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"the shadow at the foot of my bed" – Nayana Nair

today is the birthday of one another oddity of mine.
on a day like this,
few calendars ago
i learnt how to turn my helplessness into my charm.
i learnt to fill the glasses, the throats of everyone i know
with something sweet, with a taste they can’t name.
i learnt to become something that can’t be known or hurt.
in my bedroom i sit at the foot of my bed
trying to block out the presence, the weight
of the other half of my body
clinging, clawing, crying, dissociating.
i again forget where i am.
i again forget how to stop shaking.
if i walk a bit more into the darkness
i feel i won’t have to pretend to be the one
who has a say in what happens to her.
a hand slips into mine.
sometimes it rests on my waist,
and i force myself not to feel nauseated.
love him. love her. i tell myself repeatedly.
love. love. love. love till i can make up for all my lacks.
my love is my penance, my apology
to anyone who chooses me as their destiny.

“Keep me inside” – Nayana Nair

I can help you count everything you have.
These objects have no meaning to me
but I know something about life
even if I don’t know everything.
I know that your hands
will stop shaking
only if they keep counting,
only when you have confirmed
that you have not become poorer
that you were a minute ago.
I know that you don’t enjoy being like this,
even though people say you are weird on purpose.
I know that you have stars on your ceiling,
only because the ones in the sky
have abandoned you too many times.

***

So I will not tell you
how to live your life.
I will not force
the disease of my heart
into yours, in the name of cure.
Build walls all you want,
but keep me inside them with you.

“For you to disappear”- Nayana Nair

When the wind blows
there are no branches to shake,
no windows to rattle,
no forgotten clothes to be abducted from my backyard,
no ghost songs to invite me to new nightmares.
Only your imagined face,
that looks nothing like you these days,
in these lifeless eyes
keeps flickering.
Making you almost real,
making me wonder
what is the distance in time
that I must travel,
how much should I age,
how much should my mind wither,
for you to disappear?
How many sins I should commit
so that my hands are not stained
only by your tears.

“Receding Waves” – Nayana Nair

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The thought of you
walking down to me
and speaking to me as if speaking to a child,
as if speaking to one with disability of understanding only your words.
It brings me to an ocean of receding waves and words
where we could have walked every morning,
we could have found a way to love our water bodies
without waiting for it become tears.

~~~
But you keep coming to me.
One step
~we could think of all names and fates we could have had instead~
Two step
~we could play a game of guessing the memories that ruined us for each other~
Almost near my shaking hands
asking me to stop.
To stop thinking of these painful scenarios
~painful?~
To stop ignoring the one who is asking his leave
~where?~

~~~

I wish I could no longer hear you voice.
I wish I stopped hurting.
I wish my stars would hurry up
and bring me the death they promised long ago.
~all along i thought it was you~

~~~

I wish I could continue this dream with someone else
and never notice the one who walks beside me
loves me too much to be you.

“Neighbour” – Nayana Nair

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You were almost like that neighbour
who listened to sad songs at 2 am
walking me up, shaking me up to my own sadness
and as I cried I never knew if you also cried
or was I crying your share of tears as well.
Have you finally gone to back to sleep
taking my blanket of sleep with you?
And I sat up all night
staring at the moonless sky.
I consoled myself by believing that
reliving my pain
would somehow reduce yours.

“All Such Things” – Nayana Nair

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The days that starts with
a painful realization of the world.
The nights that stops with
this awareness put to sleep.
And you
whom I can’t shake off from my thoughts.
All such things that happen just because they do
and not because I am any better or any worse
than anyone else.
All such things that I must accept
with gratitude and courage.
All such things and more
that falls on us
sometimes like snow,
sometimes life flowers,
sometimes like rain
and sometimes like love.

“Like each other” – Nayana Nair

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Can it be, that
somehow we have become so much like each other
that we we have lost our own skies
lost our own rivers
and we have created this world
where there is only us.
Can it be, that the ground here shakes
to become separate,
that the air here is heavier than it was.
Only we are left to witness each other
being driven to become our worst self.
And the only enemy left to fight
are we our self.

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