to chester

this is selfish, but i am selfish. who will scream for me now? i can’t even whisper, but i could always count on screaming out my pain through you, and what hurts me the most is that you never had that.
but i’m not going to be sad. because you did this for yourself. and that’s okay too. it should be. it should be okay to do things for yourself.
it’s just the guilt again. the guilt that all that i could hear was my own pain, and completely ignored the one who was screaming the loudest.
when i thought i only have place for hate and anger in my heart, you made me realise that i have place for love too. because i loved your music more than anything at the time. and that love counts too.
i’m sorry.
and i know you can’t hear me, and i’m sorry if you can, because you did this so that you could avoid all the phony complaints from fans who only thought of themselves first. but now without you, i feel more silenced than ever. i never could even open my mouth, much less scream. but i always felt like i could through you. listening to you was the most cathartic, painless forms of therapy for me.
but i still can. scream, i mean. through you though. even now.
it’s like eminem ❤ said: "just let our spirits live on through our lyrics that you hear in our songs."
you will always live on, chester. through my pain, and everyone else's pain you helped soften, but allowed to breathe. my pain was allowed to respire and exist because you legitimised it.

what now???

the theory of sadness

we choose sadness
because it’s easier
than dealing with the unfamiliarity
of approaching happiness
for our own selves.
we’re so used to
happiness being handed to us
folding itself in notes,
spiralling out of the aroma of food,
or even jumping out of the light-carrying dust
on summer mornings,
that we’re far too cowardly
to walk in to the arms of happiness
without doubt tying itself around us
like a lasso
and holding us back.
sadness is easier
than scribbling down all that my mind
has to say to you
and watching your face contort
into an evil, mocking laugh,
ripping to shreds my letter of honesty.
see, sadness is easier
like a friend it hugs me always,
shrugging off that bastard happiness
who, if you dare to choose,
will shatter your world for a second,
make you fall in love with destruction,
and then tiptoe away
leaving behind
only rubble.
and you.
whatever is left anyway.

things i listen to when i miss home

  • reo speedwagon
  • matchbox 20
  • kenny rogers ❤
  • kandakondein kandakondein soundtrack
  • ms subbhalakshmi lol
  • beegees dude
  • the beatles
  • bryan adams
  • 70s-80s-90s bollywood
  • nickelback
  • daughtry
  • my name is luka i live on the second floor
  • american pie
  • neil diamond

conflicted: a stream of consciousness

2 sides of my mind play tug-of-war with each other. But the rope burns their hands, burning with questions of “is this really worth it?,” “what are we really fighting for?,” “what happens when one side kills the other?”
But they don’t stop. The rope begins to tear and secrets in the form of rough jute begin to jut out, but they keep pulling. Their knees are scraped with lines of blood, counting down to the days of their demise. Their bodies twist and contort to dodge stones of rival ideology thrown at them from the other side. Their teeth bite and rip out bullets that the other side pierced through their flesh — hoping that all their hopes and dreams can be crammed into that metal cylinder and entered into the brain and heart of the other side. Maybe they can both think and feel the same then. What even is the difference between the two? Finally, as they both fall down, the rope still connecting them both, they howl different melodies of pain which pile on top of each other — creating music so beautiful, that all the blood lost in vain was like red paint lashed out onto a blank canvas, creating art that even the creator of the universe would be envious of. Oh how beauty bleeds from violence, I wonder.


when i asked them if they are happy,

their eyes scrunched up and their head tilted to the side

as if the one question that we ask ourselves everyday

was asked to them in a language so unfamiliar,

so unknown,

that there are no words for it in their mother tongue.

as if this question,

asked in a language called narcissism,

did not ever echo in their minds for long,

did not ever linger when their eyes searched for themselves in the mirror,

did not ever haunt their shadows as they laboured in the sun.

because their minds frantically sought the secrets of the universe to share with me,

and in the mirror their eyes only found my face on my 10th birthday,

and their shadows were far too busy protecting me from the spiky thorns of the cold 

rather than shielding them from the sorrows of the sun.

so when i asked them if they are happy –

a question so absurd,

that their silent response hung in the air forever

in between both the borders

that stranded that second in time,

I found the answer in their eyes.

