She was a torn garment, not worth mending.
After her husband crossed, his family cast her away to her old home.
Her parents cast her away to the backyard storeroom.
And now, the river had cast away her empty shell to the shore.
-Hindu widows, traditionally, give up all pleasures in life: good food, good clothes, music and human company. Often, they are dumped in widow homes and take up begging to survive. Not allowed to remarry, a lot of them choose to die instead.
Stirred by the burning sensation, she had come back from her grief-filled fog. She realised her clothes were dripping with oil; and she was burning on her dead husband’s pyre.
She tried to escape but her relatives pushed her back in until she stopped moving, all on the pretext of reuniting her with her husband.
She looked at the sky
With the longing
Of a bird in a cage
Through the small window
In her marital home – her prison.
“I hope you did not give in to your mother’s threat. She thinks marrying a man will ‘cure’ you. But if you can’t bear the touch…”
(A gasp and silence)
“Look, I know! The entire group knows and we are okay!”
(A sigh and silence)
“I have a spare room if your mother doesn’t understand.”
(After a long silence) “Can you call an ambulance, fast?”
-Based on a true story
She felt a stab of jealousy as her husband eyed a man with a longing he would never have for her.
If only the world was more resilient to people like him, she would have had a chance at love too.
-Based on true stories