Our Voices The Orinam Blog

Poem: you bring out the desi in me

inspired by Sandra Cisneros’ 1995 poem ‘You bring out the Mexican in me’

you bring out the desi in me
the no-longer fresh off the boat in me
the non-­resident alien in me
the postcolonial still-­colonized in me
the good iyer boy gone way wayward in me

you bring out the artist in me
the saptaswaras: seven musical notes in me
the words to adore you seduce you cherish you in me
the rhythms-
that keep time to the pulse in your neck
as I cradle your face in my lap
– in me

you bring out the hybrid soul in me
the fan of morrissey and ms subbulakshmi in me
the kumkum-anointed new (pride) t-shirt in me
the extrovert loner
the insider outsider
in me

you bring out the genderqueer in me
the femmedyke trannyfag stonebutch
all at once in me
the bisexual pansexual longeyelashessexual in me
the unhurried tenderness afterwards
in me

you bring out the nature lover in me
the scent of summer-scorched earth after the first monsoon rains in me
the warm embraces in moonlit woods serenaded by tree crickets in me
the eagerness of rivers meeting oceans in me

you bring out the believer in me
the activist the pacifist in me
in loving you i find so many more reasons to live
yes i do
oh, yes i do


(c) L Ramakrishnan, from Trikone Magazine, with permission

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  1. Oh… so…

    …me…?

    “you bring out the nature lover in me
    the scent of summer-scorched earth after the first monsoon rains in me
    the warm embraces in moonlit woods serenaded by tree crickets in me
    the eagerness of rivers meeting oceans in me”

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