“Always Shining” – Nayana Nair

.

Are they finally drowning?
The sails, the flags, the songs
the party, and the expensive backless silks.
The rings and guns and blood shining.
Always shining.
They are finally coming for us.
We will again have someone’s face in front of us
at least for a while
and we will sing songs
that they have no choice but to listen to.
The cries and shrieks and the stories
that we had saved in us will not go waste.

They have not yet seen us
rotting
feets and feets below them
but somethings take time.
The water will fill them
but they will never grasp
the slow violence and its finality.
They will look above at the lost sky,
they will not know what they are looking for
as the concepts of hope and god and saving
becomes grayer in their head.
They will keep struggling
feeling all promises becoming breathless in them
and they will miss the point of saying goodbye.
We always do.

Darling, they are coming
our children, our neighbors, our dear strangers,
our ministers, our wood, our sky, our eyes,
our new memories.
Now we can die together and actually die
and not be haunting blue in this green ocean.
I missed living dear
but I missed them more –
everyone, everything taken away from us.
We have waited patiently, wishing them life.
We have prayed for them to stay away from wherever we are.
But now they are coming
and I cannot help but selfishly smile
at seeing everything coming back to us.

You stand beside the fire” – Nayana Nair

In the rubble with nerves hiding sparks,
in the nest of sleeping explosives,
again it is you.
Again you are here to prove something
by doing something unasked for.

You build a place for warm tea,
for all our shivering ghosts to haunt.
You place the chairs that are not chairs
but buckets that cannot hold anything now.
There are chairs that are lying around just fine
but you want don’t them.
You don’t want the old purposes eating away
the beauty of all that is left behind.

You console the ones holding onto what is no longer there
but you don’t want the ones who want way back to what it was.
You ask us questions with your bleeding lips
you want us to answer with something real,
not just words.
“You are cruel”,
you laugh when we say that.
You make us leave everything we are
just so that we can finally sit on empty buckets
thinking about the hands we cannot hold,
thinking about hands that are no longer hands.

“The city is no longer burning”, you tell us
as you place our empty glasses in front of our empty eyes
and tell us it is fine if we don’t believe it now.
“Sleep. Dream and stay for a while with the molten and bombed,
the lost and the dead that still have your heart.
Take your time.”

As we lay awake in our heart-wrenching grief,
as we lose ourselves to your favorite world of sleep,
you stand beside the fire
that keeps us alive.
You stand beside the fire
that is not actually fire
but your heart
that burns like sun.

We wanted to tell you, “You are kind.
You are too beautiful for this world.
Have our heart and burn it instead.”
But we couldn’t .
We knew these things were easy only in words,
that these were things we couldn’t do, yet.
That we have not smiled and laughed with bleeding lips,
helping while being hated.
That we were too selfish to be you.

“i am so fond of you” – Nayana Nair

as you melt your heart into oceans
i fear my arms betray me sometimes,
sometimes they go numb,
they surrender at the thought of your warmth.
when you tell me of your love
as i ache for another,
i want a part of me to ache for you as well.
when you settle for being my comfort rather than my love,
i wish i had loved you instead.
but we are selfish dear
i cannot give up
just as you can’t.
we wait to be seen by the one we can’t seem to reach.
we wait because that’s the only answer we have.
we try to forget the love that we can have but don’t want.
i am fond of you,
so forget me if you can.
i can’t bear to see my pitiful self
in you, i can’t bear to drag you down to my hell
only to leave you alone.

“Cheap Literature” – Nayana Nair

Don’t ask which part of me
are easier to love.

I have tried so hard
to become someone who cannot be be loved
without effort or tears.

My faith in love,
my faith in those who love
or it’s absence
is not so difficult to explain.

Clue: Every pop song that leaves you in shambles.
Clue: The books that you call cheap literature.
Clue: The lovers who want to get to the happy ending fast, so they can think about and focus on more important stuff.
Clue: The sappy feelings that you are not interested in.

Those who first talk of my skin and my volume when they talk of love.
(I mean you.)
Those who think that my view of the world, and how the world views me
is just a phase that won’t hopefully be their burden for life.
(I mean you.)
Those who tell me about my selfishness, my unreasonable fears, my unstable suspicious tiring mind over lunch as they run their blade over every bit of exposed skin of mine. Those who are satisfied when I don’t even wince as I bleed, just the way I have been trained.
(I mean you.)
You have made this whole process
more difficult than it should be.

Don’t ask me the easy way.
I might just begin to hate you for that question.

“The last brick is in my heart” – Nayana Nair

In every country, in every city,
on every street
stands a home that could have been ours.
I am a daydreamer like that
As I passed the house with an always crying child,
as I passed the house with the overwhelming smell of incense,
as I passed the house with singing reality shows played on repeat
I only thought of the life we could have there.
In my mind, we fit every house, we fit every role.
Even if our body was stripped of every muscles and every bone
even if we put back together the wrong way,
even if we our heart were to be rearranged,
in my mind we would still fall in love.
That is how we had molded the spirit of our love-
to be stubborn (if not right or just).
But now there are years when I don’t remember you,
and yet there is no sadness in me that is capable of ruining me.
You are gone
and I am trying to grieve for something I don’t particularly miss.
As I pass the houses where our stories used to be staged
I realize they are again the buildings of strangers
that I am supposed to keep my mind away from.
My sadness selfishly keeps uttering,
“I need to love someone, someone who won’t do this to me.
I need to love someone, to believe in love again.”
I reach home with bloody nails and bruised fingers
leaving behind bricks with our names scratched out.

The Scale of 1 to 10 (part 2)” – Nayana Nair

#about the street where we won’t meet

There is a street in my mind, where an often underappreciated singer sings about a love that stands just across the street. Forever they stand there, one trying make up combinations of words, variations of beautiful verses – not to win her heart, but to beg the world to keep her beautiful memory alive. Forever her image hovers and floats above the ground, but he is too faraway to notice.

   Well the first time that I saw her
   Standing in the middle of the road
   Eyes as bright as Christmas lights
   Wearing someone else’s clothes
   I did my best to ignore her
   But ignoring my best pretty soon
    - "Words", Passenger
   I’m opening my eyes
   I see you
   I shake my hands
   So your image scatters
   No matter how much I do that
   How often I do that
   Still, in front of me
   You are smiling
    - "Opening My Eyes", Zitten

And this is where my mind is stuck. Not at the numerous meetings leading to heartbreak, not at the years that passed too slowly, not at the will to live and smile that grew weary too fast, not at the silent ending that is more serene than happy.
My mind is stuck at the point where I am stuck in my life.

   Even tomorrow I will see you
   Even tomorrow, I will hear you
   Even tomorrow, everything will be the same as today
   -"Time Spent Walking Through Memories", Nell
   I want to remain
   I want to dream more
   …
   I’m just walking and walking, among this darkness
   My happy times asked me this question
   You, are you really okay, it asked me
   Oh no
   -"Awake", Jin (BTS)

There are roads that I cannot cross and always at the other end stands someone or something too beautiful to be ignored. There stands a poem I wish I had written, there stands an alien undecipherable tear that I wish I could understand. There is a torn down building that feels like a home that I should yearn for. There is a pile of love letters that I never got to read. There is horde of faces I couldn’t trust, but I wished to. There is everything I could have been, if I only had the courage to be selfish.

   You were so precious
   Countless memories that you placed
   In all of those moments
   In all of those times
   You were always beautiful
   -"Opening My Eyes", Zitten
   Even within some stranger’s figure passing on the street
   Even above the leaves riding the wind with a lonely dance
   Even within the air brushing past my cheeks on some evening
   In everything I see, hear and feel
   You are there
   Yeah, and how are you?
   …
   Even on that big empty chair left on the side of the street
   Even in the glass I thoughtlessly filled to drink some water
   Even within the mirror I face to look at myself
   Even within the music secretly sitting in deeper from the edge of my ear
   You are there
   -"Time Spent Walking through Memories", Nell
   The last thing you taught me
   Is that there are types of happiness that don’t come back
   -"Lemon", Kenshi Yonezu
   And besides, you probably don’t know how much I was saved by you
   -"Melancholy Kitchen", Kenshi Yonezu

This is what my world is made of, this what this world is to me. Something I feel and love with all my heart, with every drop of my existence. Yet something that is too far away, only because my feet are glued to this piece of land. Because I want to stay here far enough to not ruin anything so good.

   Oh moon, My moon
   I’m not trying to embrace you
   I know that you are too immense
   To fit into my arms
   …
   Oh moon, My moon
   I’m not trying to own you
   The reason why you’re so dazzling to me
   Is because I am a pitch-black night
   -"Dear Moon", JeHwi 
   Letting it go
   Seeing your light
   Living my life away from you
   Being your light
   Far from you
   -"Aurora", Savina & Drones

There is a street in my mind where the lover and the loved are always separated. Here they stay forever in each other’s sight. On that street love never ends, love never ask for practicality, never gets hurt nor does it get tired of waiting. Here the love doesn’t ask for approval of this world. Here no one changes. My feelings, here, are not something to be hidden away, or to be lied about. Here my feelings, my attachment is not a nuisance, but the only meaning that I need to live.

