Micropoetry Month: Nov 2017: #9

Micropoetry MonthKim M Russell, who blogs at ‘Writing in North Norfolk’, wrote a powerful poem a couple of days ago about the horror of domestic abuse. A chilling, wonderfully written poem, wrapped in a fairy tale, that you can read here.

I ask you to add your voice to hers. Find words and lines and verses against all kinds of domestic abuse, words that together will become a roar. Use any form, any structure, just write your poems. Share using the comments section or Mister Linky.

I chose to write Septolets. (A septolet has seven lines containing a total of fourteen words in two parts. Both parts deal with the same thought and create a cohesive picture.)

(1)

Red tally marks
scratched
behind
the kitchen cupboard,

every time
her husband
hit her.

(2)

Dawn prayer-
bruises covered
with her saree,

hiding
her shame
from the
sleeping gods.

(3)
Justitia,
blindfolded,
bearing balance
and sword,

slash your darkness,
tip the scales
it’s time.

 

47 thoughts on “Micropoetry Month: Nov 2017: #9

  1. The last one appeals to lady justice, and it is quite a powerful poem. If you tie this appeal along with Audre Lorde’s powerful insight that ‘there is no hierarchy of oppression’, we are led to the urgency of addressing all oppressions – misogyny, race (the ogre happens to be negro), class, ethnic, nationalism, etc. – together, even as we tackle domestic oppression (in which I think patriarchal entitlement plays no small part).

    The closest poem I can recall that I wrote was this one: https://huzaifazoom.wordpress.com/2015/11/08/decree-of-refusal/ where I riff off a few of Faiz’s lines where he exhorts god to issue a decree of refusal. Both poems, yours and Faiz’s, look up for justice. Time I think we look below.

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    1. Thank you. For me Justitia in the poem was woman herself, who needs to shift the old misogynistic (im)balance. Looking up or down is for strength I believe… if not from within then from somewhere else to make things happen…but that said, Faiz was a powerhouse. Do link your poem.. more people will get to read it. The sewage of human failure can disturb even the gods.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Looking up for redressal – in the same corridors which breed injustice – is what the vanguardism of the last century did. That experiment failed (and Faiz’s voice was part of that experiment). Now we have hindsight and a viable alternative, i.e., looking down – to the people, to the oppressed, to the ‘unwashed’, ‘wretched’ masses – and something we are just beginning to learn how to do… I will post my link on Mr. Linky, thanks 🙂

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    1. Sumana.. your septolet tells a story repeated so often that it’s a stain on our society. My domestic help has had the same experience too stemming from an alcoholic husband. How many such women tolerate abuse for financial security and let the monsters get away. Your comments section isn’t working by the way, unable to leave a comment.

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            1. Go to blog posts, find your post, click edit, when your post open you have post options on the right, go to more options and under Discussion you should have an allow comments check box… hope that works 🙂

              Liked by 1 person

  2. Thank you so much for the mention, Rajani, and thank you for introducing me to Septolets. Yours have powerful images, especially:
    ‘Red tally marks
    scratched
    behind
    the kitchen cupboard’
    and
    ‘Dawn prayer-
    bruises covered
    with her saree’,

    Liked by 1 person

      1. I felt a need to continue the conversation I have been creating, but when I saw the subject matter for today, I knew I had to respond. This piece was written a while back, but not posted anywhere. Although there was physical and sexual abuse in my marriage, this poem stresses the language of abuse, especially the blaming of the victim. This was my experience, and I know it is far from unique.

        Elizabeth
        https://claudetteellinger.wordpress.com/2017/11/09/his-words/

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        1. Thank you for sharing this Elizabeth..it is profoundly moving and am so glad you are free and writing your beautiful poetry. I am confident more people will find strength from this for themselves or to share with others they know who need it. Thank you so much.

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  3. oh yeah, she said
    i know just how you felt
    we’ve all been through it here
    just ask aroun

    why i remember jus as clear as you standin there
    backin out a li’l country shack
    with a baby on one hip
    another one inside me
    an a knife in ma hand just about long enough
    with everything inside me screamin’ at him to
    get away or i’d use it for sure…

    did you go, i asked
    knowing the answer already by heart

    he got real quiet, she said
    all of a sudden en said to me
    put down that knife and come here
    so i did

    i waited two three more months
    had my baby
    got m’ shit together
    and then ah left that sonabitch
    hadn’t been no place ta go to woulda died maybe
    hadda get out that’s all i knew

    some places in this world
    they catch y’en kill ye fer leavin

    so that’s why we’re here for, honey
    just passing it on a little
    pretty soon liz’ll take all the kids for an hour
    why dontcha kick back for a few?

    Liked by 2 people

  4. So sad, so horrible. Still trying to pen mine but the topic torments. I have known too many women whore bear the physical and mental scars of a vicious husband or boyfriend. One is coming to my shop now to chat with me, knowing I will always give her time to unburdon her heart, while silently feeling that despair in human nature again.

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