours I don’t understand,
the time we can’t go back to,
the moment filled with nothing but regret –
it seems like all those times will go flying
I don’t know how to cope with the feelings
that I’m feeling without you now”
“Insomnia”, DA₩N feat. YAYYOUNG

“Sometimes I’m disappointed in myself
I willingly trample on myself
“Is this all you are?
Have to do much better.
You have to be much cooler.
If you’re gonna lose, might as well die
You have to win, you you you.
You.”
“Uhgood”, RM

“I’m now so tired of you
Your constant ash-grey expression
No, no, I’m afraid of myself
Because I’ve already become a part of you.”
“Seoul”, RM

“But I can’t give up the “me” that you know of.
I can’t let go of the “me” that I know of.”
“Uhgood”, RM

When tomorrow comes,
How different it’s gonna be?
Why do love and hate sound just the same to me?
“Tokyo”, RM

My way to you is a world always in turmoil. It is also filled with glowing breadcrumbs of your love. I could never lose my way even within myself.

“But I believe, even though it’s unbelievable
Losing way
Is a way of finding way”
“Lost”, BTS

Even if it is the path I chose,
and everything is a fate that I created
Even if it is a sin that I committed,
and this whole life is only about paying for my sin.
Walk with me.
Fly with me”
“You Never Walk Alone”, BTS

“I have not seen “the end” for me yet either
But if that [end] existed, wouldn’t it be you?”
“Best of Me”, BTS

“What can I do? I speak with your words
And I breathe your breaths
I’ll be you
You, who are holding me,
I kiss your sword”
“Best of Me”, BTS

“On rainy days
Lying down, not a single word
Gazing with our eyes closed, everything becomes ours”
“Everything”, The Black Skirts

“Assignment” – Nayana Nair

There was that pile of paper
I could
never keep safe.
The crossed out, always crossed out words,
words always out of order,
words turned beautiful
only because they dissolved
in my frustration.
Only because now I cannot read them
without effort.
I must make something out of them
something that couldn’t possibly be mine.

The blue ink dripping,
forming planets on unexpected letters,
forming planets on my hands.
I would take them to class
and look at them as if now I meant something more,
now that I was suffering for something I want.

I raised my hands to answer a question
I have already answered hundred times.
I sat down and swallowed my teacher’s frown.
He didn’t have to teach me
that right answers matter
only when they come from right mouths.
(I once got an A only because I forgot to put my name.)
I knew there was nothing I could learn
by swallowing frowns everyday,
but still I dragged myself, my broken planets,
my half burnt poems in my half burnt hands
to the one who doesn’t think twice
before asking me

to hate myself better.

“Virtual Image” – Nayana Nair

the image in mirror is never formed

I copied this slowly
from my friend’s notes,
reading too much into it.

I moved my hands
over the new definition of real.

I traced the lines, the dull path of light
as faithfully as I could
but the solid blue lines of ink touch the glass
and are broken cleanly by the laws of reflection, every time.

Only I am left in this world of real stuff
tracing back the path
that only their changed selves could have taken.

But what difference does that make?
People who have changed
do they even want those old dreams?

Probably not, for all I see are points abandoned,
in the world of unpublished fiction
surrounded by crosses of dotted lines,
like the ones that are meant to be torn slowly.

the image in mirror is never formed

But it is there, in front of me.
By some miracle they exist
even when they don’t.

Doesn’t that count as real?

The emptiness in me
and in it your face.

Doesn’t that count as real?

“Now what?” – Nayana Nair

For a change I made breakfast for one
and didn’t cry over it.
I didn’t turn back as he packed his favorite parts
of this heavy life with me.
He didn’t ask me about the things I have hidden away.
I felt a bitter thankfulness
that my memories are mine to keep,
that my beautiful moments have been erased from his heart,
that I am not a part of his greed and schemes anymore,
that nothing in me can be ruined by him after this.

I simply stared at the milk that won’t boil
as he dragged away in his small heart
the window frames, the doors to my cold world,
the warm flame of my blue stove,
the table mats on which we spilled our hearts by mistake,
the songs that I will never be able to sing again,
the doorbell, the welcome mat, our plants
that never grew more than a millimeter
in spite of the four years
of sunlight and rain.
Mistakes. We created so much with love,
only to call them mistakes.

I heard the door close behind me,
my so called “heart” moving away without me
and all I could do was hope or pity myself.
All I could do was hate him
so that I can finally give up.

“name my heart” – Nayana Nair

i draw a white light
on another perfect window
with my broken hand

the clouds have gathered
for me
my blue stream must be dying inside

i speak my softest tongue
i lift my wounds
to show my untainted heart

stay on the waves in my eyes
touch the only vein in my body
that knows how to hope, i beg

but they drift away
before i name my heart after them
they drift away not wanting to be mine

the sky is clear again
i try not to cry, as i draw the lightning
that no clouds can gift my heart.

“Blue white love” – Nayana Nair

As I wait for you
in the back seat of your car
almost losing sense of my limbs and my scars
I smile – the sad smile I would never use when I am sober.
I smile thinking,
thankful,
at least I am not crying and waiting
in the trunk of some stranger’s car.
I don’t necessarily love you
but I guess I love your pattern, the predictability of your anger,
the time I have to prepare my skin to shatter.
I think about the times I have been broken
and abandoned by the loves and by the men before you
I think about your anger that I never forget this past.
I think about your hands that I can count on
even when your hands love my pain the most.
I think of your funny jokes, the food you cook in your good mood,
the songs that you hum as you move around the house,
your bluish white wings and your flickering halo
when you are asleep by my side.
I think I can love you a bit after all.

"Ports" – Nayana Nair

a blue cloudy sky over a banana plantation.
the only word to be heard – rebellion.
someone is crying far away.
another round of bullets leave the shaking hands
of the one who can’t seem to stop crying.
now he must die just like me.
he rests his bloody head and its murky thoughts on me.
in this last afternoon of my life
i drift into bouts of darkness,
without fear for first time,
with the company of only his confused memories.
will this be my last dream – his life?
even in his head my homeland and its afternoons are beautiful.
he has a face that he doesn’t want to forget,
he has childhood home he can always return to
but he didn’t, he regrets it now.
he remembers the red color that his sister
stopped wearing on her lips
once her heart was broken badly.
how he kept it with himself, as a symbol of happiness
that he can’t have only for himself.
there are ports on rainy days
and buildings that became sadder at night.
he once painted the window that would never open to him
or anyone else for that matter.
he cried when another nameless woman was found lifeless
on the last page corner of newspaper
and the window never lighted anymore.
there is a cafe filled with few bombs that didn’t go off
where the only one spared was him.
he doesn’t want to be spared anymore.
i wonder if he thinks that he can have happiness when he ends.
i wonder if i will be able to smile on a rainy day, even if i am born again.

“Under the Blue” – Nayana Nair

The button of self-destruct was never so glorious,
never so definite, never so absolute
until she uttered “end” and it sounded like “home” to me.

I feared looking at the mark of x on my maps
that she had found with great pains.
The blue under the mark looked so harmless even when it was not.

Only when I saw her tears disappear with along with her
in the waters that no one dares to drink,
did I realize that I also had been drowning all along.