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A poignant poem on the trial and tribulations, the journey through the standards of the society and finally the distant hope of the revival of a woman!
I am the voice of the voiceless.
I am the forbidden trumpet call.
I am for you and I am you.
I am that choked tears beneath your throat.
I am the repressive sobs that you hide under your eyes.
I am the truth, no one wants to hear.
I am for you.
I am you,
It begins with tears, my birth that is.
In mildly frayed, tucked emotional baggage.
I grow up, running slower, paces shorter,
Than my “Male” counterparts.
I can touch and play,
With their toy guns and arrows,
Their crowd of similar breed,
Till I bleed from a “certain place.”
And then all I do,
I cannot sit on sheets or
Enter your holy place,
Or seek the God,
That foresees your demarcation.
I huddle up in the palm fronds,
That you carefully weave around me.
I’m calculatively placed inside a tomb,
You begin writing my eulogy.
I’m taught to answer in silence,
I’m taught to breathe and laugh,
Like a “Woman” should.
I softly ask myself,
“Why the boys laugh so loud, then?
Didn’t they bleed?”
With fleeting days,
I’m asked to cover up,
“More for your own safety”, I’m told.
I nod and obey, like I’m taught to.
They call me good.
They put leaden shields at the side of my head,
So that I’ll only walk straight,
The jeering and hoot of the boys,
I should avoid.
I should especially not,
Smile at the boy who makes my heart,
Skip a several beats.
Its taboo, remember?
And having saved, my ”flower” for so long,
They are happy to give me away,
To a new faceless stranger,
Who now, “owns me”.
I nod and softly speak, like I’m taught to,
I gently obey,
And all that has to do with him,
And all that extra baggage he brings,
I’m obliged to.
It’s “In Law” they say.
Which law? I silently ponder,
And I trip over my conscious sanity,
It loops like my wedding saree,
It suddenly frays and flays,
Before it tears to a million threads,
I pull it back, like Draupati,
My sanity won’t budge.
It’s a battle for days and years,
Till my children pop out of me,
One by one.
I cry when I hold each of their teeny selves.
They grow up,
But not with as much softness,
Like I was taught,
They play with toy guns and arrows,
And they fight boys,
And knock them off their bicycles.
They give some, black eyes.
I smile inside; Though,
I chide them, firm.
One day they want me to ask their dad,
For a vacation at my parent’s home.
I shriek for an instant and cover my mouth,
They ask again, For the second taboo.
And I decline.
“Why mommy? Please! Please Please!”
“I can’t” I answer, through tears and smiles,
“I have to ask permission” I tell them.
“Then ask! Ask ask!” they urge.
“Daddy won’t give permission” I tell them,
As softly as I can. For I know of countless women ostracized for leaving to maternal homes, I shiver.
“Why?” asks the eldest.
“Why won’t he let us go?”
“Daddy did not ask permission to you,
To go to his mommy’s house, did he?”
I silently smile, because I know,
Revival has finally come.
I can shed my head covering and finally look,
With renewed strength,
And upright eyes,
At the distant horizon.
A free woman image via Shutterstock
Poet. Published Writer. Spoken Word Artist. Entrepreneur. Avid Reader. Amateur Boxer. Wannabe Motivational Speaker. Dog
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