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“What I Remember (12)” – Nayana Nair

hailstones.
that’s what i remember.
when the stones fell
onto the already breaking roofs of our class,
the girl who sat three rows ahead
stopped reading.
everyone who was busy day dreaming,
who had shut their ears to every useless fact that we come to learn,
knew how to listen to this,
to this violence that could hurt but won’t.

i sat there listening,
wondering if my skin would also be able bear
what this tin sheet roof can,
if my classmates would look at me
understand their violence that could break me but hasn’t yet.

maybe it was our silence,
maybe it was the teachers glare
that made it stop,
made the loud shrieking rain to end.
and when she left
the stones had already turned into dripping water.
the kids wanting to forget
the trauma of being silenced,
of having their dreams interrupted,
of being reminded of their helplessness
recited incidents that didn’t happen,
tried to laugh a little louder than usual,
made another joke at the expense of someone like me
and so my only memory of hailstone
was also reduced to the din of students (who never liked me).

i closed my books and pretended to be asleep
while everyone ate and talked to their friends.
i waited for everyone to leave
so I could eat alone
without being ashamed for being left alone.
“hailstones”.
i said the word aloud in that empty classroom.
i had one more words now
to describe these kids who scared me by their meanness,
who made me like the prospect of loneliness.

“Laughing it off” – Nayana Nair

I jokingly said that I would hate it
to be someone else-
someone who would have to suffer me.
But before my face realizes what my heart meant,
where it becomes apparent in my eyes
that I am nowhere near recovery,
before I panic at being taken seriously,
someone cuts me off
with laughter,
with agreement,
with proofs supporting my observation,
with a list of my faults I may have missed,
with an funny anecdote about
about the time I was too broken to think straight.

-x-

I wish I had not broken into laughter when I put myself down.
I wish ‘laughing it away’ was a trick that worked in my life.
I was never mistaken that ‘tricks’
changes reality, builds back and heals
all that is in pieces and all that is in pain.
It’s just a way to turn blind to what I cannot change.
But walking blind is worse than I had thought.
I keep colliding with harmless words, bruise myself,
and recoil back in the fear of what I may find
if I took a step forward.

“Not Cool” – Nayana Nair

Yesterday I sat myself through a video of jokes
then another and then another,
till I found nothing funny,
till I had to stop
because I was almost at the verge
of taking things too seriously,
at the risk of being offended
on behalf of someone else.
And no, being offended is not cool anymore.

-x-

I don’t want to be disliked
even a bit more that I already am
or of proving their list of stereotype correct.
So now I must find something else to waste my time on,
something milder
that doesn’t hit me so hard, that doesn’t make my headache.
That doesn’t force me to to be a better person
to people who expect the world to tolerate them
while they mock the misery and blame the victims.

-x-

But I guess it is just a matter of time
before my feelings fade forever
before a bit more numbness sets in my heart
before I see myself laugh at all that is wrong.

“Love?” – Nayana Nair

I wanted too little
and yet you who speaks of all the riches of this world
you could not give me the little that I wanted.
Not because you can’t
but because you would rather not.

I am poisonous.
I am the worst,
the one people should avoid.
All my sorrows are my punishment for not being what you wanted.
All my weakness is something to be ridiculed.
I should be okay
or even rejoice when you question my mental stability
everyday as a joke.

This is what your love has taught me.

Can it still be called love?
Am I still obliged to love you back in a kinder way,
when all you have done is to take pride
that you loved someone twisted as me
as if you have made the biggest sacrifice of your life.

“Cut Away” – Nayana Nair

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How my feelings turn into a joke
in your hands.
How I have laugh
at the sight of this
and accept it as something normal.
Is this my punishment?
For pushing away people,
who really cared,
who looked for me every time I left.

~~~

But maybe they could do that
only because they never knew me.
But you know me too much.
Every dialogue with you
makes me realize, makes me see
another part of me
that I need to cut away
to become worthy of your love.

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