For 5 years I eat onions
another 5, by shoes I am beaten
which is less painful they ask
gruelling is my task
Neither onions nor shoes
whoever wins, I lose
Some kind of “cracy” they call it
and I believe with an empty stomach and wallet
My girl is disdained
– Their ears are jammed
Light pockets and heavy school bags
– Their ears are jammed
In religious riots, I am dragged
– Their hearts are damned
For five years onions and another five shoes
whoever wins, I lose

Tanishka Patidar

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