English Doha

A doha is a couplet consisting of two lines, each of 24 instants called ‘Matras’.

Each line has 13 instants in first part and 11 instants in the second. The first and third quarters of doha have 13 instants which must parse as 6-4-3.

Source: Wikipedia

Epics like the Ramayana tell a whole story in this format. Saint Kabir and Rahim are poets who expressed their life philosophy and wisdom in couplets of this kind.

Matras are similar to alphabets. In this instance, I use 13 syllables in the first line and 11 in the second. The parsing of 6-4-3 in the first and third quarters is dispensed with.

Tulsidas, the composer of Ramayana is criticized for his misogynist views. He equates women with low-caste members of society and animals, and says they deserve to be abused. The story goes that his marriage was unhappy.

Today being International Women’s Day, this attempt at writing an English Doha is dedicated to women.

Wake up, O woman, patriarchy you must not trust
your closest ones have a vested interest
I'm yet to meet a man who's truly a feminist
they hold on to privilege - though co-exist

if it makes you happy, by all means protect your nest
just ensure you don't raise a misogynist
don't let your actions or mindset become defeatist
leave a better world for daughters at the least

independent decisions should not cease to exist
let them label you a beast or activist
you are born to raise a better world, you must desist
from raising humans who oppose or resist

Written for Colleen’s Weekly Poetry Prompt


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