|PAIN AND TEARS
Nothing, but pain, I got from you,
Except, true, the tears aplenty.
Your heart is full of scorn and hate,
But, of love, it is so empty.
I thought so often that I should
Walk on you or commit suicide.
Why should I from the others’ gaze,
My scars and bruises have to hide?
But I don’t have courage to put
My thoughts verily into deed.
Who will suffer ultimately?
Not you, nor I, children indeed.
It’s for them that I continue
To suffer all indignity,
In order that the kids are spared,
A broken home, uncertainty.
M C Gupta
1 April 2005
I received an interesting review for this poem. I have posted my response to the review, but I am not sure it will reach the paerson because he/she is anonymous. I am giving below a copy of the review and my response below because it will help understand tis poem better:
Subject: Comment For PAIN AND TEARS (#956102)
Date: 20:11:24 09/17/2005
From: Anonymous Reviewer <Anonymous_Reviews@Writing.Com>
With no love, and mostly pain, the woman's home is already broken, and the there is plenty of uncertainity to go around for everyone. To raise her children in a home without love, and only scorn, hate, and uncertainity... what message is the woman giving her sons and daughters, her children?
If a woman stays in an abusive relationship, the woman is demonstrating to her young sons that it is okay for a man to treat a woman the way they are seeing her treated, and by example she is demonstrating to her daughters that it is okay for men to treat women the way they are seeing her treated.
Therefore a woman staying in a failed relationship for the sake of the children only perpertrates the cycle of hate, scorn, and misery. Her sons will grow up to mistreat women, and her daughters will grow up and allow themselves to be mistreated.
While your poem may be perfectly written in abcb 8-8-8-8 format, I'd reconsider the message.
I find the message in your poem to be one that discourages women from getting out of a miserable relationship; a message that compels her to stay regardless, as if she is duty bound "To suffer all indignity" for the sake of the children. NO!!!!
Once a woman can get out from under, and away from the constant pain, scorn, and hate your poem speaks of then a woman can manage better independantly, and with pride and dignity with her children, and her children will be better off in the long run. The woman will then rediscover her self-esteem.
Personally, I find your poem degrading to women. Better, I think, to encourage women to break out of bondage, than to justify any woman thinking she does not have the courage, spirit, and strenght to get out of a bad relationship.
So the rating is not for the structure of your poem, but because of the message with which I totally disagree.
Just my humble opinion...
Rating included: 1.0 stars out of 5.0 stars. (Note: A 3.0 is Average.)
Thanks for the review.
1. I wish you had sent a review face to face, without hiding behind the curtain of anonymity, because that is hardly conducive to discussion or interchange of ideas and is, even otherwise, not very civil. It almost amounts to stabbing from behind.
2. I believe the correct policy should be to rate an item for its literary worth, not for its values as per the reader’s perceived criterion of value judgment. I follow this principle in my own reviews. There have been instances where I totally disagree with the views expressed, but I have rated the item very high because of its literary brilliance. The reason is simple. The literary criteria are more objective than value criteria. If we go by the latter, an excellent writing may be rated poorly by a Catholic, Sunni, atheist or black person because the writing is perceived as critical of Protestants, Shias, theists or whites, respectively. I hope writing.com includes an appropriate guideline regarding this in its Reviewing Guidelines for members.
3. The poem is written from a certain perspective which is, in reality practiced, consciously, by women in more than half of the world, including highly educated and enlightened women. By insinuating that what is prevalent in your culture, presumably American, must be adopted as the norm by the rest of the world, you are probably displaying either your ignorance or intransigence or both.
4. It is implicit in the theme of the poem that the woman therein has young children whose life would be devastated with a broken home. There may be women in different circumstances with not so young children. Obviously, the decision to walk out of marriage has to be a deliberate one, considering various factors, not a reflex and simplistic one on the lines—“This marriage is not working out. Let me try another”.
5. You are presuming that getting out of a bad relationship means liberation from it for the woman concerned. You are mathematically 100% right in this narrow perspective. But, social mores and norms are determined by facts on the ground, in an overall broad perspective, not by narrow mathematical questions and answers. The facts on the ground are as follows:
A. A bad relationship can have many degrees of badness. It may be very bad or just mildly bad. The poem is not intended to cover cases of extreme, irretrievable badness. Also, it does not envisage a defeatist attitude on the part of the woman. There are possible remedial and protest mechanisms other than divorce, which ought to be given a try before the ultimate step.
B. A relationship in American culture includes live in arrangement without marriage. The poem excludes that arrangement altogether. It is written from a cultural perspective where live in arrangements are rare, frowned upon and devoid of social sanction. When a couple is not married, getting out of a relationship is so much more easier and different.
C. Moving out of a relationship has two consequences—Breaking of relation and contact between the couple; and, Breaking of relation and contact between the father and the children, who are often very young and need both parents for proper psycho-social development. It then becomes, for the mother, a matter of arriving at a delicate decision to choose between balancing her own needs versus those of her children. Such decision often involves sacrificing for the sake of children. If mothers in more than half of the world choose to make such sacrifice, their collective wisdom can be called to question only by those who are unable to appreciate things in a deep, unbiased, analytical manner and who choose to be more individualistic and value their individual freedom more than the fetters that come when they are saddled with the responsibility of raising children, keeping their best interests in mind.
D. You seem to be presuming that getting out of a bad relationship means getting into a good relationship. Such possibility is potentially low. Statistically, the next relationship could turn out to be:
a. As bad as the previous one
b. Worse than the previous one
c. Better than the previous one.
M C Gupta
18 September 2005