TWO SIDES OF A MAN | Mandeep Singh

Mandeep Singh.jpg

Instrumental details: Originally used by Kendrick Lamar for the song 'FEAR.' on his album DAMN. Re-make by NinetySix, a YouTube based producer:


This is a call from your professor

I’ve found the patient you’ll see.

Fifty minutes to the hour

One hour in every week.

Use the theory of therapy at the precipice of your minds.

I’ll see you at supervision

For now, good luck and goodbye.


I feel scared of the unknown.

A semester of textbooks on the mind seemed fun

So I don’t know why I’ve gone so unwilling to go gung-ho

My client is coming at any minute

Now my confidence plunged so…


pull it together

professional aura

My medical student mask tries to defect all my flaws

As I walk up a corridor that stretches into infinity



I open the door and inspect who is greeting me



He’s an:

Indian man

5’10 touch ’11.

Black designer jacket on

Understated but made to measure

Takes his right hand and shakes mine like he means business

He sounded shy on the phone so my mental conceived different


what do i offer?


what do i offer a man who’s so put together?

who knows how to stick to a plan?

i should probably stick to exams

i should probably stick to the body

my mind is running amok

tell me what could he get from it?

i chat about any topic to shackle up my neurotics

short walk and smaller talk as we travel up to the office

he’d travelled down from his job in the city to come and meet me

probably cancelled cocktails with his colleague to come and meet me then



As we reach our room.


Meeting place for 10 weeks.


Two chairs

And a clock

That ticks to deaths’ beat.


I sit and I say clichéd

So tell me about yourself


Where do I start?

Tell me the basics

My name is K

I’m ambitious as hell


And my age is a little bit more than yours

I’m 27

But I want to multiply what was made when my father came to this shore

I’m so assured


Not to brag but I’ve been killing it since I was four.

Killing it in my exams.

Pillaging when I played sports.

And I played four.

Winning in everything isn’t my recourse.

But I perform

Well under anything in which I’m involved.

And I resolve

To figure out everything using my resolve

But I get so

Caught up in negative I just can’t control

It started so

Long ago

Tell me what you recall

I was 13.

I ain’t said this to no-one ever before but I was





Everyone’s fragile.



Everyone’s been hurt.

Everyone suffers.

Not everyone’s been heard.

How much is your trust worth?


I was 13.

I was thirsty for first place.

Victory my oasis.

Every podium I embraced gave me leg up over my fate.

I was running my seventh race and I crumbled

Seventy metres

I crumbled

Heavy as breathing in honey

sour defeat left me crumbled

Me and my mummy done rushed to

 the hospital  gave my lung to the doctors who didn’t jump to any conclusions too quick

Making my body do flips

A few flicks of an X-ray and they sit

Solemn as monks

They found a tumour hiding under my  lungs.

They found a tumor.

And a room in which the treatment begun.

3 years

of after school medicine peddled my blood.

3 years

 the chemo ends and now the tumour is gone.


that sounds heavy

that sounds heavy

i wasn’t ready

my head a hurricane of ideas that my mouth was looking to empty

be careful and pick your words.

pick away but don’t hit no nerve

So that was over a decade.

How does it affect your world?

It changed everything

3 years

I wasn’t winning at everything

3 years

 I didn’t party with anyone now my finger’s no wedding ring

3 years

My disposition was delicate

Blood was curded with medicine

12 years

 have passed

and still i get negative

occasional pessimist.

occasional question on things like

“Why do my friends exist?”

Family’s forced.

Family’s permanent tethered by DNA.

But like myself at thirteen friendship’s delicately arranged.

“Why are they with me if they know that I’m weak?

Why did she turn towards her phone as I speak?

Why didn’t I offer them the food that I eat?”

and then I blame it on them 3 damn years

i know it makes no sense

but these are the things that I think.

We back and forth.

How can I take any credit?

We back and forth.

It was the doctors who did it.

We back and forth.

They said my confidence wicked

We back and forth.

But I’m not comfortable timid.

I’ll overcome all my limits.

Human potentials infinite.


Two sides of a man and now my empathy lands

Emptiness caged for 12 years that eventually sang

A song of pain

Soundtrack for every man

Every woman

Every child

Upon every land

Two sides of a man and now my empathy lands

Emptiness caged for 12 years that eventually sang


It’s been an hour since our session began

We end the way that we started

Purely professional

Stand and

we shake hands

and he’s gone.


Mandeep Singh is a medical student, rapper and saxophonist currently based at King's College London. Having experienced immeasurable (given existing methodologies, at least) health benefits from storytelling in rap and musical improvisation, he now seeks to understand how these benefits may work with, ambitions of implementing them in his practice as a psychiatrist and psychotherapist. He is inspired by Chekhov, Kendrick Lamar, Irvin Yalom and Andre 3000. His band, Passenger Casanova, will release their jazz fusion, hip-hop and progressive rock inspired EP in mid-June.