Homeless, but in our homelands
Homeless, but in our homelands
Don't shoot the pigeons, as there aren't many postmen here.
I live in a country of purloiners,
of greed ,
of itchy-palm opportunists,
Each one pilfering coffers;
coffers of Mahar's body.
They sadle the soul with darkened stones,
plunge a knife into her bosom until sore.
Her body is a canvas of blood painting,
brains meltdown like the wax seals the envelope.
An envelope filled with casteist slurs and graphic rape,
the writing unfazed by tears rolling fqom each cursed alphabet ;
for cursive writing is a more worshipped shrine.
Decades of history lessons and treasuries are still pilfered by authority.
I live in a city of untouchability,
of cultural otherness,
Every nook and corner have posters of names,
not mice running amok.
Names of missing Chandal women, Chamar thieves
and sold Dhobi women.
Namasudra girls cry through the posters,
for they are a caricature, nothing more bit everything less.
Monsters are more than fairytales, they are husbands, uncles, upper caste maliks and the
Slut ,whores and Sutradhar
are tossed like trash;
commonly but unto a young face, innocent and untouchable.
Centuries of fights for human rights; corrupt hands and deaf ears stay content while young
Musahar bodies and their question of identity are cremated.
I may not fear losing blood , but I fear losing breath.
Maa asked me to keep quiet
Because silence is something a woman and a shudra ,
be fluent in.
And must for a Marecha women.
She should endure everything that comes in way,
afterall she is a epitome of patience.
I never understood that
until I saw a nine year old Dalit silencing herself.
Ripped apart vagina
and scarred chest
because she was taught silence with a chocolate,
from a stranger
and slaps from Brahmins.
We breathe same oxygen
and bleed the same RBCs.
It's just your shoulders,
are few centimetres above mine
are fairer than mine.
Yours offer libations at the temple,
whilst mine swept the ground.
I never understood silence until
I met a Jaliya professor,
who shut herself up with abuses hurled
by her abusive Principal;
because her mother too taught her
that earning, employment
doesn't prevent you from cooking
after all that's a woman's sole job.
She should do that silently
and never should she dare to
raise her voice against a man,
because you know how men are;
They work so hard.
That Chuhra independent women
who raised her child away from her husband,
silently bore the burden of her childhood lover.
Her life partner's dishonesty;
because silent is what a woman should be
atleast for the sake of her child.
That 21 year old Valmiki girl
was silent too
who was married to a man twice her age.
She was choked and taught how to be silent.
Every night her hands were tied up and a man inside her without her consent.
Silence is what society taught her.
A wife must be dutiful, devoted, selfless and
Silent is something I will never be
even when taught, recited and chanted;
day in and day out,
The society I live in,
and everyone who is shut;
not because I'm not woman enough,
not because I'm a shudra born to do this;
but because I'm a woman who carries
her self respect high
and patience low.
I'm a shudra woman who can't be shut.
I'm a shudra woman aware of my constitutional grant of rights and liberties.
I will rebel
and not without a cause.
Surviving is my occupation, living is too elite to earn.
How do I forgive a family, I cannot divorce?
How do I forgive a mother , who despises me?
says you're a untouchable, says she was cursed, says die
forgets the grade I study in, forgets me
competes with the ache swallowing me whole
or is the ache swallowing me whole
How do I forgive a mother, I cannot find?
How do I forgive a father, who sniffs at me?
says you're filth, says he was dumped, says die
forgets my birthdays, forgets it's to be celebrated
competes with the rage burying me down
or is the rage burying me down
How do I forgive a father, I cannot evade?
How do I forgive a society, I cannot live-in with dignity ?