Celebrating Women · My Voice · Poetry · Power Of Words · Soiling Stereotypes · womanhood · Women and Careers · Women and Sabbaticals

Women Will Have It All

‘Women Will Have It All’ Performed at Spoken Fest, Mumbai (JAN, 2020)

Forty Six!
That possibly cannot be my weight.
Vintage like the best of wines,
Darlings, that’s my age!

High Always on myriad roles,
Tripped over some professions.
Dusted all drunken doubts,
Burnt some mental bras,
Swinging raunchily now,
In the arms of my midlife.
I’m also bartending some dainty dreams.
But I look back,
And Voila!
What a heady cocktail,
Each of these decades so far has been!

Yes, that’s how our lives are,
As mothers, as girls, as women.
Once a geeky economics professor,
A decade of being,
Just a homemaker.
Just a homemaker.
(I’ll come back to that)
Now a maverick writer,
That’s my humble little story
And there are six hundred million and more tales,
Yarns of our careers, sabbaticals, comebacks,
Waiting to be light-housed and told.

At the helm of our homes, 
At the helm of fortune 500 companies.
Budgeting, investing, coding, decoding,
Procreating, punctuating.
We are done with shattering all your glass ceilings.
We are now claiming our rightful ground.

What for you is ‘just a homemaker’,
A ‘doyenne of domesticity’,
That’s how I look at her!
The largest workforce of my country,
The most underrated of our roles.
Underpaid is an understatement,
For no denomination can match up,
To our actual worth!

And now,
Much beyond your coffers and economies,
How we hone houses and generations,
The undocumented, the disguised,
The emotional costs, the investments
No one gives us statutory warnings
‘Read offer documents carefully,
Yet we stay put and strongly invested.

Did someone say it requires a village to raise a child,
Where the hell is that village?
Many from my brood are doing it singlehandedly. 
A big shoutout for them!
Maybe that village has to be you all,
Creating conducive conditions at workplaces,
Workplaces that deem,
Motherhood NOT as a penalty,
But as a choice a woman makes.
And yes a privilege it is,
A privilege it is,
To be able to bear,
And raise the next generation.

We juggle, we soar, we step back,
We redefine our goals.
To accommodate our children’s milestones!
Did someone talk about reinventions,
Give me one example that beats us!
Making comebacks after sabbaticals,
O yes sabbaticals!
Why the hell does the world not talk about them?
Let’s hail this most unsung phase of the lives,
Of millions of women around us.
For at times,
Our sabbaticals have required stronger calls, 
Stronger than those of your surging ahead.

Don’t look at our careers,
As if they come with expiry dates.
Don’t  look at our sabbaticals,
As full stops to our growth.
Not always do they warrant your condolences.
What you thought was a full stop,
Was just my semi colon.

While you got busy,
Writing the obituary of my career,
I was silently rewriting my script post interval.
Yes, stories of our comebacks,
Can beat any of Bollywood’s multi crore grossers!

Yes I’m making sabbaticals look sexy,
For I owe all my new found passions,
And all that my voice today represents,
To a decade long sabbatical.
Now flirting with words,
Playing around with punches,
Making out with metaphors,
And discovering finally my real G spot,
The fact that it lies in humor and satire.
This is my story of making the best of both my worlds.

But I’m Still asked questions.
Women will be asked questions.
‘Lady you left all your economics’,
All that you had mastered and worked so hard for’?
I say, “No no, Don’t worry’!
‘I still use it,
I use it now
To gauge my diminishing marginal happiness.
I also use it to study, 
My own trends and statistics’.

My marginal curves have made way for parabolas,
My asset classes are soaring.
I’m a flourishing economy,
Unlike my country’s at the moment.
On the side swings and soaring.
Sixty Nine!
I tell them is my new love
And I’m blissfully stuck on it.
Ahh naughties!
Don’t get me wrong again,
I was just talking about my gross gains.

You know the day I turned forty,
I gifted myself a mantra.
Dear skewed world,
Whatever lemons you will throw at me,
I’ll lovingly catch them,
Slice them.
Dunk them in my celery salted puns.
Juice them up with some fresh literary tomatoes.
And dish them back to you in the form of my tangy writings.
My brands of Bloody Mary!.
My way of staying high on life!
My way of rising like a phoenix with every verse.
You better cultivate a taste for them.

Time to usher in an era,
Where we women unshackle ourselves of the world’s paradigms.
Yes the pungent paradigms,
Giving up on our passions,
Will make us better daughters.
Giving up on our careers, 
Will make us better mothers.
Giving up on our inheritances,
Will make us better sisters.
We aren’t giving up on anything!

We are giving up.
Going on guilt trips,
We are putting ourselves,
Higher on our own priority lists.

Much  beyond the narrow domestic walls,
Of sexist stereotypes and gender divides.
Bridging gaps at homes and work places.
Work places where ratings and hierarchies, 
Are not more inflexible than our uteruses.
Work places where to avoid year-end shocks,
We Women don’t have to adjust,
Even our biological clocks.
Work places that are not customized, 
To cater to a gender that has wives back home,
And children who are well looked after!

Homes where we raise our sons and daughters,
As equal caregivers.
And not bucket them as primary or secondary,
Just basis their gender.

Where work cultures world wide gets redefined,
To accommodate our care obligations.
Where the mountain of this murky mindset
‘women cannot have it all’
Crumbles down into a beautiful stream that gushes,
Loud and clear
‘Women can have it all’
Women can have it all!

Women WILL have it all!

2 thoughts on “Women Will Have It All

  1. hi,just heard u bellow out ‘ my six yards are my cape’ . I laughed, was jolted a little but ended up crying . it’s my story too. and every other woman’s our age.i noticed the battle scars in your rhyme. loved it. and bellow on. btw I write too.:)


    1. Thanks a ton Maya for reaching out with your warm words! And I shall keep bellowing on till I have my fabulous fellow midlifers like you cheering me on.
      Si glad to hear you write too. More power to your words ❤️


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