Wednesday, May 23, 2012

what i learnt after watching 3 episodes of satyamev jayate

1. on one hand, we are killing our female foetuses because they are.. well, female.

2. we are also killing our brides and wives at the rate of 1 per hour because they are... well, female.

3. if you decide to get married and pay dowry, you are likely to end up in the icu in a foreign country, supported by the emergency services. or, u might commit suicide, in your own room. OR, you will be kindly pushed down the nth floor by your inlaws.

4. if you decide to refuse marriage as soon as the first demand for dowry (or anything in the nature of "contribution to family") comes up, you are likely to end up with a guy who wants to marry you - just because.

5. female children are killed because they have to be married off someday and there will be dowry. female brides are killed because they were married. ergo, marriage is bad for society because it leads to increased female mortality.

basically, i learnt that when women learn to say NO, they will find around them, a thousand accusing fingers, and maybe just one supportive hand. try and be that one supportive hand. please.

Monday, May 14, 2012

काठ का घोडा

काठ का घोडा 
असली नहीं होता 
उस पर चढ़ कर 
काठ के पर्वत , काठ की नदी , और काठ के खेत  
तो पार किये जा सकते हैं 
पर असली 
जलधारा भी 
टापी नहीं जा सकती ..

और काठ के खेत , काठ के पर्वत, काठ की नदी,
तो बस कल्पना में होते हैं .

इतना ही भर कर पाता  है 
काठ का घोडा 
उस से 
इतनी ही उम्मीद 
काफी है।

on childhood sexual abuse

right after Aamir Khan talks about it, the subject trends on our collective consciousness for the whole week. hats off to him for doing that.

one thing hit me in the show yesterday - children were not able to explain to their parents what was happening. that was important - one thing was the knowledge that it was "wrong" - but there was another - they did not have the WORDS to explain to their parents what was happening (i think i noticed it most in Harish's narrative. )

and this morning, i realised - shoulder is shoulder, but penis is "pee pee". stomach is stomach, but vulva is.. .well, mostly unnamed!

how can children explain what is happening if they dont even know the names of the organs they want to talk about. it is easy to say "my knee is hurt." because you know that your mother knows what "knee" means and what "hurt" means. but try explaining the EXACT same thing to a parent with your vocabulary of the names of organs .

and that, imho, is an important practical problem. teach your kids the names of ALL their organs, and functions. this is your penis. you use it to pass urine. this is your bum. within this bum, is a hole called the anus. you use it to pass solid waste. urine is liquid waste. potty(or whatever word you use for it) is solid waste.

take the shame out of it, and we might see a lot of children opening up about their organs.

while on CSA, i HAVE to talk abt the wonderful work that this blog has been doing for at least 2 years now - read survivor stories, get tips, talk to other people. -

vain hope, vainer thought

they will
wont they
make an account
of all the sighs
and the tears
of the earth?

they will, wont they,
in some bizzare cosmic audit
unearth the sins
that were bled and then buried?

someday, they will,
wont they
explain to me
just that...


Thursday, May 10, 2012

on bringing up a child..

the script is roman, but the poem is in punjabi, and speaks about a native punjabi belief that i believe in a lot.
main, ma..

tussi saarya ne
badi oonchi peeng jhulaayi mainu
maa ai, maa o...
meri ma ne
bas inna keha
tu meri jaayi
meri lendaar si
kisi pichhle janam di..

is janam vich
main tera udhar
tere sar
koi karz nahi chadaya
is janam vich
ai meri sewa sweekaar kar,
te meri jaan chhad...
teri meri
laindaari khatam..

is janam vich
meri usdi
lendaari khatam

te pher
tu aayon
khaure kede pichhle janam da bahi khata chuk ke
meri kukh vich payi
te main
saari umar
teri lendaari chukayi
ki tu
iss janam vich
meri sewa sweekar kar
te teri meri
lendaari mukki!
rough translation:
me, the mother.
the one everyone puts
on a pedestal:
mothers are this
and mothers are that.
but let me tell you
what my mother said
to me.
she just said,
"you, who has come from my womb
were my creditor
in an earlier birth
i died
without paying off your debt
and you
brought your debt
with you.
in serving you
i pay off
my debt
of an earlier birth
i do not
put a debt on you.
so here,
accept my service
in lieu of the debt
that i owed you
in a previous birth
and we are square."

thus ended
my mother's debt.

and then
god knows
with which book of accounts
you landed
in my womb.
and i
paid off your debt
in bringing you up.

