Exploring Patriarchy – Chapter 9
There are many things that women won’t admit – even to themselves. It’s hard, I think, for a woman whose husband loved the size of her dowry before he learned to care for her, to ever truly feel loved.
It hurt’s her to know she is treated well by her husband and her in-laws only because her family has money, or is able to keep up a pretense of wealth. That she is loved because her family gave in to demands for gifts. Or loved only because she finally had a boy child after two daughters. A woman remembers these things even when she pretends they don’t matter.
The materialism is evident within housing societies, and it hits women like MM when they’re new to the building – women from families who live on rent, and who do not value gold jewelry and a display of money. Truthfully, MM and her husband did not have any gold, because they spent a lot on their continuing education, and on hobbies.
So MM, the new woman in her housing society, would have some first conversations with women she bumped into in the lift. Some that would always be just casual greetings and some that would turn into friendly chats. Some would turn into friendships that she would retain when she moved to a new building.
There were other first conversations that were different. Firsts that would also be lasts – hellos conducted with eyes glued to her neck and ears which were devoid of adornment. Then, inquiries on whether MM’s family were owners or rentals. These women would look the other way the next time them met MM in the lift.
And MM would feel bad about it, but she would feel sorry for these women. Because their behaviour said a LOT about their family relationships and whether they knew what it was to be truly loved.
MM would go to her poetry books for solace because they brought her new ideas and always helped her feel better.
The Colour of Gold
Gold is the colour of the help that I get the kindness and caring that makes this busy no stress. Machines that take on some of my chores and let me have a life that has time for more. Gold is the colour of the love of the mother Who educates all her children and teaches them resilience in stormy weather. The comfort of less that is just enough to pay for convenience on days that are rough. Gold is the caring that helps us feel secure and adjust, helps us be flexible and bend. Like the coconut tree when the winds get too much.
Thanks so much for reading this. I’d appreciate feedback on whether the story of Microwave Madam gives this poem more meaning or makes the social issues behind it easier to understand.
I invite you to read all chapters of Exploring Patriarchy and walk with Microwave Madam as she explores the impact of patriarchy on her life and on society. And looks for solutions.