September 22, 2018

Performance

The stage is ready, I play my part
Exit-stage left, I then depart 
But the show isn’t over 
Not yet; it has only begun 
For that narrow alley, I have to cross
To head home alone, an albatross
In unsafe times like these
Even for a woman with nerves of steel 
It feels no less than an ordeal
To walk the streets alone 
The moon is frightened, the path is dark
The fear in my head and heart is stark
As I clutch my bag and clench my fist
They surround me in a drunken twist
Slurred speech armed with lusty gaze
Shocked to see me still unfazed
Unaware that the beast within them 
Has provoked the Goddess inside me
With pepper spray in my stead 
And fury blazing in my head
I open fire from my veins
The curtain rises yet again
This time though of an apartment window
A little girl sees them blinded
Screaming in pain, running amok
Panic-stricken in a state of shock
By the will of Durga, the wrath of Kali
The girl smiles at me; an inspiration
The desired end to the scary tales
That her grandma would often regale
Of how girls shouldn't clothe, too short too tight
Or walk around late at night
Of how they must hang their head in shame
And when teased or bullied, take the blame
The girl, her eyes shining bright 
Smiles at me for putting up a fight
And from that highrise building, 15th floor 
Through the curtain drawn open window
I receive
My first standing ovation


~ Priyanka Naik


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15 comments:

Sonia Chatterjee said...

Brilliant. This poem is heartbreaking and empowering at the same time.

Supriya said...

Beautiful poem, nicely penned down

Aditi Kapur said...

A part of Ma Durga is present in every girl. It's the time and will that decides the power. Beautiful poem, Priyanka:?

Sinjana said...

Just one word - Spellbound! This is an amazing poetry but hope it was true. If only men ever understood how it felt to live in constant fear, to be alert all the freaking time for no fault of ours

Pri said...

@ Sonia
Thanks Sonia. I am glad you liked it :)

Pri said...

@ Supriya
Thanks Supriya. Do vote for it :)

Pri said...

@ Aditi
Absolutely! I believe there is a Goddess in every woman. However, she only makes an appearance, when evoked or when provoked :)

Pri said...

@ Sinjana
Thanks Sinjana. A safe society for woman can only happen if each one of us becomes empowered enough to fight our own battle.
It is futile to expect all men to empathize with out struggles. We, as women, need to inspire ourselves and our own to be stronger...braver...more self-sufficient.

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