5 steps straight, 2 steps right

There are Gram-Panchayats in villages with population between 500-10,000 people, said my 8th standard Civics textbook. Next to it was a photo of people men sitting under a tree. When I went to my village I asked my uncle which tree the Panchayat sits under. He said it does not work that way.

I once only half read a book about animals that made me smile. I met a stranger in the train who told me I have an air that makes me seem unapproachable. I let a new friend test me over a make-believe ‘psychological’ test that proved that I am excited about death and look at marriage as a curious structural constraint. Sex, makes me feel peaceful and gloomy at the same time, it said. I made a list of books I have to procure and read; I am still left with

10) All the little live things

12) The history of love

15) Rosencratz and Guildenstern are dead

16) Tuck Everlasting

17) What we talk about when we talk about love

I don’t know when I started wearing silver jewelry but now if I am missing a toe-ring people worry about me. When I have to pee at night, I do not put the bathroom light on. 5 steps straight, 2 steps right. When I lie in my bed, I stare at the fan and wonder if I am the half book I read or the half I didn’t. I am the girl who *knows* that if Schrodinger made any sense, that if the observation or measurement itself affects an outcome, so that the outcome as such does not exist unless the measurement is made, I only exist as me till I stare at the fan and continue wondering. That if the cat is dead and alive, I think I am the girl “too thin to bear a child” and the one with “ass that looks great in the blue cotton pants”. I am the girl approachable enough to be told she does not seem approachable enough. I am probably also the pop song tune stuck in my head I don’t know the words to. I am the ‘Ganpati on a bullet bike’ I saw and the Panchayat that I could not.
“There are so many stories to tell, too many, such an excess of intertwined lives, events, miracles, places, rumors, so dense a commingling of the improbable and the mundane! I have been a swallower of lives; and to know me, just the one of me, you’ll have to swallow the lot as well.”

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