Friday, 2 September 2016

I have honour

On the occasion of my 37th birthday, let me say, nay sing that, I have honour. While my sisters in Pakistan, India, Afghanistan, Turkey and many other countries are being mercilessly slaughtered in the name of honour, I come to you and declare my assets of honour: my body, my breasts, my neck, my shapely legs and thighs, my curvy hips, my rolls of maternal fat, my lips, my badami eyes, my fingers and hair. My body is oozing with honour, from every pore, from every angle, down to its cells and courses through my veins and arteries. Whether clothed or veiled, my body has honour. What I do with my body is my honour. You, zalim samaj, are not rakhwala of my honour. 

I have an honourable mind and honourable intentions: to lead my life as I please, free from your stares, your protocols of control, your techniques of persuasion for my own safety and izzat, and become something of my own. 

I have an honourable will power: I mainly want to do things my own way without you telling me where I belong in a family run by baap-daada-naana-mamoon-uncle-vuncle-bhai bosses and their real and imaginary sticks. I desire an existence completely free of any mention of prophets, Gods, God's son and our Saviour, priests, and holy beards. I vehemently reject mazhab and, its holy indoctrination.   I shun all that is holy, the opposite of vulgar, political declarations of meaning, punishment and fear. 

I have an honourable mind: it thinks for itself. It comes up with fantastical ideas, notions of pride and ego, and challenges authority. It has challenged and written its own ideas on life, meaning, the universe, work, love, friends, wealth, and the earth. Now that's honourable!

I speak up, unafraid, at meetings, parties, and debates. I display my knowledge, ideas and views. I have honour. 

I have an honourable soul: it is courageous, bold and ziddi. I command myself to do right by those I love but not to forsake my self respect, desires and mind. I am loyal to the places I have lived in, friends I have made, people who have graced my dinner table, and those who have helped me. My sense of hospitality and loyalty is my honour. 

I have loved endlessly and blindly. I have crossed oceans, emptied my pockets, written poems, cried rivers of tears, worried and prayed, and burned a candle for the one I loved. I have defended his honour despite insults, taunts and abuse. Even after his death. I have the highest honour. 

I have borne grief and heart ache. I have put up a strong face. I have even forgiven my family for their taunts, abuse and violent efforts to shame me. I have forgiven. I have honour. And, yet, I have never forgotten my duty to love, honour my father and mother for what they gave me, taught me. 

I have made my destiny and my life in a country far from my own but still honour my country, never forgetting it once, its music, language, dress and memories. I honour my will, mind and heart. 

I feel heady and excited when I meet older and wiser women and men. In person. On TV. In books. In history. I salute their honour. 

I  forge ahead, unafraid. I have courage. I have honour. 

1 comment:

  1. this is great. i think you should publish it in brown girl mag. also look at the root a/b possibly publishing pieces in there. or even huffpo....