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How I secured my place in the field.

Well, this is just an incident i would love to share with you all. Thankyou for reading :).

I’ve always had this passion for football, maybe much more than the boys who play better than me in the park everyday. Even after being told by practically everyone not to go play with them, i picked up myself rather confidently hoping no one would notice the scared and awkward girl behind that tough wall. Not hard to guess, they said they dont play with girls. That actually hit hard on my esteem, bit quite unbashed i tried my best to fit in. I fell, and picked up myself without complaining. Everyone would make fun of me, constantly reminding me i dont belong here. Some of the boys did realise my love for the game was bigger than my ego and had no other choice but to pass the ball occasionally.

Nothing has changed; i still fight everyday, i still fall, help myself, get occasional passes and high-fives, but now the boys are used to my presence and i am used to their attitude.

Now i’m the only girl they would play with and wait for to come down in the same confident way everyday.

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Clocks

Clocks

You, are my 12 am muse, my
11 am canvas where my fingers lazily trace constellations and broken infinities;
I, am your
sloppy morning kisses
With horribly bad breath and sleepy eyes
We, are not out of those fairy tales
My mum read to me when I was 9
You, don’t
Make my heart skip a beat
Or rescue me from my monsters
We, are not believers
of forever
Or making promises.
I, don’t look at you like a morning prayer
I look at you like a poetry that I don’t want to end
You are not an answer to my questions
You, get me choked up with them
You make every sentence in my mind end with a question mark
I can’t find answers of
So I curl up my body around you like one instead
And it all comes undone
In my arms.
You told me it took you days to tell me
You sort of liked me
And you still couldn’t find the perfect words
But maybe, that is who we are
Maybe we aren’t stories people will remember
But songs we sing out of tune
where all the notes don’t necessarily fall precisely where they’re supposed to
They run everywhere and
Over each other
Like your fingers tapping my thighs
Out of rhythm
Like our breaths blending
To form silly words only we understand.
There are 26 alphabets
And yet, with all the metaphors filled in my mind everytime
You look at me
My tongue craves a new language.
I have spent days and days in your shirt
In your absence, and it’s not enough,
You see, with you and me, there is no black and white
All or none
We meet in those grey patches in between
Like the pause before another song
Your name on my lips like my mother tongue
In a foreign land
We
Don’t know if we are two hands
Of a clock
Or a timebomb
We
Run away, and into, each other
Board different trains
And our tracks keep overlapping
Hands keep intersecting
Our hearts keep crossing it’s
A crime scene
A casuality, and two witnesses
Who refuse to open their eyes
Or let go
of each other.
You once told me
We are almost a Shakespearean tragedy
But when your eyes linger at mine
It sounds more like a poetry
Like a free verse, quiet, humming at the back of my mind poetry
One that keeps going
Oblivious of the clocks ticking
One that has no beginning
One that never-

My First Pride

My First Pride

Humans are beautiful. We are all made of different soil, color, rhymes and metaphors, weaved in a single strand of humanity.

We also, sadly, share an obsession for categories and labels and norms, labelling every shade as either a pink or a blue, drawing boundaries and boxes, often leaving no space for ambiguity or multiplicity. These labels in turn define and dictate who we are, how are we supposed to look, talk, walk, who we are supposed to love, our abilities, strengths and weaknesses. These boxes might be convenient and uncomplicated o the outside, but for the most part prove to be inhibiting, restricting and suffocating. Take, for instance, what if one day blue wakes up and decides to wear a pink dress? Or pink feels it would rather beā€¦purple? Because of our fears and inhibitions, we shun these possibilities or sometimes put them in another label altogether; unnatural.

I grew up like most girls grow up, in my little world wearing my pink dresses and crushing over boys. My biological self, or sex, was conveniently used to assume my gender and sexuality, and dictate my preferences, abilities, and characteristics. Yet, now that I look back, I wonder if my little self ever wondered if she could also reach her hands for the purple pants on the topmost shelf, or the toy car her brother played with, or maybe the pretty girl who sat next to her in the classroom.

Anyway, as I grew up, I was-like most of us-exposed to all sorts of knowledge. I was expected to understand complex algebras, trigonometry, cell theory and history of wars and civilization. And again, there were simple things no one talked about. Those little secrets, like the one wrapped up in those glances my neighbor’s daughter passed to her “best friend”, or the one in my mother’s eyes when my brother walked out of the room wearing a lipstick when he was 6, were hidden in the farthest end of my world’s closet, where, I don’t even know when, I carved a little space for a part of me too.

Recently, I went to my first Pride Parade. I had heard about it before, of course, but going to one? You see I am a human too. A little scared, skeptical human. But as I looked around to all the happy, shining colors spilling out of their pallets and painting everything around me into purple and pink and green and even shades I didn’t know the names of, but found beautiful anyway; I couldn’t help but shed all my inhibitions and embrace all the love around me. For me, those 2 hours of my life were a time where I could embrace every part of me, and embrace every part of all the people around me. I could be anyone I want, and more importantly, I could be who I really was. Those happy faces filled me with so much warmth and love, I couldn’t understand why anyone would reciprocate these beautiful feelings with hatred, fear, abomination.

