“Wedding Photos” – Nayana Nair

It was like magic
running the highlighter, the bright crayon
over the sepia hands of her.
She didn’t complain or cry
as we ruined another photograph of hers,
as we tried to hide the evidence
of her failed love, our failing life.

We cut her out, moved her away
from the one who looked like us.
We placed her side of story, her half of heart
in the albums.
Albums that felt lighter
now that the responsibility
to remember only the good, its difficulty
was no longer our business.

We shredded few faces of his,
few others we drowned in ink.
His face was the reason we couldn’t look at ourselves,
the reasons of all the hurting words
we learned so fast.

After we ruined everything for good
we stared at each other,
and saw the tears we should’t be having in us.
This wasn’t how magic is supposed to feel.
Why?
Why was there no thrill, no relief in what we had done?
Isn’t it our turn to be free from the one who left?

“The only way to be complete” – Nayana Nair

I sit on the cold boulder
and film everything, just like I am told.
I am told, only for today,
I should stop sewing myself up haphazardly,
messing up the live-stream,
and talking about things that will never happen.
I have been told to put a hold
on the wonderful manipulation that does no good
to any effort my mind puts
in fixing things back.

My mind doesn’t like me much, understandably.
And I don’t like the idea of fixing anything- a harder concept.
Maybe that’s why I burn as my mind looks around me.
Maybe I should actually stop, when I am told to
but I don’t want a way out, I don’t want to look.

“i promise not to hurt anyone but me”
“i am fine like this. don’t take my tears seriously.”
“please don’t mind the doctor’s note.”
“please don’t mind the smoke in this room,
it is a temporary solution to my emptiness,
till something worse comes along.”

There is an exit sign that flies far away from me.
There appears a road
that it eats itself up .
There are bridges that I have cried over
and the fires that no longer burn.
Everything of beauty that I had in me
I have lost it here.
I have burnt my body, nerve by nerve,
for the sake of peace and love.
Let me live here
near the ashes of my past selves
near the life that cannot be,
around things that can’t be helped.

“Always, Only” – Nayana Nair

You told me of love and what it does to your heart
and how your heart wants to see me and love me alone.
But it is too hard. A harder task than you imagined it to be.

You loved me for my silence, for my grace of letting you go,
and for the tears in my eyes
always, only for you.

You stand outside my heart, filling my insides with
your shadows, with your hopes.
Becoming my only light.
Asking me to step out of myself,
asking me if I am up
for another search of your heart-
that you have left behind
in someone else’s heart tonight.

You kiss my hand and tell me
you like this better-
me being your hope, your home
rather than being your wretched love-
the love that that leads you to your worst face.

I close my eyes
and again
I try to forget
what I wanted you to be,
what I hoped you would be for me.
I try to forget the wretched love you have become.

“something must be wrong with me, to think of you still now” – Nayana Nair

i cried again today
– a silent sob
hidden behind the highest volume of television.
yesterday i found my grief 
for a second in the fading of another song.
it lasted for a second-
my glace, my hopeless glance
at your retreating figure
and my fruitless love left in its wake.
a shallow love clenching my heart.

“the darkness that she sings for me” – Nayana Nair

i am in love
with the woman who sings and
becomes the background
of my every night.

i like to listen to her voice
as she takes my every second
keeps it out of my reach,
teaches me some really suspicious ways
to keep myself safe from the her demons.

she glows in the darkness that she sews
only for me,
for me to hold her hand the way
she will never be held,
the way i will never be held.

i hate to cry,
i have cried for a long time
for people who called me their option
when i was out of earshot
my tears are cheap, now all they do
is make me feel equally cheap
but the tears i shed for her life are beautiful
the tears i shed for her (who feels like me)
stops me from taking pills i don’t need.

another lover of hers sat opposite me few days ago.
she looked so much like her.
it made me wonder if i looked like her as well.
i wonder she knows her lovers are running amok
in the world that she paints with her pain.
i wonder if she knows that we are catching all her fears,
staying away from guys who speak like her ex,
staying away from the patterns she has pointed out.

i wonder if she knows
that we tell strangers “she sings well, she writes well”
when we want say
“she made me embrace the woman in me
that i have been trying to kill for a long long time.
she stood in my moonlight
counting all the daggers that make her bleed every day,
the same daggers that i fear to acknowledge,
telling me about the exact number of days it takes to collapse again,
about the face, her heart, and her womb that are for anyone’s taking,
about her rage, her mind, and her will that she was allowed to keep.
how she wanted to give up last night.
how giving up can become a concept of life every easily
but she didn’t want that,
because she didn’t want to be
the sad pathetic corpse of the woman
that the world said she would eventually be.”

i am in love with the woman
who wants me to be more than a silent background.

“Zooming In” – Nayana Nair

When I sit still
I am not waiting.
I am thinking of what is not
and why it should never have been.
I zoom into every empty space
and practice how to look away when it hurts me.
I remove my watch from my wrist
and place it next to plate for a better view
and a ruined palate.
I start from the names I know,
I start from the what they used to be
and what they have become.
All the while not addressing
the forest in the middle of my home
and the animal cries in my chest.
The fog in your mind
now spreads into mine.
Now I sometimes forget your name
as you forgot mine.
I dream of making you cry
to forget my own tears.
I wait and sometimes dream
that you would never arrive,
that I would forget whom I was waiting for
and I would smile not knowing why.

“Hope you feel the same” – Nayana Nair

I read about the life you left behind.
About the days when love couldn’t protect anyone.
Days when there rose a necessary evil in you.
It seems once you were good enough
to fall for the traps that I live in.
I wish I had known the fragile you,
but maybe it is all for the best,
for my cruelty walks hand in hand with my love.

In your room, as you smile
and joke about the tears you have hidden in your diaries,
about the new hearts that you had to grow every year.
As I peel off my makeup and my sarcastic words,
I realize that I am about to fall for you
(probably for all the wrong reasons).

Though I might not have been looking
for someone sad to love,
but ‘not having to explain’ helps.
It helps that you, like me, know and understand
that showing wounds sometimes hurt more than getting them.

“Pillar” – Nayana Nair

I do not know how to help you.

I am used to relying on you,
to make everything right.

You are supposed to be the strongest one.
Or were you always like this?

Was your strength a make-belief,
my excuse
for not caring,
for not doing anything.

I do not know how to hold your hand
when you refuse to be held.
I am confused if you really mean it
when you ask to be left alone.

Teach me through your tears,
who you are, when you are not my pillar.

“Anything is better than this” – Nayana Nair

There is another in your heart.
In your mind there is always a new another-
someone you could have had.
“Anything is better than this”, as you so often say.
I wonder if the hell of your imagination has my face.
For long my hell has been – you, keeping your options open.
My hell has been – wondering if it is all in my head.
To smile and love you better, every time you treat me bad.
To measure the worth of love in tears,
only my tears.
My hell has been going towards you.
You, who has always been going away.

“After All” – Nayana Nair

When I am tempted to forget
to stop walking away from you, to return,
to shed a few tears
if it can get me your love.
I remind myself
again and again
choking on my words
that won’t kill me after all.

“I am not what he wants.”
“I am not what he wants.”