Theme: Self

Goodbye Sanity

For twenty eight years
you have kept me in your custody –
you selfish woman, you, whom we call Sanity.

You have taught me to be selfless
to forget myself
to reach out, even if my arms
were to severe from my body
to listen to others
but least to my own self
to leave my desires behind
and live the dictates of others
to bend, but not to succumb.

What contradictions!

To feel but not to speak of them
to feel but not to express them
in a nutshell -
to project a different face
to different people
at different times and circumstances.

You know not how you made me suffer
living these lies.

Therefore goodbye sanity!
Let the hands of the clock
move the other way round
your world I have known
this world is new to me.

I am alone, apart, singled out
in my little world I can see
those who are out to get me
those who want to kill me
...and those I want to kill.
I am trapped
and when I look at myself
in the mirror
I cannot see me
I see fear, desperation and vacancy.

My smile is a pain
my laughter too loud, too forced
tears come easily
my knees tremble
my hands shake
let me retreat to a foetal position...
I need support
come, Rothmans of Pall Mall!

I have lost track of time, space, events
I know not where I am going
nor where I came from
and I don’t care to know.
Nothing exists except myself
and my small world.
Everybody has become a stranger
my body has failed.

I fold my hands
but don’t know how to unfold them
nothing works
my libido has disappeared -
to bring myself pleasure
takes me ages
the release is no more a relief
nor the ecstasy, vitalising.

Yes, I think I have left your world
selfish sanity!
and entered your sister's
they call her Insanity
but I know she is selfless
and lets each one be

And yes, the pains are also here
to be alone – and, lonely
but so were there pains in yours
to be lonely, yet, never alone.

Man needs space to breathe and grow
no matter how small it be

So, thus let it be...
I have tasted both worlds
and now I know the difference
sanity versus insanity
the virtues of selflessness
versus the virtues
of selfishness.

Who knows whether we will meet
again, sweet sanity?
but if we do,
will you remember me
or will you forget?
will I remember you
or will I forget?

A series of Past tense – poems from 1972 – 1986


More By  :  Julia Dutta

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