Secret Dictionary

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The most misused word ever,

Love.

We use it to replace

LustWantNeed BandaidPacemakerAphrodisiac

MusclerelaxantSleeping pill…( top choices amongst others)

Pssst,

Every woman

Has a secret dictionary.

She opens the page

With the word

Love

And reads a new synonym, every time.

If the meaning skips from one to two to three

To four to five to six

Seven and perhaps eight

In a moment, minute, hour or day…

Well,

She will not change the dictionary

She will look at a new page instead.

The page with  words full of “I”-

IridescentIncorrigibleIntelligentIrrepressible

Later, much later

When she laughingly turns to Love,

A new meaning winks at her-

Independence

And hence  the  real truth:

Love

Shall set you free.

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Cobwebs in the Mind

My daughter had tears in her eyes when she read aloud to me the  article by Joan Feynman’s son-Charles Hirshberg. The son narrated in his inimitable way, the humiliations and prejudices that his brilliant mother faced -in her struggle to be a world renowned and path breaking Scientist.

http://www.aas.org/cswa/status/2003/JANUARY2003/MyMotherTheScientist.html

Not much has changed in people’s attitudes even today. We try to force our prejudices down the throats of others: we look at a human being as a man/ woman, country, region, religion, caste, vital statistics, college, education, subject of expertise…our tendency to box her in, is as baffling as the number of boxes strewn around in our minds.

One of the most analysed short story in Literature, focusing on what stereotypes do to brilliant women has been ‘The yellow wall paper,’by Charlotte Perkins Gilman. When Joan Feynman tells her son, that ‘she could be a part time mother or a full time mad woman,’ she was not very much off the truth. When minds with exceptional potential are forced to suffocate under society’s prejudices- cobwebs are sure to form within.

I feel fury when I read about Joan’s humiliations and I see the choked look on my daughter’s face.

“Excellence is the only answer.Your success will disprove the prejudiced theories of mediocre minds. That will inspire many more hapless souls to hope and strive..,” I tell her.
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