Poems and Other Myths:

A collection of spoken word poetry by women from Asia.


Raunala Maruti


(Youth vs Pain - inspired by the mythical ruler of Southern Java Sea, Nyi Roro Kidul)
 Kanjeng Gusti, forgive me, but these puerile misuses are surely ill
Representing our muliebrous kind yet their mind wanders aside the windowsill
In the seconds idly spent, leaking, percolating, and trickling down a hill
The sands that makes the bed of your hiemal veins, in your fingers that sprouts and grabs all,
But have you seen how they've managed to just stand still?
Ratu Ayu, maybe now we just have too much time to kill
Faint-hearted, with no spunk to stand up for ourselves, 
with no souls to grill, nor bones to chill
Arrows point to our excitements but in a different thrill
In a sense that in each ticking clock a knock would no longer come,

Rendezvous by the shore have extinct - replaced by the dinging of texts marking how all the goals of the day are now fulfilled. 
Kanjeng Dewi, I have dreamed of being a mermaid ever since I was little
But whenever I've found myself drowning a part me acquired it as your acquittal
On how my moroseness is not my anchor, we two are noncommittal
It was never how I was brought up,
You however would own up and make their knees fall
While we here sit frail, fidgeting as we brew upon another kettle.
Hyang Ratu, it was never your preferred shade but we are colored in the cerulean of our washed skills, and faded will
Decorated with the salts of devotion meant for your ocean, never to run his mill
If it were you, we knew that your pulchritude tames attitudes in tranquil
As it builds shrines,
Shivers spines,
Carves vines,
Scribble over finest lines,
And digs out the riches within a kingdom on to their deepest of mines.
But have the fruits of allure; fell to the wrong hands, once devoured by Siti Hawa
Rolled away from your grip to the now endlessly youth, who are not capable of saving themselves when under water even if they had gills.
O Dewi Ratu,
We have waited,
We have wilted,
For hearts that have now grown colder,
But ours ceased to become bolder
Would you water us all once more in spite of your bewitching ways?
Perhaps we could once again resurrect a glimpse of your enchanting gaze


Of pyre and luminosity
Volcanic in sparks that lights up a city
She was born Draupadi,
Came unasked,
Left in the fated uncertainty
Having many however none
of the proudest of husbands and sons
In their splendor she never basked.

Her presence was a waft smelled from afar,
Azure and assured
A royal lotus bloom
A fragrance that the jaundiced eyed wouldn't dare to wrongly assume
A prize shared fairly amongst brothers
All five despite how her heart yearns for
Arjuna, in spite of his many lovers

Let us not forget the Shakti within one's femininity
The ruins, that tells their own tales,
Our mothers, as they persist through silent prayers
To remind us how the slightest wrong against a flower
Dethrones a king with all his power
Dismantles towns to ash and rubble,
Witnesses a kingdom as it crumble
Like Ravana's,
Over Sita's abduction
Like Dusshasana's,
After Draupadi's humiliation

--She spun,
First with all that she could fathom,
Sarcasms that are thought of as cute instead -
As her husband's kneeled as mute as the dead.

She was a prize once won and now given to another, thrown onto a stranger's lap
An object
For with her beauty and charm, was said to come her misery & harm

She spun,
A game of dice took all, and won all
Snickered as the Pandava's fall
Whilst the Kuravas felt mighty and tall
And startled as they began to disrobe her saree,
She threw both hands in plea to He who has promised her security.

In Lord Krishna's name she spun
She twirled like the blaze that she was made of, each layer followed by another
In Awe their eyes feasted on like no other
The mystery likewise of femininity that none can unravel as it leaves all souls baffled.
An object
To them that was all she was,
Not a boat that saved them sorrow, summoned tomorrow, and kept them afloat.
And in Dusshasana's blood,
Draupadi swore her hair would one day be washed

Let us not forget the Shakti within one's femininity  
At the sole of our feet there are seeds of many kingdoms to come, voids that wombs would have sincerely fed.
We women have been taught to please,
To have a future planted at ease,
Taught to manage,
Although he was taught to carry the burdens of a baggage
We might not be a Panchali, a Parsati, like her with the audacity we wish to embody; yet a saga of agony we hope to never endure.
But we are the earth itself
Like frogs, somehow stepping upon one another to leap,
Despite the pond of tears and muddy fears we're able seep,
For higher apples and sunnier spots to reap
Blessed by the nature we forgot to kiss as mother,
With all the love that she has taught of to have, to spread, and smother.
In Draupadi's name, I wish to not cower.