Theme Parks

I love roller coasters
The uncertainty of the upside down
The certainty of the eventual drop
Screaming so hard, your throat dries off.
I love roller coasters
so much so that I became one.
The uncertainty of upside downs,
the certainty of eventual drops
the sudden, jolted turns.
I was the roller coaster.
And I constantly apologized for it.
No one should be on a roller coaster
against their will
But he was.
And I constantly apologized for it,
With periods,
I apologized every time the button switched on
and the rails creaked a little.
The moment I apologized for it,
You told me you loved roller coasters.
It was then that I realized,
He hated them.
Hated the uncertainty of upside downs
Hated the certainty of the eventual drop
Hated roller coasters.

Yours truly,

Painted Shadow


(excerpt from a book in the making) 

La Chute

It’s been a while since they visited me. I usually serve out the coffee and blades for them. But they hadn’t come in a while. They stick to phone calls, every now and then. During these calls that go on for about 20-30 minutes, sometimes less, they do their best to get under my skin. They taunt and scream and scratch until I remember. Until my skin gets bruised with their message, until I hang up.

Growing up, you convince yourself that you’re strong. That you don’t need anyone to be there for support, because you are all you needed. Repeat something for long enough and you’ll eventually believe it.

During their continuous random checks via call, I was almost always strong. I’d be lying if I said they didn’t succeed at getting under my skin.

They visited me last week. I was all whiskey and beer drenched, high heels and sore feet. A terrible combination of poison and fatigue, which turned into open doors for them. They jumped the walls and strode past my worn-out guards. Strength as it turned out, was not my friend tonight. She had left about 5 hours earlier. I would not see her again for a while.

They set up camp and lit up a bon fire. I was in flames and 1000 fire brigades could not stop me.

Victory. My demons cheered and popped the champagne.

They won.

You see, even though I thought of Strength as a friend, she was not. She just convinced me to hide them in the back of the closet. She never once told me to kill them instead.

Demons don’t stay hidden for long. This I learnt as a child. This I am still learning as an adult.


Yours truly,

Imperfect Picture

Bad Liar

I was told to look both ways before crossing the street

I wish someone warned me to do the same

When I stuck my head out of the window

And puked myself out

I wish someone pulled my back

And warned me that my heart would follow

But, no one ever dares to warn you before

No one ever dares to interfere

Until you’re hanging out of the window

Begging the car to drive faster.

They just wait

and watch

and breathe

until it’s too late.

You see, my world belonged to thieves and bandits

Black bandannas and pistols

Stolen hearts and tied wrists

I cheered as they stole pieces of my memories

Pieces of my life

Piece of who I am

I cheered as they tossed it to each other

Like some treasure on a runaway train.

One bandit named me the runaway train

While the other called me the coal that fueled it

They convinced me.

I begged the bandits and breakers

The thieves and robbers

To be a line on their book,

Or a phrase,

Or a metaphor.

See I had fallen in love

I had fallen in love with being dismantled

And no one dared to warn me

That I could get addicted to it.



Yours truly,

Painted Shadow

Million Reasons

With the sky all grey and angry, bellowing through the silence and shards of water hammering on my skin, I just had one regret. You. Nostalgia has a funny way of flooding through your veins like an over-flowing dam, determined to drown out every memory along it’s way. You see, you will be my biggest regret. The start of us, at least. I’d go back to that dancing night and stop the clock if I could. I’d go back to that room and try to feel something different instead.

Even as the rain slows, the chill in the air remains and I am once again thrown headfirst into a crowd of non-believers. This time, at least, I hope you believe me.

With the sky all grey and angry, I sat outside and let the shards of water pierce through my broken knees and bruised heart. I let it seep in until I could feel everything. Water acts in a way that purifies you. I’m sorry for those moments. We just should have never been.


Yours truly,

Painted Shadow

The end is nigh

It was a growing cancer. It started out small, but now it’s small and spread all over. It’s terminal, I just know it. It has eaten every morsel and energetic bone in my body, except for my slowly, beating heart. I can almost hear its faint murmur. It won’t be long now. Saying those words out loud was harder than telling you I had cancer. I had to pry the words out with a pair of tongs – hot and burning every inch of my mouth, I pulled out those three words. Maybe, my body was too bruised and worn out from the metaphorical chemo I put it through, to say it again. Or, maybe, I loved death more. The moment I said it, it left a sour; eye-crunching taste in my mouth. It was like sinking my teeth into a piece of raw mango, or having a spoon full of vinegar shoved down my throat, that’s what it felt like when I told you I loved you.


