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“Closer to Me” – Nayana Nair

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Now the dark corners
are the only safe place remaining.
The loveless days
are the only memory where we can rest
where we can hide from
all the passion that we wished for,
all the feelings we couldn’t handle.

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You once wrote to me about the night
that hung as a curtain over your window,
about how you can’t gather the courage to see the light
until I came along and tore away those curtains,
broke your shields
so that you could see what lay beyond.
I once took pride in being the one
who destroyed all dark cells within you.

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But I realized too late that you were a flower
who could only bloom in dark,
that shields exist for a reason,
that each step you took towards your fear
thinking it would bring you closer to me
was just the beginning of sacrifices
you made to stay in my world.

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As I lay beside you
trying to undo my harm
trying to teach you how to forget me,
what I regret most is that
when you struggled with what you are
I was only proud of my love that could make you do all that
instead of being seeing your love
that could do what I couldn’t.

“Wrong Way” – Nayana Nair

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They forgot to teach me
the most basic thing-
to know which side I should take
to keep a check on papers, to see sense
when someone tells me what is politically right
and to agree when they tell me that identity is everything
not only mine, but of all those who live on same piece of land as me.
They forgot to tell me to fight and argue
in the name of and for the sake of people
who didn’t care about the fight,
who were fine living the way they did.
I ended up believing
that I could just exist without belonging to any shore
and maybe make my own
and pray that no one joins me
and turn my life into something to live by.

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How could they have overlooked this ,
didn’t they foresee how I would sit awkwardly
midst strangers and have nothing to say
about how the world was run.
Would they consider me silly,
would they think that I am shallow
if I was thinking about the fictional character from a story
and his conflicts?
Would they judge me if the story in question was not about
wars, rivalry or mid-life crisis
but one of romantic ones with cheesy lines
that everyone seems to detest?
They should have told me to memorize lines from papers
and opinion columns
and pass it as my own,
when I was not interested to form opinions
on topics that seemed to be of grave importance to others.
I should know better than to write poems on love and sadness
when people are dying around me.
But I don’t.

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I think I may have been brought up the wrong way
and there is nothing I can do about it now.
But I am not even sure whether
I want to fix the things
that I asked to feel ashamed of.

“Crack in my mind” – Nayana Nair

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I couldn’t look into the eyes of the people I knew all my life
or even people who never knew me.
Every morning I woke up
I felt I have left a part of me in the nightmare
of the last the day.
I was afraid that with every hello that I said
I will leave open a crack in my mind
for people to look into.
That all that I had written on paper
is printed on my skin.
I was afraid that if people knew of my condition
I would not have enough energy or excuses
to refute their point
if they put their suspicions in words.
I was afraid of lot of things
for a long time
and most of it was to be seen in a way
that I didn’t want to be seen.

“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.

“Loose me in a storm” – Nayana Nair

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The paint will flow onto these papers
that have been starved of purpose and meaning for long,
and they will loose themselves in the meaning
and they can be never written on again.
Look at this meaningless morning
in hours that don’t need to be filled.
Hold my hands one last time
before you give me a name, a meaning
and loose me in a storm of expectations.
Look into my eyes and I will do the same
let’s give each other a memory of light
to search for and suffer for in that storm.

“Ones Who Broke Us” – Nayana Nair

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The fear that leaves our heart,
at some point,
does it make its way back to us?
Does it still look like our nightmare when it returns?
Do we still look away when it moves closer to us?
Do we close our eyes again on the horrid memories,
the alienation and the helplessness?
And let it erase all the instructions
of avoidance, of the hints of bitterness that must be remembered
for us to live well and choose better,
and all such advices we had written on our heart
on the gravestone of the memories that refused to stay still,
that refused to be silent
till we felt it’s last breath pass into the same pillows
we buried our complains.
Do we let ourselves believe in goodness of hearts ,
in the excuses of the ones who broke us?
I hope not.

“Lead me to the same place” – Nayana Nair

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The laments shimmer in the borrowed beauty
of words someone else made.
The pattern my words dance in
were laid out by someone else.
They lead me to the same place
where they have led the people before me-
not to change or relief.
I don’t think anyone whose steps I am following
was looking for that either.
But only for a way to look at pain
and see the beauty of the heart that endures it.
Not to find answers or reasons,
but the assurance that life can be lived
even without that.

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