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“the broken-hearted” – Nayana Nair

the broken-hearted know no love
for anything or anyone
that is not the one breaking their heart.
they see through you.
even when they say hello
they almost get your name wrong,
you can tell it from the look in their eyes.
they drink and fill every room with songs
that were not so hard to bear
when they were just noises that radio made.
they tell you in their drunken stupor that no one cares.

they say no one cares
even when you call the cab, drag them home,
hurt your hand in the struggle,
scrape more than skin, lose more than patience,
leave them on a bed not made
for weeks probably, you don’t want to guess or know.
so you close the door, climb down the stairs
shut down the part of mind reserved for them,
but remember how they have been liking and sharing
too many dark poems, how those poems
speak in their voice in your mind.
so you climb back, remove every blade and knife
and realize it is just the beginning.
you feel exhausted by the inexhaustible list of things
that can help end a life,
that can serve as a full stop.

so you sleep on the couch
or pretend to,
till your head hurts from pretending.
now that you want something true
you call your love
and tell him that you don’t know
how to handle this,
how to sleep and yet keep an eye
on the one whom you suspect is waiting,
waiting for you to close your eyes for a second
to make an exit that doesn’t exist.
he tells you that they are beyond hope
at the same time
he forwards articles that could give you hope.
he tells you to sleep tight knowing you won’t.

when you wake up at the sound of tears
being microwaved for breakfast,
you see another day that won’t be right.
you see them trying not to break
yet breaking and abandoning everything around them
so that their hurt can be felt by the world.
they look at you and smile
while they pour another glass
toasting “another drink for the world that doesn’t care,
another drink for the loveless me.”

the broken-hearted know no love
for anything or anyone
that is not the one breaking their heart.

“New Limitations” – Nayana Nair

ohgigue

I tended to all the brokenness
that now remained on your skin
after they found you at places
where they didn’t want you to be.
I hoped it was only your skin
that was red and sore.
The more silent you sat,
the more my heart worried.
As you tired to smile for me
I felt that maybe I was also a strain on you,
even me sitting here was more than what you could handle.
I felt that even if I sat here all night beside you
I would only be an obstacle in your way
to reconciling with your new limitations,
to return to what you were.

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Is it selfish of me to come to you,
look after you
only for the sake of having you as I liked you?
So that I don’t have to wonder how to walk around you
as if you were most fragile broken glass
that I didn’t want to be around,
that if I fix you somehow
things would get better.
Then we would only have to think about
where to go for brunch, what to buy, what to watch
rather than sitting here
and second-guessing our words and action.
Rather than feeling helpless and inadequate
in handling this pain
that would be easier to forget if it was not in the face
of the one we love.

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