Scent

I walked into the perfumery today.
Oh, the sweet smells!
I felt like I was surrounded by
A whole garden of roses, and daffodils, and orchids
Walking on the wet green grass beside a lake.
And out of all of these, one scent stood out.
I wish I could bottle it up and send it to you,
Because you were the first thing I thought of.

Do you think something can smell like a color?
I could smell the color yellow.
Do you know how that feels?
Like Sunshine, and sunflowers.
Like going to bed after a long, dreary day,
And waking up to spring,
The sun shining through the blinds.
Playful.

Do you think something can smell like a memory?
I could smell our car rides.
When we would cross our fingers
And hope for as many red lights as we could get
So we could sit together for just a few more minutes
Time never did stop for us,
So we made the most of it we could.
Happy.

I wish my words were enough to describe it,
To describe what world it took me to.
I can’t bottle up the scent
And send it across the world.
But I’ll keep it with me in hope
That one day, if you do,
It makes you think of me too.

[NaPoWriMo’21 Day 5] Confessions

Okay, so here’s a confession.

Amidst all the days that I pick myself up
And go about life with a jump in my step
Soaking up the sun
Getting drenched in the rain
Cuddling with my dog
And driving around, purposeless
There are days when my feet refuse to move
When my mind refuses to work
And my ears tune out everyone and everything
When I sit in bed crying, and even I don’t know why
Days when I just don’t feel…enough.
Not strong enough.
Not pretty enough.
Not smart enough.
Not enough.

My body feels heavy
Like a rock, just wanting to be left alone
My eyes feel like a sea, never dry
And my brain doesn’t want to listen to anyone
If you’ve seen me on those days
Please know that I’m sorry
I don’t mean to shout at you
I don’t want to hurt you
But my heart is in so much pain
That it can’t fathom anyone else’s

I can’t find the words on those days
To tell you that I’m hurting
So I stay silent
I say nothing, and I cry, endlessly
And I know it hurts you to see me like that
I know you care, I do
But at that moment, I’m too busy
Caring about myself

All the pain comes pouring out of me
All the pain of the past
Which I have no control over now
Mistakes I’ve made
Ways I’ve been wronged

The pain of the inappropriate touches
When I was too young to know what it meant
Too little to fight
The pain of hurting someone I loved so deeply
The pain of being hurt in return
Because what goes around, comes around, they say

The pain of disappointing the people I love
Maybe I didn’t make enough if my life yet
The pain of everything going wrong
Always.

But I’ve had these days for a while now
And I know they always pass
All I need is a little time
To feel. To grieve.
Close my eyes and wait
Because tomorrow, is a new day.

[NaPoWriMo’21 – Day 2] Chai

The cup feels warm as I touch it.
Even with my low threshold of heat,
Occassionally I don’t mind burning my tongue
On a perfect cup of hot chai.

My relationship with tea has been on and off
Throughout my life, after I was old enough
To be allowed a sip
It’s often been overshadowed by coffee
As my preferred beverage
But then come days,
When I wake up in the morning
With no muscle in my body wanting to move
The days when I’m sick
Or fighting off one of those days when my head
Feels like it is ready to burst open at the tiniest sounds
On those days, my heart craves nothing more than
A perfect cup of hot chai

I don’t like the taste as much, no
It’s the feeling that comes along with it
When the faint smell of ginger wafts up
And reminds me of the rain
The days when I’d sit with you in the balcony
Sharing tea, made just the way you like it
And I’d make faces, because to me
It tasted like sugar syrup
But on those days, my heart also found comfort
In your company

It reminds me of long road trips
That we’d take
And stop on the side
In the shade, with the cool breeze
For the thele-wali-chai

It reminds me of the mandatory drink
Served with breakfast at home
Because my parents
Can have 10 cups of chai a day
And still want more

It reminds me of when
I was living with my friends
And we’d wait for our chai time
To catch up with each other
Talk about our day
About work, and everything in between

I don’t like the taste as much, no
It’s the memories it brings
Of happy days, tiring days
Days that bring a smile to my face

And so on the days
When my mind wants to give up
Cover my face with a blanket
And just stay in bed
My heart craves nothing more
Than a perfect cup of hot chai

***************************************************************************************

Prompt: Think of the food you crave when you’re sick, sad or somewhere in between.

What is it? Why do you crave it? What memories does it evoke?

HOME

I made my home in you

I breathed the air around you
Touched every nook and cranny
I learnt of all the cracks and holes
That could be mended, and some not

I danced around
Made every corner my own
My laughter echoed through you
And some tears you helped soak

I brightened up the dark corners
Or at least, I tried to
I fixed some old bruises
And left some new marks

I ran and I swirled
I knew you like my own
I was home
And I belonged

I made my home in you
But now it’s time to move

Love Letter [NaPoWriMo Day 12]

I stand in front of the mirror,
Taking it all in.
My hair is a mess, rough and entangled
But it falls perfectly around my face.
I run my hands across the bruises, which
Keep mysteriously appearing on my body
Because I fall often, but don’t learn.
Some of the bruises are tender when I touch them,
But I know they’ll heal, like they always do.
My eyes seem to hold a spirit, beaten down,
Because my ideas are too impractical, too ideal.
Because the world will never be at peace,
And that means that I won’t either.
But in the darkness of my eyes, I still see
A tiny sliver of hope, fighting to hold on.
There’s a constant battle going on in my head,
Because I’m cursed with being able to see,
Both sides in a fight, and it’s painful to choose.
It doesn’t show on my face, in my smile,
Which still manages to grace me,
Despite the battle going on underneath.

