I have collected all my insecurities and placed them in Petri dishes. I stare at them on occasion when I want to remember who I am. Maybe I look back at them to remember who I have become? At this point in the experiment, everything sort of just blends together.
Continue reading The New Birth of Abstract
Creativity isn’t always beautiful. There is a desire in us as artists to share what we feel inside with the world; how can we do so when we can’t find the words ourselves? There isn’t always an easy road with which to release my emotions to words. It can be quite painful. That doesn’t make it any less meaningful.
“There are days when words and feelings pour out of me like a volcano. Aggressive and fierce, I stab through the lines on the page and rip it apart like my brain is ripping me. Then there are days when I can do nothing, My creative juices are dried up- I am breathing in coarse sand, I cough up ideas but also blood. It lines the paper all the same.”
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Today I’ll tell you about Aarav Chopra. Why is he here now and not Ali Wadood? The answer is simply really, but I’ve lived a long story as Ali and I’m just closing the book on that part of it all.
My name is Aarav Chopra and I hold zero shame taking on my mother’s maiden name. Removing myself from the clenches of my past and finding peace in my true calling I feel home again.
My step dad cared for me as a child and for that I can not repay him. But, what am I to do as one who can’t even go the movies alone at the age he left. Let’s not dive into that too much. I’d rather give him the benefit of the doubt anyways. Maybe he had a better life to live and I hope he lives it to the fullest and, however he pleases. Here’s why I leave him now, I don’t wish a bad fortune on his name. I aim to no longer carry it. I choose to dump the skeleton left in me and become reborn as Aarav.
I may just reincarnate my living self in this life. Sending what I was away for the legacy in my mother’s maiden name. She is the sole purpose for me being here in this country. I’m a natural citizen of the United States of America. Extremely proud of it.
My lineage was to go away after us boys. My brother and I, the ones he changed. My uncle having only two daughters who are set for their true fate with love and new families. I control my fate and choose to more life with the Chopra name.
“What’s in a name? For which we call a rose by any other name would smell as sweet.” Shakespeare said it then.
I’ve had it tattooed on me since I was 18. I knew then I could change and still be the man I am. Now I will hope to carry on the true immigrant journey. My mother is my rock and a she is a dual citizen in this world. Pretty bad ass Ma. Just know your son is keeping your name and we’re both here to leave a mark on this life.
I won’t let the family go. I won’t let the men who left us name me forever in a journey they’ll never bury me in. I’d rather honor the family name that brought me here in the first place.
Rarely, do we understand the strength of the words we use. Continue reading What we say and what we mean
More often than not we let ourselves be surrounded by negativity. And things keep going wrong and we believe it’s wrong and unfair and we feed the cycle till we’re buried underneath it all.
After a while, we stop asking if that’s how it should be. And then we forget how it all started. We are forever lost in the darkness inside ourselves that was originated elsewhere but placed there. And we believe we deserve it. And we believe it’s our own damn fault. And it is. And it’s not. It is because we let it grow and take over. It’s not because we are not responsible for the environment we live in.
Continue reading Blessing or Lesson
Listen to friend of Genre: Urban Arts, MJ Fouldes!
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Find him on IG at @mjfouldes
Please take a moment out of your day to read and listen to my interview with Vianca Fuster at 88.9 Radio Milwaukee.
You can find the interview about Genre: Urban Arts here.
She interviewed me, but she is one of the most brilliant young women I know. I am continually impressed with her and am waiting to be witness to the next time sprinkles us with excellence.
Thank you, Vianca & 88.9 Radio Milwaukee!
If you want to read more by her please click here.
I wish I could reminisce like you for some sorta time and space I felt safe. But since a young age I had to learn to hold myself and know despite it all, I was still enough. But as you would have guessed, I didn’t know that and spiralled down a really dark path. No, there were no alcohol and drugs, there was something worse, the constant battle with crippling feelings of ‘not enough’.
Imagine growing up believing you should not exist at all. Imagine how would you turn out. I wish I could say I’m turned out ok, but I guess that’s not the complete truth. Even though you may see me holding it together, I’m no more found than you.
We’re lost and alone in the journey back home trying to grow along the way. Even if we do find souls that help us carry the load, in the end we’re the ones to answer to what we let go.
Maybe it would be easier had I learned differently from what my childhood branded in me. But I’ll never know and it doesn’t matter. I’ve learned to make of my self what brings me peace and let go of the misconceptions in my system of beliefs.
© Máh Lima
Photo by Shelby Deeter on Unsplash
When you left I looked for you
in all the faces I saw,
in every crowded street,
in all the places we had been.
Continue reading The Lesson