I was here.

If you are reading this, we have moved on.

Or type this link into your browser: https://shreyavikram.com

Today is one of the bad days.

Today, I spend an hour over the page, spelling out my name onto paper, over and over and over again until it’s all I can see.

A curve here. A line there. A dot. Repeat.

A tear drops onto the ink and leaves a speckle of blue that wobbles when I breathe out.

Pulse rising, heart pounding.

It’s all wrong.

It isn’t me.

The paper cackles as I crush it, mocking.


I feel like a mirage, as if I’m made of smoke, fading into nothingness.

A cold squall of wind could hiss my way, and I’d be gone, only two sets of nails and thirty-four teeth swirling in a spiral down to the ground.

And then, just as quickly, they’ll turn to dust and ash, blown away in a gust of grey.

Maybe someone will look up as I billow past them, a look of distant incomprehension on their face.

Maybe another will mouth a perfect ‘O’ as my hand fleets right through their arm, grasping for a berth.

The moment will be forgotten as quickly as it came.

I’ll be forgotten.

I could have never existed.


Memories are dust. I’d lean on words any day.

On the desk I write on is etched three words and a date.

S.R. loves J.D. 2007.

If I close my eyes, I can look up and see two pale, shimmery shapes rise up from the letters, hands clutched together, eyes shining, a tender glance, a subtle kiss. I love you. 

No one can refute that now. It’s evidence. Evidence that they existed, that they lived, that they loved.

I would like to have that, I think.

Decades later, I would like for a hand to run its fingers over my carving, sharpen the edges, perfect the letters. I would like to become a part of the wood, to live forever through it.

And if my name is on the page, if my name is scrawled on some distant pillar, I tell myself: I can’t disappear.

I was here.

See?

I told you.

I told you I was.

That’s my name, I was here.

I rip the page and start over.

The paper cackles as I crush it.


Photo by Glenn Carstens-Peters on Unsplash

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180 Comments Add yours

  1. Shona Silverman says:

    Lovely writing, Natalie.

    Liked by 5 people

    1. Natalie Swift says:

      Thank you so much, Shona! ❤

      Liked by 2 people

  2. Ginganocchio says:

    I felt that like you were etching it into my brain.👍

    Liked by 7 people

  3. C.E.O Anchor Dynasty Records says:

    this is awesome,..i would love to hear your thoughts on my new blog (https://ceoanchordynastyrecords.wordpress.com/2018/09/22/a-precarious-universe/)

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Natalie Swift says:

      Thank you so much! I’ll definitely check it out.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I felt this one all the way to my bones. Being forgotten is one of my deepest, worst fears, and this piece captures the feeling perfectly. Thank you so much for pushing through the bad days and letting your own work it’s magic like this!

    Liked by 6 people

    1. Natalie Swift says:

      That really means a lot to me. Thank you so much for taking the time to read and share your thoughts here! ❤

      Like

  5. leelah saachi says:

    Excellent description – I have been there so often – or rather, parts of me have. I love your clarity to observe it and share it

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Natalie Swift says:

      I’m so glad you liked it, Leelah! Thank you so much! ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  6. You can carve your experience into our hearts.

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Natalie Swift says:

      That’s such a beautiful thing to say, truly… thank you so much! ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Christine says:

    I like that Natalie…. you so just draw me in with your writing..

    Liked by 5 people

    1. Natalie Swift says:

      Thank you so much, Christine! That really means a lot ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  8. beingalive says:

    This was a real carving👌

    Liked by 3 people

  9. kxngkaiart says:

    Awesome. Loved this !!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Natalie Swift says:

      Glad you liked it! Thank you so much! ❤

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Natalie Swift says:

      Thank you! ❤

      Like

    1. Natalie Swift says:

      Thank you so much! ❤

      Like

  10. jandvig says:

    As I sit by my mom’s bedside awaiting her imminent death, this writing you offer today is a deep insight – mom’s feeling too.
    “I feel like a mirage, as if I’m made of smoke, fading into nothingness.”
    Your writing is a lovely expression of our bodily mortality.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Natalie Swift says:

      That really means a lot to me, Jandvig. I can’t possibly imagine what you must be going through and I really hope my piece was of little comfort to you, if any. Thank you so much for taking the time to read and share your thoughts here ❤

      Like

  11. nickreeves says:

    ‘… as my hand fleets right through their arm, grasping for a berth.’

