Dear Girls,

Pretty girls pretty girls everywhere,
Pretty girls don’t care
What you have to say about their hair,
They laugh, they cry
They’re of all shapes, sizes and heights

Pretty girls are of all kinds,
Cheap mascara running down their faces,
Cheap lipstick and shoes with laces,
Pretty girls aren’t all fair
And like I said, they don’t care.

Pretty girls sway their hips,
And words as sweet as honey,
Words that sting,
Words of pride escape their lips.
Pretty girls are our warriors in braces.

Pretty girls? Don’t see their pretty,
All they see in people’s eyes are pity,
They make a lacklustre world lustrous,
Their hair cascading till their hips,
But not all pretty girls are princesses.

Pretty girls have stories to tell,
Stories of sorrows,
And stories that go well.
Pretty girls are all about making your heart swell,
Even if they don’t speak your language, oh well.

Pretty girls, pretty girls everywhere,
Not a soul to spare,
They are true and bare.
Not only behind a screen,
They include the girl next door who screams.

Pretty girls need to be aware,
They are pretty, witty and loved,
No one else decides,
If their eyebrows need be plucked,
Or if they need a good fuck.

Dear pretty girls everywhere,
Look at the mirror and repeat after me,
“I am a girl,
I am pretty, angry, but wise
And fuck anyone who says otherwise.”

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Voice

Yes I have a big voice,

No I’m not proud.

I’m a five year old girl.

Mumma told me not to speak,

Pappa told me, no true woman is loud.

Grandma told me,

“It isn’t lady-like.”

I didn’t understand.

 

Yes I have a big voice,

No I’m not proud.

I’m a ten year old girl.

My whole school shushed me.

“I got excited, I’m sorry!”

But it didn’t save me,

From being the embarrassment.

 

Yes I have a big voice,

No I’m not proud.

I’m a fifteen year old girl,

Too scared to speak a word.

Maybe I’d be too loud,

Be the embarrassment I’m afraid of being.

I got so quiet,

I don’t have a friend around.

 

Yes, I have a big voice

No, I don’t care.

I’m an eighteen year old girl,

And I’ve learned,

A woman with a big voice?

I’m not the only one.

We’re fighters,

We aren’t unique.

I won’t shut up,

I’ve found people who don’t mind.

 

This big voice,

I use it for all the right causes,

So don’t you tell me to shut up.

Yes I have a big voice,

And yes,

I’m proud.

 

The Danger of A Single Story

“How old are you?”, the older woman asked.

“Ten”, said the scraggy girl.

“Ah! Little children won’t get it.”

Dear older woman,

That ten year old girl,

Works at the restaurant near your house,

Cleaning bathroom stalls,

Dealing with men objectifying her,

She’s seen more than you have,

On your vacations funded by ‘daddy.’

Is age but just a number?

 

“You’re lucky you’re fair,

Your skin tone’s great!”

All that aside,

She was called ‘yellow’,

For her relatively small eyes,

But she was Indian too.

Is she not human,

Her looks put aside?

 

“Africa this, Africa that”

Does one fail to realize that Africa,

Is a continent,

With fifty-four different countries,

The people patriotic,

But wanting to be recognized,

As something more,

Than just an African.

 

Dear boy who supports the queer,

Quite ironic you say so,

When ten minutes ago,

You used a homophobic slur,

And called someone gay,

For not being a stereotypical boy.

Does going against the stereotype,

And being oneself make you gay?

Perhaps if you meant ‘gay’ to be ‘happy’,

Then you’re absolutely correct.

 

Her dresses were baggy,

And maybe terribly long,

But did they consider,

Her having an oppressive father,

Where all she wanted to do,

Was cover the marks,

She was willing to forget.

The galaxies on her skin,

Caused by havoc and not pleasure?

 

‘Slut’, this one was called.

They didn’t understand that,

All those times,

She was an innocent girl,

A hopeless romantic,

Too trusting for her own good,

But was taken advantage of.

Suddenly, saying ‘no’ meant,

Trying harder and being forceful.

Suddenly, ‘No’ meant,

She was asking for it.

 

They saw the hijab,

A quick judgment made.

