She And He - Poem by Makarand Paranjape
To be a woman is to be silent and sure
To know, to be secure,
Not just about oneself but about the world,
About what's good and what's bad,
What to hold and what to void.
To be a woman is to be strong,
Not by becoming strong, not by acquiring strength:
To be a woman is to be strength itself.
To be a woman is not to speculate,
Not to know separation from the self,
Not to know death.
To be a woman is to find one's depth within oneself.
To be a woman is never to venture,
Never to stray, never to search,
But to have, as natural right,
Dominion over the earth.
To be a woman is to hold sway,
To be a woman is to be the source.
To be a man is to seek, to venture, to define-
And to find one's annihilation in woman.
[From The Serene Flame]
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