Unseen to the eyes of outsiders,
exists a living battleground in action,
riding back and forth,
since I uttered my first word.
Tainting my initial years of innocence,
tarnishing my insides little by little,
awakening the dead monsters on loop,
that have been buried in the deep dark cavities,
that continue to reside in the palace,
of my exhausted memories.
As I entered into the complex teenage years,
constantly silencing the turbulent tides inside,
to fit in with the masked society — to feel better,
I prolonged my pain because it never mattered.
All of it now has been carried to my adulthood,
all of which seem non-existent,
to the outer world, as they go on questioning
my desire for peace and cognitive struggles.
For I seem to be perceived as flawless,
for my face usually speak in smiles,
for I remain the sole listener to the real story,
behind my resilience and achievements.
My eyes often strive to reveal
the rising ocean living beneath,
but my fear of redundant rejection,
chooses to conquer my need to release.
If my countenance succeeds in hiding the reality,
would you also choose to reside in insensibility?
If my inner battles are invisible to your eyes,
would you also say that they aren’t real?
Bani, who lives in Delhi, expresses herself as a creator, as it encompasses her passion for creating different art forms like poetry, storytelling, visual arts, and dance. Her work has been published in The Alipore Post, Notion Press, The Blahcksheep, The Period Protection Project, and Writer’s Pocket, among others.