O body, mine / Arathi Devandran

Rooted to the ground, legs hip-width distance apart and firmly planted, hands engaged with palms facing outward, head tilted towards the burning sun, deep breaths, lungs expanding and contracting, chest rising and falling, tailbone tucked in, core engaged, keep breathing, feel the strength rising from where your legs are standing strong, as if you are one with Mother Earth, feel the energy from the burning sun, lighting the energy of the sun in you, stay here and breathe, acknowledge your body for its strengths and its weaknesses and observe, at this moment, its place in the world.





Lying on the bed, the sun filtering through cheap gold curtains, the room heady with the smell of full-bloom flowers surrounding the house, the air still except for our slowing breathing, his, and mine, specks of colours dancing beneath my closed eyelids, his warmth as familiar as the taste of home, our legs intertwined, his body and mine beginning and ending, almost consumed, but not quite, his eyes resting somewhere on my skin, a spot that felt warmer than others, and in a language I didn’t understand, declarations of love, slowly pressed into skin, seeping in and sinking into melanin and scars and roaring blood and something deeper, maybe love, and then, a word I understood, beauty, he was saying, beauty, and he was pressing it hard into my skin, and my body responded, responded, yes.


My body’s wisdom tells and tells again
That I shall find my rest, my sleep, my peace
And even death nowhere else but here in
My betrayer’s arms…[1]



  1. Wear nothing, and stand in front of a full-length mirror. Nothing. Not your insecurities, not your emotions, not your fears, not your sadness.
  2. Look at yourself directly in the eyes. Acknowledge the person staring back at you.
  3. Say the following:
    1. You are beautiful, and I am deeply grateful that you are here with me.
    2. You are strong, wise, able, kind, loving and intelligent.
    3. You are the superlative you seek.
    4. I am thankful that you have stayed with me through thick and thin.
    5. I honor this relationship I have with you because it is a very important relationship.
    6. You are enough.
    7. May peace be with you.
  4. If tears roll down your face, let them. If your mouth curves up into a smile, let it. If your heart beats quickly, so quickly, let it. If your hands tremble, let them. Just let the sound of your voice fill you from within.
  5. Repeat, for the rest of your life.


Arathi Devandran curates personal experiences, snapshots of the world and the stories people are willing to share with her through prose and poetry www.miffalicious.com

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