Even This For Your Sake
Again and again I’ve read your letter
That says you are ashamed to call me ‘mother’.
It curses my womb for bearing you
And wonders if all that you’ve heard is true.
I expected this letter; but not so soon,
I thought you’d need me till you’re fully on your own.
Schooling just over, and got a low-paid post.
Your merits for the job are yet to be proved.
After your father died of sudden heart disease
Life for us with none’s care was far away from ease.
A tiny piece of land and a one-roomed house
Were all that your father had left for us.
I brought you up by doing many a menial work
Hoping to get relief when you are big enough to work.
Day and night I slogged to meet our frugal needs
Your food, clothes and schooling were priority indeed.
Wrapped in rags my body, frail, weak and starved,
I went from house to house and worked as ladies’ maid.
My misery and sorrows, I tried always to hide.
I wished you not to know that I was hungry and sad.
I used to sit awake and shed tears in the night
And pray that God should grant an early end to my plight.
It was a long journey. Every day was filled with fear.
My fierce will only has carried us this far.
When my work couldn’t fetch enough to buy our needs,
To meet the deficit source, I sold many household things.
When nothing else remained, with bleeding heart I sold
My most precious chastity. For your sake, this I did.
If that’s what you’ve heard now, yes, it’s fully true.
Even that wretched thing with pain I did for you.
I realize, it’s shameful to have an unchaste mother.
You wouldn’t command respect. Disgrace you’d suffer.
I shall vanish to the realm that’s far from human sight
None will see me or hear of. And public memory’s short.
None will bother to remember a late petty whore.
But, my soul will keep enquiring if you need my care any more.