Anklets for the feet, bangles for the arms,
necklace around the neck, rings and toe rings,
My nose and ear were pierced,
and with each ornament,
I found myself all the more restrained with
ropes of customs and mannerisms, oh the
ways in which I have been chained.
Now my hands and feet have begun to
develop scratches, and so many bruises
Since I started untying the knots and freed
myself of so many ropes
Every part of my body, my facial features, my
talks, and mannerisms were observed
My voice was admired by comparing it to that
of the cuckoo bird, to some my hair is like that
of a serpent.
to some, it’s like the night, to others my hair is
like the clouds, my lips like the rose, my eyes
as intoxicating as alcohol
And in this way, I have been caged in different
songs and poetry of beauty and love,
oh the ways in which I have been chained.
I would like to ask those who saw my eyes,
they found them intoxicating like alcohol, but
didn’t they see the sky in them
They see monsoon clouds in my eyes, didn’t
they see the pain, the pain that comes from
being tied down
They compare my lips to roses but don’t they
see the thorns attached to it, the thorns
disabling me to speak my mind.
In the name of this lightly woven cloth called
art, bare statues were carved out,
thread by thread I was unclothed,
On my body, art was practiced and in the
name of art, I was imprisoned in marble
Can someone please tell me, how many knots
did I untie, how many still remain?