Pam.

Photography

One day they will be convinced that you do not exist. One day they will know for sure that you cannot be.

And hence they will think that I am mad, Pam, crazy as a bat to know for sure that you are and that you will be.

They will drug me, and electrocute me.

They will penetrate syringes within me.

As if it is no crime Pam. As if it is no crime to separate Romeo from Juliet and lover from loved and friend from friend and dreamer from dream.

It is a crime. They must know. It always has been.

They will be certain that the cage of your persona keeps me from being free.

But that cannot be. For isn’t a dream the part of a dreamer as much as you are a part of me? You are indeed.

But how will they free me from the drug within my mind, you?

How will they detach me from the worm that curls within each cell?

How will they erase your memories, Pam, when they live in me and flow in my blood?

One day I will think I am delirious. For believing in your existence. I will know one day that you are no realer than the air. You are yet aren’t there.

But my love for you wouldn’t change Pam. I will know in a subconscious corner of my heart that I had a friend who loved me, who held my hand when the night skies were pink, and the ground was hazy, and lived with me through locked doors of asylum. I will know Pam, I will know.

I may not remember but I will know.

Do not leave me then Pam, do not go.

Stay where you are, within my mind, inside my body and in my soul, and we will survive the drugs and toil through, but stay put Pam, do not go.

Stay in my brain, even if that truly is where you always have been, and like a secret I will keep you there.

I promise, no one will know, no one will know.

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Beyond Our Alcoves

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I ran away from prison,

But never felt truly free.

I took shelter in an abandoned alcove,

It was as if,

I had left prison,

But the prison hadn’t left me.

 

In this wreckage of a castle,

Amidst grey bricks and timeless mortar,

I sat, waited, foraged,

Until familiar sounds of terror returned

Ringed in my ears like violins of thunder,

And I was overcome with pain.

 

I sat fixated, as months,

Or years, I cannot say,

Passed without notice.

Until one day,

When, hopeless, I banged my head on the bricks,

Deciding to end my torture,

Yet accidentally,

Broke a window in the wall,

And on the other end, found the sea.

 

I sat listening to its rhythmic power,

Until, its indiscriminate cruelty

Silenced me.

At last, united, the sea became me,

And I became the sea.

And I thought, illuminated,

I am only jailed by the cages within me.

The Ship That Landed On My Shore

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Alisha wrote her favourite sentences from notes sent to her by writers on sticky notes, and pasted them onto her desk.

She treasures her job. Living in the heart of New York city, being a fiction editor felt like discovering intricately beautiful sea shells from an infinite heap of sand. It reminded her, inevitably, of her childhood.

Today, like everyday, she picks up a note that stands distinct from all other letters of appreciation on her desk. This note, in particular, has unfailingly troubled her, each day of her life. It has often been the sole cause of her distress, a peculiar distraction – she looks up from her current manuscript and sits pondering.

She reads what one writer had once written to her, in response to a message she sent, hastily typed, asking the writer, she remembers clearly, to “talk about love”.

“Some sentences are still too difficult to type. Not because the words don’t flow, match or sound good, but because to give them this space would also require me to accept their weight, their truth, and my absolute inability to change them, and for that reason, I choose not to ‘talk about love’ , as you put it. One day I will have to.

Because I know, that to stir the reader, I must pour out my heart in writing, even if that means that I must break like crystal first.” 

The day Alisha received that note, something very significant about her changed.

She was beginning to understand the emotion and power with which each unedited manuscript sits at her desk. And how in that raw way, each of those works, are perfect. They cannot be mingled with, because they are more than stories, they are more than just the truth.

Something about it made her realise, that her job is not to sift for shells – she is sitting at the shore of a tempestuous sea, and she must save each wrecked ship that makes it to the harbour.