Dear Sinner / Arathi Devandran

Dear Sinner,

I see you sitting in the corner, crying. A completely ridiculous reaction, if you ask me. You did well.

You should be proud of yourself for taking matters into your own hands.

You’ve finally triumphed over your circumstances and instead of congratulating yourself on a job well done, you are…crying. You mortals. With your strange ideas of what morality looks like. Setting your life by the work of an arbitrary moral compass that determines what is right…what is wrong.

Who taught you this balderdash?

Has having a moral compass solved any of your problems? Nevermind the biggest one that you have been struggling with for as long as I have known you?

Stop that sniffling this very instance. Pick yourself up. Hold your head up high.

For once, you listened to that tiny voice in your head that has been telling you what to do since the first time you saw it happen. That first time, when you were but a child, trying to make sense of the big bad world, the sounds in your head, the ones outside.

The first time it happened, when you felt everything inside you die, and when you wanted to die too.

(It wasn’t your turn, then, sinner love. It isn’t now, either, even though that is what you want).

Don’t you see? Every decision that you took from that moment till now, till this momentous moment, has been guided by the voice you’ve been refusing to listen to. Because you knew, as well as I did, that there were no other alternatives.

It had to be this.

Are you still crying? Will you stop? The sound is getting on my nerves.

Stand up, go wash off all that grime that you have on you. Make sure you scrub yourself well, scrub yourself clean. Scrub the walls around you, where you are sitting, the things you’ve touched.

Wouldn’t want them knowing that it was you who did it, do we?

But don’t be foolish enough to think that this physical scrubbing will help you in any way, because…it won’t. This is just another one of those things the environment around you has made you believe.

We live with the scars we are inflicted with, that we inflict on others.

Call it…life’s righteousness, if you will.

Look at me. Study my existence, all that I have amassed, the myriad of feelings – pain, anger, fear, lust, hate, desire – that I carry inside, and which I have drawn out in others. Imagine the power, and headiness of all this knowledge.

You have had a taste of it now. How does it feel?

Worthy of tears, just not the ones you are shedding.

But I see you quietening. I see you sitting a little straighter, and wiping your eyes. The slight stiffening of your spine that tells me you are over your emotions, or at least, you have moved on past them for the moment.

Good. This is exactly what I expected of you.

Now, wipe your face and start scrubbing. You don’t have much time and you have plenty to clean.



The Devil

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

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