My heart beats to the rain splashing against my windows, reminiscent of the time when rain would mean our bodies writing poetry across the bedsheets, when the thunder deafened me of my urge to let go. Your breath would usher sweet nothings into my ears and leave chasms for your fingers to probe and explore. Rain is the brazing reminder of how easily your touch would fog my crude sensibilities, knocking my conscience off the tightrope, and into the void you created in me. You were something I never understood, or maybe I did, only when you were tracing your name across my naked flesh with your fingers, leaving pieces yourself on me like wet paint. Umbrellas had become a thing of the past when all we did was jump on puddles, unaware of an ocean that lay before us; an ocean we drowned in, or at least I did, groping desperately, clawing, grasping, my survival instincts so precariously tangled with your presence; so I let go and sank to the rock bottom while you so effortlessly made it ashore.
(A tribute to my room, which is unimaginably messy but very dear to me)
Books barbed hooks worn-out dolls with
hair frizzled out from lack of touch, clothes
new and old hanging loosely off a mix of
arms too fat and thighs which don’t fit anymore;
bowls of half-eaten breakfast (a victim of the
rush-hour), jades and lipstick reds and rings and
necklaces, earrings nestled carefully in porcelain
cups, cobwebbed memories framed on walls,
gathering dust from lack of use and
don’t forget the cigarettes and unpaid debts,
rows of souvenirs from secret dates,
pillows stained with covert encounters
with Jack and Johnnie, hanging posters yellowed
by teenage prophecies, and silks and crepes
and papers crinkled with stories lost in failed
relationships, alarm clocks on tables,
tangled in cables, old records wrapped with
with affection in quiet corners, and unopened
drawers of forgotten secrets, whispering prayers
from nights spent sleepless, old journals that speak of
love forbidden and perfumes arranged in rows
but carefully hidden, and a door that unlocks this
cautiously guarded territory, it’s all so real and
fake and fast and furious, a land out of reach
of the ever mundane and the never curious.
The storm leaves me in ruins, a
delirium that ink can’t define, my heart
thumps to the narcotics that I
gulped down with fervor, garnished
with a carefully curated intoxication, a
storm in the wilderness of my senses,
the lightning leaves brazing reminders
of everything that leaves me in shivers-
(deaths, unkept promises and
unkempt souls and the likes)
flashing like fireworks
in the dead darkness of my heart,
the wind, oh the wind scrapes my
rotten pieces off my parched skin,
only to bare me to the perspicacity
of reality, the rain silences
the commotions of empty graveyards
in my veins where
the restless souls of unfinished
stories walk, the sky at war with
itself, sending a fever down my spine,
warm, just enough to keep my
cold dead heart alive.
The day after you left it rained. I despised the very first drop that fell on my skin, like an unwanted intervention from above trying to rob my existence of the vague traces of yourself you left on me. Your smell, for instance. The kind that never made a big deal of itself, a beautiful concoction of everything you were – your morning coffee, your favourite shirt, the smell of the old dog-eared book you always had in your bag. I wish I could bottle it up though, your smell.
I remember how you loved the rain, and I, the sunshine. When we were caught unawares in sudden summer rain, when I was busy looking for a roof, you insisted we walk in it. You held my hand as we did, and watched me let my guard down for you. The first time we made love, the rain pattered against the glass pane, a prelude and encore to the music we wrote to each other’s bodies. You traced your fingers around my curves and crevices, hillsides and valleys, from my nape to my spine around my navel and waist… you sent electricity through my nerves. That night as the thunder roared outside, I wrote poetry to you. And many nights after that.
The day after you left it rained. I sat on the floor with all the poems I wrote for you and the letters unsent, strewn around me. I never let you leave you see, for you were very much there, in all the metaphors I caged you in, in my words and ink. Maybe I knew you would leave one day, in your habit of fleeing from whatever you lost yourself in, in your whimsical escapades. And in my habit of always being prepared, I prepared for your final disappearing act too, by not letting you disappear from the words I hold most dear to me.
The yellowed parchment has very efficiently caged the moments before you closed the door behind yourself. That was my final letter to you, the one I did send, but never got a reply to. The one which has bottled up my smell within it’s creases — the smell of cheap wine, for I had ensconced myself on the sill of a lively liquor bar one night. I never liked it, but I went there anyway hoping I’d see you there. I watched couples dancing with their arms around each other, basking in the wild promise of an unknown eternity. I watched young men trying to woo girls in sparkly dresses. I sat there and wrote to you all the things I wanted to say to you, but never could because I was never the risk-taker. I never told you that you were home. I never told you that you lighted fireworks in my heart every time you laughed like that. Or how my lips had become attuned to yours, so much so that they now feel bare and lifeless. I never told you how were the only thing I loved more than words. Do you know how much it hurts waking up alone? I guess you do, for I imprisoned that infinity in the letter for you to make meaning of.
The day you left, it rained too. That day, you put on your rain boots and opened your umbrella before closing the door behind yourself. I never understood why.