April A2Z, NaPoWriMo, Poetry

When is a monster not a monster?



When is a monster not a monster?

After the sun rises and the blood clots
When the bruises turn purple from maroon,
When he cradles her in his arms

,
Wide eyed at the atrocities of the night.
When he holds her close, cries with her,
Whispers words of endearment.
When he Promises to keep her safe,
to not let the monster in.

“When is a monster not a monster?”

She asks herself.
For the millionth time,
she musters the last ounce of her life,
Gathers her clothes,
Over the wounds,
Sweeps up her shattered self esteem
from under the bed,
deposits them in the dustbin,
smoothens the bed spread.
Hiding her laments
beneath those barely visible creases,
she deliberates the right amount of tea powder
That goes into 5 cups of Tea,
The same amount of thought
that went into her marriage,
Fixed in 5 days
Consummated in 5 minutes
And shattering her spirit in 5 million ways.

“When is a monster not a monster?”

She scrubs the vessels, until they sparkle,
As though she’s scrubbing the dirt from her body
She mops the floor clean,
the nooks and the crannies;
the only things she can control.
The clock strikes Seven
She kneads the dough for roti
The clock strikes Eight
The smell of paneer wafts in the household
The clock strikes Nine
He walks in tired
The clock strikes Ten
She tucks the kids in,
The clock strikes Eleven
He lights a cigarette
At Eleven Five, he lights another
Blows the smoke onto her face,
And as she covers her nose,
He presses the lit end onto her shoulder.
His eyes glow red
His lust burns blue
He slaps her,
Claws at her clothes,
Twirls her hair around his fist
Falters and falls.

When is a monster not a monster?

When he tries to get up, but in vain,
When his legs give up,
And so does the rest of his body,
She watches him with grim satisfaction.

When is a monster not a monster?
When his body stiffens,
Cold and lifeless,
right next to the tiny bottle lying on the floor.

I’m participating in the National Poetry Writing month. You can find all of them in my Instagram handle afew.handpickedthings


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