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“Aunt” – Nayana Nair

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“Yes, I do have plans for my future my dear aunt.”
I say, after I see her put her cup down and look at me
with sympathy and resentment.
“How can we not worry.
It is your future we are talking about.”

Actually, I never had these conversation,
at least not with my aunt.
I never had such an aunt to bother me.
But there are relatives and other faces
that I am hiding under the name of a non-existent aunt.
Sometimes it is me who is hiding under that name instead.

I am handed down spare maps
that I am supposed to study and follow.
Mark my route and choose someone
who could help me get up in the morning
even if it out of hatred.
I am sure it will be hatred
because I have seen no one one who has sorted their life
to wake up feeling that they have done it right.

My bitterness might make me seem like
a remainder of uneasy and uncomfortable families,
but it is not so.
There are just too many non-existent aunts in our house
who thinks we could have done better, chosen better,
lived better-
if only we could get our act together
and stopped acting like the world owes us some kind of happiness.

This constant re-evaluation of life
and its result coming out as failure every time
makes everything we live with
and everyone we choose as a mistake.
What is this “better” that doesn’t let us live?

“What I Remember (1)” – Nayana Nair

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the floors of the uni i went to were too slippery, too shiny, crowded with too many people whom i couldn’t look at nor understand.
i see people print the words of fond memories in the air when they are reminded of days when they had friends.
but i do not remember anyone having friends. i remember people who knew how to be friendly when it suited them.
i remember the world being as bitter as i was.
i remember the callousness in their voices that surfaced only at the mention of someone’s misfortune or someone’s flaw.
and sure they must have been entertaining to many.
maybe I should have enjoyed a gossip or two.
but i couldn’t bring myself to listen to all that was said about people i had avoided looking at.
i always thought no one wanted to looked at, no one wanted to be talked about, just like i how i didn’t want these things to happen to me.
but maybe what people expect and what people do are not exactly the same thing.
i was no lover of the social drama that entertained many.
i always felt this whole scheme of forced amusement and required bonding reeked of fakeness and pending betrayals.

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