    How swift! How lovely! Thanks, Natalie.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Natalie Swift says:

      Glad you liked it, Nick! Thanks for taking the time to read and comment! ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  12. Diego Green says:

    A very haunting passage that so fittingly describes a fear so many of us carry.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Natalie Swift says:

      Glad you liked it, Diego! Thank you so much for taking the time to read and comment! ❤

      Like

  13. An emotional piece beautifully done. You are a Poet, and I’m so pleased to follow your site!

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Natalie Swift says:

      That really means a lot to me. Thank you so much! ❤

      Like

  14. silent words says:

    It rightly captures the human want of being alive even after death… beautiful ♥️

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Natalie Swift says:

      That’s definitely an interesting perspective… thank you so much for taking the time to read and share your thoughts here! ❤

      Liked by 2 people

    2. silent words says:

      The pleasure’s all mine

      Liked by 2 people

  15. Ugandanmama says:

    Ohh! This is deep! 👍🏾

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Natalie Swift says:

      Glad you liked it! ❤

      Like

  16. Jack "Blimprider" Tyler says:

    Good morning, Natalie. This is powerful stuff, and captures something innate to all of us, the desire to leave a mark, to be remembered. You speak in your bio of “blurring the lines;” here in the age of instant publishing, many writers speak of their “special skills” without actually demonstrating them. This is as perfect a demonstration of the art as I’ve seen in a good long time, and I thank you for sharing it with us.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Natalie Swift says:

      I’m honoured you thought so, Jack. Thank you so much for taking the time to read and share your thoughts here! It really means a lot to me ❤️

      Like

  17. Susan Taylor Brand says:

    Thank you for this subtle description of writing, memory, and emotions as they rise and ebb … and burn.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Natalie Swift says:

      That really means a lot to me, Susan. Thank you so much for taking the time to read and comment! ❤️

      Liked by 1 person

  18. Knightsreich says:

    Perhaps all of our comings and goings and memories are etched in eternity somewhere.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Natalie Swift says:

      That’s really a beautiful thought… thank you so much for taking the time to read and share your thoughts here! It really means a lot ❤️

      Liked by 1 person

  19. Has San says:

    Beautiful writing. Taken aback startled at the depths to which you have waddled. As good as one can get with “just words”. More than a decade now since the etching. Just beautiful.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Natalie Swift says:

      Thank you so much, Has. So glad you liked it! ❤️

      Liked by 1 person

  20. I have goosebumps! The blend of yearning and desire create such a feeling of intensity. I love it.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Natalie Swift says:

      Thank you so much! Glad you liked it! ❤️

      Like

  21. Astonishing. Perfect. Thank you!

    Liked by 3 people

  22. angie says:

    This is beautiful 💚

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Natalie Swift says:

      Thank you so much! ❤

      Like

  23. Hellol! I absolutely loved this post!!
    Mind checking out my latest one. Do let me know what you think of it. Here’s the link: https://vodkandcokeplease.wordpress.com/2018/09/24/different-strokes-no-soul/

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Natalie Swift says:

      I definitely will. Thank you so much for taking the time to read and comment! ❤

      Like

  24. John Reyes says:

    If you plan on writing a book in the future, you can count on me to buy it. From the beginning, you’re writing was like a song to me. Now, it harmonizes with emotions. Great piece!

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Natalie Swift says:

      That really means a lot to me, John. Thank you so much! ❤
      No plans yet, though: I'm afraid I have neither the patience nor the discipline for it 😉

      Liked by 1 person

  25. kxngkaiart says:

    Check out
    https://kxngkaiart.wordpress.com/2018/09/26/life/

    Just explains life.
    Awesome writing Natalie

    Liked by 2 people

  26. Shirobanryu says:

    Hi. This Day you describe. When emotion overrides even our writing. Our soul writhes in the pain unable to be freed. Yet. You did. So try. Thanks for putting such into Words of Wisdom.

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Natalie Swift says:

      That was really a beauitful way to put it… thank you so much for taking the time to read and share your thoughts here! It really means a lot ❤

      Liked by 3 people

    2. Shirobanryu says:

      hi again-’tis a… new approach. My Ways and Training are not so socially adept at these Times and Places. Yet and much. Is appreciated. So you should know. What you write. You write well as. As well as any of Our World Legends. Till next…

      Liked by 2 people

  27. Your writing is beautiful!

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Natalie Swift says:

      Thank you so much, Hannah!

