The Sunday tea meeting was a ritual, the Hashimoro family carried out without fail. The elderly couple lived by themselves in their old ancestral home. Their son, daughter in law and both the grandchildren visited them from the city, which was about an hour’s drive from there.
Every Sunday no matter what, the family never failed to be present for this evening of bonding over tea. Life went on as usual until old Mr. Hashimoro passed away.
After his death, his wife continued to live alone in the house as she had many beautiful memories attached to the place.
The following Sunday evening, with a heavy heart Mrs. Hashimoro, set the table with five tea cups, looking sadly at the sixth one in the cupboard, missing her husband even more. She went into the kitchen to get some snacks to serve along with the tea. The plate of cookies dropped from her trembling hands as she came to the table. The sixth tea cup was on the table….
The gusty wind flutters pages of the scattered books,
a sepia toned picture falls out of an old dusty diary.
I glance at it, and my mind travels back in timeline,
a nostalgic smile creeps up, as I recall
the gang of famous three musketeers that we were,
bosom pals, partners in crime, inseparable!
Seasons changed, but not our friendship,
passage of time cemented our bond…
And then she fell in love, and hell broke loose,
for he belonged to another caste
thus shaming her family.
Being truly in love, they eloped to marry,
furiously tracked down by her clan,
for her alleged impropriety had to be punished.
Brutal death wiped their innocent souls
all in the name of honor…..
Shell shocked with no words to describe the ghastly act
my heart shattered into a million shards….
Jolted to the present by a gentle nudge,
I look up to see my mom all excited,
to show me some new bridal outfits.
Gratitude fills my heart
for, I am blessed with parents
who approve of my choice
of a life partner!
It is shameful that in spite of calling ourselves a progressive country, we still get to read about such brutal murders, here in India and many other countries. Honor killing is a homicide of a member of a family (usually the woman), by her own family. It is believed that she has disgraced the family by digressing from their tradition, religion and social norms. They are killed for supposed ‘illicit’ relationships, for marrying men of their choice, for divorcing abusive husbands, dressing in ways which are deemed inappropriate, engaging in non-heterosexual relations or renouncing a faith. They are even murdered by their kin if they are raped as they are thereby deemed to have brought shame on their family. The truth of the suspicion does not matter — merely the allegation is enough to bring dishonor on the family and therefore justifies the slaying.