“Culture does not make people. People make culture. If it is true that the full humanity of women is not our culture, then we can and must make it our culture.” 

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, We Should All Be Feminists

Feature Poem:

The One By Shikha Srivastava

I was born by two, half cells.

She went to the temple and rang the bells

Thanked the goddess for the new life in her

as her eyes gleamed with pure pleasure

Inside her womb nice warm and cozy

I continued to grow quite redder and rosy

Beyond all evil reach, where no one can intrude,

Bundled with joy, I rocked and rolled!

She visited the doctor, to keep me healthy inside

Ate well, took ample rest, as within her I reside

She loved me even before my birth

Embraced me lovingly by touching her girth

A day came when the doctor announced

“It’s a Girl” - her heart happily jounced

I was happy to make her happy

But Dad looked annoyed and snappy

Little to my conscious, did I know that plot,

Dad made the decision without a second thought

“ We don’t need a girl, let her die” he spoke as I lark

He stopped the journey, before I could embark

She wept silently that night

She tried, but lost the fight

Curled up alone in the bed

“Sorry, My Daughter” at last she said

Heavy heart, hollow inside

She went to the doctor, prepared for feticide

She kept crying waiting alone

Cursed herself for the seed she had sown

I love you Maa and I know you love me too

Let me die, if I am a burden on you

Even if I am born, they’ll cut my wings

They’ll cage me with chores; they’ll not let me sing

The doctor gave her a medicine or two

Having them, her sadness grew

In the midst of this organized crime,

That day, I cried for the very first time

I lay still like a corpse in a tomb

In the darkness, in the silence of your womb,

My growth hindered, inability to transcend

I barely hear you as I get closer to the end

I would have equated myself, Dear Mother

Only if you had let me breathe the same air

Fearless and fabulous, second to none

I was the Girl, I was The One.