   Since then, when I think of you
   —Someone I loved
   More than I ever thought—
   My breath stops
   -"Lemon", Kenshi Yonezu
   But if i could
   I would love
   To be the light
   Just the light
   That shines upon you
   -"End Roll", Androp
   Memories that spill down
   Words that endlessly come up
   How can I hold you back?
   I’ll be here
   I’ll be here
   -"Opening My Eyes", Zitten
   All the angels who know pain
   Flying on damaged wings through the night
   Every time I'm thinking about love
   Every time I'm thinking about love
   I don't wanna listen to just happy songs
   I'll face my loneliness, color my life
   -"Lights", BTS
   Inside my blue dream
   I want to hold you
   -"Blue Side", J-Hope (BTS)
   Maybe I'm a dreamer
   Or maybe I'm just fallen' apart
   I put it all on the table for you to see
   That you and I, that's what we are
   -"Waiting For You", Grizfolk

“this how i want to be frozen in you” – Nayana Nair

wave after wave of cold air,
of sad premonitions
reached us, tried to convince us
that this was a really bad idea.
that on a cold day like this
there were easier ways to find warmth,
ways that would take away no part of us.

and frankly i was afraid.
i stopped maybe a million times on my tracks.
i waited for someone to call me
to remind me of something really urgent
that needed my attention.
i almost prayed for you to give up.

but you kept walking.
you kept repeating that this would be fun.
so even when your hands were shaking
and even when your eyes were red,
i chose not to notice it.
i chose to believe that your heart is stronger,
that you would get us there.

you were always better at pretending for my sake.
you pretended to know all the answers
while i shamelessly hid behind you
when doubts barked at me on streets.
so when we walk on the river that could melt any day, any moment
i wanted you to lean on my heart for once.

my fearful weak heart was the only thing i could give.
i knew my love would last only moments and yours would last an eternity.
but selfishly i held onto you.
so when i kissed you and you smiled,
i want to say i felt sad and guilty,
but i did not.
i was just happy, probably the happiest on this planet
to have touched this sun, this spring, this filler of all voids,
to have become the reason you will break.
i really am the worst.

“Letters from my lover” – Nayana Nair

what is the use of loving you
if you won’t speak less and be less for the sake of my ego,
if you don’t have the proportions or face to brag about,
if you won’t sleep with me,
if you have “anxiety attacks” just when i am having fun
(it is embarrassing, grow up)
if my mom won’t like you,
if you can’t give me the kids that i want,
if a career, a dream is still on your mind,
if you still want friends when you already have me,
if you want to write the stupid poems that make me look bad,
if you won’t consider me your god,
if you continue to live for yourself.

so dear, work hard.
work hard
or you will become useless to me.
there is only so much that i can tolerate for this love of yours.

“Greater Good” – Nayana Nair

The trees are alive today.
They ask me to sing them to sleep for the last time.
I sing for hours
but they refuse to close their eyes.

They ask me how I have been,
not waiting for my answer,
in one breath they ask
about the words they don’t understand,
ask me about the days I do not remember anything about
(there are so many days I have no memory of
while I can’t forget the days I really want to forget),
about the rain that has left us long ago.

Their love for this world that they do not understand-
makes me jealous,
makes me wonder,
if I could love also this world as much as I want to
if I knew a little less,
if I gave up this human heart
that knows nothing but to steal and plead,
to take away and bleed.
But if I knew how to give up myself
for my greater good,
I would have done so long ago.

I can only stay selfish,
act better than what I am,
sing songs to the trees
that will soon be killed for my sake.

“I hate this convenience” – Nayana Nair

Everyday I dislike my love
for you a little bit more.
All this talk about convenience,
about being of use to each other
should not be called love.
If I love you because you understand me
then it is not you who I love
but anyone who can understands me.

“i am comfortable with you” “you make me feel special”
“you can heal me” “i like spending time with you”
“you listen to me” “you treat me well”
“you are beautiful” (how you look pleases my eyes and my heart)

My liking you
seems more about me than about you.
I am disappointed by how I love only for myself.
Why aren’t you?