Poem | Manjiri Indurkar

Artwork : Divya Adusumilli

A Letter to India

What’s up?
India, it is me
It is me, India, the woman
The same woman you were supposed to be
But India, let’s not fool ourselves
You are not a woman, India
You are a man.
Your power is masculine
And your politics is masculine too, India

India, you have scarred my body
You are the boil on my back
That doesn’t let me sit
That doesn’t let me sleep.
India, I am waiting for you to burst
India, you are the man who
Squeezed my breasts in the holy waters of Narmada
India, you are all the men who stripped me
Off my innocence.
India, you are the man who told me
I am marriage material,
When I was fourteen,
And was cooking for you, India.

India, I spend thousands of rupees
Every week, on a therapist
All because of what you did to me, India
You blinded Insha, you raped Jyoti.
You raped and killed Madkam Hidme, India
You laughed at Nellie,
You mocked Godhara
The Sikhs you killed in 1984, dear India
Are fighting against you today, in Bombay
Yes, Bombay, the colonial name that I will stick to
Because you piss me off, India.

India, you are an asshole.
Let’s talk about 1992, India.
Your sun was patrolling on a chariot
Did you think you were Arjun?
Or did you think you were Krishna?
India, you should know this,
Ram was a fictional character
And not a very good one.
If Ram was a character written today
The critics would have torn him to pieces
For getting away with misogyny
For having no depth.
For being so preachy and downright boring

Let’s discuss Kashmir, India
We need to have this conversation
How thirsty are you, India?
How much blood will you be drinking,
Before you call it a day?
They say on Quora you are breaching
The Geneva Convention
But you don’t care about technicalities, India
I have known that for a while.
Majid messaged me the other day, India
He said you won’t take back the curfew.
His Facebook wall has pictures of Nasir
Whose eye you put sand in
And pierced it with a needle.
I know what you are doing here, India
You are blinding a whole generation
You are creating Gandhi’s monkeys
"See no evil, hear no evil, speak no evil"
You are the evil, India.

India, I had a dream last night
Justice had been served in my dream
And I was watching a movie in the theatres
When the boil on my back, finally burst.
There was pus all over my shirt, India
How typical of you,
To be this messy in your decline.
You were never a graceful man, India.
But I kept watching
Because Amitabh Bachchan was fighting you, India
And it is the only place he fights you.

India, do you watch the news?
The Dalits are refusing to dispose your waste
You go and cremate your mother,
They are saying, India
The Kashmiris are taking walks on curfew’d nights
Orissa has kicked your butt once, India
And is getting ready to do it again.
India, Meghalaya won’t let you mine Uranium
Chattisgarh will fight for its forests.
Are you listening, my beloved country?
There will be no more Vande Matram for you, India
And you are not their Bhagya Vidhata either.

You are the creepy, abusive, stalker of Kashmir, India
You are Shah Rukh Khan from Darr.
You need to let it go, India.
You need therapy, and anti-depressants
You need rigorous treatment
For your manias and your phobias.
You need to see a doctor, India
I would have put you in touch with mine,
But he is gay, India
And I know how much you hate them.

India, I need you to know this
It is over between you and me
You and I are no more a thing, India
But I still hope the best for you.
Get well soon, India.

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