which answered in the language

that morphed into the shape of me.



i do not understand anymore

the meaning of the word “taboo”

for it has expanded itself

like an ocean crossing borders

to touch the hands of all people

only to handcuff their wrists.

i wonder whether this mind and body are taboo

or the lingering looks of those around me

echo taboo into my own eyes

and write them across my body?

are my breasts taboo

for simply existing?

are my hands taboo, when one clasps the neck of an old monk

or gives pleasure to strangers in dark rooms with screaming music,

and the other, a protest sign, later used by street kids as a roof?

is it my sexuality — or lack thereof,

simply desiring?

but desiring what cannot and must not be desired–

the old, the young, the one that carries the weight of being “woman” or “man”, the one whose hands are empty, but their hearts are overflowing with their soul?

or is desiring no one at all taboo?

is my mind taboo?

for thinking all the things that i wish to yell

but that stops at the speedbreaker in my mouth built with fear?


the biggest taboo that wraps itself around us, forming a “border”

for a “great nation”

is fear.

and like a surge of powerful electricity

it sparks itself into all of us

surnames written down on black lists drag with them fear

dalits crossing the threshold of temples is taboo

because then we are afraid that they will walk on the same earth as us

and we will no longer be stepping on them.

the uncaring, loud and booming truth punches fear in our faces

so we soften the truth

for fear of simply hearing taboo

or worse — replaying it in our minds

over and over again

thinking is taboo too.

and those men on podiums who dictate to us

have their voice travel into our brain

so that they can do all the thinking.

but they seldom speak the truth

because the truth, while liberating, sets us behind bars

jailing every free breath we could ever breathe.

still i will breathe in every curse word flung in my way

every finger pointed at me

only to breathe out all the horror that i mirror

of you.

i am a complex, narcissistic, unlovable, sinful, living entity.

and i am ridden with taboo.





am woman

brown skin fiercely walking

pressing down fear


sometimes in shock

at my own blazing anger

pouring red hot electricity

to the edge of my fingertips


the fear that makes my heart beat jerkily

swims to the tip of my tongue

i don’t mean to sound so unsure — i swear

but my voice quivers and dances around

for fear orchestrates it

i persevere

to gather all the morals

my two hands can collect

but i am too full of sin

too full of gluttony and greed

and i lose more

than this body can hold in


am becoming

a body compact with emotion

threatening to spill over at any second

jealousy melts into my stomach

as my ears read all of your poetry

and i strive to digest your words

hope intertwines with my legs

forcing even the most painstaking steps

on the road much travelled by

cynicism guards my heart

while liberalism — sometimes forced —

lays itself like a speedbreaker before my tongue

is it my mind that pulls everything together

that becomes me

or are my toes the ones

who bare the burden

of becoming something

so unlikeable

so complex

so narcissistic

something that writes poetry

only about herself?





karma works in seasons sometimes

i wear jackets and sweaters in this godforsaken cold weather

all of them weigh more than the children who make them.

but i love the cold that hangs in the air

because everything i avoided that evaporated in the sweltering heat of summer–

condensed, and falls on me like dumbells i’m constantly carrying

adding to the anger and resentment i take with me everywhere.

now i’m juggling all of this

as my hands freeze with guilt in the cold temperature

keeping them still, unable to reach out to you.

i am 60 kgs of apologies that never got out

of guilt racing in my blood until it reaches every muscle

of anger that flashes before my eyes — making it difficult to see everything as i did before.

and of utter disgust that amidst all the buildings that tried to burn you down

and hearts that tried to steal your smile,

i am here writing about me

so that people will read about it

it’s all about me, me, me

the problem with sanctuaries is us

i want to fold myself in the pages of a book

and sleep soundly in the dense forests of it

not make it a sanctuary

but find myself in the wild

so that every raw emotion can crawl out of me

fear like I’ve never felt it

anger like I’ve never feared it

joy like I’ve never heard it

sorrow like I’ve never loved it

and hate like I’ve never desired it more

i don’t want to put the book in the glass lab

and pour different chemicals of ideology onto it


i want to curl myself up in the shapes of the letters

rest my head on the gentle soft paper

and roll up in its bindings