Daily Prayers

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In the puja room
I pray for health — mine and my family’s,
for success in what I do,
for the humility to accept my mistakes and reform,
for the strength to follow my dreams

Just before stepping out the door
Please, please — just once — please,
let today be the day I escape
from catcalls and leers and rapey hands

At the interview with HR
Please God, let them not ask
where my husband works or
how I plan to manage when 
my children are sick.
And please, let this be the person
who doesn’t ask 
if I always leave on time,
with that knowing smirk 
which screams that I will 
never give importance to my job — 
How do I explain my professionalism to one like him?

After reaching home
Please work a miracle,
and let all the housework be done,
I just need to rest a while

At a family event
God, no, please, please
keep that leering uncle
a good ten steps away.
Please keep me out of the grasp
of those chittering aunts who
poke their eager noses into 
everyone’s business

At night, just before bed
Please God, let tomorrow be
one of those days where
I don’t have to pray and beg
to just be me