BORN FREE,

On Woman’s Day
Just want to say…
Don’t depend…
On destiny and fate…
They are sentiments…
They can wait…
You’re the XX person…
YOU can’t be late…
Seize the day,
Seize your life…
Seize everyday…Create your fate..
Don’t listen to hype…
Listen to YOU!
Fly like a kite…
And if you can’t fly… yet…
At least, on your mark,
Get set…
“Go” make take a while,
But it’ll happen…you bet!!

I CAN!

I’m no one to talk,

No one to opine…

What captive means…

Because freedom is mine…

I have power…

That’s taken for granted…

So I can act, speak and write…

Flexibly, unrestricted…

I’m free everyday…

In every way…

And so are my kin…

We don’t fight to fit in…

Sometimes, not even to win…

So we can’t even imagine…

What not being free is like,

Because you only realise,

When freedom is denied.

Every human being…

Has a right to dignity…

To criticise freely…

To live as they want to be…

Being oppressed is a trap,

And we have to fight back…

It’s a cycle of a kind…

When you’re born into it…

But some don’t seem to mind…

Being imprisoned isn’t the physical chain…

The mental bound, so hard to break

At a single spot, you tend to remain…

You’re transfixed in your head…

And the worst part is…

You become intellectually dead…

Then you just accept …

Whatever is flung,

You’ve no inclination…

You’ve come undone…

Just as oppression…

Is the oppressor’s habit,

To bear the oppression…

Becomes a practice…

So if you’re being bludgeoned,

Even in a small way,

Don’t brush it off…

It’ll pile up in days…

And when the pile’s high,

And you want to get out,

There’s more rubble to clear…

No one hears the shout…

So start very small,

And go into big,

Because everyday…

There are issues to dig…

There are leaves to rake,

It’s a leap of faith…

In your throat,  theres a lump,

But never mind, JUMP!

Take a stand…

Make your mantra, “I CAN!”

This brings to mind, 1936…

When Jesse Owens won…

Four golds in the Olympics…

And for an achievement as this,

He should’ve been revered,

As an icon and hero…

Of those Hitler-ruled days…

The Olympics were in Berlin…

Where Hitler was all in…

But the Dictator refused…

To acknowledge his win…

And what was Jesse’s sin?

Well he was African American,  you see…

And he had, moreover, crushed…

The myth of Aryan supremacy!

But even within the U.S.A…

He wasn’t invited to the White House,

No, a black man of that day…

Was controversial in the White House of A!

”The battles that count, aren’t …

The ones for gold medals,”

Owens did say,

”It’s the struggles within, the inevitable…”

Are the battles that make us stable…

“One chance is all you need,”

The words should be an anthem…

One word, one voice, one deed…

One thing to expel the Phantom!

Raise a voice,

No matter how stoic…

A whisper is fine…

It’s still an objection…

It’s something heroic!

So when you get pushed around,

Inside your home or out…

Don’t think you’re being kind…

And just shut your mouth!

It starts with everything small…

”Just get me a glass of water,”

Pipes an ever-lazy daughter…

“Oh since you’re going there …

Do my work too…”

Is said without care…

And sure! You’re doing them a favour…

Going out of your way to help…

But DOING becomes a habit…

And the askers won’t stop, you can bet!

I never realised this…

I’d get tired to the hilt!

I thought I was being helpful …

As if my life depended on it…

But the demands, they were reaching their limit!

And my mind did a double back flip!!

Sooner than later, I was….

Doing things for others all day…

Without anything for myself…

It was slavery in a better way!

I reached the point where…

I was doing things for the help!

The smart alecks would come and say,

“Madam, I don’t know the way…

To do this, or that,”

I’d jump up then and run…

And the help’s job was done!!

Now I know that just because I…

Chose to do all that I did…

You’ll say, she wanted to do it,

And now, why should she crib??

Because, my dear reader…

I want to bring the point home…

That if you say “yes” to something….

It may become hard to say “no”!

Yes, this is a meagre example…

I’m way freer than most,

But if we can’t be free mentally,

Then we might as well be ghosts…

And we, who are “born free”…

If we ourselves cannot be…

Chainless and unbound…

How can we, possibly see,

What the enslaved are going through?

How can we think we are…

The “privileged” few ?

