The Indian Man

I want to cut myself and bleed it out,
amputate it from my being,
it’s a hernia for my conscience,
a ripe pustule, everyone, every-fuckin-one tells you not to touch,
“It’ll leave scars”, they say;
Being polite leaves scars,
Letting it be leaves scars,
Scars you’re ashamed to wear,
and would ask your lover to caress someday.
I keep toenails by my pillow,
I need nightmares for a distraction,
I look myself in broken mirrors,
Cut hair on Mondays,
Step over exorcising lemons,
With the same fervour with which I watch
them shooing away a little boy clinging to their feet begging for food they’re eating,
young men scratching their crotches ogling girls,
an old man beat up his wife.
I sip chai, from the glass, which kissed a million lips,
Careful not to step over the intestines of a rat canvassed on the road,
thinking to myself,
when was the last time I cried because it hurt so much,
But I dismiss it, I adjust,
I’ve learnt to pee without retching,
I’ve been uncomfortable most of my life,
I’m an Indian man,
Religious, Stoic, Civil, Manly.
-C

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