“What do you know of prayers?” she asked, as she held my hands together within her own. I asked her “Don’t you anything about me?” and there appeared another crack on her hands, there bloomed another rose in her hair there was another smile – the “looking down” smile, “you don’t know any better” smile, “you will soon thank me” smile, “I know you hate my smile” smile. I tried to imitate it, to drape it on my own face. Cause even if it didn’t seem like that, I loved her smile.
I stared at her smile wanting to save it somewhere in me. I stared at her small beautiful parts wanting to un-see the person she is in this moment. I am always trying to forget how suffocated these moments with her are. I am always trying to forget that with her words of love there was always a plea, a suggestion, a manipulation – to make me something like her.
Would it make me seem pathetic, petty, or romantic? if i called her a poison. Though everyone here is a poison, even me, but she is a poison for me, the only poison that works on me. The only one I didn’t want a death from. She tells me about another deity I will never believe in. She tells me a bit more about saving, about faith, about her own self that can never be broken, how even breaking can’t end her now. I wished she was right, I wished there would be never an end to her.
I wished for all kinds of ends for myself, even the ones without her. But in no version did I invent an agreeable version of her that will better for me. She has to be herself. Whatever that might mean for me. I wonder if there would come a day like that, a day when she would love me like that. Do I even want a day like that? Can I even tolerate a change in her? Wouldn’t that break me more than anything?
I get up and say something about “better things to do” and she says something about “the dangers to the faithless” and I can only smile for now at this weird, beautiful, messed up part of our life at our of differences, knowing of love, at our knowing of faith in different things that save us in their own ways.
The howevers have replaced the forevers and it is a beautiful change. Now we can let the dying thing die at peace. The fleeting feelings and their fragile wings could have dropped and turned to dust with time I know, but there is something frustrating about slow, about things that don’t end when they drag their feet to the wrong doors pretending to look for answers, when everyone stares at faces they cannot bear to look at waiting for someone to end things for them. I am also guilty of all this, of thinking that making new promises will give me enough pressure, enough motivation to follow through the life that I don’t really want, of holding on when I have no mind to continue. However isn’t this a good excuse, a god-sent moment to finally separate our stories, to forget this mess that will never fix by itself or even by our half-hearted trying.
As my empty cup for tea came crashing on the floor, I heard another sigh escape me. I turned back from the counter and watched in resignation as the winds mercilessly pushed through the cushions, the magazines, the old discarded phones that made no noise as they came to find death second time.
The curtains and the window frames came apart. The sad smiles, barely visible through the annealed glass, cracked upon and my ancestors fled away, rejoicing for first time in the brokenness of this world. I recalled all the videos I had seen about the land of disasters and the restless hearts that live there. I recalled the reasons that cause such misfortunes, the incomplete distracted television reports. But I didn’t have to think of all that, to know what was happening to me.
The sky was clear and I could hear people walking to festivals and carnivals and towards to unbearable silence of funerals, trying to laugh as much as they can before they get there. I closed my eyes and waited with anxiousness, waited without hopes for love to appear again and make a mess of the life I had spent years to put together.
The answer to your question- the truth you always ask and wonder about is there somewhere inside me. But inside me are many other things that I have not been able to find till now. And I would have probably invited you in and asked you to help me a bit if you were not better than me in every sense. Just saying this makes me feel so cheap. It makes me the person I am always trying to hide and inside me things are a bigger mess. There is a river of hatred and an ocean of guilt, the walls of past that I paint over and over but things just keep looking worse. And though you hope to find a sky of love there, though you hope to find a true love or a true end, I would rather not be loved for the possibility of who I can be, I would rather not be looked at closely, or loved a bit more than I deserve. And what I deserve is a piece of cake that keeps getting smaller and smaller every day; a cake I dare not eat, or even want . I am afraid in my shrinking world, there is no place for you or anything called truth.
I sit on the cold boulder and film everything, just like I am told. I am told, only for today, I should stop sewing myself up haphazardly, messing up the live-stream, and talking about things that will never happen. I have been told to put a hold on the wonderful manipulation that does no good to any effort my mind puts in fixing things back.
My mind doesn’t like me much, understandably. And I don’t like the idea of fixing anything- a harder concept. Maybe that’s why I burn as my mind looks around me. Maybe I should actually stop, when I am told to but I don’t want a way out, I don’t want to look.
“i promise not to hurt anyone but me” “i am fine like this. don’t take my tears seriously.” “please don’t mind the doctor’s note.” “please don’t mind the smoke in this room, it is a temporary solution to my emptiness, till something worse comes along.”
There is an exit sign that flies far away from me. There appears a road that it eats itself up . There are bridges that I have cried over and the fires that no longer burn. Everything of beauty that I had in me I have lost it here. I have burnt my body, nerve by nerve, for the sake of peace and love. Let me live here near the ashes of my past selves near the life that cannot be, around things that can’t be helped.
DRAWING THE STARS WRONG all my hopes, now in your hands, feel like signs of trouble. i liked it on paper, the broken star in red ink, but not on my sky. can i undo my steps to you? will my heart break even if you leave my skin?
