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“Keeping Distance” – Nayana Nair

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All my sketches of you
are living in a hopeless state of
growing hunger, growing questions.
I hear them talking to each other,
asking your whereabouts.
I have grown to become
a mother of many children
abandoned by her man.
Children who are forced to share a life with me
while struggling to keep a distance from my breaking heart.
Asking each other questions that they want to ask me.
I wish they would just ask me
“where is he?” “did he forget his way to us?”
“did he forget you? us?”

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A saner me could have told them
“he probably forgot the person he was
people tend to do that life
but he cannot forget himself without erasing us
maybe we were no better that the life
that he had forgotten before us
or maybe it became worse with us
whatever he was suffering from.”

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But the saner me
is also fading into the sea of past.
I fear for these innocent memories
that do not get to choose,
that do not have any say,
staring in silence at me
hoping I continue to love them
knowing that I probably won’t.

“The Cold Returns” – Nayana

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The steps I walk
and the fate I follow
all run into faces that somehow
already know all the reason to despise me.
Why is it that walking in these shadows
calms my heart and brings it pain
at the same time.
Is this how life is to be lived?
I myself this all the time.
For if not for my own voice,
there won’t be any answers returning to me
from this world that seems more far away
when I look for answers,
than when I look for places hide.

But I look at the moon today with a new eyes.
I find I am no longer alone,
when you look back everytime you leave.
I find I am no longer alone,
when left to myself, I have someone else to think of.
I no longer need assurances and promises
from this life, if only you walk this earth
with a smile and a lighter heart.
The cold returns to my heart again,
freezing your memories forever in me,
and I smile.
I am no longer alone,
nor are you.

“What I Remember (1)” – Nayana Nair

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the floors of the uni i went to were too slippery, too shiny, crowded with too many people whom i couldn’t look at nor understand.
i see people print the words of fond memories in the air when they are reminded of days when they had friends.
but i do not remember anyone having friends. i remember people who knew how to be friendly when it suited them.
i remember the world being as bitter as i was.
i remember the callousness in their voices that surfaced only at the mention of someone’s misfortune or someone’s flaw.
and sure they must have been entertaining to many.
maybe I should have enjoyed a gossip or two.
but i couldn’t bring myself to listen to all that was said about people i had avoided looking at.
i always thought no one wanted to looked at, no one wanted to be talked about, just like i how i didn’t want these things to happen to me.
but maybe what people expect and what people do are not exactly the same thing.
i was no lover of the social drama that entertained many.
i always felt this whole scheme of forced amusement and required bonding reeked of fakeness and pending betrayals.

“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.

“Too late to care” – Nayana Nair

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There are moments of indifference
that once piled up
seems more than the years I have lived.
There are too many memories
where I cannot see anyone but myself
running around in a dark cave
afraid of everything I bump into.
Not knowing that even if I shout
if anyone would hear,
sometimes fearful of who might hear me.

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And even though
you are out of your cave
and I am out of mine.
Now when we can see all the things we couldn’t.
Now when we can really see each others scars.
Now when we have the luxury to know each others pain.
We feel
it is better to pretend we are still in our caves.
For too many things have been done,
too many words have been said.
And we do not remember answers to question
that we wanted each other to ask.

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On friendships….

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I don’t remember the first time I met her. Perhaps when things are really important, we don’t remember first moments. Or, more likely, I just met her before I was old enough to form these kind of intentional memories, before I was capable of reaching back in time and freezing an image into significance, naming it a beginning.

People talk a lot about whether men and women can be friends, as though the difficulty of friendship stopped there, as though the same question shouldn’t be asked about all friendship- can two women be friends, can two people be friends?….Is there any love possible in which one person doesn’t want something from the other that isn’t quite the same thing that the other person wants from them?

Helena Fitzgerald, “First Best Friend”

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She writes really awesome. To read the complete article visit:

https://catapult.co/stories/first-best-friend

 

 

“WHERE COLORS MERGE”- Nayana Nair

 

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As a child, they were, a wonder,

The brown stone bridge and the blue flowing under,

The green withering away on reaching the path,

The fiery red flames spitting everywhere its wrath,

The yellow sun, or orange maybe,

The pink that clouded the hands of babies,

The black cold night and the white snowflakes,

When colors had life, that was ours to take.

And today on the bridge I stand,

With withered white dissolving the pink of my hand.

Where went the colors? the wonder?

Now red is just love or danger.

The yellow just a hideous bright color,

The blue is for rain: for eyes or weather,

The green has, now, no space to grow,

Other colors, with time, come and go.

The people too are colored now

In their cheerful oranges,

Or gloomy blue nights.

In the black ashen hearts,

Or in the red gore fights.

In the yellow sunny smiles,

Or the lifeless aged white.

In the carefree green lives,

And colorful soaring kites.

But you my friend,

You my love,

Are very hard to define.

I look hard,

And guess I might,

But I’ll never get it right.

For you are where my judgment fails,

With your color having neither meaning nor shade.

As I stand at this rationality’s edge,

I see

You are, where all my colors merge.

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