still breathing

still breathing 


you are not here
and life still continues to breathe
just like before.
the sun still brightens my days
and the moon perfumes my nights.
my life is still stringed with everyday joys.

i still feel. i still continue to love.

i still continue to touch your hand in your picture.
hoping, feeling you again.
still talk of you to saanjh as if you're with us. home. listening. smiling.
still think of you every time i make your favourite mithai.
still share my overwhelm with you every night listening to our favourite ghazals.

but not every moment i live.

i sometimes forget that you really aren't here.
every month i forget your anniversary, until ma reminds me.

when people who've known us together
ask me how i am in your absence.
i don't really answer that question
because i’m not sure i can explain.
i’m not sure they'll understand.

while you were here,
i lived with you and loved you like i’ll never love anyone
now when you're gone,
i hold you gently in me like i’d hold the most delicate withered flower.
with no less love than when it was fresh.
it has died, but it still breathes, in me. like you do.
there's no space for sadness.
only love.

everyday, yellowed leaves fall off their branch
and their trees live on gracefully.
how can their continued living be a measure of the love they shared together.


life goes on into the next day.
and death awaits.

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let my thoughts come to you
when I am gone
like the afterglow of sunset
at the margin of starry silence
- rabindranath tagore -