Yours truly,

Painted Shadow

Cherry Wine

It’s always waiting for the other shoe to drop. To laugh and love with caution because you might wake up tomorrow and it’ll be the end of the world. Figuratively speaking of course. You might wake up tomorrow and he’ll give you a list of reasons why he wanted to end it. And, just like always, you’ll sit there, hands in your laps or tucked under your thighs, waiting; for all the reasons on where you went wrong. You’ll sit and wait for the ball to drop. You’ll keep waiting for the day, no matter how great things are because you know it’s coming. It’s inevitable. The feeling will linger in all the dark alleys of your over active imagination and it’ll burn holes in your heart, so deep that no amount of kind words and hugs would ever fill it again. The feeling will turn you into them, because that’s the only kind of love you know. The kind that loves with open hands and closed fists, never fixing and always breaking. So, you wait. Because somewhere down the line, somewhere in the last 10 years, you made yourself believe that good things aren’t meant for you.

There is no ending to this. It’s a constant battle.


Yours truly,

Painted Shadow


Things I’ve learnt – Part One.

I learnt to run at the first sign of trouble. My initial natural instinct of flight is more dominant than the fight response. My parents didn’t teach me well either. Their initial reaction was to fight, with fists and words and anything in between. They thought me to shove things under the rug until it formed a big mound one day, and someone tripped; breaking everything in their path. I got comfortable with having rugs around the house. They were safe to fall on and they were warm during cold dark nights. Eventually, we became close. They would always be there, they were always excited to hide things. Sometimes, they would walk over to me and beg me to hide just one more thing with them. Obviously, I trusted them, so I did. Life became so much easier with so many rugs.

Over the years, I’ve learnt that Fight or Flight are no longer the only options available, that they should not be the first thing you think of. I’ve learnt that shoving things under the rug only works when there’s no one around to help you roll the rug away. Rugs, I’ve come to learn are messy and take up so much space; especially piled under a mountain of secrets, lies and loves. Do away with the rugs. Admire the tiles, or the hardwood floor. Admire the fact that you’ve learnt, all by yourself, that rugs don’t always cover everything up. That sometimes, rugs are the bad guys.


Yours truly,

Painted Shadow


I think I’ll turn my body in to a canvas. I’ll add a bit of colour here and there and make sure it reflects the colours of my mind. I think I’ll tattoo my body and use it as a map, so if I’m ever lost, I’ll be able to find exactly where I have to go next. You see, I’m tired of people drawing all over my back with  pens and blades. I’m tired of them using my back as drawing paper, which they crunch and throw away later. I’m tired of them carving their names and their broken promises to every inch of my skin and then calling me imperfect for the cracks and edges.

I’m on a mission. A mission to convert my body in to my own canvas. A canvas; so god damn beautiful and magnificent that Picasso himself would be jealous. A canvas, that you will want to study and follow the dotted lines to. A canvas, that will make you fall in love.


Yours truly,

Painted Shadow

An Ode to the Heart

Hearts; trapped in rib caged prisons,
are often given out like candy on Halloween,bandaidheart
And are often returned bruised and purple.
Some learn to heal faster than others.
These are the dangerous ones
They  puff out their chests like a peacock
and walk around with the confidence of being invincible,
ready to be broken all over again.
They wear a shield of armour, each one stronger than the one before.
It’s these fixed ones you have to watch out for.
They run in to battle every time, regardless of the consequences.
And there are some hearts,
The ones who desperately try to avoid the super glue and hope
They’re like soldiers who return home from war,
And are asked to go back to fight after a month
They walk around, limping and shivering from PTSD
They don’t always learn to beat the same way again
They only heal once the war is completely over.
Once they know for sure they don’t have to fight another day.
Hearts are brave little things.
Give them room to heal and grow.
Give them a reason to keep beating.
Yours truly,
Painted Shadow



I find myself falling in love with things out of my reach, like the sky or you. I find myself holding on to things that are desperately begging to be let go off.  Things that don’t want to be held or touched. Things that love to run away. I’m not used to being in one place for a long time. I’m used to being temporary. I’m used to new places and new faces. I’m used to running away. I gave you my heart; bandaged and glued together, and you had the audacity to give it back with more cracks. I don’t believe in much but I believe in expiration dates. I find myself always looking for them on the back of milk cartons and on relationships. Things aren’t meant to last long. At least that’s what I’ve been shown. Until you drove past my darkest thoughts and stopped to listen.


Yours truly,

Painted Shadow