“Whatever Blooms in Darkness” – Nayana Nair

When all things that are not divine
found a home in me,
I realized they would probably
be the only friends I ever make.
I read up many books
and considered taking up some mildly destructive
and slightly disturbing hobbies,
so that I could know them better.
So I could become someone they could accept.
I looked for a teacher who could teach me
how to love back darkness,
how to become a wound itself
instead of nursing one forever.


I want to say I found happiness
in that one friend
with sad eyes and bitter lips.
But there still lived in me
that one girl made of light
who wanted to ruin me
by guiding me back to life.

“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.

“No Other Choice” – Nayana Nair

When I held your hands,
you told me I am calculating.

When I listened to your worries
you told me that it is because
I have no other choice,
because I have no one else anyway.

When I cried
you told me I am manipulating.

When I speak of my feelings for you,
you tell me that I am afraid of loneliness,
of dying alone.
That a person like me can never love anyone.

I wish I could say that it is all in your mind,
that I am not evil as you speak.
I want to say that my love for you is true,
that I am not all that bad.

But as you said
I have no one,
no one to tell me that
I am only as bad as everyone else is,
no one to tell me that
I can still be loved.

I have only you
and now to love you
I have to learn
to hate myself first.

“Too Good and Too Sweet” – Nayana Nair

love?
no,
i suffer from no such thing.
even if i do,
that is an easy illness.
there are delusions that i can buy
that can ease all these pains of affection.
if nothing else,
my lover and my heart
knows all the lies, that can put me to sleep
even when my world burns.

loneliness?
maybe,
it could be one of the things that i do not know
how to get around.

self-doubt?
yeah, probably that’s the reason
why i feel lonely even when i am not.
no there are no bad people in my life.
all of them are too good and too sweet.
though there are loud voices of arguments
in the middle of night
and things i wish had never seen or heard,
there are threats of abandonment,
there are days when we end up playing this game
where no can hear what i say-
it is not much fun for me, but i hope they enjoy it.
i need to be a bit fun, to keep everyone around.
but it is nothing serious,
nothing I cannot ignore.

i need to leave though.
uncomfortable?
no,
not at all.
just things that i must get back to,
life that i must live,
people i should bow to,
who never ask me how i’ve been.
so i’ll get going if you don’t mind.
don’t be sorry that you couldn’t help.

“Having All” – Nayana Nair

Since the broken have got their share of songs,
now let us grieve for the ones who are complete.
who have got more than they wanted,
and have too much in their hands.
Who walk with a loneliness similar to the ones who were deprived
just without the right to complain or take pity on themselves.

. . .

Maybe it is this ‘having all’
that would become the reason of their cracks.
For in the pauses of the ones who I thought were happy,
I have often seen a wait for another life.
They find themselves wanting this struggle
that has been romanticized and exaggerated
so much that, it becomes a yearning.

. . .

They find themselves hating
this infinite stretch of perfect utopian dream
that cannot last
only because the mind that creates and wants the perfect
in trapped in a body that by nature are attracted towards disorder,
towards its own undoing.

“Given” – Nayana Nair

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Even if I moved
there were lot of things that
remained a constant in my life.
All that mattered to me
was always with me,
so I don’t think I ever had to cope with downside
of being move all the time.
I have not built up towers of defenses against others
and even if I have,
it is not something new or peculiar.
Everyone I met,
everyone who lived like me
carried their fear,
the indifference to their own fear,
and their refusal to feel all that should hurt
as the most normal thing ever.
I think we all grew up to be not so broken
as people would have expected.
If nothing else
we maybe suffered as much as any child
but learnt how to separate what we feel from what we are.
When suffering is the norm,
when loneliness is a given condition of life
then they can no longer be excuse
for what we do or what we become.

“Easy” – Nayana Nair

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I am an easy person
for if you really care for me
and do something for me
that my distrusting mind cannot make sense of
for even once in your life
and I would end up thinking
that I somehow need to look out for you forever.
So, you surely understand
why I need to look unbothered and hostile.
You also must have had your share
of playing friends with all those
who are really nothing like how friends should be.
You must also have blamed yourself
for not being satisfied
with what everyone considers normal
or waited for that moment
when you would grow up to see the bigger picture.
Though my life is nowhere near its end
(sometimes I sadly wish it was)
all I have learned is to either ask for less
and apologize to the world for being so needy and small
or cut off the world with rudeness
so I at least become deserving of the loneliness
that I have to live with.

“Half” – Nayana Nair

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I always assumed
that people are working for what they want
and I shouldn’t feel hurt from what they do
when I was the one that got in their way.
But often, like me, they are just working for something
to know if they want it or not.
And when they don’t,
they move from this part of world to another.
Leaving behind
half done work,
with things that will never be complete
that fills the land with a loneliness .
Leaving people who speak of all possible things
that might be wrong with them
when asked “Who did this to you?”.
If you have a love that leaks, words that do not make sense
a story that never went beyond description of half formed characters-
probably you have found a home in my dream
and I am sorry for what you have to put up with
only because I didn’t knew what I wanted.