My writing exists in two dimensions: poetry for my soul, and the poetry I give you. And you don’t have to agree with what I say, or evolve like I do through frequently contradicting myself. I’d rather you not. I just want you to share this journey with me. My art doesn’t always parallel my life, and in both spheres I often fall short of trying to communicate and reaching a particular standard. But I’m glad these two universes exist: both with their kaleidoscope of reason, emotion, battles won and lost, and their plethora of both elegance and raw wounds. My poetry teaches me, and in that sense, I write for myself. I imbibe the syllables from the page, and yes, they bring with them some reciprocation: negative and positive, but I’m learning slowly to eliminate judgment and accept them with a neutral mind, and it’s hard, but it’s worth it, because it prolongs and nurtures this process we call art. And my poetry is given to you, never to teach or preach. I’d rather not have you look at it as something dogmatic, or an insult, or a satirical personal assault. No, I give it to you on a platter without seeking fame or money, and I want you to choose and savor only the things you like, or perhaps experiment with your perception and alter the taste before chewing on it. Keep a distance from what I say, and what you absorb, or don’t. It’s your prerogative, because I’m here extending my hand through these syllables which float like motes of dust, and perhaps they are just dust to you, or perhaps they become petrichor and invigorate you, but either ways, the communication is mutual and that’s the second beauty, a symbiosis which helps me, and helps you too. Now, about failure and loss: Yes, failure is hard, excruciating and often fate’s web is one made of fire, burning skin, and leaving putrefying sores, but bloodied and bruised, I’ll have to nurse myself and walk again, until the infection fades to a scar, which reminds me of bettering myself in a similar situation again. And this happens in both life and art, although the artist lives very differently from what his art projects, despite a few rhythms being the same in both universes. As much as I have suffered in art because of needless judgments, imbibing coarse external variables and interjecting my life into it, I’ve suffered in life because of needless judgments, looking through a darkened lens at my surroundings and making my art seep into it. In the end, it’s judgment and the collision of worlds in an unhealthy way that cripples, but this is a journey, and there’s meaning in suffering, quietude within the raging fires of anger, tranquility in chaos, and beauty in the ugly, and finding a way through it all.
© Nitin Lalit Murali (2018)