Before you read the poem: Just think about these questions- Is life as easy as it seems? Is ‘trust’ a lethal word? Do best friends ever betray? Will you do everything for money? What would you choose-Circumstances or choices? Your family’s happiness or your wishes? ruining your life or running away? And to all the questions i asked there is just one answer, this poem.
I trusted her, I did. She was my friend after all. Friends don’t lie to each other, right? We trust them blindly. I trusted her, I did. She said I would earn. And my family would be proud. She said life would get so much better. She said a lot of things. And all of them were good. She convinced me to leave home. She told me she would take care of me. I trusted her, I did. So I believed her. It wasn’t that hard. She always had her way, Ever since we played together. Baba came to see me off. Ma gave me an idol of Durga. Didi gave me all her new clothes. My niece gifted a family portrait. All of us were happy for a new beginning. No one knew what this beginning was. We just knew that life was going to get better. I trusted her, I did. I arrived in the city. She welcomed me. To my new life, a better life. My life soon took a turn. We sat in the rickshaw. ‘So, what’s my job about?’ ‘We’ll talk about the job later,’ ‘Where will we live in the city?’ ‘With other girls in a big house,’ ‘Oh, I won’t get lonely too often!’ ‘Nope, and our clients are nice too!’ Wow, I thought. This couldn’t be better. Great people to live with. Great people to work with. The rickshaw was slow. We reached home at 10 pm. The street had houses on both sides. There were well dressed women all around. We went up to a wooden staircase. So narrow, it could barely hold me. My feet were bigger than the steps. Carrying the luggage was getting harder for me. The first room I saw had a TV set. A narrow corridor made its way from there. There were small rooms all along one side. It looked like the room which can’t even hold two. There were sounds coming from every room I crossed. I didn’t know what the sounds were, so I walked quickly. She led me to the last room in the corridor – it had one bed. Next morning, she shook me awake. ‘Wake up, you can’t be seen like this!’ She applied eye liner and lipstick. She made me wear a denim skirt with a top. They all told me that I would be the first one. The first one that day who would get a customer. That was the first sign. They told me to stand outside. I singled her out and took her aside. ‘What did she mean when she said customer?’ ‘You know what people do when they are married?’ ‘Why do you ask, what does that have to do with this?’ I have to do sex with other men. I need to satisfy them to survive. I don’t want to have sex with strange men. I want to have sex with them to send money home. She brought me to the city to sell my body. To a city which would obliterate my soul. I trusted her, I did. I shouldn’t have.
About the Author: This article is contributed by Aashna Banerjee, our Intern.