so here,
accept my service
in lieu of the debt
that i owed you
in a previous birth
and we are square.

an entire blog dedicated to feticide in punjab..

how awesome is that!

thoughts on mothers day (mothers and daughters of my punjab)

ਮੇਰੀ ਮਾ
ਫੇਰ ਓੜੀ ਮਾ
ਫੇਰ ਓੜੀ ਵੀ ਮਾ

ਰੋਜ਼ ਸੁਵੇਰੇ
ਓਹੀ ਪਰਾਂਠੇ
ਓਹੀ ਮਖਣ
ਤੇ ਓਹੀ ਲਾਮੇ

ਰੋਜ਼ ਰਾਤੀ
ਓਹੋ ਝਿੜਕੀ
ਓਹੋ ਅਥਰੂ
 ਜੇੜੇ ਕਿਸੇ ਨਾ ਤੱਕੇ

ਨੀ ਮਾਰ ਜਾਣੀਏ
ਆਖਾਂ ਵਾਲੀ
ਰੋਜ਼ ਰਾਤੀ
ਪਾਠ ਕਰਦੀ
ਮੇਰੇ ਸਿਰਹਾਣੇ
ਸੁਖਮਨੀ ਸਾਹਿਬ

meri ma
pher odi ma
pher odi vi ma

roz suvere
ohi paranthe
ohi makhan
te ohi laame

roz raati
oho jhidki
oho athru
jede kise na takke

ni mar jaaniye
aakhan vaali
roz raati
paath kardi
mere sirhaane
sukhmani sahib

rough translation:
my mother
and before her
her mother
and even before that
her mother

every morning
the same breakfast
and the same taunts
on eating too much.

every night
the same cuss words
the same tears
always unshed.

the lips that say
"may you die!"
every night
by my pillow
the prayer
- The Prayer for Happiness.

Tuesday, May 01, 2012

more Manjeet Kaur Tiwana

from the poem मेरी मिटटी के जाये 

हादसों में घिरे लोग 
अपने साथ ले आते हैं 
दुस्साहस भरी अकड
और थोड़ी सी आग 

फिर वो मधम  रौशनी में 
हादसों की आँखों में आँखें डाल कर 
रात भर जागते रहते हैं 
हादसों के हुजूम में 
हादसों के मुकाबिल 
हादसों के खिलाफ 

शकुंतला की अंगूठी वाली मछली को समुद्र ने निगल लिया है 
क्या विश्लेषण के पास समुद्र का हल है?

सुनहरे चोले वाला 
एक शरारती साधू है 

इस वक़्त जब की
मैं ख्वाहिशों की आखिरी साँसों पर लटकी हूँ 
तुम सब आओ 
मेरे सीने में से अपने अपने अस्तित्व की 
एक एक कील तो खींच दो 

मैं विदा होने से पहले 
अपनी तकदीर को माफ़ करना चाहती हूँ 


manjeet kaur tiwana's poetry

i have only read one of her books - uneenda vartaman (sleepy present)
and every time one reads her, one loves her even more..

कुछ लडकियां बनारसी साड़ी होती हैं,
जिनको एक बार देख कर ही जी जुड़ा जाता है..

कुछ लडकियां सुनहरी फरमे में जड़ी रंगीन  तस्वीर होती हैं,
जो किसी भी द्रविंग रूम में सजाई जा सकती हैं

कुछ लडकियां पच्छिमी बयार होती हैं
जो बिना बोले
सीने से लग कर चली जाती हैं

कुछ लडकियां होती हैं तितलियाँ
जो बचपन के किसी शौक के पीछे
उम्र भर पन्नों में क़ैद पड़ी रह जाती हैं

कुछ लडकियां होती हैं
बेगम अख्तर की गज़लें
जो बहुत कम लोगों को पसंद आती हैं

कुछ लडकियां माँ की आहें होती हैं

क्या पता था
वीरान नदी पर
किश्तियों का पुल तो बनेगा
लेकिन रिश्तों का शहर कभी नहीं बनेगा

क्या पता था
कंपोज़ की गोली बनेगी बिचौलिया
मेरी नींद के साथ सुलह करवाने के लिए
क्या पता मैं कब
पहाड़ की और मुंह कर के चली जाऊं
और तुम
मुझे ढूंढते रहो
उसकी आँखों में
चुप्पी में जड़ा  हुआ शीशा
तुम्हारे ज़ुल्म की गवाही