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Tailoring Myself

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I was running from myself, trying to be someone different for each person of importance in my life, tailoring myself to their needs, choosing personas to inhabit and abandon, wearing masks that only obscured my own desires and the gravity of my choices. I was code-switching for the hell of it, without much purpose but with plenty of precision.

-Brandon Harris, “The lies we tell ourselves about gentrification

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“Let me sell you a story” – Nayana Nair

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Let me sell you a story.
A lie
that my hollow life could live in.
A home that can be changed to my need.
A reality that never exists,
but is as real as
the stories,
the lives
that we avoided by one choice.
Let me sell you a story,
let me sell you my dreams.
I have no need for them anyway.

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“Be You” – Nayana Nair

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Oh! Let me be you.
Who walks with a sun in your pocket
for every rainy day.
Who stood at crossroads
and decided which road shouldn’t exist.
Let me be you for a day.
So that I am not the one
who hides in hollow words,
who makes her bed on the dreams of others.
Let me be you,
so that I can put out my hand
always with the confidence
knowing that the love I ask
shall be given.

But what is this that I feel?
Why my hands shake?
Why my heart cries?

Is it because
the one who is breaking the wall
with bare bleeding hands
has the same pain, same fear
as the one who is hiding behind that wall.
Is it because
this love, this life
leaves no one without scar.

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“Cruel” – Nayana Nair

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I always had a sense of entitlement
when it came to dreaming of a lover.
That there would be someone
who puts me first.
But I realized with time
sometimes you have to be that someone
who puts others first.
That was such a terrifying and distressing thought.
And suddenly all these heroes
became somewhat out-of-the-world, larger-than-life
someone I can never be.

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To realize the pain
it must have taken
to scrap down their lives
for the sake of a person
whose love can’t be trusted or guaranteed.
How one must endure their own foolishness.
How one must look away from our own self.
Knowing all the while
that all this, built
by sacrifices,
can be broken in no time
with one word of hers,
that can end your suffering
and renew your struggle.
That there is no way out.
To cling
or to leave.
And to suffer each minute
no matter what you choose.

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It seemed so tiring
It seemed so cruel
to ask someone for that.

“See for yourself” – Nayana Nair

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Last night I saw her
lying by that tree,
as she slowly bled.
Though I am sure she saw me
looking out from my window,
she didn’t ask for help.
Her stare was enough
to remind me of boundaries
of her life and her choice,
that I as a stranger,
I as her love
cannot cross.

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See for yourself.
Look how the ground
looks doubtful,
whether to soak or spew the blood
that is trying to find a new home.
Come and see for yourself
how I died here,
not knowing it was me.
How like always
I was a bit too late
to decide what it was
that I really wanted.

“More or Less” – Nayana Nair

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It was more or less like waiting
Only there was no excuse of distance between them
Though they walked hand-in-hand,
they knew
this was not all they could be.
Just like noises of traffic merging in the call of birds.
They knew the love they want and the love they have
was not so much different.
It was more or less the same.
Or at least they soon will be.
It was not a question of which person.
It was a question of
how much,
how long.

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And they have not lived an eternal life
to believe in eternal love.
But they kept it in mind
played with this idea,
scrutinised it,
made fun of it,
wished for it.

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As they wait for their love to
become bigger than themselves,
they have no choice but to be who they are
and live the life they know.
Soon this love will numb their pain.
But it takes time for poison to work.
But it will.
It always has.
Poison, too, can be a medicine.
It is just a matter of
how much,
how long.

“This Life”- Nayana Nair

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Slowly,

I am killing myself.

One drop at a time.

With each drop of time

that leaves this life,

I observe helplessly

but still having control.

Any second, I can save myself.

But I choose not to.

Everyone dies anyway.

Everyone is dying

this same death.

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