Beqadri.

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Mitti ho kar ishq kiya hai ik dariya ki rawaani se,
Deewar-o-dar maang raha hu main bhi behte paani se.

headfirst through a glass window from fourteen stories above with no stories left to tell, catapulting to the ground feeling the blood rush through a bruised and broken body like it’s confused. the blood is confused.

a child writes about death like she held it in her soft creased palms, she talks of memories like they tattooed them on the roof of her mouth, and i realize loss all it takes to understand madness.

i ask him to make an incision under my ear and pull out all his fiddle footed half assed apologies and he does just that. this is why i never learned to forgive.

knuckles change colour from pale yellow to red to purple. you take my hand in yours and suddenly everything turns blue. the shades of my battered skin are the closest thing i have to a rainbow.

i pick up a pen and write: hold a hand. chain a soul.

what do we owe to ourselves but excuses to make our hearts hurt enough to have us look each other in the eye and say, “i do not regret having lost to you”.

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Hiraeth

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“Kya gham hai jisko chhupa rahe ho,
tum itna jo muskura rahe ho?”

the sadness in your eyes is borrowed.

every story you tell is borrowed.

every time i laugh it hurts my chest;

i realise my laughter is borrowed.

sixty pence for a lifetime of giggles,

i say no, thank you, it’s a wonderful bargain

but i prefer the pain.

heartbreak is like a toothache.

it hurts when i bite into someone else’s lips.

the sound of my fingers tapping on hardwood floor,

i borrowed from a fairytale about a princess

trapped in a magical tower.

my foolishness, my unrelenting desire

to escape from nothing but everything,

my courage, i assume, is borrowed too.

my lips trailing the outline of your collar

leave behind a memory that is borrowed,

the time i froze between a sigh and a kiss,

borrowed.

if only i could borrow

the smell of your hair,

the warmth of your arms,

the ghosts of your destruction,

the debris of your soul.

I saw you in the night again.

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I want to leave pieces of you with this morning.
Mix the sunrise with your breath,
you leave shades of the nightsky on my neck.
I breathe in the fragrance of your disapproval,
I want to leave before you ask me to.
My arm over your chest painfully overstays its welcome,
and your eyes seem to search
for emptier spaces in an already empty room;
almost feels like the air in our lungs
begs us to poison it further.
I still haven’t left and now you want me to leave.
My tears sizzle in the heat of the friction
as our bodies untwine;
I want to remember the aftermath of my heartbreak,
I try to hold on for just a while longer,
I fail.
I want too many things too soon, too often.
Your magic tricks fail to amuse me and my
amusement never mattered to you, I want to not forget.
I’ve realised that motion blur etches itself too deep
into the skin of old, forgotten lovers.

Forgetting.

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To You, 

My chosen one, mi eterna primavera, my sin. 

I wish I had the patience to turn you into a poem. 

I wish you could just stay still as I tried to remember how you looked under this pale blue sky; how your voice still found its way to me through the chaos of that marketplace, through the shrieks of babies and the cuss words of shopkeepers. I wish we had more time, more memories. I feel bad that I have only so many days to miss, only so many kisses to try to feel against my lips again. Some days, I just wish you could have held us together with your lies a little longer. Now you see, I’m tugging at the edges of my dress nervously. I don’t know how to say ‘Hello’ anymore, I just stick to smiling politely, coldly. But not cold enough for anyone to see the broken heart inside, or the absence of it. 

I know for a fact that you wake up in the middle of the night after a disturbing nightmare, a little before I decide to switch off the light and try to fall asleep. In those few minutes that we share our consciousness, I know you sigh my name and I’m here, on what feels like the other end of the world, taking a deep breath and counting the colours in your eyes on my fingers. I wish you’d never have loved me, and I wish I wasn’t so lost in my imagination that I never knew what reality felt like. I wish you didn’t know how to weave fiction like a fairytale, and I wish I had never let you read me your stories to sleep. 

Loving you wasn’t hard, I still feel like I’m back home when I try to listen to you speak in my head; and loving you didn’t drive me insane, I definitely don’t smile at inanimate objects. 

Loving you was just different and I’ll never know how, and so I wish I could have loved you a little more, just long enough to know the bones under your skin and how they held you without failing; just long enough to learn from them. 

Take care, you. 

You’re spring, you will never wither. I’m autumn, I will never bloom.


Yellow.

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You say yellow, you say sunshine; and frames from Bollywood movies. You say ‘I Love You’, you say it like you mean it. You say yellow, you say stay. You say paint me, paint us, you say come let’s take a nap. You say yellow, you say cold flames, you say flowers. You say yellow, I say stop. I say poison. I say ‘I Love You’, I say let me kill myself. 


Wake up before the sunrays reach your skin,

And I know, I know you’re here.

Keep playing with these matches, 

There’s not a lot of time left before

We turn into ashes. Wake up. 

You know, the sound of your tears as they

Trail down your cheeks, they remind me how

Our angels get drunk too, and they paint the sky

In shades of tequila. Look at me. 

Look at me, I’m shifting silhouettes for you.

Inhaling poison, grainy smoke, so much chaos.

Can you hear this thunder, hear it roar under my quivering lips?

Can you break away from your toxic stupor, just to watch me?

Watch me fall from grace. These walls, look,

These walls that surround you aren’t white anymore, they aren’t white anymore. 

Can you feel me die? Can you touch me?

I’m a feather. Wake up. Look at me. 

I’m a feather, I’m flying. 

I’m a feather, I’m still breathing.

Almost. 

Houses.

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when i imagine houses i tend to see them from the inside. 

i see the front door slightly ajar and a cat having made itself comfortable in the gap that lets the dusty sunlight in. 

i see a coat hanger that bears the weight of an exhausting day, that makes the wooden floorboard creak when osbcene insults tie themselves around it’s age-old pegs. 

i see windows, and curtains, and furniture that passes of as antique but in reality is only representative of a time when this house reeked of happiness and fresh baked macaroons, a grandmother’s oven mitts, a grandfather’s crisp newspaper. 
my lover, however, 

always imagines them from the outside. 

she says she sees a cat peeping inside an abandoned house. 

she says the paint looks like something that could have passed off as pink a few fifty years back, but now is a pale ashen grey through the milky glass of the windows.

she says the insides look like they’re crumbling. 

as if a soul once inhabited the chairs and photo frames but has now left; left these inanimate bodies waiting for sunlight to burn them to the ground.

my lover, she says she can feel the house spiral down into an abyss. 

i ask her if she wants to mend it, if we could change the fixtures and paint the walls. if the matted tablecloth could be replaced with a flowery sheet, if we could breathe life into the house, again. 
she smiles. she shakes her head and tells me how we’re both too spent already. how my heart doesn’t have enough room for reconstruction and how her shoulders don’t have enough strength for shifting furniture.
so we walk away.

and the house we both imagined, it basks in its emptiness.