“Buses I Miss” – Nayana Nair

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Going back home is always difficult.
Everything stands in my way-
the weather, the traffic,
the buses I miss by seconds,
the roads under repair,
the detours I must take,
phone calls and thoughts
that come at inopportune time,
my heart, and you.
For as long as you are not where I am going,
as long as you are not home,
I will only have places to sleep or suffer.
Or a place to write about you.
So if my steps halt and my heart slows
when we part for the day,
keep me with you for a second more
for I have nowhere to go.

“Adjust to Red” – Nayana Nair

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It was gruesome
because everyone kept walking,
thinking they can move on and grow up,
only if they stepped over
whatever was left of themselves
to become friends with the faces
that are still drunk and happy
with the taste of their weakness.
It was scary
because it was normal
to be cruel,
not only in hatred, but also in love.
It was unbearable,
till it was not.
Till my eyes adjusted to the red,
till my hand became familiar
with touching all that is dying
or touching only to kill.
Till I learnt to close my eyes
to everthing
I knew
I couldn’t save.

“Slip every time” – Nayana Nair

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There is one step
where I slip every time.
And just because I know now to jump across it,
doesn’t mean it ceased to exist.
It just means I have to keep reminding myself
what to avoid.
Sadly, the trivial betrayals and their deeper hurt
doesn’t reform my trusting heart.
My aloofness is just a way to ensure
that others don’t know of this.

“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.

“Mess” – Nayana Nair

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A shadow moves in the clearing ahead
avoiding the columns of lighted air.
It steps on the green
now splattered with red
and looks for a hand that can help,
to get rid of this blood.
It finds my face and looks away
seeing probably I am in a bigger mess.

“Same World” – Nayana Nair

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From where I sit
I see the beauty that moves my heart
and makes me realize
why I am alive till now.
And though I love you
and wish to see the world with you,
I could never gather enough courage
so as to tug your sleeve
and ask you to follow my gaze.

I fear you will look at what I see
and mock my eyes, my mind
to be fascinated by the things
that for you are trivial.
Worse, if you take me away from the beauty I found
for you know better things.
Worse, if you refuse to look back
for you have better things to do.

I wish I could tell you my heart,
tell you my fears, tell you about the minutes
of my life where sometimes I feel I am trapped,
and sometimes set free in a world I cannot share with anyone.
It is enough, I guess, that I can hear your steps beside me
and believe that we are in the same world,
even when we are not.

“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?

“Throw Myself”- Nayana Nair

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There was no breath left to let out

as I throw myself down the stairs.

And every step that I tumble down,

I feel breaking bones.

Muscles and knuckles

losing another bubble of a happy memory

that I once thought would be enough to keep me alive.

My broken thoughts rush into my blood

into my empty lungs,

almost convinced that this the last

they will see of me.

And I never tire out.

I never feel sore enough or pained enough

to stop myself from doing this to me.

But while I took you for another wall

that existed to break me,

another voice to help me fill up

pages of essays of self-hatred

and regrets that do not forget me.

You became the arms that hold me, lift me

And carry my burden of life along with me.

And for first time

I want to live better.

And I want you in that better life with me.

“Map” – Nayana Nair

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I lose memory of the nights
when you crept up the walls of my life.
When you planted the seeds of doubt
and made my each step wary
and my words full of fear.
One day I woke up knowing
that I was not me, but you.
I was living the second chance of your life.
I could no longer make the decisions
that I want to make.
I just had to stay clear
of all your mistakes.
That was my map.
Everything else,
even me,
seemed hazy and inconsequential
in front of your plans.
But how long can we bear
the weight that no one put on us,
that we stole from their stories and silent sobs.
How much of our life is ours?