Our Voices The Orinam Blog

Poem: Despair and Hope

by Ravichander, R.

Long have been my nights of despair, longer still the days;
Countless times I held my tears back
And drowned myself in self-pity, wallowed in low self esteem,
Trying desperately to seek meaning for life
all the while, not living it.

I am no longer young;
Younger me: a gawky skinny adolescent;
Crushed crushes, failed whispers
Silent misery: my wretched teenage years.

When I grew confident, I buried myself in work;
There is time, or so I thought,
Put off meeting boys;
Those that I did meet: disappointments.

I came out to my family
With a bang: on Diwali day;
A year and more has passed since.
I moved out, moved back and moved out from home again;
Never was an interest shown in my love-life;
For them, it was non-existent or it should be so.

I love my parents as they love me,
They are heart-broken, their hopes and dignity
seemingly shattered;
Yet, have I not a heart too? They do not see
that I need all the more support from them
when society is against me.

I want to say to my well-meaning ill-informed parents,
Only this: these four lines from Don Leon:
“Though law cries ‘hold!’ yet passion onward draws,
But nature gave us passions, man gave laws,
Whence spring these inclinations, rank and strong?
And harming no one, wherefore call them wrong?”

Why should I not want what I want?
And how will my want be fulfilled-
When not many want it?
Life of a gay romantic is indeed difficult.

People, open your hearts and look around,
We are queer and we are here!
Fellow gays, don’t live in the down-low,
Come out as the free men that you are –
that I may take one of you as mine forever.

I am no longer young, having crossed thirty last year.
A decade of search at naught;
Though many a kiss I did steal,
Not one was the gentle playful delight I longed for;
Is romance dead?
Was it always an idyllic dream?

I have none to love me for who I am,
No one to share a laugh or a tear with;
Life partner – just a hyped-up unattainable mirage?

Young guys show no interest in me;
Nor do I, in guys of my age;
‘Looks’ being the reason for both.
Am I shallow and a hypocrite?
I am afraid that I might be.

Perhaps I can hide my stray greys with dye,
Push in my tummy with some walking and right diet – if only I try;
Then just maybe, I would be desirable again;
(But was I ever?)

Maybe then I would find a guy
Whom I like and who likes me;
Someone, Oh anyone, please tell me
that its all quite possible and true;
what else but hope can really carry me through?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *