A Thousand Deaths And Still She Asks


She speaks from my womb
Last time it was her entrails yelling
having been pounded, wrung and spread out to die
in wide eyed surprise
at yet another killing

What did I do wrong Ammi?
Why do I get all the bites, bruises and savagery?
Why not a lap and a tender pat?
Don’t tell me, there is no time
just hide me, Nirbhaya and your next one
from pain and its etchings on tender skin

Your name was on my bleeding lips
when they choked me in the end
Ammi I whispered
but my voice never came
Where were you when they held me down?
Where was everyone?
The ponies must be dead too
All my little friends too
It can’t have happened to just one little girl again

If they do it again, bahut maarna unko Ammi
I tried but my eyes went black with pain
I couldn’t see what they did down there
But it tore me like paper
and more than a dozen times
Each tear I remember
and the sounds of panting in the hazy shadows
but how did you forget this was savarna bharat
where vegan wolfs eat little children
and none must play in the meadows?

Reena Prasad is a poet/writer from India, currently living in Sharjah (United Arab Emirates). Her poems have been published in several anthologies and journals e.g. The Copperfield Review, First Literary Review-East, Angle Journal, Poetry Quarterly, York Literary Review, Lakeview International Journal, Duane’s PoeTree, Mad Swirl etc. She is also the Destiny Poets UK’s, Poet of the year for 2014 and one of the editors of The Significant Anthology released in July 2015. She was adjudged second in the World Union Of Poet’s poetry competition, 2016 and won an award for poetry in the 2016 “As You Like It International Poetry Contest” commemorating the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare. She won the Reuel International Prize for poetry, 2018.


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