When I have a daughter

Itisha Giri | February 23, 2015
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When I have a daughter,

I will pinch her every day so her skin turns to rhino hide –

so she feels no pain when cornered by a stranger’s hand at play.

 

When I have a daughter,

I will lash her with my tongue –

so she is ready for it when someone else calls her names.

 

When I have a daughter,

I will cover her room with a thousand, wide-open cutout eyes –

so she is used to someone else’s stare.

 

When I have a daughter,

I will teach her to disappear into thin air, like a ninja –

so she is never is in the wrong place, at the wrong time.

 

When I have a daughter,

I will teach her of lust and of pleasure –

so she never feels any shame.

 

When I have a daughter,

I will bathe her in milk tinged with acid every day,

so when someone decides to attack her,

like a snake charmer, she is immune to the venom and its decay.

 

 

 

 

8 Responses to “When I have a daughter”

  1. Sneha says:

    I don’t know why they did it, but I will never believe that there might be a rational reason. It’s plain violence.

    And this piece that you’ve written, well, it speaks my heart. Kudos to you.

  2. Aradhana says:

    Since I have a daughter, this resonates so well. Thank you.

  3. Wayne Amtzis says:

    When I am a daughter
    in the next life or in the countless lives
    to be lived,
    may I be born to a mother
    who is as painstakingly honest and clear-minded
    as you are in this poem.
    When I am a mother, as I have been
    and will be again,
    may I nurture all beings
    as the earth does
    even now as we disregard and fail to return
    her love

  4. Shreya says:

    I love this and feel every word, every shred of emotion behind it. Please keep writing words that touch our hearts.

  5. Marcus says:

    This is stunning Itisha – and resonates across countries, culture and gender.

  6. Anonymous says:

    When I have a son,
    I will teach him what consent is, that no means no,
    and that his hand must never be stranger’s hand at play.

    When I have a son,
    I will tech him that language
    can be a tool of violence, and his should be a tool of respect.

    When I have a son,
    I will teach him that his beautiful eyes
    are not to violate anyone with his stare.

    When I have a son,
    I will teach him to be that man,
    who reacts to violence, harm and injustice, at any time or place.

    When I have a son,
    I will teach him that real men
    don’t get pleasure from coercion or force.

    When I have a son,
    I will teach him not be be the problem
    but to be the solution.

  7. Rajesh says:

    I hope you don’t have a daughter. The things you’ve planned sure looks painful.

  8. […] *Originally posted on La. Lit […]

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