Author's Note: My first ever attempt at spoken word. My first ever spoken word poem. It speaks about being a modern woman living in urban India who, despite the trappings of civilization and the illusion of freedom, faces a plethora of overt and covert judgments about what being a woman is or should be.
Feedback, tips and encouragement would be much appreciated.
You say you love me and that just makes me cry,
Helpless and anguished hearing this bald-faced lie,
For in a heartbeat you’d tell me who you’d like me to be,
Whoever she is, she just isn't me.
She’s got hair less curly
and a head less full of fluff;
Ideas you call them- impractical, improper, volatile stuff.
I should laugh less loud, and smile a little more,
I shouldn't hug like a tramp, nor speak like a whore.
I should learn proper etiquette,
learn to properly discriminate,
and follow the rules I should,
when I call a man a friend,
or try live my values;
all two doz’ and a score.
My beliefs are commendable,
Though my voice should stay mum,
My passions are too passionate,
I should tone them down,
Be visibly serene,
Smile an upside down frown,
My independence is too manly,
My intelligence intimidating,
And the applause I often hear,
Just noise masking a collective sneer,
Not a man, they jeer,
Not enough of a woman.
Do my heels make me feminine?
My pants just compensation for lack of a penis?
If my motorbike casts me a dyke,
Would a scooty make me more girlish?
Not so much a girl; with contemptuous feminine wiles,
Just enough to not confuse our uninspired minds!
You come at me with machetes
Eager to carve my flesh to acceptable proportions,
All power to me,
Bah! You’re just going through the motions!
Women at the head in boardrooms,
Women on top in bedrooms,
It’s a new age you tell me,
And then I hear that guy
Telling his friend without a qualm,
There’re those you take to bed,
Then those others home to mom.
The one’s you take to bed
are those you’d buy a drink,
The one’s with a man’s morals,
They wouldn’t make a stink,
When you give them what they ask for,
And remind them who’s on top.
nor a woman as you’d like to define her,
I’m too big for your boxes,
Too me to fit an adjective,
And no, you do not love me,
Though I’m sure you think you do,
And maybe if I were cut up and served in pieces,
for some bites that’d be true.
So, NO you do not love me;
just the idea of me, who you’d like me to be.