Monday, January 7, 2013

Poem: Dented and Painted

I am a woman

Pricked by thorny remarks
on my girlhood, staining
my innocence with spite

Stung by the bite of leather
on my skin, trying to whip me
into submission

Choked by dreams imprisoned
in the kitchen’s stifling heat,
gasping for freedom

Disfigured by acidic attacks
seeking to silence my voice
which rises above his

And you call me dented,
like a car’s fender, when
I’m scarred all the way through?

I am a woman

Daubing myself
in the black and white
do’s and don’ts, prescribed at birth

Smearing my face
with the blues
of monotonous obedience

in the earthy brown
of a mother’s warmth

Changing my makeup
and switching roles
faster than the best of all divas

And you call me painted –
a hasty cover-up job – when
I am a mask, down to my very core?

If the Delhi rape incident revealed anything, it's that many of the people our so-called representatives, are themselves sexist pigs who can't (won't?) do anything to end the vicious cycle of male chauvinism and supremacy. My reply to one among the spate of callous remarks, courtesy Abhijeet Mukherjee (Prez Pranab's son), who commented that the women who protested at Delhi were 'dented and painted.'


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