Because privilege should be a weapon…

And a weapon to be used…

To help others to make a choice…

And somehow raise a voice…

In this very way…

The idea of freedom…

Must take sway…

So an awareness of freedom…

Needs to be spread…

And we can do a lot …

Once we get it into our priveleged heads!

Like I make sandwiches, everyday…

For a homeless lot that stay…

On a promenade that they work on,

It’s a temporary place…

And I feel thrilled as I ask,

“Do you like these jam ones I bring?”

They say, “Yes, but bring some others tomorrow!”

And as I nod “yes”, my heart sings…

Because this has to be a good thing!

They’ve exercised a choice,

A decision in their own voice…

Freedom to choose what they want …

(a lot like we do in a restaurant!!)

It’s just the filling in a sandwich…

May seem incredibly small…

And though they may be bound…

In so many other ways…

They’ve felt a whiff of freedom today…

And I pray, fervently pray…

That I can give more of such…

Every single day!

As Pierre de Coubertin said…

“The essential (in life) thing…

Is not conquering…

But fighting well…”

And this can quell…

Any kind of hell.

 

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Pristine Cuisine

As the French say,

“Zee foood eeez zeee life!”

So cooking that food…

Requires a wife!

Not necessarily though,

You see, I know…

Many men…

Are so…

Possessed with…

Culinary zest,

That makes a multitude of men,

The world’s best chefs!

Very adept with a ladle,

Proving that, in the kitchen,

They are more than able…

A spice bowl, and it’s haute cuisine!

More adroit than Julia Child…

That Cordon Bleu queen!

See…some men that I know…

(My husband is first)

Can stir up a storm…

Then quenches his thirst…

With Glenmorangie and…

After working up a sweat…

Churns out his best…

Creole mutton stew…

And then I say, “Phew!”

I’m just glad that it’s over…
Gravy’s not flung to Dover …
My kitchen’s intact ….
And though I cannot deny the fact….
That my husband cooks well…
I always dwell….
On the state of that room
Where the food aromas loom
My kitchen has to be…
Always squeaky clean!
I can’t help it…. I’m Parsi….
So you see,
I’m obsessed with hygiene!
And though a Parsi can eat….
The preparation of food,
However delectably sweet….
Must never be compromised….
However delicious the meat,
Greasy chef must not be spared!!
So, I ask should men be allowed
To cook without care?
Your answer no doubt
Will meet my furious stare…
Everyone thinks….
Without so much as a blink,
That if men can cook…
Women shouldn’t think…
(Shouldn’t spy, give dirty look!)
Think about the oil
That spills on the sink…
The kitchen cloth burnt…
The sauce on the brink….
The butter stained counter…
My friends think I’m ungrateful
And my laments are a downer!
They wish they had….
An apron-clad hubby….
And cooking would be done
In flamboyant (albeit grubby)
SPLENDOR!!
Who’s worried about
The bouillon blemished blender!!
Then there are men,
Called lazy and langorious!
Veritable sloths….
No charm, no wit, their lot….
Is portly and salacious ….
Beer drinking specimens
Who think they work too ‘hard’
While as wife is at their beck and call….
They stay lodged like lard….
They blame and blame….
That’s the only game….
They know to play…..
For all they’re good at….
Is to simply stay…..
On that sofa, at that spot,
Forever, for tomorrow, for today….
So I ask myself this now…..
(Getting back to grimy cookhouse),
Do I prefer a resident chef?
Or an indolently idle spouse?!?
I’ll take the messy, dirty grime!
(Creating grime is not a crime)
Condoning splattered walls of food…..
(I must confess, it always smells good)
Is a smaller price to pay….
Than dealing with an ungrateful man……
So my Gordon Ramsay stays!
And so do his flambés!!!!

 

 

 

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Fighting the Good Fight:Of Her-oes & Other Equal Woes…..

Why have ‘a day’ to celebrate womanhood?

Sisterhood, brotherhood?

Other days…..

Aren’t they good?

A day for love?

And childhood?

For motherhood?

Are the rest of the days……

Only to brood??

Its everyday, I say!

Man with woman,

Citizen with citizen,

Black with white,

Kids with bullies……

Colours that hide …..

From the light…..

Countries with countries…..

Everyday is a day….

To fight the good fight…..

