appraising identity

why 176 cms? 60 kgs? — fucks to give?

my anatomy//structure is a wilderness, drinking
through the air, one part mulch, the other
a hybrid of gas-dreams.

why rate my brown-bread-skin through
its number of moles and grafts of love?

why try to measure the length&girth of my life through
an arbitrary number of years?

my freedom isn’t your sugar & flour ration
that you can scale and take away per your
desired capacity for consumption?

how do you measure the taste of my ilk,
my sun-settled eyes, the fight of my cauterized
heart?

how do you see and experience my queer body, in-
tact, (w)hole, sweet&sour&salty like the rim
of your empty shot glass?

why do i succumb to the standards set in my core
by the (ir)regularity of your burnished soul?

i shred figures and hopes, letting the well-paced,
untold story of its desire to take its toll, leaving me
to rot, with a rumbling disdain for this mirror of
your eyes, that cannot tell or realize
the plurality of my roles.

.
© Anmol Arora

Day 29
(Inter)National Poetry Month

Edit: (Previous title, the value of existence) Linking it up with The Tuesday Platform at WRT (June 4, 2019), where I am hosting this week and I have shared a poem by Kamala Das for inspiration and acknowledgment.

 

disbelief

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a sense of disbelief —

people pleasing people,
shadows falling a-p-a-r-t
in their own figurative voids

make for an entirely new
picture, atypical of agonies,
realized but not really felt.

whiteness doesn’t scare me,
lights measure my body mass
and frequency of my beats.

the ground shakes, angles
come down, and i learn to
belie that very disbelief and

know, inhaling is vital for this
and every other moment
to pass.

.

© Anmol Arora 2018

Image source (Deep Inhalation Of The Cosmic Breath Painting by Ganesh Bhat)
Linking it up with the Tuesday Platform at With Real Toads

***

I have been working on a new Insta handle for over a month now, for literary and creative posts: @anmol.ha.
For contact, you can reach out to me through my multiple profiles, enlisted here.

Life, right now

Okay, it’s been a long time coming. It’s strange how this place used to be a repository of all my horrid experiences in life and how it provided me refuge from the insurmountable grief of being alive and wading through the darkness of my mind, and how I stopped doing that entirely, focusing instead on something that came out to mean a lot to me. For a change, I am reverting to the original intent behind everything, perhaps behind every word I have ever written.

I know and I acknowledge that living is not easy. My college education made me aware of the social condition of so many people and communities all over the world. My experiences pale in comparison to those who struggle to even survive — death, illness, starvation, violence, war, et al. govern their lives and their actions every minute. I am so privileged to have a roof over my head, regular meals and clean drinking water to keep my body alive, healthcare provisions when I am sick and financial support for basic amenities and some leisure. How I live may deem to be luxurious by many and I am often ashamed of that. I try to be politically and socially conscious, raise my voice in whatever way I can against destitution and exploitation, and care about people around me. This is of course not enough.

I am not enough, even when I have all these privileges and luxuries. I am constantly fighting my own self, my own condition, my own mind, my life which seems to be adamant at breaking me down. Perhaps I am complicit in this internal violence. And it hurts at times. Otherwise, I have in a way blocked myself from feeling, from dealing with my own emotions or expressing them in a way which is direct and confrontational. So, I am doing this to try to undo my own resistance to the acceptance of my condition. Intrusive thoughts are a part and parcel of my everyday existence — panic attacks, suicidal thoughts and social anxiety are so inundated in me that I no longer heed my own pain.

Yes, I had to deal with some situations and circumstances which have left a deep impact on me, made me snivel and cry in the corner of my bedroom, holding my own self to get through the hour and the day. ‘One day at a time’: I had come to believe that as a dictum to help me through every day. What a limited condition to keep alive!

I finally had some control because I was busy for three years with my education. There were times when I would find myself in a dark chasm, but I could find my way out, find a light at the periphery of my vision and get on with it. Since completing that, it’s been three months and it seems I am back to where I was. Life has come a complete circle and I am still reeling from the things I had come to ignore and bury within my psyche.

I am not doing good. I don’t know what lies ahead, but I find myself not caring about it. Incidentally, a friend brought it to my attention after a pitiful thing happened to me today. She said that I am displaced from some solace the routine had provided me and that I am giving up now and that is making it worse. I didn’t have the heart to tell her that I may be giving up on everything, and not just my career or romance or other sensory experiences.

And yet, I am not able to do anything about it. I don’t know how to take care of myself anymore. At least I am waking up every day, trying to read and write, having one or two meals, drinking plenty of water…

I am putting it all out there just for the small comfort that I am sharing it. How I always have this need to be understood! This is the only thing that keeps me going, for now, to be able to express and reflect upon my own breaking.

That is all.

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I exist in the voices,
in sounds-

gentle, ricocheting against
the loud bass in the background
and speaking in hushed tones
in corridors where the tiles
are no longer bleached white.

I exist in that TV volume, defined
by the bars that identify the
intensity of my intent,

exist in the grrr grr grinding
of thoughts into an unpalatable
mush, that I got served for
dinner,

I am defined by the water striking
the s(k)in(k) surface, I am that

you no longer pay attention to, Continue reading

let me be.

I walk in the shadows-

there’s a slight rustle of the leaves
overhead.

the sun touches my foot-steps
through the smog,

evanescent,

there’s a slight rustle of the leaves
behind me.

the cloud breaks open to reveal
the spillage of blue, her eyes

trace the contours of my existence.

numb thoughts are strewn on my path,
the world is asleep and I, awake.

so let the winds be, let me be.

.

Image source: LIGHTS AND SHADOWS — PALETTE KNIFE Oil Painting On Canvas By Leonid Afremov

Linking it up with Poets United Midweek Motif- Tranquility.

This is Poem # 4 for my 30 Days, 30 Poems Challenge.