The Selfish Woes of a Woman

The Selfish Woes of a Woman


‘Look at me’, he orders.

His eyes reflecting no light,

completely dead.


he bellows.


His hovering shadow,

like the brooding clouds that veil the sullen nights.

The same dark eyes that I know,

are glaring down at my worthless frame.

Making me sink,

as I stare at the bright stain of spilled ink.

Fascinating me,

how it consumes each inch of the worn carpet.

Smearing so bewitchingly over the lusterless grey fabric.


It was my mistake.

It was me, I know,

I had been warned so many times.

‘Didn’t your lowly Amma teach you anything?’

Did she?

Who would marry their son to someone like me?

Meagre, despicable, pitiful excuse of a human.

A woman, you see.


The striking cyan in the ink now reaches watchfully,

against the tip of my scrawny ring finger.

The diamond studded armor,

that holds me captive.

Each day,

robbing me of my right to live.


‘You deserve to be on the streets, you slut!’

His blunt words echo in my ears.

The voice that once held so many promises.

Songs of burning love,

showering amorous kisses.

Torching desire ascending over the lingering dusk.

How my body would be adrift to his soothing musk.

His touch would ignite a blazing fire,

too powerful to put out.

How I would hum as my body went aflame,

when his whispers of yearning dripped from his sensual mouth.



Where did I go so wrong?

His presence no more roars his doting song.

I did everything Amma had taught me.

From bride-to-be,

now mother of three.


Three beautiful girls,

my Allah has truly blessed me.

I see in them everything that is bliss.

I see hope,

all where I was amiss.


‘I asked for a son, you pathetic woman!’

Now I smell it.

The sharp stench of alcohol brushes my senses.

I cringe at his drunkenness,

but I do not blame him.

‘I put him through this…’

My thoughts start to trap me,

as the eerie light above me gets dim.

After all, I am a woman,

lowlier than him.


He took to the bottle after Amira was born.

As she left my swollen womb,

I heard his ugly scorn.

But she was so beautiful, so devastatingly breath-taking.

Her bold turquoise orbs shone so vividly,

a reflection of her handsome father,

who couldn’t bat an eye at her enthralling beauty?


I failed.

Amma, forgive me,

I failed so horribly.

‘He will treat you the way you treat him,

be his reflection, my jaan’.

I couldn’t be the perfect wife,

it pains me every day of my inferior life.

Amma, I do not deserve to live.

Why didn’t you take me with you?

I wanted to float along the angels cascading the horizon,

just like in the bedtime stories,

when all the worldly things,

would cast away into oblivion.



I keep staring at the bewildering shine of the wet ink,

now imprinting itself against my bony palm.


The hate pulses in his husky voice.

I breathe deeply,

my eyes closed.

A small smile creeps up on my dry lips.

I see my daughters smiling merrily,

their eyes gleaming, their lips zipped.

I feel the tears now,

aching to flow over my cold skin.

‘Mama, you’ll never leave us, right?’

I hear myself gasp,

a tear flows free.

Everything shatters,

as I feel a blow so mighty.




My head feels light.

He hit me again.

I cannot move, I stay lain.


My tears fall freely against the ink.

Everything goes dark,

my mind cannot think.


Can anyone hear my selfish woes?

Being a woman,

why do I have everything to lose?


About The Author

Maleeha Rizwan – A reader who reads more than a reader should
Timber by EMSIEN 3 Ltd BG