I’ve just realised it’s been exactly a month since I posted last! Way to being sporadic 😉 But there wasn’t much happening worth writing about. (Or maybe, I was just lazy. Who knows?)
Anyway, there was this self-composed poetry competition in my college on the occasion of the College Fest, in which I, unfortunately, couldn’t win a single prize. Of course, there were rules to it. We had to write a poem which should accommodate these 3 words: black, faith and spirit or their relative forms. Easy enough! But not when you have another event to go to right afterwards… -_-
And as I’ve said before, I can’t write without feeling, hence it was doubly difficult. So, I chose to write on something I was familiar with and which I had felt keenly at the time I’d read it. And that was how this poem came about. Well, this is actually an edited and improved version of the original.
This poem is my tribute to a very moving novel called ‘Ruth’ by the English classic novelist, Elizabeth Cleghorn Gaskell. (Can also be read as a summary to the novel, though not completely based upon it.)
THE WRONGED WOMAN
“There she is, that blackened soul!” they whispered among themselves,
Yet loud enough for her to hear and keep her far away.
“Don’t let her near the children, that Vixen will taint their hearts,”
“For she is destined on a journey to the pits of Hell on the not-so-distant Doomsday.”
“How pure she roamed among us, the Saint incarnate of Virgin Mary,”
“What a great sinner she proved to be! Her adultery couldn’t be kept at bay.”
“And no surprise she finds shelter with a dissenter, the renouncer of Holy Faith,”
“For the stain they cast on our wholesome land is better beneath a single roof to stay.”
Never could they see the chaste spirit struggling against that ill used corse,
For they were too busy acting God & passing decrees, judgements on her, the disgrace to the Leigh!
Nor did they ever pause to think she could be penitent and long forgiven,
So high on their Horse of Piety, they couldn’t stoop to pardon, come what may!
She too had a past, a joyless, friendless, tragic one, unknown to all but few,
She was a victim of deceit, wrongful passion and a rich man’s guile administered a cruel way.
It gave her a scar, a tender, winsome, pleasing one, loved by all and sundry,
It brought promises of a future bright; diffused with nights and days blissful and gay.
The day she would walk with her head held high, a picture of pride and honour,
Unbeknownst to her was not so far; patience and time, those trusted two, shall bide the day.
Years took flight and she grew prettier, an angel shrouded in womanly garb,
That beautiful face, bathed in unearthly Halo, could it ever have a Vixen’s part to play?!
Then one fateful day, the light turned dark, the fever took all and plebeians died,
She walked among the sick, brave and kind, nursing each ceaselessly without food or pay.
It made her gaunt and grey with fatigue, but she worked on, so constant was she to her duty,
The Leigh whispered and praised her efforts; “Verily, hands that help are holier than the lips that pray.”
Lastly! The dark mist cleared, the fever vanished and the sick were restored to health,
All hailed Ruth, the heroine of the Leigh;
But Alas! They’d lost her, for peacefully asleep in her chamber, many hours since, there she lay.
PS: I do hope that it’s ‘hands that help’ and not ‘hands that heal’. I’m confused. Correct me if I’m wrong