Most importantly, even though I’m still not sure if my inhibitions are ready to come out of their closet, at least now I know the view outside is worth opening my doors for.

My God

My God

As a child
My class teacher
Would scribble on the board
“God is one”
Everyday, as she’d adjust her Burkha
She once told me his name is Allah.
Back at home
I’d see
A temple inhabited by
Miniature statues
And my grandmother would tell me
The blue one is Shiva
The blue one with the lady is Vishnu
The blue one with the flute is Krishna
Veena is Saraswati
And we don’t worship Bramha;
And my neighbors would worship another God
They’d say he has no face, they’d call him Vaheguru
My friend who brings me plum cakes on Christmas
Worships Jesus.
And so I’ll tell my grandfather
When I’m drowning in a river
I’d call all of them together
And he’d say
I would never be saved that way
That our God is our God
And their God is theirs
And no one would eventually show up to save me
If I start to worship them all the same.
Some people have even told me
We’re all God’s children
And he loves us all
Yet, in the same breath they’d say
I’d go to hell for loving who I want to
And on certain days of the month, he wouldn’t want me on his doorstep
Some of us, he loves more than others.
And I see people bombing other people
To make Him happy
I see kids dying
Of hunger
While their mothers pray to their Gods
I see people burning and breaking
Homes and families
All in his name
I see sad eyes
And hopelessness
Spilled all around me.
So when God comes at my doorstep
I’d want to enquire about
His caste and class and religion and race and nationality
So as to tell him if
He can really enter my house;
I’d want to ask about
Dying and hungry and sad kids
And who’s God is he really
But first
I’d ask him for a bloody long due apology.

To the women they tried to silence

I have grown seeing too many women
Being told
That they can’t tell apart affection from affliction
And so they keep mum
Drowning in the labyrinths of society’s lies.
I’ve seen women cleaning the mess
Of their lovers
Day and night
Accepting that love hurts at times
All the time
Leaving ugly scars they hide
With layers of makeup.
I’ve been told being beautiful
Is a liability, a curse womanhood has endowned upon me
And it’s okay if people touch me
For that is what I really want.
To be touched, to be fucked; consent is a lie made up by
Some immodest women who pronounce “yes” as “no”.
I have been long looking for
Durgas who slay demons who walk around
As heroes
Sitas who don’t permit society
To judge her on the basis of her purity
Radhas who love shamelessly
Kalis who speak of truths no one wants her to say out loud.
And here I say
To the women who were silenced
But spoke up anyway
Who knew they are
So much more than what society lets them be
Who fought, and are still fighting;
I’m tired of looking up to sculptures and mythical stories
I bow down to you instead.

Sold bodies

Neon lights, blinding lights
Colours and shimmer
A fair of lust and pain
Games of helplessness
Pieces of cloth, hanging loose to the body
Giving peeks to all the glitter-
All the glitter, that can never be gold.

Used and abused,
Yet smiling women.
Hiding their puffed up eyes
Behind layers of makeup
From all the nights they couldn’t sleep-
From each and every night
Hiding scars
Ugly, cunning scars
From the visitor’s eyes
Ready for new ones.

And every day is the same
Another night of helplessness,
Another choking dream,
Another shattering hope.

Beautiful, sold bodies
Dancing in the neon lights
Seducing,
Asking,
In all these shining, enchanting
Golden bodies
Everyday, something is damaged
Everyday, something is sold
Everyday, something dies.

Free verses

I do not contain rhythms inside me
I sway up and down
In and out
Of the peripheries of your love
Like the waves of the ocean
Merely touching your feet
Like your feet
Shying away from water
You see
I don’t rhyme
To your heartbeat
I string down
Lose to your tongue
Almost like I belong there
To you
I am the free verses of your poetry.

Just a boy

My fingers flutter through
Your hair
And the stubble on your cheeks
And I think how
I’ve always liked men with a beard
But not on you.
You have a habit
Of holding my hand when we cross a street
And when we watch a horror movie
And I ask you why won’t you let me go out in the dark.
You’re scared, you mumble.

You see, my love,
There’s a right amount of everything:
Every aroma, every word, every gaze.
You sometimes say the wrong things at the right times
The right things at the wrong time
You speak too much, and not at all
Holding me close with your gaze like your favourite toy
Smiling like you’ll never smile at a woman again.
There’s a right amount of everything.
And you’ll learn it with every hand you hold, every time a heart breaks.
And you’ll make an equation, for the next woman who’ll warm your bed
Not too much
Not too little
Just the right amount of love.
But right now, you’re just a boy.
And you don’t measure, for this is all you know.
You’re a boy
Maybe I’ll wait for you to learn
Maybe I’ll wish you don’t.