city hair

And just like that, like a breath of fresh air, or a warm breeze, like the handing of summer into autumn, she disappeared. Without much of an eruption, silently, she was catapulted into the world, with her hair still on fire. What now? So as she slithers beyond alleys, she waits and braids her hair into waterfalls and forks. She’ll spin tales of what has been on these forks, and turn them into tridents. The city is noiselessly noisy, white and somehow, suddenly, holding these tridents of tales, she feels incongruent.

When the sun sets and the city’s ablaze, where will she go? Which gates will open for her now? Now unchained, she’s free to frolic and fight the night till the early hours- but the red, raw, skin on her wrists ache for the chains, somehow. Because with the chains come the tales and turbulences. So she dreams of those chains and metal, gates and fences, waking up to the taste of iron.

The next few mornings she wants to cut her fire hair- each strand maliciously weighing down on her (and she’s got her luggage for that.) So longingly, she’ll twirl her hair and twirl down her path, with the past twirling behind her. For a while, for now, she knows she’s a lizard with a chopped off tail. Left behind, it moans and wriggles. “Take me back, I beg you!”


So she nurtures this beautiful tail of hers, composed of all the colors she’s collected throughout the almost 24 months. Her hands trace ridges and scales and stop upon the empty spots, white, like the city, begging to be filled. “Just a little more, one more drop.” Those spots remain as they are, and both the tail and her learn to accept white as a color.


The day she leaves, looking down from the plane window, she can point out the treasures she’s buried and disowned on the land. She’ll see the souls down there and her, up there and all she wants to do is stitch the two worlds back together. And the past still glistens like an emerald palace, an open wound and her hair’s still ablaze, ignited like a cigarette. She’ll come back home alight, like that, glowing and dripping adrenaline. “What a wild ride it’s been.”

Time passes. She begins weaving her old world into the fresh, impatient new one. She never knew she could do that till now



Green ring

It’s a harsh life. Grandfather gifted me a mint leaf yesterday and a jade ring today. I float between this green-ness: an incapsulated reminder that summer will come and the cold will go. This winter bites harder than the last, chained by steel frigidness- we’re all trapped behind bars. Grandfather went out into the front door garden yesterday, to smell and pick the mint for me. He did it because he thought I was sick. Sick in the childhood nostalgic sense: stubborn sneezes, oozy eyes and all. We all let him believe that. I was sick in different ways. It was like this whole time I was walking on cracked glass, and only now did it finally shatter. Never thought I was capable of carrying so much weight, dragging them along to create a path soon sucked up by my quicksand. Never thought I could breathe in and consequently out like a revving engine.

I don’t quite like these comparisons, I’m saying as my eyes rest on the gleaming golden ring. My writing never as polished as that elegant embrace of light and precious metal. Who am I to ponder upon elegance? The whole occurrence was anything but polished, like smudged pencil marks after impatient rubbing on paper. You can never rub out a mistake completely, dear, traces will always remain (shavings too). So this time, I’m not trying to rub it all off, instead I’ll turn the traces into something beautiful. As a human, I have an advantage in finding beauty in the pile of rubble. (define rubble).

Yesterday I fell down a well, and when I hit water, I thought that was it. And when I started sinking, realising the fall wasn’t over, I opened my eyes. All unfamiliar. Burning salt-water, numb hands. Fuck. My oxygen tank was out, I had used it all up, litre by litre, on the voices of the past. Sitting on the hour hand, I weighed her and me out, down to the last breath of air. She shone and kept shining, blinding my eyes, driving my thoughts like moths to her.  The figure of her, her curves, the way she opened her arms to the world. How I, instead, kept them crossed. (I think). Trapped like a marble in an arcade game, bouncing between realities I wish to be, forgetting there was only one exit sign, one place to be, ever. And with all that bouncing and clashing in the maze, I left behind a trail of velleities. And with all that happening in that too-much confined space of my mind, I forgot. I forgot my eternal dance with ink and stories and hearts of people. My sensual strides, barefoot in nature, air fresh and undressing me of my skin. I forgot my magic and how much I loved singing inside seashells and looking up at clouds. How much I desired to unfold my petals to everyone, to it all. To show my radiating, pulsating light. My flower will never be like hers, and our buds will bloom in different ways and we’ll be facing the sun at different times. We were meant to grow into something different. We will have different vines chopped off us and we crawl across different continents and settle at different times. Our missions, infinitely different and that’s what I love about it. My reality must be like this, and her’s like that, it is essential. I’m happy to say we’re carrying it out amazingly.

Dear, we’re different flowers with ever changing, never clashing roots.

Let me marvel at all the tulips, daisies, orchids, roses, sunflowers in the field. All composed of one frequency, love.

opal eyes

She always sat on the same swing, and no matter the weather or the day, he always found her there. Mostly still, hands wrapped tightly around the two chains like pillars and guardians by her side. When she swung in the air, the few rare times she did, her grasp would slightly loosen- and he often thought about how easily he could push her off. Did he plan on pushing her off? No, of course. Never. But it was simply a thought, in the myriads he had about the thousands of opportunities presented before him. He often thought of meeting her, but once again, it played out all in his head: as either a simple, “Hello, I’m Tom.” to “Hello, you baffle me everytime I pass this playground to go for work. I’ve thought of the many times I could introduce myself, and I guess this is it.” He never actually even dared to see her face. All he had to do was walk in front of the playground and not behind, but he was scared that too would ruin the moment, her moment. With her spine gorgeously upright, wood-colored hair tickling the swing seat, muscles tense, she seemed deeply engrossed or entranced by something. What was she staring at? Or was she inside the realms of her mind, just like him. So her, and the thought of who she might be and could mean to him always hummed like a bee in his head, disrupting the music coming from his earphones. At 9:20am, as he made his way to the office, he would witness the epitome of beauty. It was a moment in which he found he was most human. He was a simple human, searching for the beauty in life. And somehow, it had always presented itself to him in her form.

