LADY OF THE NIGHT - II

Written by: Sumit Majumdar

Dreaming of a pot of gold, you came to town
It was sprawling, this metropolis, you knew none around
Your earnings were scant and engagements, irregular
The overseer assured steady income in lieu of a favour
You succumbed to ward off uncertainties, and gradually sank deeper

You were born of impoverished stock, high up in the Himalayas
Your clean looks and youthful age were your kin’s panacea
Your home, the arid plains, where land is mostly barren
Starvation a reality, your innocent world was broken
When it comes to sacrifice, inevitably you are chosen

You were a country girl, pubescent and barely thirteen
Travelling to the big city with a distant kin
To serve an urban family with mop and pail
A drug laced cup of tea made you vulnerable to a cartel
You woke, imprisoned, in a dingy room of a highway brothel

Battered and beaten and raped to submission
You forgot the gods and your daily oblation
Your escort paid dearly for his betrayal and malice
Was it your homage to the gods or backstreet justice?
You languish now in jail, but the brothel still exists

You were in your second year, studying BA (Honours)
With a weakness for the life of the upper class
And the knowledge to achieve what you felt, you must
The initiation was debasing – no niceties, just frenzied lust
The payment was in cash –the first time wasn’t the last

You are not alone in your tainted existence
Women arriving at the metropolis in suburban trains
Working by day and exiting before the peak hour rush
Living in opulence, in times past – barely middle class
Very discreet, these devil women and financially flush

You conceived, a professional risk, and the baby you resolved to keep
Now nineteen and actively trafficking, his misdeeds make you weep
His latest catch, a tender ten year old, the same age you were shackled
Your flesh and blood, the son, you had mothered from the cradle!
Your agony was incomplete, now it had completed its cruel cycle

Hail lady of the night
With time, you’ve overcome both fear and fright 
And blended the distinction between wrong and right
You’ve lost your vision, though you retain your sight
In a world shrouded in darkness where the sun still shines bright