Inequality happens….

In every hour, somewhere…..

It isn’t confined,

So we have to care…..

There once was a boy in my school,

My school called Lampton High…..

And he was teased and badgered…..

Morning, noon and night…..

Why, you may ask,

Why, oh why?

Well, because he was timid and shy……

He often broke out in a cry…..

His name was Samuel Boone,

But people called him ‘Samantha’!

Because of his delicate looks……

And for still believing in Santa…..

This was when we were thirteen…..

They said, “God’s made a mistake!

He’s produced  a beautiful queen!

And confused this human being!”

Everyday for Samuel,

Was a torturous day…..

“The girly girl has come to school,”

The kids would laugh and say…..

In the long lunch line……

Boys would clear the way…..

“Ladies first,” they’d say….

When would this go away??

Samuel thought as tears…..

Welled up on his eyes….

This tear stained face…..

Was his trademark for all time…..

Children can be mean,

But they can be righted in time…..

Samuel waited and watched…..

Brave in the ordeal, meanwhile…..

Our teacher, Mrs. Baker,

And another, Mr. Lewis…..

(Baker was a sort of mater)

Their idea was this…..

One Monday, they announced….

That a day had been selected,

On which a winner would be pronounced,

For dressing as opposite sexes!

“Let’s see how you all find…..

Life on the other side!!”

The children were excited…..

The children thought it was fun…..

And enthusiasm was infectious,

As disguise trying had begun!

On the day of the main contest…..

It was amusing to see…..

‘Girls ‘ giggling in jest,

‘Boys’ with a swagger so neat!

I was dressed as a boy too….

Hair gelled back and slick….

White shirt, black trousers, laced shoes…..

Trying to make the impression stick!

My mother, frank as she is…..

Took out her Polaroid cam…..

“Shez wait, I must have a pic…..

Of my pretty little man!”

Now something hit me quick….

I hated when mum called me that…..

Though it was just in joking….

I wanted her to stick to fact!

Samuel was just a boy…..

With an angelic face,

Which should have been a joy…..

To behold at any rate!

Mrs. Baker and Mr. Lewis,

Entered the classroom at last…..

Muffled whispers weren’t missed….

As the gaunt Mr. Lewis asked,

“Well, how do you feel boys and girls?”

“A bit strange, but not that much!”

Replied the mean boy with the curls….

“Well, you don’t look the same as such!

You’re beautiful now, dear Simon!”

Exclaimed Mrs. Baker, and then…..

The class rang out like a siren….

With whistles, and catcalls, when…..

Simon shouted out aloud,

“I’m not beautiful! I’m a boy, just the same!

Please don’t call me that!

I don’t like being called names!”

The teachers smiled at each other,

And Samuel was smiling too…..

“So now you’re all in a bother,

When names are being called at you!”

Simon, his head down in shame,

Said, “I’m really sorry, I am!”

The teachers pointed him to Samuel,

And Simon, as gently as a lamb……

Said sorry to Samuel,

As he shook Samuel’s hand …..

Now Mr. Lewis spoke,

“It’s not nice to be amused…..

At another’s expense, or poke…..

Fun, at innocent folk!”

Whether you’re born as XX,

Or whether you are XY….

No one is better than the next….

And you have no right to malign…..

Looks may keep differing,

But what matters is INSIDE….

HUMANITY must be seen….

And no one has to hide…..

We are all equal in the fact…..

That we are all different like that…..

The air that we breathe is the same….

That’s what keeps us living….

Having a different name…..

Shouldn’t stop us from giving….

As I’ve grown into what I am,

I think it’s all so bizarre…..

That people have to still fight for equality,

In this day, and age, and hour…..

We’ve started to raise daughters like sons….

And that’s not at all too bad,

But we should have the courage to raise sons more like daughters…..

We don’t , and that’s just sad…..

Mrs. Baker’s finale speech,

And one I’ll never forget,

“Never dish out something……

That you don’t expect to get!”

 

 

 

 

 

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Women’s Days-Thank you Emmeline!

Let’s trace this day,

Called “Woman’s Day”……

Back to a time…..

When men held sway…..

(and only men ever had a say!)

There was that era….

In nineteen-oh-three,

When a lady couldn’t vote,

But was expected to make tea!

