~ Unchained ~ Dedicated To The Spirit Of A Woman Who Takes The Strength To Walk Away From Violence And Build Her Life All Over Again

Urmila Chanam
Posted October 10, 2018 from India

On the day of International Day of the Girl Child I share a poem I wrote to depict my life after I walked out of a marriage where I was beaten physically and crushed in my spirit and the light at the end of the tunnel. I recited this poem in the One Billion Rising celebrations in India in 2017 and in 2018 at Sambhashane, the Bengaluru Dialogues on Citizen and Community Media organized by community radio Radio Active 90.4 Mhz.

The first bruise on my face

Covered the side of my mouth;

Till one day I had a black eye

That needed a veil.

The injuries spotted corners of my body

Till nothing I did could cover it anymore;

I stopped meeting people in the eye

It became my habit to hide.

 

Eight years it took me to listen to my inner voice

And I chose justice that day;

But the judge I faced in the court 

Asked me proof of my pain.

What proof does a woman keep who loves her man?

Does she take down dates?

Does she take pictures?

Why has she no witnesses?

Where are the hospital bills?

Had she been just busy, forgiving him?

 

I found no justice from law

There was no one in the court to console me; 

I lay there shattered more by their disbelief 

Than the open skin of my wounds.

That night I looked hard at my sleeping child

Thought deep what I wanted her to be; 

And I chose justice that night

I let go, to close a chapter of our lives.

 

There were ups and downs but

We had dignity;

We were surrounded by unknown faces

But we found safety.

There was a time there was no money to pay for our bus fare

But we hung on for better times;

We ate simple food

But our soul was nurtured.

 

We lived in rented homes

But we knew we had each other;

We fell sick, we got broke

But we slept at peace every night.

Most of all, every knock that life threw our way

We inched a little closer to each other

My daughter and I.

 

We walked out of this world of man-made laws 

And built our lives ‘brick-by-brick’;

We lived among happy people

And finally found our sunshine.

It has been 10 years ever since, 

Seems like just yesterday; 

But I have changed, we have changed

No one can give us justice anymore

For we are not takers,

We have become the givers.

Our home is our temple

And the world our family;

We rise, we soar, we celebrate our spirit that now lives

Unchained  

Comments 17

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anita shrestha
Oct 10
Oct 10

Heart touching poem

Urmila Chanam
Oct 11
Oct 11

Anita, we can draw strength from each other and overcome anything. Sharing is empowering. Sharing is hope. Keep walking.
Much love,
Urmila Chanam,
India
urmila.chanam@gmail.com

Anju Bist
Oct 11
Oct 11

Wow Urmila, very humbled to read. Pranams to you for all that you have overcome. Its a pleasure to know you and work with you.

Urmila Chanam
Oct 11
Oct 11

Must have been destiny when we became room-mates. Looking ahead to good work together, Anju.
Love and hugs,
Urmila Chanam,
India
urmila.chanam@gmail.com

Shatakshi Gawade
Oct 11
Oct 11

I see so much strength and such a powerful will in the words here. I loved the poem for how candid it is, and also how beautifully it is written. It's given me strength to face hurdles that life will put up.

Urmila Chanam
Oct 11
Oct 11

Thanks Shatakshi for reading my post and understanding the journey during ten years of trials and tribulations but each one making me wiser, stronger and giving me a humor that came along with it.

Love and hugs,
Urmila Chanam

Olutosin
Oct 11
Oct 11

Amen.
I Love you always.

Urmila Chanam
Oct 11
Oct 11

Dear precious sister of mine,

I love you back and honored to be your sister and friend.

Hugs and kisses
Urmila Chanam

jlanghus
Oct 13
Oct 13

Hi Urmila,

Wow! This is so, so good!

Great job, and thanks for sharing. It's so clever and well thought-out. You have so much meaning in every stanza of this poem.

Hope you're having a great weekend, dear:-)

Urmila Chanam
Oct 18
Oct 18

Sister Jill, I had tears when I wrote it and also when I recited it. It took just 20 minutes to write but 10 years to conclude it in real life.

Much love always
Urmila Chanam

jlanghus
Oct 19
Oct 19

Hello dear Urmila:-)

I bet! I can't believe that only took you 20 minutes to write..wow! You are so gifted:-)

Yes, I can imagine.

Hope you're having a great day!

XO

Marie Abanga
Oct 15
Oct 15

Dear Urmila,

Your poem speaks to me...I know where you are coming from...it's been 7 years I walked away too, not even able to take my sons...but it's been 2 years now we live in our own home...

I just joined WP over the weekend, I am so happy I did.

Wishing you all the best, to your lovely daughter too of course.

Urmila Chanam
Oct 18
Oct 18

Dear Marie,

Welcome to the World Pulse family! I joined almost 9 years and since then been so happy in my family of sisters and caregivers of my heart and soul. I wish you more power to see through difficult times and remind yourself that the worst is over and only and only the good awaits you.

Much love
Urmila Chanam
India

Marie Abanga
Oct 19
Oct 19

Dear Urmila,

Thank you. I already feel the WP Sisterhood and I am glad I finally joined.

I am in a much much much good place today than 7 years ago when I left that marriage.

I look forward to more sharing here.

Hugs

Marie

Urmila Chanam
Oct 21
Oct 21

My dear Marie,

You can post your stories- your thoughts on a particular topic or a social cause/evil, what you believe is the solution relevant to your community, about events, programs, workshops or conferences you attended and summary of your learnings or even your personal journal and advice to others. These are so powerful in uniting us across the globe my sister. I wish you great times ahead on World Pulse.

Love and hugs
Urmila Chanam
India
urmila.chanam@gmail.com

Marie Abanga
Oct 23
Oct 23

Dear Urmila,

Thank you so much. Yes I will be doing that progressively. Thank you for your email, I will be reaching out to you to eventually so we share notes on the way forward for our respective communities o.

Loads of appreciation and love

Marie

Namrata Sharma
Nov 27
Nov 27

Heart touching, moved me into tears..... What an inspiring woman you have become! So much to learn... hugs and heals!

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