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Hemant Bawankar

 

(Inspired by the news published in a newspaper in which a mother donated her eyes with an unborn child before dowry-death.  This poem has been cited from my book “The Variegated Life of Emotional Hearts”.)

 

 ☆ It’s not an eye-donation….  It is an eye-offering  ☆ 

 

Listen

these eyes are

not only eyes

but,

these eyes are

like melted and purified gold

in the life’s altar.

 

I have seen.

No ….No

these eyes have seen

a river of fire

warmth in the mother’s lap

and

inflammation of puberty.

 

Wedding pavilion

sacrificial altar

and seven rounds

around the fire.

 

The first night’s

soft and warm flower bed

and ….  and

various forms of fire.

 

My beautiful body,

I was proud of which

has been scorched

in

the fire of dowry.

 

Where is ‘he’?

Where?

Who has held my hands

by making

fire as witness.

Now given

the fire of dowry;

and ……

he will give

the fire of the funeral.

 

But, Mom!

Why are you crying?

And brother,

you too?

 

You are drowned in debt

by raising funds for dowry.

 

How have you been broken in life?

Alas!

Dad is no more today.

Else,

in your place

he could have offered

his shoulder to you

in support

to cry with you!

 

My goodbye tears

are still in my eyes

and

my bier is being readied.

 

Enough is enough.

Breath is less than hope,

I am going

with an unborn child.

I can’t imagine

his/her face

and

I don’t know

how he/she could

smile/play/laugh/cry

if he/she could take birth?

 

No ….. no

Mom!

Enough is enough.

 

Now,

give these eyes to someone.

Not as a donation

as charity is being done by those

that have something.

 

Therefore,

it is not an eye-donation

it is an eye-offering

to continue the journey

of life.

 

Listen

These eyes are

not only eyes

but,

these eyes are

melted and purified gold

in the life’s altar.

 

© Hemant Bawankar

This poem was written on 2nd December, 1987.

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