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“Ready to Break” – Nayana Nair

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We are the mediocre television soap
that no one wants to see.
We have learned to gulp down bland food, bland life.
The books that get us jobs, get us friends, gets us love,
we have learned to pay for it without bitterness.

We adore the mania, the depression,
the moments when we don’t want to think clear-
that makes us feel alive,
anything like that,
we are ready to call it love.

In our small hands we carry
whatever meaning we have left in us-
the offering that no gods want.
We are ready to break for anyone
who is ready to break for us.

“Red Valley” – Nayana Nair

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every red flower
that couldn’t bloom,
that was denied a spring,
now grows inside us.

we breathe to keep them alive
so their sky remains blue
and they might know
what tomorrow means.

there is a weight on our tiny shoulders
to carry voices that were once locked in vacuum,
to do everything right,
to build greenhouses by our words and intention.

but we don’t need broad strong shoulders
to carry this weight, to keep this valley alive.
we only need to unlearn
every cruelty we have ever been taught.

“On the saddest cloud” – Nayana Nair

Even when I insisted
that I am fine
without relying on you.
Even when I tried to keep
only my best version in your eyes.
When I said I can solve my problems
and if I can’t, I will learn to live with them;
to never trouble yourself
with what I suffer or how I suffer.

You told me I no longer have to live like this,
to not fear dependence in love.
You lied that I am no longer alone.
You liked to be a promise
and nothing more.
You wanted to be believed
as much as I wanted to be never hurt.

So this wingless me
left my land to fly with you,
to go to a place where you can breathe better.
And you realized the effort it takes
to carry another person pretty late.
Now I am stuck in a cloud
and you are somewhere in this vast sky.
You can give me only few hours of your day.
There is a life that is meant for you
and I shouldn’t come in your way.

I live on such crumbs of you
that my heart wilts one petal,
one dream at a time.
Love can now no longer live
in a heart like mine.

“I dream of an end” – Nayana Nair

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there is a land of promise
that only promises an end.
end to everything.
a painless but a sure end.

i wondered if i should dream to be there.
if i would be able to say this aloud
if i can say,”i dream of an end”.
if you ask “end to what?”
what shall i say? what i should i answer?
how does one begin to answer such questions?
the questions that do not mean anything
till they have an answer.
then those questions become regrets,
become point of no return.

an end surely is better
than the unbearable stretch of time,
the long life
that lies after the such questions.

how can you look at me the same way
when you know that my monstrosity and my weakness are the same?
how will i be able to pretend or play dumb?
surely an end is better
the endless days of pretend.
an end is better
than carrying the burden of this life,
this life that i don’t want,
than loving you and loving myself
with closed eyes and closed heart.

“How people live” – Nayana Nair

I sat there crying.

It hurt to know,
how people live,
how they smile,
how they could look at each other,
how they felt welcome wherever they went,
how they could sing along
and not be reminded of all the sadness
that song carried in itself.
How my desolate riverside
was their ‘beautiful view’,
their ‘venue for celebration’.

I saw it and cried
for I realized
that this life could never be mine.
I cried because I realized
something must be wrong with me
to not want this life.
I cried because I couldn’t understand
how to set things right.

“What I Remember(9)”- Nayana Nair

I tell myself stories about
why I threw away all that I had,
or why everything was taken away from me.
How I was too weak, will always be too weak
to carry the weight of the gifts that I had.
Or how I was never quite convinced
that I had something to be proud of.
How I was always trying to gauge
how much deep my feelings ran
for everything that I could only sort-of-love.
I can list all similar attempts
where I sought a better quantitative understanding of my specialness
and used these unreliable results to decide how and when to give up.
But if I had to give one consolidated story of
why I was never a failure at anything,
why I never succeeded,
why I had nothing to show for the years I lived
or for the talents that people remember me for.
If I had to be concise and true
I would say
I never made those decisions,
I was never aware of how I felt about
all the things that bother me now.
I drifted away from what I was, from what I treasured,
the way dear friends lose touch, lose each others name,
lose a happiness they could have had.
Only to be reminded of this loss
when it no longer matters.

“Empty Shells” – Nayana Nair

The list of all the words that I use and don’t know meaning of:

friend, understanding, dream, ethics,
distance, space, wait, promise,
family, kindness, virtue, trust,
love, love, love, love, love, love,
(I was told I need to be especially obsessed with love
if I want to be normal)

I, me,
memory (real or invented),
boundary between reality and fiction…

What a poor human I am
that I carry around these empty shells
pretending as if I know their worth.
All the flags that I carry
of the countries
to which I do not belong.
All the people who I live with,
only because I cannot live without them.
What an excuse to walk on this road
that will eventually to lead to a heartbreak.
Every heartbreak a drop on my window
and it has been monsoon for years altogether.
What a sloppy way to end all things
that I never wanted to begin.

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