Dark Side Of the Moon : Short Story and Poem on Women and her everyday struggle

Like every evening, Pari was waiting for her regular mode of conveyance Bus # 160A; so that she could return from her office to PG, where she used to stay in Delhi. Pari was basically from the hilly regions of Dehradun, she was beautiful, blessed with perfectly curved and carved vital statistics; gifted with big, hypnotic hazel eyes and curly long locks.

That day, it was already dark and Pari had been waiting for the bus since half an hour, usually the bus would arrive by this time; but that evening it never arrived. She was feeling nervous and was worried about the rapidly ticking time, as quiet often she had some horrible and disgusting experiences in bus # 160A; so she was wondering if it would be safe to go in a bus at around 8:00 pm in a scary Delhi night, but unfortunately she had no other option with her. While she was patiently waiting for the bus with the headphones plugged into her ears; Pari took a quick recap of her daily ritualistic everyday happenings. She would wake up every morning sharp at 7, quickly take a shower and light the incense to say a little prayer without any fail; as she has set up a little temple in her room.

dark side painting women empowerment Dark Side Of the Moon : Short Story and Poem

Hastily, she would rush through the nearby coffee house to catch a bus at the Bhogal, bus stand. There she affectionately has befriended 3 small boys; who were victims of child labor and would sit all day near the bus stand with their little box to amend shoes, like mobile cobblers. She made it a daily practice to bring some chocolate or few candies or any other kind of eatables for those 3 kids every day. The kids would also get excited to see beautiful Pari coming towards the bus stand every morning and evening and giving them a little special attention.

Then Pari started to think about her daily pissing experiences in the bus. It has become certain for her to encounter any lousy guy, who would intentionally stand beside her in the bus; just to rub his body parts rubbed against Pari. This daily habit would irritate her to hell, but till now she has just been silent and never took any provocative action against such cheap male co-passengers. Somehow, after 30 minutes of resilient bus travel; she would reach her office and things would subtly calm down for her as the day progresses.

At 6 o’ clock in the evening her office would get over and again the same old harassing drama would begin to repeat itself with any desperately cheap male co-passenger in the bus; and 30-45 minutes of tolerating a social nuisance. After a conscience choking bus travel, she would be little glad to meet those 3 laboring poor lads, she would buy them some snacks or chocolates and then it was a 15 minute walk for her through few lanes behind the stand and later would walk down a dark passage of about 150 meters and finally she would reach her PG.

Suddenly, she was shaken aback to present moment by a polite question, ‘Madame, are you waiting for Bus # 160A?’ A question was thrown at so lost looking Pari’s face by a street side peanut vendor in the bus stand.

Pari replied politely, ‘Yes, Chaacha (Uncle)’.

The vendor clarified it to her,’ Dear girl, that bus has met an accident today and has got a break down; you better travel in bus # 166B, which would be here in next 5 minutes and it follows the same route thus, you would reach your home safely before it gets too late; as it is already 8:30 pm now’.

Listening to this news, Pari got more nervous stricken and started to feel and imagine many things at the same time. She was tired, scared and nervous already and now this new surprise made her feel frustrated and irate as well. She thanked the vendor for the unexpected information and replied to him quiet lowly, ‘Yes Chaacha (Uncle), it seems I will have to return back in 166B tonight’.

She sounded scared and her nervousness was whispering in her low voice, it has been a year; since she has been traveling in 160A. Apparently, her face has somehow become a little familiar to the bus conductor of 160A, so she was never really so much worried and scared to travel in it. But, tonight it was a different stage of 166B and a new drama, which she was afraid of.

With a vintage style honking, Bus # 166B arrived at the bus stand. The bus was crowded as usual; as the labor class and many MNC employees would return to their homes by this time and no surprise, they preferred a low costing drop back in a local bus. She turned back for a second and exchanged a look with the peanut vendor. Further, she moved ahead and climbed the staircase of the bus. A dusky complexion man with sunken eyes and unshaved beard standing right beside the peanut vendor also moved along with her and got into the bus. All seats were occupied in the bus, as a result Pari advanced and somewhere near the middle of the bus she stood holding a clamp hung from the roof of the vehicle.

The lousy and vulgar looking man was deliberately following her and stood just right beside her, showing all kind of negative signs of his intentions. The bus started to move and so did that man’s hand, towards Pari’s hand to hold the clamp. His fingers brushed against hers and she reacted instantly by moving her hand to the next clamp. In no time, she found his hand as well as his body prickingly rubbing against hers.

There was a nasty stinking smell of alcohol, coming out from his body. She thought in her mind with a feeling of disgust, ‘After two months, I would get promoted and my salary will get a hike; after that I am no more going to travel in the buses and would hire rickshaws for communication. No more of these buses and their sickly desperate passengers’.Those 45 minutes of bus journey felt to her like a hell for a lifetime with drunken insects creeping on her. She got down and to her worst nightmare even that man got down at the same stop. Now, Pari was scared to death and started to sweat in fear, as her PG was at a 15 minutes walking distance from the bus stand and it was already past 9 at night. She nervously advanced and started walking with terror in her head and a sense of fear in her feet, as that man started following her. She realized that those 3 lads were not there, as it was too late at night for anyone to come and clean or amend their shoes. Gradually, her nervousness increased and her feet started to tremble with every step, as she was getting closer towards the 150 meter dark passage.

‘Choc-ae-late Didi (Sister)..!!!’, an excited shout came from nowhere. She was scared to turn and take a look around; she only heard few footsteps rapidly running to come towards her. It was those 3 poor laboring kids, they surprisingly asked her,’ so late you are today, Didi..?’ She told them that there was lot of work in the office. As Pari stopped and was talking to those 3 kids, that man also took a halt at few distances behind her and started to look here and there. ‘Didi, there is no problem; we can understand, as there was too much of work today; so you must not have got time to buy chocolates for us’, 1 kid innocently and empathetically consoled all 3 of them on behalf of Pari.

Suddenly, Pari was awestruck with an idea, she asked those 3 kids to accompany her till the PG. Within no seconds, all 3 of them echoingly replied,’ Yes…Yes, for sure; it would be our pleasure’, and they started walking towards her PG. After walking few distance, Pari had the guts to turn around and check for the man; if she was still being chased. She could see that man still standing over there, as if he anticipated and knew that she would turn back to give him a goodbye glance. In a micro millisecond, that man also turned back and started walking in the opposite direction. Ohhhhhh…!!! Finally, Pari took an incomplete sigh of relief…

Like a stringed instrument,
All bendingly strums her.
Drinking from her vessels,
Leaving her cracked and broken.
Since Ages…,
She has just been,
A machine for reproduction.
Emotionlessly Unliving,
Undervalued and Unloved.
My finger is pointing towards,
The Dark side of the Moon.
Looking at,
We men for the Wo-men.

She’s beaten to tears,
Often sobbing in corners.
She is leeringly over-looked,
Eaten by lusty eyes.
Labour accompanies her,
Since, her kinder joyful days and youths.
An identity is lost between responsibilities,
Losing her vitalities.
And her GOD is sleeping,
Changing bed to bed.
My finger is pointing towards,
The dark side of the moon.
Looking at,
We Men for the Wo-Men.

Time has gone to heights,
And now Ducklings of yesterday;
have become wild Peacocks.
Young birds of Today,
Soaring higher & higher in the sky.
Encountering a man with equity;
In his so called claimed spheres of life.
Rising through conspiracies,
Hurdling all obstacles.
My finger is pointing towards,
The dark side of the Moon.
Looking at,
We Men for the Wo-Men. 

Writing and Painting By: Aakash Sagar

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