In another thousand lives.

A thousand times in a thousand lives you have been brought to me.
These are tangles in my heart that refuse to untie.
Your fingers, like soft moonbeam that hesitates
to illumine the darkness, never run through my hair.

I look for you in between pages of my notebook,
in the dried up lily stuck in them—old and withered.
I look for you in the scent of rain washed grass
and your scribbles on my notes from class.

I try to find you in postscripts and letters,
in dog-eared books and toffee wrappers and crumpled paper—all that remains of us.

I remember the way your lips moved when
you described how water felt,
running between your fingers,
and how my breath hitched when I thought of them in my hair.
I remember how your palms caught the sunlight
and your eyes twinkled like stars,
I remember the joy in your laugh
and your smile like the only diamonds I’d ever need.

A thousand times in a thousand lives you have been brought to me.
And once again must another thousand years begin.

I find you everywhere and in everything I lost you in. And I know, as sure as the weight of cold, as sure as night after day, that is all I’ll find of you in this life.

Beginning

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Prinsep Ghat, Kolkata, West Bengal, India.

The end of a long summer day,
my weary body slumping on the
unpleasantly warm concrete

and the sun begins to set on the
distant noise of the roads,
blue, yellow, orange then a deep ink.

A small bubble of peace before the
chatter of people drowns it all—
and the heart brims with memories
like the sunlight split into a
million glittering drops of golden water.

Another tired sunset.

My city shakes herself slowly—
her dust settles down
under the weight of the violet
and the street lamps are surrounded by gray halos.

Depression

I have finally come to terms with it. I am depressed.

Been so for quite a while now.

My depression has prevented my self-exploration (in every sense), I had withdrawn into a bubble (like seen in most cases), I had sudden manic outbursts of tears, fury, other emotions which I excused as causal to my (very attentive) boyfriend’s changing behaviour  and the strained relationship between my parents.
I passed Durga Pujo, Christmas, New Year’s Eve, New Year and Saraswati Pujo convincing myself: it’s just a phase, it’ll pass. I’ll only have to ride through it. Honestly? It didn’t help. I wasn’t dealing with my depression, you see. I was afraid of it. Depression, for me, was the proverbial elephant in the room, every corner of my mind bursting with the pain of trying very very hard to contain all of these turbulent emotions, repeatedly giving myself false hopes that IT’S OKAY. IT IS NORMAL. YOU ARE FINE. When all the while I was pushing away the very people I love and those who love me back and could help. Depression has a way you isolating you, you know. It’ll strip you of all feelings, make you go numb and have you wake up in the middle of the long wintry nights leaving you to deal with that sudden, sinking feeling in the pit of your stomach whose origin you’ll never quite figure out.
I like to tell people I’m a melancholy person, that I study literature and criticize and can never see the joy in things because I’m busy deconstructing everything. That I’m the hero with the burden of an knowledgeable.

None of that stand true.

I’m human, I like human company, I’m compassionate when I need be, I like attention just like everyone else. It is nice to appreciate and be appreciated in return. And I also prefer my solitude. All of us do.

You see depression takes away the pleasure of both company and solitude. You want to be alone but you don’t want to be alone. You want to be saved because you feel like you’re being suffocated with this opaque blanket of self-loathing and doubt. You wish someone would cut through this darkness with a shining sword and sweep you off to Happyland.

It doesn’t happen.

Because, depression, you see, has a way of isolating you from your saviours.

Your wall of thorns has no rose and unless you shine that rusting pair of shears to cut through and just live, you’ll forever suffocate, alienated.

The first step towards defeating depression is admitting you have it. Then you apologize and reconnect with your loved ones. And: TAKE SOME FUCKING TIME OFF FOR YOURSELF. Don’t validate yourself through Facebook  posts and WhatsApp statuses about how “heroic” you are in your depression. Fucking fight it. Get your ass off that couch. Get going. Go to that seafood restaurant you’ve been meaning to try out with you best friend. Walk around a park, Take some nice fresh oxygen, let out that poisonous carbon. Eat that double chocolate ice-cream,think about your waistline some time later. Cut out all that city noise, go on that mountain trek, jump into that blue lake, drink that suspiciously delicious soup. Give yourself a break.

Most importantly, love yourself. If you can’t love yourself, no one can love you in return.