On Mother’s Day 2016

Here’s to those who choose to and do not choose to become mothers
to those who are trying to or trying not to
to those who can and those who can’t
or who still wonder whether to
to those who know they don’t want to
to those who are but didn’t choose to be
to those who are but didn’t expect to be
to those who are and wanted to be
to those who are.
Here’s to the women who are people too
who don’t want to be defined by being a mother
or not being one
Here’s to the people and institutions and legislations and communities supporting whatever choice is made.
Here’s to the people who have to make that choice.

This poem was later submitted to and published by the KavithĂ© Collective here. KavithĂ© Collective ie ‘a collective of writers from Sri Lanka scattered across the world who want to see more creative writing engaged with social and political realities.  KavithĂ© is also a space for work that is identifiably of Sri Lanka: its sounds, smells, situations…’. See more about them

Let Them Stay

It’s 1965
and Nancy Prasad is to be deported.
So Charlie Perkins hides her, holds her
hostage, demands the government
pay the ransom of her safety

It’s 2016
and Baby Asha’s turn has come.
So 200 people hide her, hold her
hostage, demand the government
pay the ransom of her safety

The girl-child sits, as strangers pass above her,
debating the course of her life.