Society’s Many Crimes: Was It Them Or Was It You?

Posted: July 4, 2014

When society errs, we are quick to blame ‘the other’. This evocative poem asks an important question – who is to blame?

When men and women blame social folly

They must stop to think




What brought it to this day?

Was it criminals who brought it to rouse

Or was it you breeding it in your house?

Was it the foetus that the truck driver killed?

Was it a social norm you gave birth to and fuelled?

Was it the dowry that the Kirana owner demanded?

Was it a working wife that you wanted?

Was it the mini skirt of the damsel to blame?

Or your instructions to wear duppatta at home that set the game?

Was it the bride’s parents who committed suicide?

Was it your in-laws who don’t drink water from your side?

Was it the pan shop owner who eve-teased the dame?

Was it your harmless comment that validated and entitled his game?

Who started the first domestic violence?

Did your choice to train your working daughter in cooking just establish a society license?

Who objectified the raped woman?

Who killed the unborn foetus?

Was it them or was it you

With whatever in your daughter’s life you do

Did you teach her to support her parents?

Did you teach her to expect her husband to cook?

Did you teach her to consider herself equal?

Before society planned her sequel?

Sequel to follow up with what you started in your house

Sequel to continue building the rouse

The status you built, the expectations you set

The demands you make, the fight with your wife you rake

You set the stage for her to be downtrodden

For society to sabotage her identity damp and sodden

For when she gets teased, raped, killed

Or when she gets quieted, de-prioritized and quelled

One makes the TV news

The other makes your family drama and truce

Who suffers all along?

Who harbours this rape song?

Who was it?

Was it them?

Was it you?

Was it many opinions and solutions few?

But while you debate those opinions

Or nurture the news

Guard the daughter who is stepping into ruse

Guard her identity that gets raped

By you

Before it does by

That man who was hanged yesterday.

 

Pic credit: Bartelomeus (Used under a CC license)

 

 

 

Prathibha is a cocooned wordsmith in the skin of a technology marketing professional. She hopes

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