For Our Women

By Srijani Rupsha Mitra

How we have learnt the art of hiding 
Behind veils, foliage of security, under the sheaths of the over- protective fathers,
Have you heard the constant murmur and whisper of getting back early to home, before the nestword-bound birds arrive at their homes for resting,
Before the ‘evil spirits’ would upturn our welkin and engulf us in their dark webs of vicious cycles,
Burdening, tiring, burning like in an ordeal – all fire and ashen bits to prove our purity, decency.
How we are taught to be ingenuous creatures, yes, merely creatures without the teaching of  building our own startling power,
And fighting the world with fierce ire.
Yes, it is sometimes tiring to be a woman, it is tiring to be an Indian woman, shackles raised, and the borders of enclosure drawn,
Think of our missing girls, think of the nights of battling for our rights, think of the bloody offerings of our mothers,
Isn’t it time to discard the veils, and speak for ourselves, with heads held high? 
To the sky and isn’t it time to scream out loud and not hush of the woods, or its swishing silence. 
But turn wild and bright with lions breathing in between our thighs.

© 2024

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