I Loved At A Time I Wasn’t Permitted To Love

By Ikshaku

I am hurtling slowly towards Goa, legs tucked under me on the seat, mind far away as the train gallops across Karnataka.

Everything around me is abuzz with life. Vendors come and go. Kids prance by excitedly. Most poignantly of all, a Christan family is singing beautiful hymns and sharing food…

…And their song just transports me. I watch green rolling hills slide across my huge window like a never-ending PowerPoint presentation. Each slide triggers a musical memory and I am lost in nostalgic Narnia. I remember previous holidays in this part of the world with someone who said he loved me.

I remember how I felt so hopeful and trusting in that new beginning, nothing could tear us apart. The wind was in my hair then and my eyes alit. The memories are as sharp as yesterday…the sun brighter in those beaches…the air saltier. Now…now I feel nothing, smell nothing. How will I enjoy this trip? Love…what a waste of time. My eyes burn and I feel tears…

A sharp ping jolts me out of my reminiscings. Someone’s sent a text that the SC is going to decide on the 377 petition tomorrow. And instantly….I feel the electric pulse of adrenalin.

Yes, the verdict is likely to be good, yes this was long expected…but the excitement is inexplicable. No one around me seems to give a damn. But I imagine the joy and shivers of countless queer folk and not-so-queer folk across the country as they read this little update.

I can feel the heady joy of being on the brink of revolution, of approaching the Bastille, of pulling down the Berlin Wall. I feel the rush of a fist pump, as I imagine hearing good news for a change!

I remember the one who left again. He would have been ecstatic.

But no…tomorrow…tomorrow the 6th of September…is essentially about the freedom to love…the freedom to be different. I’m proud that I loved sincerely.

I loved at a time I wasn’t permitted to love.

It made my heart glow.

I’ll be damned if I ever doubt love again.

And suddenly, I’m the brightest, most alive in the train compartment. And everyone else… seems lost in the past.

Ikshaku is a queer lawyer and a drag artist.

Follow Ikshaku on Instagram here. And on Facebook here.

Below pic is from the Instagram profile.


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