“Out of Frame” – Nayana Nair

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My pictures are not about me
they are just replacable frames
filled with the skin I have shed
filled with people who have left
and with my smile that has changed
beyond recognition.
So I can’t help but look at them
and picture the happy life
this person must have had
when I know it is otherwise.
I have lost track of my memories
I have lost track of the reasons
for why I lived my life like that.
I have a fading list of afflictions
and its pain that I have learned
to live with or ignore.
As I age, I find
I can almost forget,
I can leave behind
whoever I was out of frame.

“Uncomfortable Reality” – Nayana Nair

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I remember the conversations
that I had with you
even before we met.
How you always gave me answers
that I wanted to hear.
You always told me the words
that could help me sleep better.
And though you are not
the gentle soul I dreamed of.
But even I am not the pitiful girl
that I thought I was.
And all you are
is so much better
than all you could be.
And I realize at the core of your words, that
pierce and break my delusions,
is the reality-
that I was never comfortable with
until you stood by my side
to face it with me.

“Walking Home” – Nayana Nair

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The street is lined with houses
that have forgotten how to breathe anything
but neglect.
There are broken windows
through which I see hopeful eyes staring and crying
trapped in homes that
reek of wait that yields more wait.
The street is lined with trees that never grew.
The roads cling to the snow that never melts.
We all have learned how to go deaf to cries of help
(that’s what growing up means?)
and walk home to our own tragedies-
some we suffer, some we create
and some we never stop.

“One of them” – Nayana Nair

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Slowly I hear
a flood, a riot, a madness of people
rushing towards me.
Their voices turning from
gossiping whispers
to name calling.
Their anger pulling triggers
real and imaginary.
I hear a silence in the world
that looks at me
and tell me a list of things I did wrong
to deserve this.
They look for a reason to forget the existence
of people like me
whose broken pieces remind them
of their own cruelty.

And soon they run to another direction
finding someone to bully.
But many a times, one of them looks back,
helps me get back on my feet.
And now I do not know
how to hate them.
I fear my hate will make me one of them.

“Nothing hurts more” – Nayana Nair

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The table is set before us.
The lights from a far away sadness
finding its way
to our faces,
that seem too empty without it.
There are friends
holding glasses filled with whatever
helps them forget their hope.
Nothing hurts more than hope.

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For this hour
the ache of our heels
and the weight on our eyes
are replaced with something
smaller and innocent,
something more painful.
Like a snow globe filled
with broken promises.
And we all become kids,
who are still waiting for the presents
of a Christmas marked on calendars lost.
Sleeping on beds that are too small for us.
Holding onto wishes that really doesn’t matter now.
Nothing hurts more than hope.

“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.