Ice floats and ships sink
but the absolutes end here.
For this red sun, that seems
to sink together with us all,
is just playing a kind game.
It is will be fine. Just fine.
It will pretend to die
just for our sake.
Just like how it pretends to be born
so that we don’t feel alone.
It doesn’t know yet, that we feel lonely
in spite of that. That there are things in life
that can make us forget, that can cancel
the sunshine and the storms. There are soft things
that gets trodden upon,
there is a kindness that we can’t value as humans
because it doesn’t come from the one we want.
There are things with weight and never leave our heart-
Like love, like death, like subjective harshness of this world.
Like the unnamed thing eating our dreams,
Like the unmanned vehicle of luck running over us-
leaving us alive everytime.
The friend who forgets us so often
that we believe that we are ghosts, the rain of care
that we try to predict in the eyes of cold lover,
the floating bodies that we can’t recognize.
But we cry and in our tears we feel the remains
of the memory that we can’t access.
we only feel we must cry or we will regret.
So dear sun
forgive us if we don’t return your smile
as we thrash around breathless in water,
as we demand answers in a voice weathered by tears.
Forgive us if we forget
that unlike us you will probably die alone.
Things get forgotten
important things like you and the other members
of your life-filled-lifeless club.
That’s just how we are
but we realize it sooner or later what they were.
I can recall the days when i knew you tried to save me.
You almost succeeded. You were beautiful
even when my life was not. But even that helps.
We may not say it that much, but we have written a lot about you
in the papers you’ll never read.
I hope when you die the papers that are filled with your beauty
can burn to give you a few more breaths.
I hope it helps even though it won’t.
It is not the night that brings in the monsters.
They are just creatures, just nature-
that exist outside the door that you are guarding.
They come in because this world is theirs as well.
They come in because they can,
just like how you can go out.
This is the fair deal you don’t want to exist.
At least they do not look for you,
they do not mark your picture
and throw darts at it.
I love them for that,
for the lack of vicious premeditation,
the lack of fun in their delivery of hurt.
The river of pills that flows into my window
has nothing to do with them.
The hurt that keeps you awake,
the nails that slowly make marks
on the surface of your eyes
this ruined place, this brokenness
are always the gifts of the ones
who look like us.
This has nothing to do with the monsters.
This has nothing to do with nights.
But has knowing such things ever helped.
The days are just as frightful as nights.
Now anything that looks like me,
and everything that doesn’t –
they are possible ends of me.
Now I must either run away from everything
or must end up loving them all, forgiving them all –
this broken temple of knowledge, this fake shallow sacred unions,
these glorious wretched feelings that won’t let me remain me.
How far should I run. How foolishly should I love.
How do I decide.
When I talk of the moon that shines on us in our sorrow,
as we promise to do better and be better,
I am again omitting something
that needs to be said.
Something that everyone reading us should know,
before they tell us the best course to reach happiness from here,
before they believe us when even we have learnt not to.
I am omitting that we are comfortable in our sorrows,
that happiness is an alien land.
We would rather break our hearts
than visit that place where we don’t fit in.
I am omitting that
we are obsessed about fitting in
as much as we are
about doing it without changing anything about ourselves.
So we will only be what we have always been.
I am omitting
that our love is primarily
about navigating life with heavy hearts
just to reach moments like these
where we feel we can be forgiven as long as we forgive.
The moon that shines on us in our sorrow
on the absurdity of this refuge that protects us from nothing,
on this love where there is no place for ‘better’.
Even when we know that this is a cycle of pain and deception
we revel in the fact
that this won’t end like everything else in this world.
I tried being cool about it.
I tried not to call it a heartbreak.
I tried forgiving.
I tried thinking ‘my life is not over’.
I even invented some feelings that can be talked about.
I entertained the stupid idea – “it’s all for the best”.
I fed it all I owned,
and soon I didn’t have much left to keep that play going.
I think there are still hundred things more
that I have not yet tried.
Maybe one of them would work.
Or maybe till I reach the end of this list,
I would probably forget
who I was or who you were,
and maybe you would just melt into my identity –
claiming 2% of my faults, causing 25% of my breakdowns,
the major reason for my suspiciousness,
the only reason I can’t seem to be myself.
Just like how I pick up all odd habits and mannerism
from people I don’t even recall,
will you end up
becoming things that I do without reason,
becoming my convenient excuse for turning my back
on anything that can become
more important that me in my own life.
I wanted to tell him
“You have not lost much.
For sunsets you missed
are not even there in the hearts of those
who saw it everyday.
They walked past it,
shut their windows tight,
and sat in their darkest caves
trying to run away from what you want so deeply.”
I almost said to him
that even though it hurts,
it is a hurt I would like to have-
to yearn for the things that never happened.
That unlike him I yearned for things
that I walked over and killed.
Things that I can still see and hear
in my dreams, telling me, showing me
all the marks of my hatred on their skin, on their hearts.