She ‘had to’ bear children,

And be the good wife…..

She couldn’t complain,

But in kitchen held knife!

So a brave little dame,

Emmeline was her name,

Roused all English women…..

To legitimize their claim…..

(England, since then, has not been the same!!)

This Suffragette Movement,

So called by the Mail,

Made women infamous,

Temporarily ‘ungracious’,

But by all means and numbers….

These gals were courageous!

In the meantime,

The husbands, fathers, brothers,

Were perplexed, furthermore vexed….

How could wives, sisters, mothers,

Take to streets with such text?

On posters, in red….

“Votes for Women!”

It said!!

These women were mocked……

They stood their ground,

And men were left shocked,

At revolt all around,

A frenzy newfound,

That seemed to confound!

Emmeline Pankhurst,

And then, Anne Kenney….

Were willing to die,

For the cause of many…..

They starved themselves ill…..

Were beaten at will….

But the righteous mob….

Couldn’t be stilled!

Multitudes were arrested…..

Put behind bars,

But these damsels attested…..

To the fact of ‘on par’…

Though it was known,

For the most part in England,

Other countries around the globe…

All had suffragette women….

England was late,

In accepting suffrage,

But finally, they did,

In nineteen twenty eight,

When women of the age,

Of twenty one could vote…..

And this was just the start….

Of a beginning of note……

But all this makes me wonder….

Have women really reached,

The top of that mountain,

That equality peak?

It starts with a state of mind….

And you don’t need anyone….

(or for that matter, anything)

For it to be defined!

 

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REAL

In all these years I’ve lived…..

I’ve come to learn a fact….

That no one wants your honesty,

And no one wants your tact….

They don’t want what’s white…

They prefer what’s black!

Your candor is rebuffed,

And then you’re mocked,

Sometimes roughed up,

And being a real person….

Is something not so loved…

Instead you’re pushed and shoved!

If you’re genuinely nice,

And truest to yourself….

It’s considered now a vice….

And then you tend to delve

Into your inner being,

But worry not, my friend…

That’s just their way of seeing!

So I always tell my child

(Because upbringing is everything)

That a multitude of ‘friends’,

‘Likes’ and all the ‘pals’….

Won’t be there in the end…

It’s better still to have

Two or three real gems!

But niceness isn’t nice,

And you’re judged by bulk beside you…

But why be judged at all,

Whether you have no friends, or twenty, or two??

It doesn’t matter at all,

‘Collecting’ has become a habit….

It’s an accumulation epidemic…

Of the human vapid….

Just like some believe…

Self worth is how much you own…

It’s the same with people…

Esteem rises the more you’re known…

But self worth comes from inside,

And behind others, no one should hide….

Externalizing the self….

So it’s actually off it’s shelf…

And identifying with the rest…

Is really no test….

Of you being your very best….

Because in large groups

You tend to

Go along and get carried,

They bend you…

They mould you into

Something you’re not,

Were never meant to be….

And then it’s too late, though you see….

Now you’re in conflict as you want to be you…

But you cannot be that…

And there’s nought you can do….

So you face an emotional

Withdrawal of a sort…

It comes at a price

And a mental onslaught

Of thoughts, they’ll engulf, while….

Those same thoughts beguile….

But such upheaval in mind

Is good for the soul,

If it releases your true self,

And you seize control….

And a myriad possibilities

Will now unfold….

So give yourself this gift….

The gift of being you…

Be real…..In this life….

Be truer than true….

That’s all you have

To really do!

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Silence Strong

Silence can make…

It’s own unique noise,

And silence has….

It’s very own voice….

It speaks volumes,

Without pitch…

Without decibel,

It’s a kiss….

Now a smile,

It’s a frown…

Lasts a while,

It’s a tear…

Barefoot steps,

Ever near…

It’s thinking,

Involuntary blinking,

And winking…

It’s pondering…

Something,

Deep in thought….

It’s quiet,

But it’s not…

Weak, but brave…

Silence can often

Quell the hate…

It’s magic,

The somber

Solace is not tragic…

It’s a wave,

It’s a hug…

An omnipresence…

A hush, a tug….

But though unspoken,

Silence speaks

A thousand words….

And quietude peaks….

Though nothing is heard,

It’s all understood….

In the feeling….

Mute mood….

