I and Me

a poem by Sujatha Thankeswaran Parvathy, India

Every day I lived,
All time I lived,

As a child of somebody,
As a sibling of somebody,
As a disciple of somebody,
As a partner of somebody,
As a parent of somebody,
As a colleague of somebody,
As a relation of somebody, distant or close,

Connected by the mesh of relations,
Just borne out of existence as a being, as a life form…
Breathing, sensing, and tossed up at times by a medley of emotions.

Am given a body, a name and relations borne,
To a group of people
By choice or by chance,
At will, by wish or just destiny.

A group of strangers connected by lineage?
A group of strangers living nearby?
A group of strangers sharing the work space?
A group of strangers travelling together in the journey of the ephemeral life…

I knew theirs and they knew my existence.
Alas! I do not know them, they do not know me.
I do not recognise them, nor do they realise me.
I do not belong to them nor do they belong to me.

I lived in their space, they lived in my space.
They were all the time in my space, in my thoughts, but not me.
All the time I lived, in those spaces in my thoughts, occupied by them.
I thought about them, related me with them,
Still I did not know them, they did not know me.

I did not know me, for I was them
Many a tags I carried, to identify myself
I didn’t have an identity
But then Who am I? What am I and my identity?

Shedding the tags, shedding the chain of belonging,
Borne to this world alone, to return to my abode alone.
The journey is not as a daughter nor a son,
Not as a sibling, Nor a spouse,
Not as a friend nor an enemy,
Bundles of lives young and old, bundles of experiences good and bad,
Living being borne to this world
Engrossed in their lives, their world, so am I.
I was me, I am me, I will be me !!!

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