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The Sunshine Cat by Kamala Das

They did this to her, the men who know her, the man
She loved, who loved her not enough, being selfish
And a coward, the husband who neither loved nor
Used her, but was a ruthless watcher, and the band
Of cynics she turned to, clinging to their chests where
New hair sprouted like great-winged moths, burrowing her
Face into their smells and their young lusts to forget
To forget, oh, to forget, and, they said, each of
Them, I do not love, I cannot love, it is not
In my nature to love, but I can be kind to you.
They let her slide from pegs of sanity into
A bed made soft with tears, and she lay there weeping,
For sleep had lost its use. I shall build walls with tears,
She said, walls to shut me in. Her husband shut her
In, every morning, locked her in a room of books
With a streak of sunshine lying near the door like
A yellow cat to keep her company, but soon
Winter came, and one day while locking her in, he
Noticed that the cat of sunshine was only a
Line, a half-thin line, and in the evening when
He returned to take her out, she was a cold and
Half dead woman, now of no use at all to men.

How the bits of abnormality, the bits of the neurotic elements! None can but a neurotic persona can share it. None can but a dissatisfied soul can express as such. How the confessional element! The autobiographical bits of not hers, but of the whole of womankind! Hers is not a diary of a woman, but that of the whole womankind. People may take her as a mad persona, but she is not. The situations and circumstances of life have made her so. She is a woman, a man after all, not a thing of sex and love. She is not for to be sold as a toy. She is not a painted doll. She is a woman, a woman and this she wants to state it, but what can it change her status? But what it to change her situations ever? Who is it to feel her womanly self, her womanly persona? Is the give and take, attraction and repulsion met in love, attachment and detachment the periphery of her love story? Can she be not free? Has she to live under forever? A call, why does she become a call girl, have you thought it about? If a girl mixes with all, what will it happen to her? How does man want to be closer to take the benefit? How is a woman betrayed and dodged? Do you know? Where does dissatisfaction in love lead to? How the situations and circumstances turn a good girl into a bad girl? How does our society of village elders and patriarchs try to show themselves as the strict guardians of morals outwardly which is so rampant in our Asiatic society? A woman’s heart none has come to feel it. How does she keep shedding tears? Who has but thought about the wails and weeping of a woman? Many just try to make fall in love and after having trapped, betray and deceive the simple beings. Is this love? Can it be called love? A woman has something but to confide in privacy. There is something to keep it private and personal. A woman needs to be left alone as she cannot mix with it all. A man can go away, but can a woman?

Sometimes it is but extramarital love, dissatisfaction in love which but she talks of. How does it mislead one? How does it seek for fulfillment too? What is it the life of a woman? What did she it about? And what did it happen to her? How to tell it the story of life? How does good turn into bad as for situations and circumstances around? How does time too hang heavy during the nights or lonesome periods? It is indeed very difficult to say it about.

Actually every girl is but a simple girl barring a few crooked ones. But times hang it heavy upon. Situations and circumstances force it to be otherwise compelling it too much. Hardships impact relationships. Sometimes the company spoils it. A woman needs to walk cautiously averting the unwanted intrusion.

The woman is not a sunshine cat. She is not only a thing of sexual gratification, love and lust, but a human being too. None sees her with the sympathy she wants it from. The men she met they just loved the body, not the soul. They did not at all by heart. A cat too cannot be tamed if it is not allowed to roam, it is not given love, it will not purr into the hands. A young girl, how can she take the company of rudrakshas and books? A young girl, how can she be a yogan, a sadhu at a tender young age of life? The friends with whom he makes her introduced cannot be a lover of her. They will just like to love the body of her. But the hell is to befall it one if the own love is unable to give it that kind of love. But it turned cold during the winter. The outsiders cannot understand the misery of life rather than aggravating it. If the own people fail to understand feelings and emotions, who will it then?

What a life has she got if it is miserable and loveless! A neurotic girl playing with dolls or a girl mad after love, have you thought it about? Is Kamala Das talking about mismatch marriages? Sometimes the stories of older husbands and younger wives dance upon the mind’s plane. The sunshine cat too needs a natural life. How long can she be kept locked?
 

10-Dec-2022

More by :  Bijay Kant Dubey

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