By: Akshita Chaudhuri
tell maa her daughter ran away
from home in search of a home.
tell my mother I am alright;
tell her I have my meals on time
and my heart breaks into more
pieces as her sobs reverberate
through the dungeons of my heart.
I can feel your hands caressing my hair,
I miss the taste of your dal
but I am on a journey to find peace.
I don’t want to open your old wounds,
you know this feeling of being caged
inside the four walls of what is
to be your home,
they placed iron bars on my windows,
little did they know my essence
had already flown away.
my soul is the terrains of Afghanistan,
I have lost my ability to breathe.
my heart is a grave,
here lies the coffins and caskets
of the eight-year-old me
the night she first saw abba
raising his hand on you,
the 12-year-old when she felt
her uncle’s grubby and filthy hands
crawling up her thighs,
your little girl is dead;
the thorns were too sharp
for the rose to survive.
I am running away in the search of my liberation.
I will not be covering my face anymore
but exposing my scars for the world
to marvel upon,
my face is a testimony to the fate
of the girls born in my house.
I will come back one day,
you couldn’t keep me imprisoned
and tied to the shackles of your patriarchy,
I can still smell your shirt reeking of misogyny.
I remember the night you slapped Ammi,
was it only because her waist was visible
or because no other man
could gawk at your property?
I remember you pulling me out of school
when I was 11 only because my skirt
was stained with blood,
are the bloods coursing through
our veins not the same?
why is your blood pure and mine impure?
I am a phoenix; I will rise from the ashes.
I emerged victorious in a war
I had fought against the
deep-rooted concepts of
chauvinism engrained in my family.
let the people of my land know,
I paved the way for the matriarchy to begin.
I am Akshita, the first of her kind
and this is my story.
Akshita is a 16 year old high school student from Kolkata. more often than not you’ll find her obsessing over poetry books, sufi music alongside a cup of coffee. She considers herself to be the first of her kind and says, revolution is her synonym