On Masturbating in an Indian Locality

Tanvi Mona Deshmukh

When your thighs tingle with impatient anticipation
At what only you can do to your body,
Bite down on your lip, make sure nobody notices, 
Excuse yourself from the chatty aunty who asks
You about all your guy-friends and their guy friends, 
And gives you the unabridged version of
The Importance of Getting Married Before 25 
Every time you run into her on the stairs. 
Ignore the screaming children, the religious ajobas
Who sneak glances at your retreating figure when
They think you're not watching every day.
Lock the room, pull the curtains, hope to goodness 
Nobody rings the doorbell while you're at it. 
Call it "it" persistently, refuse to acknowledge how
You are, in fact, masturbating. Give yourself the 
Freedom to laugh just once, under your breath at how
There is no real equivalent for the word in your language.
Leave your t shirt on, incase you're interrupted, then panic
And recheck to make sure the lock is truly shut.
Spread your legs open slowly, as much out of pleasure, 
As out of the guilt that accompanies  
Two decades of internalised misogyny, and the 
Constant struggle to embrace your own sexuality. 
Let your thoughts take over your mind, dig deep into 
Your knots, think thighs, think sweet spots,
Think girth, think breasts, think moistness, think scent,
Think lips, think hands, think unholy sounds,
Think swollen lush flesh waiting to explode,
Think restless, ceaseless hunger finally abating,
Think gardens bursting into a thousand blossoms,
Thick with perfume, slick with the surge of the dormant 
River, held back too long by sanitary customs.
Open your eyes as you ride out the last wave,
Flushed red with wonder - remember, until you're forced
To forget again, that you cannot contain oceans 
In travel sized water bottles. 
Wipe your hands clean off the sapid remnants of 
Your shame. Get dressed, fix your hair, and put the 
Stopper back on pleasure. Pretend you are no heartbeat,
No heart, no body, no whole, and certainly no desire. 
Pretend you are fragmented tits and ass,
And a smile worth a thousand bucks (only/-)

7 comments

  • Great work

    Vyga
  • A sensuous and exciting poem! Or should I say an Ero-Poem? Bravo Tanvi!

    Yashin Rupani
  • Love it!
    Especially how you ended it

    Sam
  • This is beautiful ❤️

    Mragank Purwar
  • I absolutely loved it! It is so relatable and speaks out to a large mass of women!
    Tanvi you’ve done a brilliant job!

    Chhavi Nagpal
  • This is glorious. Incredibly malignant. Once it ends up on the mind, it stays there a long time.

    Prateek
  • I liked it. Awesome work, Tanvi.

    Nida

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