STRIPPING YOU OF FLESH before i turn away from you there are things that must be done. (only painful things are remaining no matter what i choose) everyday for a hour i must imagine being alone in this world. everyday i must imagine the relief you would feel at my absence. everyday i must imagine you with someone and being capable of caring. i must imagine in detail and color. i must put you on a window in clothes i don’t recognize. i must strip you of my love and hope you feel the warmth, even when my heart tells that you won’t. i must stand outside the shop i plan to leave you at and practice standing there without tears in my eyes. i must take your feelings out of picture to take even one step away from you. before i turn away from you i have to turn into the person who won’t be able to walk towards any happiness after leaving you broken.
MESSED UP SEARCH HISTORY in my room, on my phone, with another love, in the crowd that will never be mine, i feel my heart drunk on you again. and everywhere you are with me i need someone else to keep me from making another mess in your name, for my sake. in return, i love them the only way i can, the way only i can, by removing you from the search history of my mind every second i live. i love them by holding them back from running to the one, who like you, can only love in dark dripping red and swelling universe of purple.
THE EASY WAY TO LIVE speaking without fear, loving without abandon, sitting in sunshine, somehow loving the world, wanting to stay alive, getting comfortable with the concept of wanting, knowing the feeling of being considered and seen, (all this with you at the back of my mind). i told you, all this is my life now- the easiest life i have ever had. i hope you believe. it would be the happiest end, if you would accept this as the last scene of me in your life. i want to live so better, just so that you can forget the me who could do nothing but get hurt only because i didn’t want to live without love. i want to be better than that, even if it makes me sad.
In her loudest, happiest voice she told me about one of her near-death loves, how she wished her skin would stop keeping her alive. She laughed at how we both always find something awfully painful or ugly in common, how we should probably never call each other just to remind each other of the spite that lives in our blood.
I moved her lackluster glass of fake green mojito by an inch towards her and looked past her at the couple who sat closest to the sky. The wind that touched them called out to me again, reminded me about my trembling legs and my heart that didn’t want to give up yesterday.
I told her about the fall – my bad decision, my backing out again at the last minute- another really bad decision. I told her someone needs to lock me up before I take any more decision as I showed her my new skinned knee and told her in detail about all parts of me that were filled with pain even now only because of that one moment in which I wanted to live more than anything.
She walked towards the the railing decorated with hearts that won’t light and found herself a seat, placing her elbow carefully away from the mess that the ones in love left behind. She waited for me to follow her as I always do.
I stood behind her and felt a fear very similar to mine swimming in her mind. I wanted to tell her, it will get better. but I couldn’t. I wanted to believe in this, in this hope for better; if not for me, at least for her. And I knew she had nothing to say now because her throat was also crowded by the words she doesn’t believe. We are painfully alike even in our search for hope, even when we are searching it for each other.
You walk in with a cake of rust, two hours late. You kiss me , wait for me to smile, to say thanks, to make another offering of myself at your shrine.
You tell me of love, the only love that you cannot get out of your heart. This love that suffocates you these days more than before. How my face asks for too much, even when my voice doesn’t.
I cross out and mess up the frosting trying to hide the wrong name. These days I don’t correct you, or remind you of who I am, and so you forget me just as I thought you would, just as you promised you wouldn’t.
My half hidden sighs tell me that I am just an appointment, things that have to be done, feel good pill of a the mean god that you are. The clearer I see this the more I want to speak against you, to hold you closer with my rage.
I want to speak of all the facts I have on you- the bitter candies from the assembly line that my minds works overtime overnight, to show you the moments you hated yourself most again and again and again. I am weak like that. I am mean like that. And now I don’t want to be better. I wasn’t like this always but now this all I can be.
I don’t remember or expect a beautiful love, now neither should you.
Her floor had always been the color of the season I remember this, only when I step into the mess of her life. The spring issues lay scattered like the flowers The pink, red, yellows, and greens, women who only know youth, women who only grow younger the kind of woman she wanted to be (what a small impossible dream) and she almost is. And now that she can never change would she be happy? When/if she comes across her own lifeless eyes in the missing posters would she be glad to be one of the “sad popular”? I shatter the home of her missing goldfish in my haste efforts to pick them up and put them out of sight- the bundles of glossy paper that my eyes can’t handle. I try to put them away, wanting to throw them away now that she wouldn’t mind, now that she won’t yell at me or anyone for taking away too much of her. I want to try it. i want to try, so she has no option but to stop me. “let’s leave her in peace” tells me my moral compass and my grief. “i don’t want to show her the kind of respect that only dead deserve” shouts back my anger and my love. I drop the heaviest bag in this world on her rain soaked bed. Her last dress, her last chocolate wrapper, her last bus ticket, her last mistake, her last breath everything spilling out, everything ruining the spring that I dreamed for her along with her.
twenty-six steps away from the cold end, we stand together as if we are both looking at a foe we must defeat together. a child passes us by with a yellow balloon. how misplaced it seems, this child in this place made of storms.
this is something i don’t want to do. our steps will fade into the deep end of this lake while the mother in me would summon the face of this child as a hope of what i could have had if I could endure a little bit more.
an invisible small hand curls around my fingers as your voice falters and you mess up our last song. the ghost of your future, whatever face they may have, have also arrived. so i put back the sweater on and you check the calls you must return as the ones who intend to live on only do.