Home & Identity

Finding home & a sense of belonging within shifting identity politics of geography, region, language, politics, ideologies and culture.

Out Of The Closet

Out Of The Closet

We are getting some long overdue renovations done on our home. So we’ve moved out temporarily. The last time I shifted homes, I was coming back, abruptly. I’d moved out to start a new life. It wasn’t easy and involved having to break bonds to create boundaries. Then I fell…

Bombay Meri Hain
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Bombay Meri Hain

I’ve been calling myself a Mumbaiker by identity. But yesterday, a compilation of Konkani songs sent me down nostalgia lane. I realised my history is a specific slice of Bombay culture. It is a Bombay of Koli fisherfolk, their current descendents dressing in westernwear rather than a kashta draped saree…

A Skin Of Dignity
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A Skin Of Dignity

The first ebook I ever bought was ‘Cuckold’ by Kiran Nagarkar. It had come highly recommended by the man seated next to me at a literature festival. A stranger, the two of us bonding in those sudden intimacies that are the magic of city life (if you don’t try to…

SOARING SOLO
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SOARING SOLO

Life feels easier when you realise they don’t understand you. Can’t, won’t try & probably never will. But that is okay because when there’s no one around to live your life for you, is when you start to breathe. And you realise you don’t need anyone to understand you. It…

I Don’t Belong Here
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I Don’t Belong Here

These carefree whistlersgirls throwing hearts & bodies outto men who will let them falland men who will pick them uponly to throw them backI have been thrown away,thrown over, thrown backI don’t belong here The screaming thundersdripping rage & accusationsto fertile minds that will turn theminto gangrene & cancerThe storms…

Love Gardener
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Love Gardener

We have to separate the feeling from the person who inspires them. We are so literal, we use the words “my love” to describe a sentiment as well as a person. But our feelings are entirely our own, to process, to draw from for poetry, to express in our ways,…

Love Language
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Love Language

LOVE LANGUAGE – my journey deciphering my experiences through the words of love songs in different languages

Dignity In A World Of Tumult
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Dignity In A World Of Tumult

I’ve been thinking about dignity. I do, a lot, especially when I feel I’ve not been dignified. I haven’t felt it lately because I haven’t felt in control of anything. But dignity isn’t about control, is it? I realised that most of my emotional decisions were trauma reactions. It wasn’t…

𝗟𝗘𝗦𝗦𝗢𝗡𝗦 𝗢𝗙 𝗟𝗘𝗢 👑
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𝗟𝗘𝗦𝗦𝗢𝗡𝗦 𝗢𝗙 𝗟𝗘𝗢 👑

The month was full of learning. 2020 was hard, getting hit by a pandemic no one had seen the likes of. But 2021 was the slow, grueling grind back into a world that will never be the same. The soul-crushing realisation that all things break – stability, connections & worst…

🆃🅷🅴 🅿🅾🅻🅸🆃🅸🅲🅰🅻 🅸🆂🅽’🆃 🅹🆄🆂🆃 🅿🅴🆁🆂🅾🅽🅰🅻, 🅸🆃’🆂 🅴🅼🅾🆃🅸🅾🅽🅰🅻
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🆃🅷🅴 🅿🅾🅻🅸🆃🅸🅲🅰🅻 🅸🆂🅽’🆃 🅹🆄🆂🆃 🅿🅴🆁🆂🅾🅽🅰🅻, 🅸🆃’🆂 🅴🅼🅾🆃🅸🅾🅽🅰🅻

Why do abused women support misogynist regimes? Maybe it’s because their violators were feminists. What, is that not possible? Yes, it is. I’m living proof that it happens. Feminism, activism, promises & politics are words. Hot air, marks on surfaces. Sometimes those marks are wounds on bodies & minds. Ideas…

🄺🄰🄻🄴🄸🄳🄾🅂🄲🄾🄿🄴      🄻🄾🅅🄴
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🄺🄰🄻🄴🄸🄳🄾🅂🄲🄾🄿🄴 🄻🄾🅅🄴

Do I have the courage to be loved by that which is bigger than me? Yes, it’s a question of courage. Also of ego. The spiritual masters say that love is a lesson in your own projections & insights on your being that appear as reflections in the beloved. I…

~B~L~U~E~ or A Rejection Of Romance
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~B~L~U~E~ or A Rejection Of Romance

His voice holds me. His words unravel me. And the trouble is the unraveling, the undoing, the blurring continue long after the voice has gone silent, the line cold. Because words, they linger. Burning flesh wounds inside defenses. And everything else feels harder, sharper, steelier. I am in a world…

The Political Is Personal
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The Political Is Personal

Activists with sincerity on their tongues, burning eyes & tearful hearts. They set mine afire. I register the call of their wild cries, in the pounding in my ears. Eloquent speakers do the same. They tease out the primal me. I’ve railed against patriarchy. At my loudest, I was screaming…

Calling Card

Calling Card

My calling card is a color. One dab gives you a peek into a thousand stories, my stories. Ugly Duckling. SlumdogCinderella without a Fairy Godmother. Poor thing. Wear dark colors, the fashion mags advised. So I sat in navy, black & grey boxes. You’re ugly, he said, the pretty girl’s…

Communication Skills

Communication Skills

I’ve been quieter with my writing recently. I try to keep my presence online positive & hopeful, a big challenge in recent times. I don’t want to disrespect the listening I get from my followers by expecting them to deal with my shit in addition to their own. So it’s…

Say ‘TRUST ME’ To Yourself
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Say ‘TRUST ME’ To Yourself

Try it. It’s a lesson in what trust is & what we mean when we say we trust someone. It’s really hard to say “Trust me” to yourself. So we build up people who can say it to us. When we call someone trustworthy, aren’t we really saying we are…

Shameless Self
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Shameless Self

A friend’s admission about experiencing shaming made me think. All shaming is bullying. We all know what shaming feels like. We’ve been in the presence of other people’s distress, of remembered hurt, of confusion & fear. We’ve been at the receiving end of people who can’t or won’t manage their…

A Big Ask
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A Big Ask

Ask for what you need. Don’t beg for it. Don’t demand it. Don’t rush it. Don’t force it. Ask for what you need because it is an exercise in knowing yourself, facing your many imperfections & other ways you connect with the world. You must acknowledge these before you can…

𝕻𝖆𝖕𝖊𝖗 𝕾𝖍𝖎𝖊𝖑𝖉𝖘
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𝕻𝖆𝖕𝖊𝖗 𝕾𝖍𝖎𝖊𝖑𝖉𝖘

I’ve been examining the concept of labels this week – why we need them, why I resist them so much. No denying labels play an important role in the human experience. A name is a label & it’s the first building block of our identity. Therein lie some answers. Labels…

Social Ladder
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Social Ladder

‘d always find it funny when people said “Bombay gaye the” about visiting South Bombay. And I’d ask, “Where are you now?” Over a century ago, the ‘city’ was concentrated where the affluent (colonial British & the British-adjacent) lived. As happens with ports all across history, commerce flourished & people…