When the bough breaks

I’m  a little girl , just completed eleven years into this world.  At age eleven I am afraid of you.  Don’t stare, I fear.  You might be able to see the scars in my tender life.  Don’t look at me, like I won’t look at you. What if I find in your eyes the same covetousness?  
My eyes have seen men calling themselves ‘uncles’ but nothing avuncular about them.  The relationship seemed  to be a parody of one. They played games with me. Games they assured me I would enjoy, but I didn’t. I was often obfuscated by the great alacrity they showed to play with me. I never understood and they always won. They looked victorious.  How can they smile while I struggled in pain? Their games left scars on my body. They called themselves hedonists. Their hedonistic indulgence made rape a game of power? 
I came into a world , my mother called pure. Pristine and blue like water. But all I saw and felt seemed adulterated. Having lost my parents gave me little choice but left to be servile?  I wonder how the eyes of men saw provocation in innocence! I silently sobbed at how my pretty little life was turned by cannibals into a sordid outpost of lust?
I tried to talk and was often muted. Some pulled my fragile tresses with brutal words. Some spanked these dark concaved cheeks. And when I finally let out a scream, no one listened. Each scream added a nail to my coffin while the crime was treated as mere peccadillo than a heinous one.
When mother told me life ended in an urn, whether  you are rich or poor, pretty or ugly, loved or hated little did I know that my mother would bid adieu in it someday. And now, when I go through this torture of life, I hold an urn close to me. With me, always.  And  this urn my best friend.  My mother’s last words to me were, to bloom into a beautiful flower. But I don’t want to bloom. I am a bud asking for death as I was crushed  countless times, leaving endless nightmares.  I hear  the sadistic laughter of heartless wretched souls, as every wistful moment I cry. Love was an ode which died with my mother and now I pray to find  shelter in the urn, in its small space while the whole wide world failed to give.
This protest I make
For every girls sake
I need you to know
Even if tomorrow I go
You could have saved
But you did not show
Why didn’t you hear me call
When the bough broke
While I cried and screamed
And you let tears flow!
Don’t wait for the day
When you can’t face
Yourself in the mirror
Memory can’t efface
And then when your girl
Asks you, ‘what is hell’?
You will look in the mirror
As if under a spell
To know your apathy
Is what hell felt!
—Devika Menon 
This entry won the 3rd prize in Nationwide writing competition Melonade’3 (2012 – 13)


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