Monday, October 25, 2021

Our Men are Learning

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“Cut them some slack,
our men are still learning.”

“Don’t be so harsh,
our men are still learning.”

Did you know that
the learning cycle of an average male
coincides with the melting of an iceberg? And I’ve heard,
we’re still at the tip.

We have waited for centuries,
not for the icebergs to melt,
but for our men to learn
what women have inherited
from their mothers’ nightmares
and the tragedies of their own.

And as we wait,
we have mastered
the art of forgiving and apologizing.
Dropping ‘sorrys’ like loose change.
Appreciating the bare minimum
like a toddler’s first sketch,
in hope that it would get them
to draw more.
But you know toddlers,
they get distracted easily.

So we become the mothers
cheerleading for our manchildren.
Clapping for our non-abusive fathers.
Thanking all non-threatening strangers.
Surrendering our souls to men
that claim to have cracked the code
on the difference of a yes and a no.

I get this recurring nightmare
that the icebergs might soon
beat our mighty men,
and we’ll all be drowning,
holding on to wooden planks.
But no Jack will show up,
for he still wouldn’t have learned
love or selflessness.

I wish we’d learned swimming
instead of forgiving.

Art by Raneesh P.R, Visual Editor, Indian Ruminations

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Himani Chouhan
Himani Chouhan is a postgraduate student of Public Policy at National Law School of India University, Bengaluru.

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