A Revolution

Orlando Ceaser
Posted August 5, 2020 from United States

A Revolution is set up as a play with multiple voices describing abuses experienced by women in various settings. The objective is to view the subject from various perspectives which can be followed by a conversation. The play can be read by women to women or a mixed audience, and men can be among the voices participating.

 

A Revolution

Part 1. The Accusations

Narrator

First came the accusations

And then the denials;

The charges are years beyond the offense.

Is the evidence credible

Enough for trial?

In the court of public opinion,

The claims are not common,

But do they make sense?

 

Should we believe the accusations

Against a good man’s reputation?

The charges circling, as vultures

Above their prey,

Should we believe, without provocation,

That she vetoes and says no,

And he blatantly disobeys?

 

Truth

The women were emotionally maimed.

Their stories ring of truth, just as they claimed.

Men drunk with arrogance abused their role

And used their authority, as they stole

The women’s dignity through rabid threats,

That led to silence and regrets.

 

The women waited to report their claims.

They initially withheld their names.

They stood authentic, no imitations;

Beyond the statute of limitations;

Believable, regardless of their fears

And potential impact on their careers.

They are ready to face all obstacles;

Emboldened, by what now seems possible.

 

Narrator

Social media’s a fireside chat;

A platform and a habitat;

Where conflicts that are not resolved;

Can be aired, as they get involved;

Inspired they discuss despair;

And shared the hardships, hard to bear.

 

Truth

Ubiquitous publicity, widespread

Stories of women, misused, misled,

Spawned solidarity we rarely see;

#MeToo grew exponentially;

An avalanche formed, rumbling down a slope;

A platform branched, and it is giving hope,

To hold on and watch, as more industries,

See more women disclose their injuries.

 

Brave souls stepped out of shadows,

As in a roll call, identified

Themselves and stood

Side by virtual side;

No longer feeling the need to hide;

No more thoughts of the gauntlet

Of condescension;

Accused of baiting scandals

With false intentions.

 

Conscience

The number of women coming forth

Should not surprise us.

They have always been there.

And if we analyze us

And open our eyes

To the stark reality

Of brutality,

It will come through,

That we always knew.

What we denied,

Was always true.

 

Truth

We hear the words

Of the victims,

We must believe;

For it is invariably, inevitably,

Overwhelmingly true.

#MeToo,                                    

Relates to me;

#MeToo,                                  

Relates to you.

 

 

Part 2. Testimonials

Narrator

Nightmare scenarios dismissed and unreported;

Their accounts of what happened, distorted;

Afraid, many have resorted

To bury their burden within,

To hide the memory and secrecy of sin,

Especially when abused by kin.

 

Truth

When malice strikes close to home,

To someone we know;

The aftershock has no afterglow;

A family member debased and defiled;

Emotions expressed, but not reconciled;

Relatives prone to denying;

Accusing their kin of lying.

 

She was vulnerable, unsafe,

And often with no means of escape.

She begged for belief, relief and rescue,

To help her remove the residue;

But it happened far too often;

When he died she looked in his coffin

And wanted to spit on him, as he lay

There still, no longer able

To take her against her will.

She quietly cursed him,

Content he would pay

Through torment and damnation

On Judgment Day.

                                              

Conscience

A teenaged victim washed incessantly.

She was not as clean

As she needed to be.

She wanted to remove the violation.

She felt dirty and demeaned.

She wanted more water and more soap

To cleanse her body and return the hope

And innocence, she experienced,

Before the offense.

 

Narrator

Sexual harassment has metastasized

And a day of reckoning is beckoning,

As Judgment Day and Karma have arrived;

And the past sins, even if repented,

Are being presented and resented.

 

We honor those who survived despite

The trauma who withstood the drama.

We honor those who did not survive

And those who, although disadvantaged;

Were able to strive

Until they managed to thrive.

 

Truth

Women wanted freedom to compose and identify

The offenders charged and to clarify

The details, to describe the incidents;

A sordid recount of the events,

Involving neighbors and presidents.

 

Narrator

Victims spoke their stories with conviction,

After years of denial, self-blame and addictions,

And the hesitancy to wrestle with shame,

For fear of others,

Thrashing and trashing their name.

 

Conscience

Anonymously and silently, men

Are having sleepless nights,

Nervously wondering if past deeds

Will come to light.

 

Part 3.  The Perpetrators Strike Back

Narrator

Power is not passive.

Power strikes back and goes

On the offensive,

With massive counter claims;

Relentless, intensive,

And launching a flurry of insults;

Claiming infidelity

Between consenting adults.

 

Truth

Power attacks character, pressing

The public into second guessing

Whether the women were really under duress;

Was body language and manner of dress

A method to signal their consent?

Did they somehow portray their intent

To curry special favors

For their labor?

 

Narrator

Something of value was removed.

He claimed she asked for it and she wanted it

And she approved.

He said she led him on and now has buyer’s remorse.

She changed her mind and mysteriously 

Believes she was taken by force.

 

Truth

The women said what they knew to be true;

Someone wondered if the defendants would sue.

