Tanwar’s Wife.


(Inspired by a story by Ellen Barry)

My husband is a bouncer in a nightclub in New Delhi.

His muscles crouch like tigers and he hasn’t any belly.

I do not know just what he does as bouncer, but I know

A nightclub is an awful place where horrid demons go.


With me he’s gentle and as mild as any mourning dove,

And never thinks of hitting me or giving me a shove.

Of course I practice purdah – no strange man may see my face;

I do not leave the house without a yard or more of lace.


I pity the barbarians who lack such fine traditions

And have to live with infamy in ungodly conditions.

I’m proud to live my life at home behind a burlap screen,

And have a happy marriage now that I have turned fourteen.