To be a Woman

A poem about the injustices that women continue to face
Profile picture of srupsha

Created by srupsha

Published on Oct 18, 2023
Grayscale photo of a woman looking into a the camera
Jyotirmoy Gupta, Unsplash

A note from the author: I wrote the poem on Women's Day thinking about the significance of the day and how we celebrate this one day, showing our reverence for women, yet we, as women, feel unsafe even today. I wanted to focus on how being a woman can become tiresome sometimes, especially in India, as we have to abide by certain norms. I also refer to the news that we hear of missing girls, of women being harassed and kidnapped, and through this poem, I want women to raise their voices against the violence women face.

To be a Woman

What is it than a submission,

celebration about how we turn


 and repulse this anatomy.

Female being, how to become a woman,

who is a woman,

who is a lady.

How many names have we imagined

to name our own selves, aching

blood wrath shattered visages in dismay, this time,

this moment pains me

As I say,

how tiring it

 can become sometimes to be

this woman,

clipped aside in the curtains dwelling afar,

preventing the rays from visiting in.

And how artfully we talk of the woods,

sense how the return from there is never easy,

 still pretend to

 let it hushed, as an unexplored wound in

 the depths of skin,

but we open up in closed

Spaces, guzlkhanas, togetherness

Yet how it all remains within. Silenced.

Yet we share

 the power

In our stories,

Every year,

 this is the time of iterations, the

 women’s history month, that one day styled after us,

but what of the entrenched disenchantment,

 this whole saga of missing girls,

 this soft whisper, this unsounding wail still

cracking the earth beneath,

can’t we settle this moment to an incantation,

tap the beat in silence,

bring back all those abandoned in the woods,

scatter the ravaged, the closed,

the secretive stories –

to navigate this self,

that is wholesome

in its vivacity,

this voice that must roar indefinitely,

this stride that must be unstoppable.


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