ENDEPT
Sailesh Naidu

Territory: Three

(How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love You...Again)

     you tell me you are straight
     as if somehow
     those words can draw
     a line between us
     and now
     there is a
                                                            gap
     that i should be mindful of
     that i should look at this endless
                                                            space

                                                            between
     and know
     there are some borders
     i should not cross

     for long ago maps
     used to contain beasts
     that said

     do not go down that path
     for there be dragons there
     and there are some roads
     you should not travel down

     but I cannot help
     drive towards you
     knowing that every kilometer
                                                            i push on
                                                            is another
                                                            you take a
                                            step
                              back
                                            and
                                                            forward
                                            and
                              back

                                                            oscillating
                                                            between
     the idea of
     what you think it means
                              to be close to a man

                              and

the idea of
     what you think it means
                                                            to be close to a man

                                                            and
     the idea of
     what you think
                                                            you should be close to

     what if I did steal
     your hand
     for a moment

     but no
     not stole
     gave you my own

                                                            would you pull away

     or would the warmth you feel
     be all to real of a reminder
     of what you
                                                            lost
     when it became too real
     to hold the hand of
     another man

     what if I told you
     that I know that
     loss too

     that there is
     space in me
     that needs
     to be filled
     and questions

                              that burn in my mind
                              like dead stars
                              whose light still shines
                              for even in darkness
                                                            they will guide you

what if  i told you
that i too fight
                              between
                              the rumble
                              i have in my belly
                              when i catch your gaze

and the thoughts
i have
in my head
that tell me to
                              stop

i wish
i could give you
the shovel
i used to
dig
       deep
                  down
                              inside
                              myself

to know that
i could

love      anyone

but i fear
that you are still
trying to dig
yourself out
of the rubble

                              of broken down homes
                              that reigned upon your soul
                              when the bombs of masculinity
               waged war
               upon your
                                   child
               you were a
                                   child
                                   once

who used to think
they could love anyone

you tell me you are straight
as if somehow
those words can draw
a line between us
and now
there is a
                                                    gap
that i should be mindful of
that i should look at this endless

Sailesh Naidu

(How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love You...Again)

Sailesh Naidu

(How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love You...Again)

Sailesh Naidu

Sailesh Naidu
A poet, performance artist, and comedian based in Berlin, Germany. Born in the United States by way of India, Sailesh’s work delves into the ideas of gender, sexuality, decolonization, and the body.
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