I Don’t Know

I don’t know.
Not anymore.
Where I’m going.
If I must.

I don’t know.
Not again.
Why my heart is racing.
Why I feel my gut pulsating.
It’s an alien rhythm–
This strange feeling.

It’s as if
I need to get away from here
From me
But whereto?
And why?

All these
In my head
At the back of my mind
As I try
To trudge on
Day by day
And hope
Maybe the next time I wake up
The strange feeling is gone
And I’m back to my carefree me
The real carefree me
But until then

I don’t know.


An Open Letter

In a race
Of who is the best
Of who is the fastest, the smartest,
The busiest, the strongest,
The one who slept the least,
The one who ate the fastest,
Would you really want to win?

In a race
Of who gets to the top
Of who is the first, the leading,
The champion, the all-around,
The one who made mistakes the least, if not none,
The one whose name stays on the list to show everyone,
Would you really want to win?

When nothing is valued more than where you are
With respect to where everyone is
In a list of names– I ask
Is it all worth it?
Is it all that’s worth it?

Yes, it is, perhaps, in a way–
As our parent’s parents say–
To shape your future
To ensure
That you don’t suffer the same way they did
And yet, you do suffer
In a completely different way–
The weight of the books on your shoulders
As heavy as your eyes  that cry out for sleep
As pale as your skin that never got the taste of the sun
As limited as your vision that can’t go beyond the printed text–


Learning is life
And life lessons never end, but–
Don’t, for a second think
That it’s all in your books
Or from your teachers’ mouths
Or in the words on the walls
That did nothing more than cover those eyes
From what lies outside,
Beyond the comfort of your seat
And the order in your class.


My dear student
I come to you as a fellow student
A student in the never ending lessons in life;
There is more to it than that–
There is more you’d learn outside
Not from anyone you know, not always.

There is more to life than that, look:
Have you touched the dew on the leaf from the rain last night?
Have your eyes seen the wonder of the world that no words could describe–
Have you smiled for no reason and just felt the breeze wrap you within its arms?

It hurts me to see
That you have deliberately caged yourself
In the thought that nothing else matters
Than to be on top, always on top–
Than  to lead, not knowing what you truly need.

Young as you are right now–
Get up and know there is a vast world out there
Remember not where you are with respect to where others are, but
With respect to where you were.
Remember that the world and everything
Is yours for the taking
So bask in it–
The glory of living
The real meaning of learning
The beauty of just being.

Go on, child
Pick up a stone
Throw it out the pond in your mind
And let the ripples flow where they do–
Tell me–
Do they make a sound?
Do they tickle your mind?
Do they make you scratch your head in wonder?

Go on, child
Get up, and pick up that twig
Swing it til it feels like part of your arm
And let the wind swirl around you–
Tell me–
Does it scare you?
Does it make your spine shiver with cold?
Does it make you feel any different from that four-walled room of yours?

Go on, child
Use that paint and draw your own sky
Your palm is your brush and the world is your canvas–
Tell me–
Does it inspire you?
Does it excite you?
Does it make you feel bigger than you were yesterday?

Go on, child
The world is what you make it
I can offer you nothing, but kind words and this ticket
It’s a free pass, but you must not forget–
Tell me–
Tell yourself–
Tell the world.


And yet here we are
At an impasse–
You and I.
Where words stand still,
And we say all we can,
Until there is nothing left
But the truth.

It is the truth
Of could’ve beens,
And should’ve beens,
Of what ifs and why’s,
And how come until now,
We know
We both still care,

Try as we might
To hide it from the light,
We both know it is there–
The truth,
Out in plain sight,
And purely by omission do we know
That it is true.

And it is perhaps,
Because we share a tinge of regret,
Do we leave these things unsaid,
And deny it from each other,
To ourselves.

How cruel it is,
I know.
I know now.
I have done the unthinkable,
And wrote your name,
And saw what I did not expect–
You didn’t tell me.
I have been replaced,
They said.

My condolences.
To our shared story, here it ends.
The closure of all closures,
The proof
That there is nothing more for me to do here,
Than to represent
What we both cannot afford to hope for anymore.

There is nothing for me to do here,
Than to remind you,
Of whims and wishful thinking,
Of blissful times,
And hopes and dreams that transgress all boundaries.

I am nothing more than that.
I am nothing more.
I am nothing.