between you and me


I can marry who i please
i can silence you with a look
i can curse you every day
i can stop you from reading your paper
i can flirt with your best friend,
I can earn a lakh of ruppees a day
I can forget a meal you packed
I can break my mother’s heart
I can embarass you before your family,
I Can bury our newborn daughter
I can pour kerosene on your body,
And light you with a match.

But you, woman, must
pin your duppatta
with two safety
pins even if
you are


10 responses »

  1. wow! good poem.

    Don’t know if its a gender thing or a race thing, but when I get into an elevator here sometimes, and there are a whole bunch of colleagues, sometimes people say hi to everyone except me. Or say hi, and then talk to each other and not me. A couple of months ago, I read about this “being invisible” stuff in a journal article about race. Till then, I’d felt it but never noticed it. Now I notice it. Your poem reminded me of the same shame-sad-sick feeling I get whenever I notice it.

  2. dipali: mail follows

    socio: maybe i should thwack them all with my broomstick, and get my inner and outer children to sit on them — that’ll teach them

    i’ll put this in 178 point size and in Times New Roman, and do a banner that says:
    the socio is special!
    u upset her?
    u deal with me!

  3. you gave me goose bumps…i wish i had read this the first day I was made to wear the dupatta, if I ever have a daughter I will make her read this..I am all for being culturally sensitive but there is always this subtext to the language of the dupatta and you have it here.

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