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ISSN: 0974-892X


Jul '19 & Jan '20



Where Is My Dwelling?

Bindu Rani, Research Scholar, Department of English & foreign Languages, M.D.U. Rohtak (Haryana)


Numerous eyes fall on me
Communal fingers resist me
Dumbfounded as usual,
Withal woman neglect woman
Where to go
I suspect again, on my shadow
So uneasy, anguished and detested face
As silent as a cow
No right to live as a human
Because I am a woman

O’ my lullaby, you still not cry
My hands replete with salty water
Your shadow is knocking at the door
He crushes my arms, torments my soul
With the hands of pride
Am I stranger to you?
Becoming a bride

O’ my lord! How to escape
No one hope
All the doors slammed on me
My shadow proposes, go there!
He insinuates, your dwelling is not here
I keep stand-alone beyond social mercy
Urged for justice and bobbed a curtsy

Taboo! Taboo! Taboo!
No one has courage to smash you
I perceive a destitute cow that seems like me
Bound with chains akin my bangles
Clings to the peg
As I to the rigid nuptial trap
Its eyes are unduly glittering with tears
Begging for freedom but
Grudging and afflicts with funk
I unhitched the chains but still
It repulses to budge

It gestures towards the chains and whispers
Look my safeguard, it 
Defends me from the eyes of slaughters
As your ornament protects
You from the rapist and social whips
The peg is my fate to be a pet
The cow’s peg is reminder
For my conjugal subjugation
It left me no way rather to succumb
To my brutish consort
But my muliebrity interrogates
The social eyes and keeps yelling
Where is my dwelling?




The poem is about the pathetic and miserable condition of a woman in the patriarchal society, where even woman blames woman, if there is a dispute between husband and wife, a woman detest woman and insist her to succumb. She herself accepts the subjugation and straightjacket of this society. The poem demonstrates the bitter reality of this macho society that, if a man becomes violent to his wife, it is accepted customary and right of a man but woman doesn’t have any option rather to surrender and live with him. If she challenges the rigid rules of the society, her shadow (woman) doesn’t allow her to go against because she lives with a fear of ostracizing. She considers that her ornament, which symbolizes her marriage, protects her from the offensive look of the eve-teasers and the scoffs of the society. She compares her miserable condition with the pet animal cow, who also urges for freedom but have a fear of the slaughters (because a vagabond animal like cow is taken to the slaughterhouse by the slaughters). Rather a woman accepts the slavery but her womanhood always keeps questioning to the society; if she is not esteemed and accepted by her spouse and discarded by her parents likewise, where she should go and where is her bona fide house?