Portraits of Poets
Portraits of Poets

© polka
For the longest time, I had spent time being someone rather than identifying who I really am. And to tell you the truth, it felt good and sometimes, really really good. I was comfortable being someone, it felt like I was wearing a use and throw mask. It was simple, I’d meet someone or maybe see someone on screen, get inspired by them and imitate them. For couple of hours or maybe for a day, or maybe till the effect of the mask wears off. I don’t care what they eat, but I’d closely observe how they eat, how they hold the fork when they are chewing, up or down! My mind would question everything about them and my eyes would analyse every action of theirs’ closely, and once I am done making their mould in my head, I’d then go to somewhere alone and come out as a different person. I’d be careful so that I don’t exactly look like their clone, but I used to do that neatly. I’d steal their identity and then throw it somewhere never to be found again. Now, I don't know anyone who does that, but last year, while chatting with someone on the internet, I couldn’t answer their question of ‘Tell me something about yourself?’
And although I kept writing and deleting my answers for almost 15 odd minutes, I had no answer whatsoever. Funny, but when I realised how deep of a question for an answer so simple it was, my system crashed in front of my eyes, unable to show a stimuli, I then again looked for someone’s face to steal. I wanted to get close to prove without realising how far I was from seeing myself. 
No one around. 
No imitation to take. 
Sure, I've hurt and lied to a lot of people in my lifetime for which I shouldn't be forgiven, but hurting and lying to myself, everyday, without remorse or guilt, that's a punishment that has no bail. Human after all, aren't we?
Starting this year after learning from the self inflicted harm, I've learnt the most important lesson of 'being yourself' while being proud of it at every thing you do. I'm not a philosopher and this is not a philosophy. This is a fragmented realisation that hit me at a very precise time in life which I will never regret. 

I put up “missing” posters all around the town and you helped. “I hope we find her,” you say, and I sigh.
Later that evening I cry hard enough to cause an ache in my ribs. 
I’m not lonely but I could use some company. “Of course,” you text back. “My bed is big enough for the both of us.” You only live down the block so I walk. 
On my way over, people are pointing and taking pictures and thanking God that they’ve found me. 
I keep walking and no one stops me. 
I know I’m acting foolish.

You blend in so seamlessly with the darkness, it’s easy to forget you are human. Like a soul stuck in limbo, in this impenetrable forest of your dead dreams. 
You hold on. 
The way decay holds onto pictures of youth, the way I hold on to the memory of you. 

But I was not there, neither was I here. I was shrouded in a colourless decay, the more I tried to move, more I found myself in the void of darkest cube, trapped inside, no window, no light. I would never be able to tell her how I feel for her, even if I did, I think she would disappear by the end for I will wait for the time when I really do appear.
Nostalgic for lives I've never lived.
Life happened. And with that, the demons came lurking onto my scarred shoulders. Twisted palms. Angelic smiles. The stories of how the world devours me every night. Fear is here, there, everywhere. Won't give in to you. Won't give up until I am through.
Tonight I can write the saddest lines. 
Write, for example, 'The night is shattered 
and the blue stars shiver in the distance.' The night wind revolves in the sky and sings. 
Tonight I can write the saddest lines. 
I loved her, and sometimes she loved me too. 
Through nights like this one I held her in my arms 
I kissed her again and again under the endless sky. 
She loved me sometimes, and I loved her too. 
How could one not have loved her great still eyes. 
Tonight I can write the saddest lines. 
To think that I do not have her. To feel that I have lost her. 
To hear the immense night, still more immense without her. 
And the verse falls to the soul like dew to the pasture. 
What does it matter that my love could not keep her. 
The night is shattered and she is not with me. 
This is all. In the distance someone is singing. In the distance. 
My soul is not satisfied that it has lost her. 
My sight searches for her as though to go to her. 
My heart looks for her, and she is not with me. 
The same night whitening the same trees. 
We, of that time, are no longer the same. 
I no longer love her, that's certain, but how I loved her. 
My voice tried to find the wind to touch her hearing. 
Another's. She will be another's. Like my kisses before. 
Her voide. Her bright body. Her inifinite eyes. 
I no longer love her, that's certain, but maybe I love her. 
Love is so short, forgetting is so long. 
Because through nights like this one I held her in my arms 
my sould is not satisfied that it has lost her. 
Though this be the last pain that she makes me suffer 
and these the last verses that I write for her.

by Pablo Neruda
My lover, I wrote poetry for you in languages I wasn't able to speak.
Portraits of Poets

Portraits of Poets

Assorted collection of composite portraits I have made on photoshop from Jan — Jul '17.