Varsha Pillai

Inhale, Exhale

I’m tired of conversations turning stale

And pale visions in my mind prison

Counting my greys

Panting on the corridor

I wonder if I should call off the truce with my demons?

My sigh carries itself deep into the night

Further than what words could ever betray

A sigh so stray

Optimism has gone astray

Counting my greys

Losing track of my thoughts

Am I sleepwalking through life?

Watching the sunrise

Dark circles under my eyes

My old bed warmer, insomnia

Hidden amongst my supplies

Inhale, exhale

I count all the empty seats in my head

A deafening silence applauding me

I made it through the night

Counting my greys

I make a note to buy some box dye

Another compromise

Just to get through tonight.




What a perfect getaway

Today, memory’s all but a dull haze

Trying to fill some blank space

Re-telling old tales

Grey everywhere

A tinge of rusty red

Old wounds, new rage

Abuse forgetting to age

Letting the pain pave the way

To the demons under my bed

Screaming voices in my head

Only if yesterday

Was a perfect getaway.

Only if yesterday was a blank canvas for me to paint this day.



The Last Time I Saw You

Gunshots fired in the coffee shop

I saw your brain unspool

You said

Don’t waste your tears

The only thing I said was

I love you

The last time I saw you

The world came to a halt

You said

Don’t let yourself be fooled

The only thing I said was

I love you

Warm effervescent memories

Now frigid than a morgue

You said

Don’t worry about a heartbreak

The only thing I said was

I love you

The crime scene’s sparkling clean

Life keeps going on

You said

Don’t stop breathing

The only thing I said was

I love you

Investigation suspended

Every trace of you erased

You said

Don’t put people on pedestals

The only thing I said was

I love you



In a few moments from now, you’d find your doorbell ringing.

You’d rush to the door to find your dinner home delivered,

Instead, you’ll receive a courier.

A box gift-wrapped.

You’d release the skillfully tied pink bow.

Your face is now a map of excitement and astonishment.

You open the flap of the box slowly and see a red, slimy object.

An inanimate object.

Disgusting indeed.

You’ll pick the object and the object starts fluttering.

You clench it between your hands and begin to frisk the box searching for more whereabouts.

A note in crimson reads ‘ A heavy heart serves as a great paperweight’

Your screams echo down the road.

The walls of silence you had built finally bites the dust.

You realize that you never forgot me the way you intended to.