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  • Skinless Sorrow [A Collection]

    These pieces aimed to encapsulate the feeling of pain that sinks below the outer shell of our skin and into the flesh. As such, my two paintings are deeply personal.

  • A Momentary Lapse of Self

    The experience of psychosis and losing your sense of self.

  • Down By The Creek

    Author Pronouns: She/Her

  • Anxiety

  • Draped On My Bones

    TW: Violence Not all fears are outgrown, and one does not have to cut them to keep living. The poetry collection "Draped On My Bones" explores different fears intricately connected to the human body. The proof of fear lies within the unspoken spaces and shades of the figure. And as it shadows the very vessel of our being, fears play a crucial role in our choices, words, and other decisions. Notably, it can be rooted in traumatic experiences and bring about flashbacks that cause terror. But sometimes, it can be the driving force to continue or be the foundation of one's strength. The collection does not tackle whether it is more fear-based or strength-sourcing. Instead, it chooses to enunciate that there are fears that stay within our lives forever. It is very much possible to live and prevail while grappling with phobias. There’s no shame in having it draped on our bones. I. Mute Order Staple lip against the other Plaster them over old wound Leave a taste of tarnished maroon The steps to a mute order First eight hours with the lips sewn tight Air barely stays in body Like labyrinths, paths, a study Yet string doesn't set things right Stomach howls wolf but she cares not For the thirst for words sharpen Scrape at throat like bitter bourbon Yet stays in silence to rot The hammering heart hides a crypt In spaces, no ear listens Where her bystander admissions Lay to rest, like all hush-lipped Follow these vows for mute order Glimpse shackles in teeth chatters Phrases pound, cause heart murmur Quiet - a serial murder II. Barefoot Marathon Hands reach for stones to excuse Gravity's grip from barefoot boy Purple feet with staining bruise Frontline's experience in deploy Be blind to absence or lone Keep pushing on land versus wind Even when clean breaking bone If tears synonymous with skinned Outrace yesterday's ghost And win over future's victor Exceeds yet calls it almost Does barefoot marathon once more World knows he loses to none But never wins to anyone Boy ignores, does one more run Plays like Icarus and his sun III. Draped On My Bones Draped on my bones is my skin Where people's hands' caressed and pinched Concealed organs, and other cut-ins Canvas of me in each inch Figure parallel to theirs Yet clearly mine, yours, no in between Labeled by self-intimate affairs Fear's touch in stretch marks they've seen Yellow shades at soles clearest Meanwhile, pale lips hold the most creases Spot kaleidoscope eyes easiest Ten fingers wrong most pieces Anatomy bared the I With darker secrets nobody asked for Labels of Phobos, no more reply Despite the trauma we wore Draped on my bones evermore Are manic shadows impersonating fear Declared sole body for blood and gore Fleshed out shape akin to gear Will I ever live without my bones? Never. Therefore fear will accompany Forever.

  • That Which Shaped Me

    My submission is a culmination of the lifetime of experiences that have shaped me. It is personal and honest and means a lot to me. Fear, as a word, means much more to me than it can define. As a typical Indian kid, I grew up in shared spaces among many watchful eyes. My definition of fear has changed all throughout my life. As a kid, one of my earliest memories is visiting a dam. Seeing the vast reservoir at the brink of water, introduced me to my first fear, the fear of water. More than water, the fear of the unknown and the sinking feeling came with it. When I was about 10, fear was changing cities and moving to a new place. It was the apprehension that came with making friends and fitting in. At 12, it was the fear of Mathematics and not being cool enough. Fear was suddenly looming in front when I first talked to my crush. It was butterflies in my tummy and sweaty hands. At 15, fear was loud and scary. You see, at that time, fear joined ranks with apprehension and danger, and caution. It rolled into one when I realized I was now a target of the male gaze, and my every step was seen and heard. My every action withheld consequences equated to my familial honor. At a time when fear should be my looming exams and approaching deadlines, my fear was the length of my skirt and the color of my skin. At 18, I realized that my fear wasn’t mine alone. It was my mom’s depression and my dad’s unemployment. It was my brother’s rebelling. Suddenly, it was encompassing and riveting. It captivated me and led me to believe it was alright, even when it wasn’t. At 21, my fear is my boyfriend’s fear of losing his parents. My best friend’s fear of her life being confined to societal norms. It is my parents’ fear of growing old. My brother’s fear of not being enough. In the end, fear is much more than a sinking black hole or a red, angry circle. It is now present in my dreams, my aspirations, my hopes, and my wishes. Because what can be more frightening than living itself? After all, my fear is now a part of me, omnipresent and all-knowing. It is now pastel with hues of white, soft, and free-flowing. It now longer defines me but is now represented by me. It rests when it wants to and takes charge when needed, but above all, it is now.

