Song of the Daughter of a Mortuary Worker, poetry written by Archana Bahadur Zutshi at

Song Of The Daughter Of A Mortuary Worker

Song of the Daughter of a Mortuary Worker

written by: Archana Bahadur Zutshi


I am married, now that I have a husband to keep me warm,
I no longer sleep in winters draped with a corpse,
Which my father would move in for a morning burial!
I would snuggle up, before, for warmth,
Before it was sapped,
Before winter could seep into me.

The dead came to revive my life breath.
To the living I cannot unburden even!

If my vulnerability is revealed it will be unsettling
The highbrow claim that it is a case of a willing victimhood!
They help themselves even before a catastrophe befalls.
Persistent penury is non-injurious!
In the Parliament, what is the wager,
There is no deserving candidature,
Except that of its own party coffer.

A mortuary worker’s daughter should know better,
Than ask for help, or expect a raise in life!

I dwell with my man now.
The past I forbade!

As he mows me,
With a forlorn blank face,
His static demands are meant to be met urgently.
Then he disowns me just as I had to disown my situation!

He is like the politician who has expedient urges.
It is one year now, and my belly has grown big I carry a little life in me.
This life sucks, sucks my breaths!
Draws from my heart cold, listless tears,
To remind me that I live with walls!
Can the parchment of parliament,
or governance give a woman a life?

I hear of rapists lurking outside,
My agony is sealed within this house.
Didn’t I own my life when I slept with a real corpse?
A woman now I bid for the spring to break out!

Latest posts by Archana Bahadur Zutshi (see all)