Our mothers were blinded by the pretence of love,
their existence dictated and written with pens inked in patriarchy,
that became textbooks for every girl
yet to be born.

Every day when my father returned home,
my mother, acting in accordance
to the expression and gazes of my grandmother,
hauled herself to her feet after an exhausting day of household chores,
to serve her king of a husband.

As a seven-year-old,
I believed that to be a woman,
meant to be reticent,
to be submissive to the pernicious laws of the house,
even if it meant the slow death of your soul.

// sophistry wrapped with a red ribbon. //

Womanhood and freedom are strangers,
lingering under the blanket of fear –
shades of sepia,
like those of unopened envelopes
and unvisited nostalgia.

// history cannot be rewritten,
but freedom, for women, remained an anachronism. //

A female with a voice against injustice or oppression,
is perceived as violating the sanctity of womanhood –
she is seen as an outcast,
waging war against a wolf pack.

Every time a woman fights, 
challenges or opposes despotism or abuse,
she ignites a spark in many others like her –
courage tugs at the hem of every corset,
waiting to creep into the ribs like caterpillars,
and when it tears open that envelope of fear,
it metamorphoses into butterflies,
making known to every woman,
where her freedom lies,
and what womanhood actually feels like –
a process so suffocating, yet so beautiful.

About the Author:

Nuzhath Athaullah is a student of psychology from Chennai, India. She considers her faith, family, chocolates, and sleep as the most important things to her in the world. She can usually be found reading a book (most likely a crime or psychological thriller). She is passionate about poetry and photography and aspires to become a clinical psychologist who writes great poems. Her long-time bucket list item of getting featured in a magazine can finally be struck off, thanks to Isele

Image by axonite from Pixabay