  • Blooming Pains

    I made Blooming Pains with the thought of my identity. Being of Gujarati and Mexican descent I often struggled with blooming into the person that I am. Growth hurts, but it's a beautiful experience that gives life meaning; no fear should stop growth. https://chimi.bvm/

  • Cat Funeral

    TW: Suicide Dear Little Boy, In 2012 you threw up on me while I was sleeping. I never forgave you because I suspected it was on purpose. I’m writing to tell you I forgive you now. In 2012 I was only seven and I didn’t know how much I’d need you, even though by then you were already sick. You were so mean to people, you used to bite my friends and leave shit outside our neighbor’s doors. Why did you want to sleep with me? I wasn’t so nice to you. After you threw up on me I locked you out of my room. Mom and Dad say when I was young I would always pull your hair. I thought it was funny. They’d run to pull us apart– you’ve taken out eyes for a lot less. But you’d only push my hand away and lie with me until we fell asleep. One time when I was 12 Dad filmed you fighting a raccoon. I got mad at you for fighting it and mad at him for not stopping you. He said it was fine because you were winning. He showed me the video. I saw that you were so frail already, skin hanging loose from your bones. Dad saw that you left the battle without a scratch. I didn’t let you outside for two full weeks. This weekend, at your funeral, Dad told me the raccoon had been trying to steal our chicken’s eggs. Little Boy, add this story to the list of things I’m sorry about. I remember when you lost your sight. The doctors said you could only see outlines of shapes and blurry colors. After, Mom bought you that stuffed banana on a whim. You kept it with you all the time. You couldn’t see anything, but you could see the banana, with its bright yellow and its big smooth edges. You slept with it tight in your arms until it was gray and limp. You screamed when Mom took it from you to put it in the wash. When your banana went missing your screaming didn’t stop for days. In 2018 you found me in my room standing at the window. It was 3 am. I was trying to get my other foot over my sill. You screamed and screamed and you woke everyone up. They made me get down, made me go to therapy. They wouldn’t let me chop vegetables or shave my legs. I never stopped blaming you, Little Boy. After you died I only cried twice, once when I learned the news and a second time yesterday when I found your banana, hidden in the back of my sock drawer from all of those years ago. We buried you this weekend in the garden by the house. Mom thought you’d like the blooming hearts. She says you’re in heaven. Everyone else thinks you’re in hell. I’ve never believed in heaven, but I hope it has lots of banana trees.

  • Fear of Falling Asleep

    I'm peeling my eyes open, but that's futile; I'll eventually close my eyes, and the human desire to stop immediate pain will inevitably override my fear. My blank expression shows I'm aware of this, but I try to stay awake for a second longer.

  • Of This Annum

    You dissolved through the haze of summer. Disintegrating like melanin in my subtle bronze as months passed on. You decayed beneath gaps of autumn, quicker than a pumpkin left to rot. It wasn't in your best interest to linger no longer. In a rush. Hurrying, swooping pile of gradient leaves. Before I exhale a misty breeze... you evaporated. Not a trace of you had been left with me. Except a lilac bag, I can't even bear to look at. Filled to the rim, with dried out lavender seeds. You cleared just as winter came, now I happen to be numb outside, just as I am, within.

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