Patriarchy cursed me, I laughed and move on

They said you are a female,

your birth is a burden

I survived and thrived, flourished and bloomed

Confronted their stereotypes and challenged their misleading notions

I vowed that I will not accept their false binaries or phony divisions

I will keep demanding equal rights and opportunities to be a human

That is my firm declaration

I laughed and move on

 

Patriarchy cursed me, I laughed and move on

They said your education is a drain,

It has made you in-vain

You will empty your family’s purse and then

You will move away when you get married to someone

I questioned their negative stereotypes and adverse presumptions

I opposed their entrenched superstitions

and challenged their harmful assumptions

I went to college to gain education,

I got all degrees, medals, and accolades

And walked out with distinction

Aiming towards the path of progression

I laughed and move on

 

Patriarchy cursed me, I laughed and move on

They said you are a woman you need to stay silent

Shut your mouth up and remain compliant

You have no right to make noise

You can’t raise your voice

I refused to remain obedient

I shouted, I wrote, I danced and I hopped

I defied, I rebelled, I resisted, I disobeyed

Because I chose the path of liberation,

I recognize my power, reclaim my freedom

Self-respect and love that is my assertion

I laughed and move on

 

Patriarchy cursed me, I laughed and move on

They said you have to cover yourself from top to bottom

Veils, jewelry, sindoor, bindi, saree, makeup,

we will decide your uniform

We dictate and you follow this is the compulsion

I said I decide the way I wanna stay, it’s my conclusion

I am not your slave, I refuse to bow to your oppression,

I am not a thing that you can own

I don’t need your pointless interventions

I laughed and move on

 

Patriarchy cursed me, I laughed and move on

They said you don’t need to go out, you stay at home

Staying inside the four walls of the house is your only occupation

Crossing the Lakshman Rekha is out of the permission

I broke all inept rules and regulations

I learned to fly, became a CEO, run big farms,

Excel in business, work in factories and set up my own craft

I choose to work in all male-dominated professions,

And achieve success in whatever I do with all my passion

I laughed and move on

 

Patriarchy cursed me, I laughed and move on

They said you can’t be seen in a public domain

We will molest you tease you, harass you, shame you,

Because that is our dominion

No said I, this will not deter me this is your hollow frighten

My courage got your fragility shaken

This planet belongs to everyone

No one needs your futile intrusions

I resolved to walk fearlessly on the streets,

On the roads at the workplaces all on my own,

Breaking all your rules is my determination

I laughed and move on

 

Patriarchy cursed me, I laughed and move on

They said for a female marriage is a compulsion

We will decide whom to marry when to marry that is our declaration

I said I assert my choices and my selections

I marry when I want to, and with whom I want to, it’s my decision,

I need no redundant patriarchal interruptions

I laughed and move on

 

Patriarchy cursed me, I laughed and move on

They said you have no self; no identity of your own

Your existence is irrelevant, you are important to none

I use my skills and talents to earn fame and recognition

I proclaimed myself found my individuation

I need no benefaction

I laughed and move on

 

Patriarchy cursed me, I laughed and move on

They said we will decide the sex of the baby or

when you will have an abortion

I said my body my rights, no interference from any one

Procreation, or abortion, all of that is my selection

I laughed and move on

 

Patriarchy cursed me, I laughed and move on

They said divorce is not permitted, marriage is a sacred obligation

With no guarantee of my safety, wellbeing or protection

They pushed me to `adjust’ silently in a violent relation

Torturing and burning me for dowry that is their sole ambition

I walked away because forcing a vicious tie on me is a coercion,

Their masculine toxicity is indeed an intimidation

I refused to bow down

I can survive on my own, I need no superficial imposition

I laughed and move on

 

Patriarchy cursed me, I laughed and move on

They said you can’t remain single,

Rearing a child with no father, you are a humiliation

I rejected their negative undesirable notion

I raised my child on my own,

I need no certificate of my motherhood from any charlatan

I laughed and move on

 

Patriarchy cursed me, I laughed and move on

They said you are a bad woman,

A selfish slut who takes care of none

I raised my child, supported my old parents,

Cared for my loved ones

I laughed and move on

 

Patriarchy cursed me, I laughed and move on

They said you will be denied the right to own a property,

Land, house or any possession

you have to stay under male protection

I said I refused your discriminatory directions

I made my own home full of love, kindness and compassion

I laughed and move on

 

Patriarchy cursed me, I laughed and move on

They said you can’t be a politician,

You will not take decisions because lack the capacity to run a nation

I rose to the top to take national and global decisions,

To end all the wars and to culminate to all destructions

To make this world a peaceful place and to save nature and its creation

I laughed and move on

 

Patriarchy cursed me, I laughed and move on

They said you have no rights, no laws apply no legal protections

It’s our will and command that is your only destination

I said I will not obey your unjust orders

I declined to give in to your unwanted unreasonable instructions

I will write my own laws; I will pen down my own constitution

I laughed and move on

 

Patriarchy cursed me, I laughed and move on

They said he is superior, she is inferior

Male supremacy prevails, which forces biased preconceptions

That is engrained for generations in every institution

I confronted the age-old hegemony, oppose all the privileges

And challenged the obstinate male-domination

Dismantled the toxic masculinity, and resisted sexism.

Shred the misogyny and disarranged the dogmatism

I laughed and move on

 

Patriarchy cursed me, I laughed and move on

They said a man is a hunter and a gatherer,

And therefore, he is a protector and provider

This is a divine creation based on biological differentiation

I questioned them that this is their false assumption

Because this imagined version is of a feeble and an apprehensive person

Perhaps, he can’t reproduce and lacks the capacity of procreation

So, how can he counterfeit his powers when he has none

I laughed and move on

 

Patriarchy cursed me, I laughed and move on

They said your will remain bound by the man-made religion

And will obey all its customs and traditions

I defied and disobeyed, shattered all stereotypes, and broke all chains

I use my passion to transform the patriarchal civilization

They can neither rob my dignity or pride nor could harm my reputation

I laughed and move on

 

Patriarchy cursed me, I laughed and move on

They said we will use against you all institutions

State, business, law, policies or religion

Pitting women against themselves,

this is what we have had you conditioned

I said I will rip off all your devious designs

and dismantle all your deceitful narrow projections,

Nurturing a just world, that is my solution

It’s your end, and the time of your permanent termination

I laughed and move on

 

Patriarchy cursed me, I laughed and move on

They said you witch, your laughing is ferocious,

This mocking hurts our fragile egos; it is savage and dangerous

I said laughing is an art of resistance, an act of power disruption

I lay the claim to the authority and to my solid foundation

Laughter is an anti-dose to all forms of oppression

It is indeed a step towards revolution

In me lies my courage, hope and conviction

There are unlimited possibilities that is my imagination

I laughed and move on

 

About the Author

Currently, the author is working as an advocate, researcher, and activist at the intersection of gender, law, governance, and human rights issues. She has done her Ph.D. in Social Work and has obtained a law degree. She has published several books, articles and research papers. Her recently published books include `The Founding Mothers: 15 Women Architect of the Indian Constitution’ (2016) (co-author) `Women and Domestic Violence Law in India: A Quest for Justice’ (2019) and `Domestic Violence Law in India: Myths and Misogyny (2021).

 


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