Silenced, but….

Not defeated…

It’s a lull…

Often needed…

Reverent,

Not conceited…

And sadly,

Not heeded…

Patience is silence…

Silence is strength…

Silence is relaxed…

Time well spent…

It’s therapy….

It’s theory…

Uplifting

When we’re weary,

And if silence

Could speak….

It would vocalize

That it’s a boon…

To utilize….

A decision to be wise….

A fire is silent,

But flames are strong…

The glow is powerful,

Igniting and long,

A lingering blaze….

In a candle that stays….

Water is silent,

Tranquil, serene…

Yet it tells…..

Of things unseen…

It’s a miniscule puddle,

A very large lake…

A sweeping sea….

Yes, silence can be…

All things great….

Immense and tall….

All things slight….

And trivial and small….

Silence is nature….

The mountain and tree…

Butterfly on the wing….

A stray Autumn leaf…

Silence is a veil

Of mist, it surrounds,

And snow is silent…

As it makes it’s way down….

Swimming languidly,

Silence is a croc….

Spying on it’s prey….

Eyes firmly locked…

Silence is a slow,

Sauntering breeze…..

The blowing of dandelions

In grass on their knees…

Silence is sleep,

The chronicle of dreams,

Silence is when

Our inner voice screams…..

Silence is peace,

For noise fires war…

Silence is a portal,

To open closed doors….

Silence tells stories,

If we just wait to listen….

We can hear so much more…

In the humble things written…

Silent is the quill

That touches the sheaf,

But paper comes alive…

At the touch of a scribe….

Books are silent,

Yet say a lot,

Bringing to life

Reader’s thought….

Silence is when mother

Combed my hair….

Tenderly touching…

With devotion and care….

Being all alone…

Is being silent, yet…

It isn’t being lonely,

It’s a moment to get…

A hold of your being…

Project, introspect…

Silence is art…

Stark marble in form….

A work in progress…

Is silently borne….

Structure is silently

Built from it’s roots…

When a bloom…

Gradually transcends…

Into shoots…

Silence is anger,

Silence is pain,

Silence can shock,

But it’s never in vain…

Silence is love…

Silence is shy….

Silence is a swallow,

Flying on high…

Silence is happy….

Silence is sorrow…

Silence is hope…

A new perspective…

On the ‘morrow….

It’s a look,

A glance,

A scent,

A trance…

A prayer….

A wish….

That’s what silence

Is…..

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The ‘Tech’nique of Life

Belligerent, yet happy….

This was a recent past….

Till ‘tech’ did come along….

And broke our human grasp….

On all things slow, yet skillful,

Little did we know…

That the ‘tech’ world would take us….

Where we didn’t want to go…..

But yet most of us, if not

All, have caught the bug,

We’re in ‘tech’ territory now….

Without old fashioned hug….

Instead we send a graphic

Detail of a kiss,

And call it an emoticon…..

Something’s quite amiss!

What’s emotion then,

Without ‘personal’ present?

It’s just an empty face….

Indifferent, ambivalent….

I understand the world….

Is an ever changing place,

But must we change ourselves,

At ever increasing pace??

I often hear this phrase…

“Changing with the times,”

But humans lose all grace,

When machines control their lives…

Depression has gone up,

Ten fold, I heard the last….

And this statistic increase….

Is racing by so fast….

People don’t want letters….

The post is dying quick,

This ‘tech’ thing has been growing…

Like insidious slick…

So clever, it has been,

So devious and so sly…

A drug some are addicted to….

I cannot tell a lie….

Now without it, we can’t live…

Everyday depending so much…

On Facebook or on Twitter….

That’s how we express love….

And our children,

What of them?!?

They’ll be left…..

With this mindless ‘gem’

That changes personality…

There’s just no humility…

A total lack of empathy,

And yet we think,

It sets us free!!

All sanity is gone….

At a heavy cost….

And the icing on the cake?

We deny that we’re lost!

Two faced, you…..

May call me,

For I am using ‘tech’…..

Yet, there’s a difference in me….

It doesn’t rule my head!

I doesn’t rule my heart…

Rather, I rule ‘it’….

That makes poetess me….

Lesser of a twit!

A mental dependence….

On ‘tech’, people face….

And we call ourselves…

A HUMAN race??

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