She always wondered who the footsteps belonged to. Everyday, when the sun took up a particular spot in the couch of the sky, a particular set of shoes would hit the ground. How could she tell?

She was blind.

She saw in different ways: the feeling of transparent heat tiptoeing from her lap to her arms, would tell her the whereabouts of the sun and whether noon had striked yet. She could pick up the movement and crunching of gravel and estimate the shoe size and heaviness of a person too. So just as she picked up all kinds of patterns in her life, she picked up this one.

It was a slower stride, the gravel moved languidly under the heavy soles. It was a man, she concluded, after the first 3 times of his passing. Sunlight would heat up her fingertips and that was the signal. Scrunch scrunch scrunch. Then there would be a pause. He was probably looking her way. She never turned around though, for she wanted to keep him spellbound, to keep her assumed beauty intact. Refusing to wear sunglasses, her blind eyes remained wide open, like two big milky opals dominating her face. They took all the attention away from her praised facial features, thus, ruining her to-be witchcraft on men.

And both of them went on like this, her hair melting down her spine, merging with tufts of silky clouds in the sky. Him, like a hungry beggar, following behind, yet never getting too close. Both too scared human touch and voice would interrupt the sacredness of the moment. Both never realising they had become each other’s highlight of the day, each other’s break-for-a-second, where breaths felt fresher and life, brighter.

She only ever heard him, and he only ever saw the idea of her beauty.

“Nothing gold can last.”

One day, when fall was undressing into winter, it got too cold and she decided to walk back to grab a coat. Picking the stick lying on the floor, she turned around a minute too early, for the sun didn’t shine that day. He was passing by, as usual. Both were slightly too slow to realise what was happening until a small gasp crossed the air between them. Tom pondered upon those eyes, then regained his footing and walked past her. He walked away, towards his office, and towards finding another source of beauty.

The next day, she didn’t sit on the swing, neither did he walk past it. And neither the day after that, or ever, in fact.

Like humans do, he moved on to the next spark and she moved on with life as if there had never been any interruption.


Humans are so intricate, like finely tuned violins. If you strum them with enough fragility, they’ll sing you tunes that are out of this world. And for every phase of the moon or mercury, they’ll bathe you with their sweet little personalised melody. At times, these tunes full you up to the brim with melancholy hopeless despair, then they’ll tip you over like a water bottle as you watch yourself spill out your tales. Tales of how deep a cave your heart is and how many shadows splay upon it every time moonlight crawls in. Other times, it’s as if their tunes were to empty you all out. You’d imagine them place a straw and suck you dry when you never even realised you were a full bottle. They sing to you lullabies with a voice that dips down, then arches high with peppermint breath. All you do is lull your head back in pleasure, hands waving in the air, intertwining with all the magic around you.

On growth

Teeter-tottering between utter indignance and the shallow waters of seemingly-ancient preoccupations. Preoccupations that held upright the clay to form the statue that I was. Eyes frozen in place, head never to tilt a degree lower. Now, all that’s left is cellophane snakeskin, first shedding between the cracks, now peeled off completely- with the satisfaction of removing a used up, scratched up sticker. New flesh glistens, pumping and fuelling, beating unusually. Fingers skim over this newly polished marble surface, and only once or twice have they delved under. Floating back up to the surface, it’s the feeling of having tasted a first time: unimaginable, frighteningly beautiful bliss, you never knew you could find even after multiple sunsets of digging. It’s the feeling of cracking a prepubescent book spine open, or the desperate inhale of air after having childishly timed how long your lungs could go without oxygen. Then your fingers slip out of these depths and return to longingly caressing the surface. You’re not sure how many more times this marble floor will open up for you to dive into, or whether, with the seasons passing and your exhale blowing like the wind will wear the layers out. But after that one glimpse, your motor’s running and you’re ready for more.

bip bop (lonely) future














you forgot

the smell

of books replaced by

blink, blink,



blank ego


(followed by deflation)



bite my pride

like my fluorescent






the world up






mommy where are

the fish?

(the ocean seems

far too empty)

oh honey,

no matter,

only we exist (now)



the rest.


it’s only




and maybe

a bit






winter, here,


snowflakes moulded

out of the fire

from our




turning hot

chocolate lukewarm

like hands

jingling and dangling

over a pine tree,

needles made out

of comfort

and compassion,


and the little pleasures

of tingling cold


old freckles


bold cheeks,

fiery red


you’ll pour

kindness threefold,

we’ll sing songs


a stream of golden


swaying to strums

of human souls expressed

by throats or





hold on to

aroma of sweet


book spines,

gold vines,

mug stained letters

woven into









tenderness of the moment,



sinking into leather sofas

caster sugar,

and the smell of christmas


open all your doors

let your souls dangle and waltz

the stage is all yours