Flirting

A void inside my chest
threatens to consume me;
I don’t know if it’s
the calm before the storm
or the oblivion after the tempest.

Fingers on my neck
like a lover,
caress my skin
slowlyslowlyslowly
choke me with love.

Wrote you a love letter.
Paint on paper-
red
black
red
black
red
black
halo of blood
around my head.

Push me off my cliff
into your sea.
You always leave
even in my dreams.

I can’t make you stay
but I can take a part of you
away with me.

Say your name, breathe in, jump.
Will you stand behind me
and count to three?

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Book Review: The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood


“We were the people who were not in the papers. We lived in the blank white spaces at the edges of print. It gave us more freedom.
We lived in the gaps between the stories.”


The world created by Atwood in The Handmaid’s Tale is a world out of a feminist’s nightmare- a world that reduces women to their reproductive ability. The world builds slowly and gradually, as the story unfolds, and you realise, slowly and gradually, how horrible this world is. 

I fell in love with Atwood’s style of writing. It’s metaphorical, but not sugar-coated. Don’t expect her to romanticise the horrific life that Offred lived; she’s very straightforward. The prose is dark, quiet, rich with detail and drama bubbles under it. 

This book will disturb you. It will haunt you. In the best possible way. The ending is obscure. You might immediately dislike the book when you get to that part. It might even annoy you. But, for me, it worked. It gave the book a sense of reality, that I expect from such a heavy theme. The story will stay with me forever, and so will Offred.

Image source

Impressions

You splattered red
on my bare canvas;
defined my desires,
determined my fears
and the things that
fuel my fire.

You dabbed my canvas with
your favourite shade of blue.
Etched your own
notions into me;
of faith, haven and virtue.

You smothered me in orange,
never not reminding me of
my inadequacy to irradiate lives-
neither mine, nor others’.

You covered the parts of me
that you hated in black;
discarding them as odd,
ignoring their existence
despite their persistence.

Pink was your favourite.
With it, you carefully drew
the boundary of my love,
the bounds of my femininity
and the scope of what I can do.

So I bathe myself in white,
painting over the myriad of hues
you stained me with.
I stand here, a bare canvas again.

I will not be your red
for I will build
my own fire.

I reject your blue
for I will be
my own refuge.

I am not orange
for I will burn brighter
than the yellow of the sun.

I refuse to be black
for being imperfect
doesn’t make me inferior.

Your boundaries of pink
won’t contain my love
or my potential.

I stand here, a bare canvas again
and I will recreate myself.

But this time
the colours will be mine.

Daydreaming about Anxiety

I wish my anxiety were a boy I loved

Maybe then I wouldn’t hate the palpitation and the clumsiness because it would spring only from the way he made me giddy and not from the endless chain of ‘what ifs’ 

I wish my anxiety were a boy I loved

Maybe then I wouldn’t be disgusted of the razor sharp scars he left on my thighs and my belly

I wish my anxiety were a boy I loved

Maybe then I wouldn’t want to scream every single time he wrapped his arms around me, not letting me leave my bed

I wish my anxiety were a boy I loved

Maybe then it would not be bleach that I swallowed that day with the hope of dying, but champagne that we had to celebrate our love

I wish my anxiety were a boy I loved

Maybe then everyone wouldn’t tell me that it’s just in my head

Things that the women in my life have taught me

  1. Opportunity can do more for you than capability can.
  2. Feeling doesn’t make you weak. It’s okay to cry in your room for weeks.
  3. Your opinion is not worthless.
  4. No one is born to serve.
  5. Don’t accept everything in the garb of social norm. Always question what doesn’t make sense to you.
  6. The definition of a man with leadership skills often coincides with that of an overbearing woman.
  7. You will always be judged; not by your opinions and actions and thoughts but by the marks on your face and the size of your breasts.
  8. Never be apologetic for not reciprocating feelings. You do not owe anyone your affection.
  9. Femininity isn’t weak. Lipstick doesn’t change the importance and power of your voice. The length of your heels is not a measure of how far you can go during the course of your life.
  10. You are your own shelter. Have a hobby you can always turn to when you have nothing to do. Learn to sustain yourself. Very often, you’ll be all you have. Don’t be afraid to ask for help, but never seek refuge in other people.

Love Letter

You don’t know
how I love the taste
of my name
in our mouths
as you say it
when we kiss.
You don’t know
that if I tried
I could count the stars
but not the magnitude
of your touch
on the back of my neck.
You don’t know
that all the wine in the world
can’t douse the taste
of your lips
from my tongue.
You call me ice cold
and laugh
your so palpable laugh.
But you don’t know
that I could
set myself on fire
just to keep you warm.

Home

Infinite seas of
gregarious folks,
at times, convivial,
at times, intimidating.
Shrieking of
maddening horns
during the day.
Dulcet chirps of
cicadas
by the dusk.
Uneven roadways
outlined with
at times, establishments,
yellow leaves and leaflets,
at times, trees,
fences and shy lovers.
The sun-
bashful in the winter,
tyrannising in the summer.
Oxygen lined with
the scent of
spice, mangoes,
gossip and dust:
All interlaced delicately
to give me
the aesthetic pleasure
in residing in
the little town
I call home.