Sati

21 Mar

I tore my hair out for you

And lit myself on fire and walked toward the pyre,

A choice, a bond, a commitment made by my Father

Who told me once when you were gone

that I am nothing

So I stepped toward the burning wood

And my golden silk slunk down to the floor

Naked, with eyes on me and I looked straight back

Daring them to judge me in my last moments

Daring them to turn their eyes away from

The curves that you rode when we had lain together

When you glanced at the sheets to make sure I had bled

For my pleasure, which I have never felt, I will never

Know myself in that way, only that it exists and maybe

Once I am an ash, and God anoints me, I can always be this way

A flame engulfs my body, so others don’t have to lap

Up my drippings, but now, I have no choice, it has been

Decided for me, since the moment that I was conceived,

‘a girl,’ the midwife said, and Daddy sighed for there were

Two already, so I gave up my name when I was bound

To you, who decided to leave this earth before me, even that

I could not control, and I sat by your bedside praying, for I

Did not want it this way, ‘my darling’ you said, for despite it all you were kind

Occasionally, I must add, ‘I’m sorry’, you said

 because you knew that I would have no chance without you

 I bore your name, we bore no children,

and all eyes are upon me and my golden flesh, so, ‘my darling’

Watch me burn, watch me burn for you, and know that my breasts are

Now gone, and next will be the cunt that you sank yourself in

And that for centuries we women have done this for you

Silently, and yet, I have been the only one who have gone there

Naked, with eyes upon me, for I want to be seen, at least

Once, for who I am, for who I could’ve been as my barren self

That got pushed out my mother’s womb.

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