Un(ad)dressed

To where ? Wind ,you blow? Re-kindling swindling snare,

Perched above , they shoved below, the garnish, does one not care!

Have you ever seen those faces? Ever smelt their scents?

In His many graces, felt  thy holy effervescence?

Then why do their souls, caged and bound and chained,

Unvoiced where the shoals, begot the bleeding and the pained.

Lives have trailed the lines that ‘ve seen no ends,

 this cruel, the sham in spite of it all transcends.

On shoulders we sly imbeciles stand,

Sweating to the unabated blood on his hand,

With every screw, bodies turn,  In every wash, we watch them burn.

Why don’t the elements, the earth and the sun,

Take these bodies, their stories for pun?

Marred by conditioning, charred at mounting the glistening,

Bathed in slivers of timber, extradite!! undeserving of the slumber!

Souls set free ! Souls breathing thee!

Stranded, stripped, the tears in their eyes soak,

A caring hand to when it wraps, Fore-playing the cozy winter cloak ! 

Along shores, their corpses lay, waiting to end it all !

Ending, feeding pockets with the pay as the God forsaken days fall !

The roads, billboards stand witnesses to plight,

dreams once dreamt, knowing they’d take no flight.

Cos the wind knows no direction knows no way to say,

Driven to obscurity, these are lives once lived, once loved,

Ones gone, here lined up against the conveyor awaiting hay!!

Kailash_Chandra_Meher's_Painting-_W_&_W.jpg
Women & exploitation, painting by Kailash Chandra Meher, 2008

People today race for a crazy and meaningless embodiment of what they call ‘success’ & ‘fulfillment’.  Often blinded by unstoppable ambition, we fail to see the world below us, a nation of people we survive off. I refer to them as a nation, as universally these are the people united by labor, united by issues,  united by exploitation, united by disdain! Their presence, devoid of the basic dignity as human beings ! our expectations devoid of consideration ! ‘United we stand’, we say…however, this unity is a paradox. We the hypocrites of the 21st century, preaching egalitarianism, social justice, inclusion, counter insurgence and all these notions and theories that were very aptly applicable for our ever evolving society, fall apart the minute we have to sit alongside our domestic help at the dining table, or our drivers sitting next to us in a rickshaw, or sharing the lift with delivery boys. We sit behind blinking screens, unknown of the real scenario, we believe what we are made to believe, rising high stooping down upon this service class like they were mere beggars, incapable of working for their daily bread. Unity is not an object of display, it is a notion ! it is supposed to be a deeply rooted feeling that directly or indirectly influences the actions undertaken. Said all this! where does this Unity come from? It is in the smallest of gestures, breaking of the formal code of images that we the bourgeoisie are so concerned  about.

Dignity! what is it all about? A series of scantily clad Chandnis & Chamelis, dragged out onto the chaupals of their villages, stripped naked for a hundred alien buyers inspecting every curve, dimple and cut on their 16 year old virgin skins, ready to be ripped at their holes. These Chandnis and Chamelis, sell themselves with every penetration, just comforted by the thought of protecting the more fortunate girls of the world from getting raped and killed and shoved in with steel rods exposing their intestines and left to die on the road. Inspite of their efforts, their sacrifices, the animals do hunt ! it is their gut instinct to end what is beautiful and harmless! As spectators to such horrific scenes, we are no less the murderers and rapists. How would it be if a ‘whore’ posted selfies on ‘fakebook’ every time she was harassed ? We don’t see them. They are silent killers of themselves. They accept life as it comes, live off the pain and grow stronger with every scar. Their lives are truly inspiring for us, who complain about every little unaccomplishment. We should be thankful to this army of disqualified soldiers, who serve the world without a posting, without a salute, but with all the side-eyes. The least we can do is to let them be and accept them with open arms for their bravery. Donate a bit of our time rather than the money ! to help them build their lives, to help them save their children born in this living hell.

Spaces for these hamlets of the downtrodden are commonly referred to as Red-light areas. Why? Because red has farther visibility owing to its wavelength as physicians would explain. It is this red light that obstructs visions over the ‘uptown’, to deviate attention towards overly made up faces hiding the darkness in that vividly unidentified world. We all know this dark world, some of us even go there, donate our off springs, but never acknowledge. Walking along with us, this is a world with no sunshine.  In cities, these have been areas located closer to the more industrial and migratory compartments. Prone to more unknown faces, piling loads to work as fourth class staff for industries and offices, straining their brows with sweat and blood, welding reinforcement, oozing their stresses on these ladies of the night. The dynamics in the relationships of these men and women is like that of a middle-aged stressed out couple. Unwilling, unwanted, is what they feel, uncared for is what their bodies feel. But, the body does what its meant to, unwillingly like two corpses making love in the snow, numbed, emotionless, beaten to death by the society but find solace in either’s genitalia.

Similar is the story of Sarrah or Saratjie Bartman, a colored curvaceous beauty belonging to 18th century Africa. She traveled to Europe, with her free employers to fetch for herself, the dreams of wealth and prosperity that she thought she deserved. She got sold like an antique piece of furniture. Amused by her demure and raw earthy beauty, the then bourgeoisie i.e. white folks picked her up, stripped her down and watched in amazement the way in which her healthy muscles flexed her wholesome bossoms and her overly large buttocks on the Picadilly stage of London. Giving slavery a whole different meaning, this lady of the earth bared it all, even worked as an object of amusement at circuses, with people stargazing at her wishing to have her to themselves. She died by the time was 25. Outwardly uncanny, and inwardly tormented, her life as a naked muse or ‘Hottentot’ as she was referred to, gave the upper sects a newer pinhole to look at the blacks, through the eyes of beauty and amusement.

La_Belle_Hottentot_
La Belle Hottentot ; source: whgbetc.com

History is proof of it! these fallen women have always been sores in the Sun, but roses by nightfall. Obviously, Darwin’s theory of ‘Survival of the fittest’, was a suggestion based on assumptions and a few specimens. It does not apply to every aspect of life is what people need to understand. Respecting all equally, it’s the responsibility of mankind to keep aside their judgements and strive to be better contenders. It is in our hands to reach out to these faceless creatures of the night, to give them an equal place rather than generalising and sympathising. It is in our hands, the future of this dark world that deserves the view of the sun shining bright.

 

 

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