The only boy at a women’s march,
like a needle in a haystack,
a flash in the pan.
But he did it.
Out of compulsion,
for an earth’s share of more compassion.
To be first among equals
and in a lop-sided world,
he was society’s eager pupil.

He was a friend,
rebuffing sexism and sailor mouths, learning to say No to a puff of smoke or alcohol.
And he was laughed off indeed. Always the ‘half man’
or possibly a ‘non binary’,
as they learnt to call him,
when the term gripped their skewed radars.

He marched on,
leading the way,
jotting down landmarks for equality on a map of the world.
Learning the alphabets and vowels anew,
transforming boyhood,
to know that time had come,
for men to not just be typecasts of snobbery, class wars,
or sneering, jeering social animals.

It had to be more than a brush stroke or a wielding of the pen
and much more than hyphens on milestones
or more than harking back to warriors and kings,
of pomp and show,
dating back to history of yore.


Man is one half of Woman.
A cross current deluging mindsets, beyond tropes of pots and pans,
Yin and Yang,
Lion and Lamb,
Woman and Man
and this and that.

I stand with him,
watching time and tide turn amid impassioned chants and meaningful words.
And I know I am a man transformed and that to sit idly by is a choice we make.
But to employ actions and words to stir a change within is a life-skill.

That’s when mountains break
and a sea-change swells,
to orchestrate a movement towards righteousness.
I am a man transformed
and stand with him,
my friend and cohort.
Once the only boy at a women’s march,
he now knows the way to make principles count.


NOTE: this poem also appears simultaneously on my Wattpad poetry collection FRONTIERS.    

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