At eight, I used to read the newspaper aloud.
I read, “A GIRL OF 3 RAPED BY 7.”
My aunt, horrified, said, “Who puts such news in the newspaper, people don’t have sense.”
I searched for the word in the dictionary: dominance / conquest.
I asked my mother to divide my hair into six plates and braid them into two. I was gonna make a fake path at the center of my head, “Lest a bad king with his army might attack my boundaries and break open the gates to poke his flag into my grounds, I may not be dead.”
Later that day, I wept when uncle waved at me his flag, again, and my fake path didn’t work. He knew secret tunnels.
I was the queen of another castle and I couldn’t rescue my grounds. So, now my kingdom must accept or else, the kingdom in my legs would be burned with cigarettes and their harsh smoke;
If I told my mother, my head would be cut off and stuck on a pole at his lands.
I saved my life. I kept quiet.
Another game of hide-and-seek,
Another blame of eye-spy-cheat arrived even when I disguised myself under an ugly face, a dead body fumed up with high fever, I showed him a 105° point thermometer.
Years passed by, one day, uncle left the world.
I was the happiest girl on earth.
My demon left, so did abuse, pain, conquerors, and theft.
My family had their lament.
I spent a week on my bed.
I had started a cemetery in my scalp and his tombstone stood tallest.
Now, my hair grew wild, a freedom flag. Now, I was a blood-feasting goddess. Now, I awoke my unrest, and a lot of power. Now that my demon was gone, I fell in love with graveyards for they could call upon all the bad in people and all the bad kings and their armies.
I used to teach little children. My cemetery now held numerous buried flags, hands, and heads. Many bad kings were dead.
I taught my kids about #BADTOUCH. “We don’t need any more #METOOs,” I said.
Bio: mahish.asur-mar.dini: I gave myself this title a short time ago. I have always felt it in me; I am meant to cleanse the world of its neck-gripping flaws that suppress women. mahish.asur-mar.dini – it’s a Sanskrit word that means ‘killer of monsters’. I hope to kill them in my poems. I hope to kill the monsters in the minds of people. I am change; I am breaking every glass ceiling I see. I will make this world better. You can also check out my work on Instagram: @nidhie_saini