Sunday, November 29, 2015

Don't be alarmed when
Introverted polite 
Tell you their deepest secrets 
Don't hate them
Maybe they held onto darkness 
For six years 
Lend them your heart 
Lend them your heart 
Lend them your heart 
Lend them your full heart 
For they might not remember tenderness 


Friday, November 20, 2015

They were empty
So first they ate us
(and we let them)
Then they decided
They were still hungry
So they ate themselves too
And now there's nothing left
Just the words they use
To fill the emptiness
"Mountains of liberation"

[and we believe them]


Friday, November 13, 2015

To Imagine an Undefined Liberation.

There were two white women. One questioning my Bangladeshi friend about why she wears the hijab, wondering if Kolkatta and Bangladesh are two separate countries. Told her to use the Google machine. Upon one of my classmate's insistence, another hijabi, I explained the Partition of '47, the War of '71. Tired, I thought, if I did not make the deliberate decision to educate myself on my country’s history, I would be spouting out the accounts that my family has put together over the years – an invaluable inheritance, but a limited one all the same. Although I am looked to as a reference for Indian history, no one, no education system, equips me with the knowledge I need to educate myself and others. This is how the system inflicts violence on third world and colored bodies. We are brought in, in times of fascination, as points of reference and just as quickly, we are ignored, shoved back into the shadows. We are left trapped in a maze, like mice, looking at only what is in front of us and nothing more. Lost. Education allows us to rise above the tricky alleyways and illusionary dead ends—it gives us the words we need to articulate and understand how history has betrayed us and how we continue to betray history. Though I am still working to escape the confines of this trap, to know that white prodding is also a form of injustice and a tentacle of the overarching system for the Otherized student means my hands have discovered and are slowly unraveling one dimension of this artificial maze.
The other white woman’s laptop brandished a laptop sticker, “Well behaved women rarely make history,” but in reality, it is only ever well-behaved cunning white women who make history, because history is written by them and their white associates. Everyone else is treated as accessories, as condiments, to be put in or to be left out when stirring the white history soup. When and if we are included, we melt into whiteness, like salt in water, we become invisible, disappear, look just like them. You can taste us, but only to the degree that the white scholar wants to taste us. Anything beyond that, we are trashed, dumped out, offered to the vultures. The same ones circling over our hearts and minds. Watching our actions and our words. Any swift movements. Waiting to pick apart anything worth eating, so that we are forced to keep secret anything we believe is worth knowing. We cannot brandish it or speak on it, with the fear that if we are found out, our vulture friends and colleagues will surely consume us. Without warning.

I am struggling to understand the idea of a safe space, when even when we rip out our hearts and offer them to our kinfolk, we still risk the possibility of being trampled over for the sake of white validation. This trauma and this vulnerability indicate that we must look beyond skin politics. Though whiteness is stripping us and though our home is with our racial community, oftentimes, we find these lines violate one another – and we find that even in the arms of our Brown sisters and brothers, there are traps and cages set up to clamp down on our skin. To leave us exposed. It leaves me wondering, where can I go? To be understood and to be the authentic me. To move beyond my skin, but to also be liberated by it. Where I can find a mazeless land, untroubled by vultures.

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Sometimes we forget that
Raising wolves to be gentle
Makes them gentle wolves
Its raising wolves to be accountable
That makes them men

-Your softness is not enough

Sunday, November 8, 2015

He thinks he’s wooed me. He thinks he is a gentleman. Dashing,charming, courting. The flowers. The impromptu tickets to no where and everywhere. He thought his days of effort and work had plateaued when she helped unzip his pants, car windows fogging up, breath speeding up.
He pulls out of a kiss, whispers, "I love you." There’s pride in his voice-not the kind of pride that carries arrogance-but the kind of pride the little five year old neighbour holds in his voice after his first bike ride without falling. I smile, eyes crinkled, laugh lines deepening. There is a desperate yearning to hear the words like my lungs are finally filling with oxygen. Quite literally-it isn’t a great feeling-it burns through you like a good scotch and oh, oh, ohhh, it is so painfully good. What is it about a complete stranger’s love that we crave so much? How do we grow up being loved unconditionally and yet are willing to throw away everything and everyone we love for a nobody-for somebody else’s somebody?
In the ever dark and twisted place that is my mind one would presume I’d be more skeptical in my response; at the very least in the way I respond. But I reply with the eagerness of a puppy-the inner me flinches. The overpowering need to be touched from inside is too strong-that void that’s chronically starving to be filled; that is why I say, "I love you too" with conviction.
I know with utmost certainty that he does not love me. Absolutely. Does. Not. I’m a force to be reckoned with. I say that with no pride. Rather it is with shame and disgust-the appropriate word here would be overwhelming. I am positively, unceremoniously overwhelming. Take it how you may.
It has always been a choice of being in or out. There is no dipping your toes at the edge of the water to see if you’ll adjust to my temperature. You dive into the unknown, whether that’s the coldest chambers of my heart or the hottest flames of my amygdala (the region of the brain responsible for love, angsts and other fucks).
How do I tell him he only likes me? Without sounding condescending? Pretentious, haughty. I am after all undoubtedly condescending, pretentious and haughty on the best of days. He likes sex with me. He likes the idea of me. He is flirting with the idea of loving the idea of me. But me? No no no, he does not love me. Most people like or even love the idea of me. But the reality is so much uglier. Not the ugly-beautiful kind of ugly. The kind of ugly that makes you feel guilty. The kind you can’t make eye contact with. And no one likes to feel guilty like they’re tip-toeing on egg shells in the crevices and cracks of life where they want to feel most comfortable.
What he wants is sex. And love. But without the love. But my love, it’s conjoined twin is intensity. It hits you hard; so painful you may even like it if you like to get spanked. Joke. My humour is warped-part of that dark and twistiness.
I am all consuming. Fire. And I want a love that is all consuming. Anything short of that is a friend with benefits. Not even a good friend with benefits; it’s the kind of benefits where you’re actually getting more ripped off being in the union-your dues get you nothing.
Why has emotional intimacy become the hardest hurdle to surpass? I feel like a common whore pushed to the streets after you fucked me. See. Intense. Over whelming. I know. But tell me, what is the difference between me and the whore if you are able to show me shamelessly and effortlessly every inch of your carcass, able to exchange unknown bodily fluid with me without question but spit me out when I want to exchange feelings? Oh right, the whore gets paid. Dark and twisty. Dark and twisty. Dark and twisty.
I am admittedly arrogant. Vain. My demeanour is arrogant even when my intentions are not. And with that, let me tell you I am perspicacious. I hate it. It is a curse and a double-edged sword. How do you see the bigger picture and then sit around waiting for everyone else to catch up? (She said so humbly).

-while we're on the subject can we change the subject now