      Liked by 1 person

  28. OwnShadow says:

    Eloquent and moving. Will resonate with many, I suspect.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Glad you liked it! Thank you so much! ❤

      Liked by 2 people

    2. OwnShadow says:

      You’re welcome!

      Liked by 2 people

  29. pacharc says:

    I love everything about this💕 The pace for it was perfect🙌🏾 I don’t want to sound greedy lol but give more 😊

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Haha thank you so much! Glad you liked it! ❤

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much, Chris! Glad you liked it! ❤

      Liked by 1 person

    2. chris jensen says:

      What’s not to like it was brilliant!

      Liked by 1 person

  30. chris jensen says:

    Outstanding post!

    i found the material enlightening, an the way you laid-out the page, interesting..

    i truly enjoyed read,

    chris

    Like

    1. Mmm that was such a beautiful piece.
      Especially that last line: “The meanest flower that blows can give- thoughts that do often lie too deep for tears.”
      For some reason, it really struck a chord in me…

      Liked by 2 people

    2. Fred says:

      It is the true secret of happiness.

      Liked by 1 person

  31. Gary A says:

    Loved it, you really know how to bring the reader in and feel exactly what you intend them to. Nice, it made my wheels turn and want to rehash any old emotions i have locked and put away in the corners of my mind. But if I go searching for it… I don’t think I’d like what i would find. The past is just that and I put all of it away to save my sanity. I don’t think I could handle all of the bad thing that has been done to me.. See you have me blogging in your comments.. Great job

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Glad you liked it, Gary! Thank you so much for taking the time to read and share your thoughts here! ❤

      Liked by 2 people

  32. Thank gods I found you again. I was so stressed when the darkest tunnel was gone! Your poems really touched my heart and brought alot of feelings to me. Thank you for making things better again! ^_^ To become part of the wood, to live through it. Nicely written! Never have I felt the fear of disappearing without a trace, maybe I should start leaving marks! XD

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Haha, thank you so much! Really touched you feel that way ❤
      And I have a feeling I'm here to stay, so you'll definitely be seeing me around for a while. I truly appreciate the support, thank you so much for that. This comment just made my day ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  33. Glad you liked it, Andrea! Thank you so much for taking the time to read and comment! ❤️

    Liked by 1 person

  34. sue clancy says:

    Nice! Reminds me that within my creative life I’ve found it helpful to remember “focus on what you’re doing instead of how well you’re doing it.”. Helps me to just “get it done” – I can tweak it later. What matters is that we keep going!

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Definitely true… I find that’s the only thing that really works with writer’s block: write now, edit later.

      Liked by 2 people

    2. sue clancy says:

      Yes, sheer keeping-the-pen-moving (edit tomorrow) followed by the promise of a bit of chocolate after the pages are written. 😉

      Liked by 1 person

  35. Don’t crush that paper! 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  36. This was beautiful, your writing is incredible!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you so much! That really means a lot ❤

      Like

  37. My Deaf Mind says:

    I think this is wow and very lovely writes! This moved me and also inspired me greatly. Cheers and peace to you.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Glad you liked it! Thank you so much! ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  38. Wow, this is amazing, the power of a few words

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Glad you liked it, Nathan! Thank you so much for taking the time to read and comment! ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  39. Härzenswort says:

    That’s very powerful writing, thank you.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Glad you liked it! Thank you so much! ❤

      Like

  40. M. Evalyne says:

    Wow, this is beautiful writing!!

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Glad you liked it! Thank you so much! ❤

      Like

  41. Michael33 says:

    I’m very glad you are here. Tonight… I became glad that I am here also. I’m etching the proof that I was here by leaving this comment. Thank you for giving me the opportunity to linger in your words. However… I am wondering… if perhaps… when I press the “post comment” button… my laptop might cackle.

    Hope you have a most beautiful day, Natalie.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Hey Michael,
      Thank you so much for taking the time to drop by and leave such a lovely comment! It really means a lot.
      You too! ❤

      Like

  42. chillEmpress says:

    So glad I found your blog … your writing is so authentic, honest and heartfelt. Going to keep reading more now.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. That really means a lot to me. Thank you so much! ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  43. Tom Burton says:

    This was an amazing read! Love how you immerse the reader into the scene, beautifully expressed! 🙂

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Glad you liked it, Tom! Thank you so much! ❤

      Liked by 1 person

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