Stranger within me: A poem by Rohini Jayanti

I stood and stared at the distorted image of myself

In the mirror that shone under the reflection of the moon
Layers of secrets separated me from the essence of who I am
I lived in the fear of being an imposter to myself
My inner self being fragmented and
I disavowed what I didn’t want to acknowledge
I felt incoherent and incongruent like a stranger to my own self
A stranger I was afraid to know
And that invited me into contemplation and
An insatiable quest to know my true being arose
I broke the walls of my belief system
And started a new journey discovering my core
And then I learned to embrace the stranger within me
And finally, could see that the stranger was a shadow
Of my failures, misguided actions and struggles
And as I moved towards openheartedness
Responding to the stranger within
The shadow vanished and there was no stranger
It was a unique, gifted, beautiful soul, that’s me