I stand in front of the mirror,
Taking it all in.
And with every passing minute,
I fall deeper in love
With myself.

Be still, my beating heart [NaPoWriMo Day 7]

Be still, my beating heart.
Be still.
I would tell myself over and over,
With one look from you, my face
Would turn into a whirlwind of emotions.
Flushed cheeks, trying hard to fight that smile,
Creeping up on me from nowhere.
One smile, and I could feel my stomach
Somersault down to my feet.
A million butterflies taking flight,
Lifting my spirits higher
Than I’d ever known them to go.
Be still, my beating heart.
Be still.

Memories of my first, loved and lost.
You’re still etched in my heart somewhere,
But I’ve found ways to think of you and smile.
I’ve come a long way since you knew me.
I write, but my words are no longer for you.
I wonder what would surprise you the most,
If you saw me now, the person I’ve become.
I don’t keep my feelings bottled up anymore,
I talk, and I cry, I speak up when it hurts.
I’ve realized that love is fragile, but heartbreaks heal.
I don’t let my life revolve around one person,
Because there’s so much to see, so much to do.
I try to be complete all on my own.
For teaching me this, and a lot more, thank you.
My world didn’t come crumbling down,
Like I thought it would, without you.
I found love again, and you did too.

My thoughts still wander back to you,
Sometimes, unintentionally.
And I let them, there’s no pain anymore.
You’re just some filled pages in my diary,
Pages filled with pure love, before I knew
Of the pain in the real world.
Just pages, saying over and over,
Be still, my beating heart.
Be still.

Unspoken [NaPoWriMo Day 6]

You found me all those years ago,
When we were both broken.
I had my walls up, like I do with everyone.
I hid all the damage behind a tiny smile,
Hoping one day, these pretenses
Would become my truth.
So I smiled at you, and you smiled back.
A smile that I knew all too well.
A smile that was meant to suppress
All those feeling that wanted to come
Flooding out of you.
And my bruised soul, found yours.

You took me apart, layer by layer,
Teaching me to embrace the insecurities
That hid behind my veil of laughter;
To not shove the past away, but to
find light in all the darkness;
To find my strength, and my voice.
There were no pretenses anymore,
Just me, strong and resolute.

Our broken hearts mended each other,
And then each found its own way.
All those years ago, I didn’t thank you,
Not enough. But today, I hope my heart
Can find yours again, to let you know
that your short, ‘insignificant’ life,
Was a big part of mine.

Forgiveness [NaPoWriMo Day 2]

I only see you through photographs
Beautiful and majestic
But in a land, distant
Your cries for help fall short
Maybe the ocean drowns them
Swallowing them whole
Like it did, your home

You see, I was only a child
When I learnt to turn a blind eye
To the suffering I couldn’t see
Unaware that the consequences
Of my actions couldn’t see borders
They could fly across the land
And swim across the seas
Taking from you
Everything you’ve known
Your food, your home, your life

All I do now is hope
With every fiber of my being
That you don’t leave
Like many before you
Who have stained my hands crimson

Here I stand, heart heavy from what I can’t undo,
Will you forgive me for the ways I have wronged you?

 


Disclaimer: Featured image photographed by Paul Nicklen. I claim no copyright on the image, and no copyright violations were intended. 

Hurt [NaPoWriMo Day 1]

I find myself alone again,
And my heart is free to feel,
The pain and the hurt.
There are memories sometimes,
And on others, just thoughts,
Thoughts and tales that my mind spins,
Because I’m a dreamer,
And sometimes I dream of sorrow.
I can feel it course through me,
Like an unstoppable tide.
It engulfs me whole,
And I feel that the world,
Will never be okay again.
But I’ve been here before,
Broken.

Don’t tell me to be brave.
Don’t tell me I’m weak.
Say it’s okay to hurt,
And let my heart heal,
In my cocoon of pain,
Till I emerge,
Stronger.

The Divide

Separated from you by a border,

I wonder if you feel what I feel.

I wonder if you cringe at the words

‘War’, ‘Attack’, being thrown around lightly

Like they mean nothing.

As the world around us burns to the ground,

You only know what your people tell you,

And I only know what mine tell me.

My people, your people.

Does that even matter anymore?

We’re all just human beings,

Caught in the crossfire of hate.

Being fed big, bold headlines,

With a coffee on the side,

Tainted with cynicism.

When do we stop,

Paying for the crimes we didn’t commit,

Suffering for the sins that weren’t our own?

Ignorance is bliss, they say.

Ignorance, that you’re just like me,

Dazed and confused,

Wondering what the world is coming to.

I don’t know you, but I wish I did.

I wish I did so that I could understand,

What it is like, on the other side,

Of this divide, created and guarded by us.

I wish I could reach across the words,

Twisted and turned, the truth lost in there somewhere,

Molded into a new reality.

The reality which has divided us in two,

Which stops us from joining hands,

Against the beast that terrorizes us both.

As I sit writing this, in the comfort of my house,

And you read this in the safety of yours,

I wish we could see the people stuck in the middle,

Under siege,  terrified for what lies in their fate.

The little kids count days, till they can go back to school,

Till they can run outside the house, and play,

Because that’s what kids are supposed to do.

Instead, they cower in their house,

Waiting for another day to pass them by.

I wish I knew them, so that I could understand,

The pain of losing someone I grew up with,

The horror of people around me being blown to bits,

And the blind faith, with which I would close my eyes

Unsure if I would ever wake up.

 

I wonder if you feel the same,

Loathe the mess that we’ve created,

Struggling to clean it up.

Separated from you by a border,

I wonder if you feel what I feel.

If you look at people as people,

And wonder if everyone does the same.