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“Keeping Distance” – Nayana Nair

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All my sketches of you
are living in a hopeless state of
growing hunger, growing questions.
I hear them talking to each other,
asking your whereabouts.
I have grown to become
a mother of many children
abandoned by her man.
Children who are forced to share a life with me
while struggling to keep a distance from my breaking heart.
Asking each other questions that they want to ask me.
I wish they would just ask me
“where is he?” “did he forget his way to us?”
“did he forget you? us?”

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A saner me could have told them
“he probably forgot the person he was
people tend to do that life
but he cannot forget himself without erasing us
maybe we were no better that the life
that he had forgotten before us
or maybe it became worse with us
whatever he was suffering from.”

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But the saner me
is also fading into the sea of past.
I fear for these innocent memories
that do not get to choose,
that do not have any say,
staring in silence at me
hoping I continue to love them
knowing that I probably won’t.

“Future You Saw” – Nayana Nair

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You say, “There are two of me and two of you
and if we are trying to be precise in the count of us
I think there are many me and many you.”
Does it even matter, to think about
all the people we were just for a day?
To complain about a love that didn’t fade
but changed from one thing to another.
To complain that it changed
even when it found a way to survive somehow.
When it is trying so hard,
when it has stayed so long
do you really want to sit here
and count the ways
in which it is not what you thought it would be,
that it is somehow lacking
and breaking your heart.
I cannot hear you count again
all future you saw in me,
to be reminded
of all the things I hoped from you.
I cannot stand here and look through the real us
that we have, that has sustained
all our disappointment,
that is better than what we want.

“New Organ” – Nayana Nair

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All the words that I have gulped down
are still inside me,
never digested.
They have found a space for themselves-
A new throbbing organ that I cannot name,
since I have never named my organs,
someone else always does it for me
(does it for all of us)
and tells me through fading words
of second-hand textbooks
how is it supposed to feel to be a human,
how I am just a complicated machinery
and why my heart can’t possible think or want.

“Conversation” – Nayana Nair

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Last night as we talked in the dark,
I saw you hold a fire in your hand
as you sculpted the air
into the memories of people
that won’t leave your mind.
Soon the room became nothing
but a projection of what you see,
and in these moving
and fading screens
of your painted conversation
for a moment
I saw a glimpse of myself
and I thanked the darkness of my life
that let me see,
that let me know,
what I mean to you.

“All I Can Do” – Nayana Nair

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If all I can do
is to write up my pain
that will fill itself every morning again.
And hide the evidence of my weakness
on pages
that burn with longing for the fading ink,
the ink that longs to see
those eyes from whom they were meant to hide.
Then I am just moving my feelings
from one dark cage to another.
They continue to grasp for air,
even if the hands that choke them have changed.

“Immune to Good Advice” – Nayana Nair

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When my own opinions can’t budge the doors
that are closed on my face,
I run back to these books
which list how to think, what to want.
I do not look for how it is done
I look for what I did wrong.
But my mind is so immune to a good advise
that the words that I read make me sick
even when they could be my medicine.
But I don’t yet know if they are,
cause my wish for a better life fades away
in front of the genuineness my heart demands from me.

“So many things” – Nayana Nair

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The jar of broken smiles
sits on my table,
along with the books and records
of my fading writing.
There are so many things
that wither at my touch.
There are so many things
that cannot be brought back to life.
Their graves lie here dreaming to be resurrected.
So many seconds laid waste in my worry
for the future that never will be.

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