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“Version” – Nayana Nair

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Sometimes the hatred, the bias that
people around him smoked
sticks to his clothes, his skin, his tongue
when I come near him.
He can wash it from himself with a sleep.
He can leave it at the door, when he steps in.
But I can’t wash it out of my mind.

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In my mind
I mix up the person he is and the person he has to be.
But I realise that I do not know the person he is,
I only know the person he has to be for me,
I only resent the person he has to be for others.

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The person he is, looks at me from his corner of eyes
and this stranger looks at me
not across oceans, not across roads of fate,
but across the versions of us filling up the space between us,
the versions we can never throw away.

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This stranger looks at me and gives me the smile
that he has to wear for me.
For me to realise the love I have for the the days
I share with this person who spends his days with me,
loses his ways with me and grows old with me.
I smile back becoming the person I have to be for him,
becoming the version I love the most.

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“Far Enough to be Fine” – Nayana Nair

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I could probably have called it a blue morning
waiting through each hour for the day to gift it back its colors.
Or a white one where our eyes and the air are filled with
a whiteness that is never stained,
for it leaves as soon as it comes,
for it never comes in touch with the world,
just moves around it.
Is that the way we should have lived our life?
If we existed together, moving around each other,
maybe we wouldn’t have to look at each others brokeness like this.
You tell me it is a dirty gray morning that we are never going to forget.
And I almost curse myself
for not getting that right color on my lips before you did.
But I stop myself by reminding
that goodbyes like these should not be filled with the same mistakes
as the ones that filled our time together.
We wait for the beams of light and for the screech of tyres on road,
that takes you away, masking your last words to me
in the jarring sound of honks.
I make my way back to the gray life
that was always waiting for me.

If you looked back at me through that moving car,
through your healing heart,
when we are far enough to be fine,
would you see me as the defeated person I always was?

Abstraction

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“It is terrible to destroy a person’s picture of himself in the interests of truth or some other abstraction.”

Doris Lessing

“Running Stream” – Nayana Nair

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My hope waits for the day that this skin won’t alien,
like a loss,
like a counter running out of number
like our voices running out of things to say.

***

And my wishes for a gentler nature,
or to be that cool-headed person I once read about,
or to be the running stream of water
before it was poisoned.
All changed to wanting
something that is not waiting to vanish.

“Switched On” – Nayana Nair

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As the light and the life of the streets
are switched on,
I wait for your knock on my door,
my heart going on imaginative trips
to the hell of not knowing.
Not knowing
with whom you might fall in love,
where you might find another broken human to pet,
in what form will that person appear
who would hold your rain for a moment
while you fix your smile.
This interesting world scares me,
where everyone and everything is better than me.

“Remain the Same” – Nayana Nair

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With every step that I take towards you,
a part of me crumbles down to dust.
Sometimes it is my smile,
sometimes it is my fear.
And yet when I am so close to you,
when I have proved my love for you,
I cannot ask you to do the same.
I fear when you loose all that I have lost,
would you be still remain the person you were.
Would you still be that light,
which could pull me out of the rubble
of my own broken world?

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