I feel numb.
Not the way your foot feels
when blood flow gets restricted…
The tingling sensation goes
through the skin like strum.
Nor the kind you feel
Given before a surgery;
That’s a placating stifling numb.
It must be my fault. Father said so…
Though I don’t understand how…
I’m so naive, just so dumb.
Skipping around that I was
With excitement ample,
Hurried up to get dressed
for my betrothal;
He must’ve entered quietly,
Quite sure he didn’t knock;
I know I’d closed the door,
Maybe missed to lock;
I can be so unheeding like a bum.
Before I knew, all over me he was,
overpowering, pushing, groping,
Scratching like an animal;
I couldn’t, though I tried stopping;
Couldn’t even shout for help,
Helpless rivelets pouring and dropping;
Wondering how so much ugliness was hidden,
Behind a face so handsome.
Father, maybe you didn’t love me so,
But you were always my hero;
At my moment of despair
I just wished for you to be there
To save your little doll frail and fair,
From the filthy paws of that scum.
God did send you in time,
Before the beast could culminate his heinous crime;
But how could I face you
In my state so abhorrent,
I wished I could vanish
or simply die at that moment,
He took the opportunity to push his lie,
Said it was with my explicit consent;
I should’ve stated the facts but couldn’t out of shame,
And you took my silence admittance to the blame,
Didn’t you see my tears, and the truth hidden in my pain;
Or you simply chose to believe him for he’s your business chum.
O dad! I’d felt so dirty
Under his touch so repulsively vile,
But I felt dirtier under your gaze so accusing,
Probing me, holding me to an implicit trial,
Like a spike, blunt and deep,
stabbing me over and over again, ad nauseam.
And mother! even you didn’t step up for me,
Though you always said I’m your tiny crumb;
In your presence I was molested the second time over,
How could you just look away and stay mum!
You wanted me to hold my peace,
To go quietly through the protocol,
Hiding behind the glittery veil
The wounded body and mutilated soul;
Moving like a zombie, I complied to suffer,
Sans protest I laid myself on the altar,
As an immolation to the baalim.
Looked at me with eyes amored,
Held my hand, blushed a little,
Then smiled and proposed –
You look dazzling in this garb incarnadine,
Today on, I’ll be yours and you’ll be mine,
It’s such a auspicious moment
With celebratory air and a toast of wine;
All around are so happy dear,
then why is it that you look so glum!
The empathic words almost broke the dam
Holding the volcanic tempest restrained,
Wanted to howl, cry and scream,
To take me instanter to a far away land;
But dear, you too are a man
Will you believe, will you understand;
The humiliation, the pain, the anguish,
Will you ever be able to plumb?
Why is the woman always blamed?
Violated against her will, still held guilty;
It’s manly to be the perpetrator,
And being a woman is the culpability;
Dressed wrongly, at wrong place,
Or leaving the door unlocked,
Every action or omission is an invitation for assault;
Scantily dressed or all veiled up,
It always is her fault;
Living in the shadows from the moment she’s born,
Guarded, coveted, suppressed, used, sold, possessed and shorn;
Even for her progenitors, she’s nothing but a problem.
He takes my hand, to slip on the ring,
Something snaps inside with a twinge,
I pull back my hand,
Throwing back the veil I stand;
There are murmurs but I don’t care,
There are callings but I don’t hear,
Holding my head erect I start walking,
There’s no more pain and no more fear;
I look up – the clouds are gone,
And the skies look so amazingly clear,
I just walk on straight, never to turn back or veer;
There’s no anger, no sadness, nor the opprobrium,
All I feel is just numb!
Not the way your foot feels…
Nor the anaesthesia…
It’s the kind when you are about to die,
Or say – just reborn numb!
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