‘Terrorist’, she was labeled.

Funny how four letters,

I,S,I,S,

Ruined the reputation of one religion ,

When in actuality,

The people of that very religion,

Fear and are against that very organization,

Defaming their innocent faith.

 

Stereotypes,

They’re nothing but a single story unexplained.

 

 

 

All They Want, Is To Be Accepted.

The other day I was discussing with a few friends of mine about a project my sister was doing for her fellowship. (Her project was on ‘Views of the public on sexuality and prostitution’.) Out of curiosity, I had asked their opinions on prostitutes. “I think they wear too much make up and have 0 morals”, said one and the insults kept coming in. I sat there, waiting for them to finish but yeah they took forever to finish discussing this topic and when they were done, I learnt that this set of friends are quite ignorant, but I won’t blame them. They’re having their own mid-life crisis(s) like not having the right dress for tennis what so on and so forth. It is then that I asked them, “Have you ever thought of them as…Courageous?” because honestly after a while my mind set changed about them. What with my parents being lawyers and human rights activists and helping such people out, I didn’t exactly pity them nor did I judge them. These people don’t need our pity.They’re brave enough to give up their bodies for such an awful industry, they aren’t weak and seeking our pity. They don’t need to be judged either. Or rather, shouldn’t. Ask yourselves, especially if you’re a woman– how prepared are you or brave are you to put yourselves in their shoes and deal with what they deal with. I’m guessing the obvious. All they want is to be accepted.

Now, call me a nerd for doing my little research but here’s why prostitutes exist according to 85% of the prostitutes in a few European countries(And other places):

“The main reason for prostitution in all groups is money. ‘Money is cited by 85% of the prostitutes,’ says Kofod. ‘Some have to pay for housing, food and day care for their children.’ ” (source 1, source 2)

There, now again ask yourselves, how many of us are brave enough to give up our bodies and dignity all to be judged by society, simply to make a living and provide for our loved ones because we don’t have another option? How many of us can/ are willing to put up with sexual harassment and threats or other hazards that come with the job to provide for those who are dear to us?  So think twice before judging someone for the job they do and show some respect. Also, think twice before calling someone regardless of their occupation/designation a ‘Slut’, ‘Whore’, etc. Because such slurs are used to describe courageous women and are rather deprecating.

Recent Annoyances ; An unpopular opinion on modern-day feminism.

Recently, as I was going past my dashboard on tumblr, I came across a gifset. One that has made me think a lot. It was that of a man on a television show talking about the traumatizing abuse he had gone through. At one point he said, “She had locked me up and I had to jump out a window and was hospitalized.” or something along those lines. The audience never once sympathized. They laughed instead. This, the host/MC didn’t like and he went on to say what was exactly on my mind, “If this man, was a woman going through all the abuse, no one would be laughing.”.

Feminism. A word that gets thrown into conversations ever so casually these days. Feminism isn’t about women. Feminism isn’t against men. Or at least, it isn’t supposed to be. Feminism is fighting for women in order for us to have equal rights and privileges like that of men. Feminism isn’t to prove to men that we are superior because we aren’t. Here’s the thing, sometimes, men are better than women in certain aspects. And sometimes we’re better than them. We all have our pros and cons– a common and familiar phrase? Yeah. Let’s take for example; lifting weights. Some women have better physique after extensive work outs but most of us can’t lift overly heavy objects out of the blue. Biologically speaking, we’re more petite, relatively at least. Then again, this doesn’t mean we must be all stereotypical and expect every Tom, Dick and Harry to be muscular and have the perfect physique to lift heavy things etc. Stop being stereotypical y’all.

It’s so disappointing to see people younger than me talking about feminism and criminalizing men. Yes,crime against women is growing and it’s great to see that everyone’s becoming more cautious and aware and are promoting safety for women. But men do face similar issues. Maybe the number of male victims is lesser than that of women, but they must never be laughed at, criminalized, teased etc. Because they are just as traumatized as women victims.

What we need to do is stop competing, be more accepting, not be overly sensitive and get back to fighting for equality, not superiority. This sentence was me addressing both genders.