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“Not So Bad” – Nayana Nair

he sings the most beautiful song.
so beautiful
that the sky becomes a reflection of the heart
that he can barely carry in himself.
the words on his lips
they break, they sound different,
feel different,
they sound like the first cry of a baby-
the violent coming to life.
they run and collide and shatter
against the rough indifferent surface
of this dying world, a not-so-bad world.
he becomes a not-so-bad singer.
as he runs out of breath and love
someone places a coin of gold in his hands.
he means to feel grateful for this compensation,
but all he can do is hold his tongue, hold his tears.
hold his bitterness in himself
and sing another song dreaming, waiting
for an honest reply, a genuine care,
an understanding gaze in return for laying bare his humanness.

“Bland” – Nayana Nair

I heard her again complain about warm hands.
A hand that remains warm, always warm,
so warm that it almost becomes a fault, a flaw.
That it turns into blame, into words that make no sense-
“I could have loved him if he was not so good.
Good is suspicious. Good is bland.
Good is you when you try to be something you are not.
He cannot know my heart, if he cannot be human enough to sin”, she said.
I wonder why I never met them – the bland people
who would be good for my heart, whom I seek in every hand I touch.
Maybe I confused grand gestures, big promises, passionate gaze
for goodness too many times.
I wonder if it is just my weakness, my weariness
that now wants someone harmless to live along with.

“The Saving Business” – Nayana Nair

Ages ago, I did a course of 48 hours on saving people
(as if saving was that easy).
There were lots of questions, none that I could answer truthfully.
I sat through confessions, lot of confessions.
I sat there distancing myself from everything I had the potential to be-
the one who clutched her handkerchief too tight,
the one whose gaze seems like a hammer, itching to crush and break.
And like the pathetic person I am,
I only thought “Where should I run to now?”

I would return to a sad room to sleep (thank god it was never to be my home),
I would wake up and find myself staring
at slideshows that I tried hard not to see
or find myself cooking up stories of life
that won’t put me on that stage, won’t sound like a cry.

“Is this how this saving business would continue to be?”, I wondered
as I left those 48 hours behind.
“Is this all I can do?”, I asked myself as I finally wept for hours.

“What I Remember (11)” – Nayana Nair

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beauty may be only skin deep
but lack of it goes deeper than that.
so deep
that you end up learning to want things
that you wouldn’t otherwise even think about.
i wish i could remember every face
that was surprised to know
that i am okay with looking older than i am,
surprised that i do not want to exorcise fats
especially when i have got so much of it.
every morning i wake up
they hover over me like faceless shadows
with black markers, drawing over my body
showing me all that is wrong,
giving me tips so that i can become easy to look at,
hiding their superficiality under the wraps of concern,
whispering how thick-skinned i am when i don’t listen
and wondering what is wrong with the ones who love me.
it made me wonder
that maybe going under the knife
wouldn’t be as bad as being smeared black by markers.
that maybe i am supposed to love myself
only after the world approves of the ‘me’ that i want to love.
i would have understood if they cared,
if they actually meant good,
but they don’t
because they know nothing more than my name
and they say my name only with heart-breaking adjectives and assumptions.
i want to say they are wrong,
but i have suffered their gaze for so long
that sometimes i end up sharing their hatred of me, of what they see.
there are days that i obsess over a passing comment.
there are days i beat up myself for being like this.
i starve and fail,
i try to get over their words and fail,
i try to hate myself and fail.
i want to say it doesn’t matter
but it does
because i am tiring myself out
by trying to see something good in me,
by apologizing to myself,
by trying to save my heart
while they burn my body in the woods.

“Meet me on a sunless day” – Nayana Nair

the sun is so much brighter than it used to be
it makes me wonder if i remembers my days correctly.

has it always been like this,
when did my eyes start creating its own darkness.

(is there a word for it?
like there is a word for plants creating food from the drops of sun)

were you always this beautiful?
were you always looking at me with those kind eyes?

my broken mind only remembers cruel gazes.
why did it never take your image in?

how is it so easy to not see?
why is it so easy to believe the worst?

what if i walk over to you, try to smile with you
and call what i feel love

how long will my new vision stay with me?
do you know how to love a blind bitter person?

i am asking since i am always not like this
i asking because i want to meet you again on a dark cloudy day

i want you to know of my blindness
before you love me back.

“I could learn to be yours” – Nayana Nair

You walk into this room
and all eyes that have not met yours
continue to gaze at everything
that is crumbling and dying.
All eyes but mine.
I can only look at you.
My eyes like only your light.
If you would have me,
if you would want to have me,
I could learn to be happy,
I could learn to love.
In every room,
in every gaze,
in every life
you are all I want.

“What I Remember(5)” – Nayana Nair

No it is not an escape anymore
because
it is not only me
who is into these addictions of milder kind.
All I want is what everyone already has.
Don’t worry these books and music I get high on
don’t alter my perception of reality
like they used to before.
So I am fine with irrelevant goals of
having one more book to read, one more page to fill up,
and some hours to sit and stare at screens of literature of a cruder form.
They may not constitute the real meaning of life.
But I have not seen anyone who is particularly worried
about missing the real point of life.

. . .   .   .     . 

I know this consumerism and media culture irritates you.
That I look like one of the thousands who sit and demand
to be entertained, to be fed with something other than
the reality of insufficient time and cash.
Would it make me more real, would your gaze become more softer
if I bring up a portion of my life where I was hurt by this world,
when the reality didn’t change just because of my disappointment in it.
That not everyone can be one with the nature and one with society,
when nature is far away from where we are locked,
when society is all about waiting for someone else
to mess up on a grander scale than us.
See that is what I don’t want to talk about.
It is depressing enough to live it.
We can either discuss about how I almost found friend in a fictional character,
found a mirror or even a window in another,
how I do not agree with most reviews,
how I couldn’t get the tragic end of the story out my head.

. . .   .   .     . 

I don’t mind sitting in front immaculate shows of lies
if that is where the my temporary relief of my life is hidden,
at least we are entitled to that much – relief.

“My Possessions”- Nayana Nair

All objects that I possess
have stopped doing what they were meant to do.
The window doesn’t bring me new air.
The bed doesn’t give me rest.
The glass filled with water and handful of pills
promise me disconnection from reality, sleep, or even death
but never the rest that I so want.
The words on my books run around on pages, hating my gaze.
The music breaks itself into disjointed string on noises.

It is as if one night
while I lay trying to forget you,
they voted and decided to forget me unanimously.
They agreed and concluded
that if someone must be forgotten
it is me.
So now they rebel,
they serve only purpose-
to remind me
of all I lost simply by losing you.

“Same World” – Nayana Nair

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From where I sit
I see the beauty that moves my heart
and makes me realize
why I am alive till now.
And though I love you
and wish to see the world with you,
I could never gather enough courage
so as to tug your sleeve
and ask you to follow my gaze.

I fear you will look at what I see
and mock my eyes, my mind
to be fascinated by the things
that for you are trivial.
Worse, if you take me away from the beauty I found
for you know better things.
Worse, if you refuse to look back
for you have better things to do.

I wish I could tell you my heart,
tell you my fears, tell you about the minutes
of my life where sometimes I feel I am trapped,
and sometimes set free in a world I cannot share with anyone.
It is enough, I guess, that I can hear your steps beside me
and believe that we are in the same world,
even when we are not.

We all long to be something

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The Flower“-Kim Chun-soo

We all long to be something.
You, to me, and I, to you,
long to become a gaze that won’t be forgotten.

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