Some of the women over time repressed

The memories, but no longer suppressed

Their accounts of the stories,

After scrolling through the inventories

Of events, the incidents and accidents,

They remembered the stress

And the recurring nightmare

Of feeling less

Than they deserved;

A recurring nightmare

Made them feel guilty,

Filthy, unnerved and under-served.

 

She had a gift that was only hers to give;

But it was taken and now as long as she lives,

She is reminded of something taken;

Her faith in men sullied and shaken.

 

Part 4. The Perpetrators’ Repentance

Conscience

A few perpetrators, conscience driven,

Asked for mercy and to be forgiven;

And offered apologies

For the selfish qualities

That caused them to intentionally

Or accidentally,

Hurt physically or mentally,

As they selfishly and recklessly

Robbed people of their dignity;

Against their will and conversations 

Revoked women’s rights and

Ignored their reservations.

 

They apologized after they were caught;

“Be aggressive” is what they were taught;

Obsession with sex is how they were trained.

It is how manhood was defined and obtained.

But, they should have known it was a mistake;

That rights are not something they should take.

 

Narrator

Men resigned from office and positions

Of power to show their true contrition;

For they are a liability,

For showing poor judgment,

And through the lens of interpretation,

Bad behavior that is an aberration

Is still considered a violation;

Which is open to dissemination.

 

 

Part 5.  Next Steps

Truth

The ladies expressed their tales of woe;

From feeling helpless with no place to go;

About disrespect that made them cry,

From feeling helpless and wanting to die;

And being belittled and made to feel,

The deed could not be true,

The deed could not be real.

 

Narrator

We see courageous women

Speaking about abuse;

Through their outrageous accounts

Of villains on the loose.

 

We are shocked and numb.

We were not aware.

For we did not know the acts existed,

That the pain was there;

Anonymously suffering and secretly

Wanting to speak out, so they could be free.

 

Truth

As we sit around and debate these facts,

Is the culture culpable in these acts?

The power dynamic and social views

Are we complicit when people abuse

And fail to listen when the victims speak,

Compromising the justice that they seek?

 

Conscience

We hear the stories and the outlook is sad.

The focus on these acts is not be a fad;

Corrective measures will be put in place

And penalties to prevent, punish and erase

The attitude and pervasive disdain,

Toward women who faced harassment’s pain.

 

Narrator

The vulnerable will be protected;

Not victimized and disrespected.

The laws on our books will be enforced

And values upheld and endorsed;

Inappropriate behavior defined;

Cherish accusers when they speak their minds;

Punish abusers when they cross the line,

Because harming the vulnerable

Should be seen as a crime

And the response should always be,

“Not in this lifetime”

Because everyone should equally

Have access to respect and dignity. 

Copyright © 2017 Orlando Ceaser

This story was submitted in response to Share On Any Topic.

Comments 9

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Nini Mappo
Aug 06
Aug 06

Dear Orlando,
Your poem comprehensively captures the terrifying and humiliating intricacies involved in gender based violence, the fear, the grief, the morphed identities and the exhausting and frustrating fight to be heard, to have the law on our side.

Corrective measures will be put in place
And penalties to prevent, punish and erase
The attitude and pervasive disdain,
Toward women who faced harassment’s pain.

These above are my favourite lines, my prayer, my hope. the hope of all of us here at WP.
And yet, with the increase in gender based violence during Covid-19, the fight feels like two steps forwards and three steps backwards.

But we live in hope. We have to hope. Thank you for being part of the fight against GBV.

Orlando Ceaser
Aug 06
Aug 06

Nini, Your words are uplifting. I appreciate them. I will continue to write and support the fight against GBV.

Orlando Ceaser
Aug 06
Aug 06

Nini, Your words are uplifting. I appreciate them. I will continue to write and support the fight against GBV.

Hello, Orlando,

How are you doing? This is such a powerful piece. I can already imagine the characters and movements in a play while reading each line.

I support this kind of revolution! This resonates with me, among many others,

“We hear the words
Of the victims,
We must believe;
For it is invariably, inevitably,
Overwhelmingly true.

#MeToo,
Relates to me;

#MeToo,
Relates to you.”

YES! Please update us about the development of this play. Please make it available on YouTube.

Thanks for sharing!

Orlando Ceaser
Aug 06
Aug 06

Karen,
Thank you very much for your positive and supportive comments. I will keep =
you posted on how it progresses, but I have a number of projects.

otahelp
Aug 08
Aug 08

Hi Orlando, i may not have passed through the most and worst form of Violence but i did when growing up in a Family of all Female Until my mum started having male children. I can remember Some snickerings from relatives but now the Joke is on them that felt they had all male children. You captured it so Well. Thank you for standing with us on GBV. Stay safe

Orlando Ceaser
Aug 08
Aug 08

You are very welcome. Thanks for your comment.

Chi8629
Aug 08
Aug 08

Thank you for sharing.

Orlando Ceaser
Aug 08
Aug 08

You are very welcome. Thanks.