01 January 1970

Poem: The Lived Experience

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Poem: The Lived Experience

The poet calls out the society for harbouring 'Fear, violence, threats, manipulation, Tools of control, Oppression, exploitation, subjugation', and reflects upon the vagaries of life.

Reflections
Reflections Getty Images

Shackled, silenced, stigmatised
Moulded, conditioned, accustomed, trained
Ideology or social arrangement 
An oft-repeated script, a familiar refrain

Glorified, objectified, othered
Glass-cliffed, placed on a pedestal
Bossy-bitchy-pushy-domineering
Saint-martyr-maternal-malleable 

Seen not heard
Chaste, modest, torchbearer of virtue 
Upholder of honour  
Or a commodity devalued

Irrelevant, invisible, on the shelf 
Or in the first flush of youth
Stepping up? Speaking out?
Who’d believe the truth?

Taunts, jeers, ridicule, judgement
The shame, the blame
Gold-digger, power hungry
Greedy for fifteen minutes of fame 

Perhaps, in time, they’d fade
Losses, lumps, bruises, pains
But for the infinity mirrors 
Scars, bumps, aches, veins

Constructed and deconstructed 
Fear, violence, threats, manipulation
Tools of control
Oppression, exploitation, subjugation

Double standards and social sanctions
For compliance with norms
Maintenance of hierarchies
In any shape or form