I cry for them, look for them,
seek forgiveness from them when I am awake.
I dread them when they find me in sleep.
I almost confessed to him
that being the maker of caves, a lover of sunsets,
being the one who filled half the world and half the hearts
with a blindness even I can’t cure,
maybe I shouldn’t be his savior,
maybe I shouldn’t be relied upon for answers.
The last stranger at the funeral home
brought in the worst rain of the season,
the coldest wind of the night
along with your last letter.
He leaned against the window
and called up everyone he won’t be able to meet today
looking at me all the while.
As if he knew every word that I was reading.
to see whether I cry at the same lines that he did.
His eyes look like the ones who have got used
to crying for things that cannot be undone,
for a life that cannot be.
I wondered if he loved you. Maybe he did.
Maybe you knew. I hope you did.
He sat beside me
trying not to grieve more than a mother,
trying not mourn like a lover,
making himself invisible with every word
i read under my tearful breath
“…even when I sat at the dinner table with my brightest smile and deepest hunger, i couldn’t convince me that i needed to exist here.
even the warmest embrace of this world could do nothing but break me. i knew opening my heart could only bring floods and all ends of all kind.
i knew all along of this end. forgive me for pretending otherwise….”
Amidst the clutter of her living room, I sat down with the last drink in her refrigerator- an extremely sour and almost suspicious orange juice.
I could look up the expiry date but it was already too late. I was almost down to my third sip. A thought that arrives a bit too late is probably a thought best forgotten. If I end up in ER for this, this might be my last orange drink. Sort of sad that the last orange drink in my life tasted like calculated foolishness rather than a bright sun and its shameless almost applaudable want of attention.
I walk around her apartment, looking at all the stuff she has accumulated over the years, things that I am rather too conscious to look at when she is awake. I do not know the face that I should make at the face of all that she can’t get rid of – the things she wants to throw away, the things that make her believe that she is an actual person with a life that was actually lived.
When I see her bleeding fingers, her grip, her intent to never fall from this precipice, her intent not to ever pull her self out of it; I end up finding all thing that I could have done, all that I could have been. I end up finding ways to have broken beautifully, to break in a way that wouldn’t endanger my will to live so much.
Which is weird because she is sadder than me. Which is weird cause I do not think the type of breaking matters that much.
They are just thoughts that have arrived a bit too late because now I have time to think, because now I have the heart to forgive, because I am that ideal age where I might opt to forget for the sake of my own heart.
If I end up in another heartache because of the things we can’t change anyway, if this turns out to by last love, then it is sort of sad that I can do only so little, that I can love this much.
I folded her note and placed it carefully in my wallet. And I smiled. I told her something I do not remember now. It was something sweet, something weird, because that was the only sort of thing that could make her smile like that.
I folded her smile and placed it carefully in my wallet. And I smiled for a bit. I smiled till I saw the crease that now divided her in half. Trying to ignore the apparition of her breaking, trying to ignore my guilty heart, I gave her few words to smile about. She smiled as if she knew nothing. She smiled as if she knew everything that could ever be hidden in my heart.
I folded her forgiveness and placed it in my wallet. I smiled apologetically. She smiled back as if this is what love was. I recited to her all her favorite promises, probably to soothe my own heart.
I folded another note of forgiveness, and another, and another. The thickness of my wallet and her cracks increased by millimeters, they always walked hand in hand, unlike us. I bought her new flowers and she bought me new wallets. With a smile she told me something untrue about us, something that she could believe in. Maybe she waited for me to tell her something true for once.
But I folded every truth about us and hid it in the memories we won’t find our way back to. And just when I thought nothing can go wrong. I realized that I had also left her at that place where I was not allowed to live. She stared out and smiled from the warm rooms of love, far away from my unlovable heart.
the green pastures
the white fences
the perfect fake loving gaze
the debts of kindness
the half that never completes itself for once
the ornamental lackings of my being
the personal sun, the privilege to look away
and never know the heart of one who can’t
the greed such that I can’t stop receiving
the ideals that I can live without,
ideals that are already falling short
my monstrous growth, my falls from grace,
everything that I say I don’t need
all that I cannot give back.
It is easier for me
to be kind,
with a life of hypocrisy,
with a guilt weighing down my heart,
with the smile that I can get only because
the world is unfair.
It is easier for me to smile
at the knife stuck in my back.
It is easier to forgive
when I cannot forget my own blood stained hands,
my own reckless selfish heart.
All the wildflowers of our soul,
all the drops of yellow suns
dissolve in the air of shrieks.
One by one we loose ourselves.
The moments of despair and pain
are not only ours now.
When I speak,
When I am silenced,
when I accept suffering,
when I am trodden upon
thousands wake up
with bruises they do not deserve.
How should I live?
How should I forgive?
Knowing my pain is someone else’s as well.