Sunday, June 12, 2011

Dalit ~ A Poem

                  Dedicated to the 250 million dalits in India today, whom I was inspired by to write this. (Please forgive me for my not-so-great writing skills - this is the second poem I have written in my life)

(Also, since I posted this, many people have asked me what a dalit is... In India, there is something called the caste system, ranking people in what caste they "belong" to.  There are eight levels. Dalits are the lowest - in Hindi, dalit means "untouchable". These are the people who do the dirty work, who live in the trash, and eat mud cake when they are hungry (salt, mud/cow patties, and water - dried in the sun), the ones who can not go to school and the people who usually end up being forced into slave labor or prostitution.)

Disgusted by who we are, 
we hear their mocking voices,
They say we are untouchable 
The people with no choices

I am a dalit. 

We called out to our gods when 
Broken and battered, 
But they won't answer the cry of
  Souls hurt and shattered. 

I am a dalit. 

 A tarp on two sticks,
 Has made up our home, 
  Some trash for bedding, 
And pillows of stone. 

I am a dalit.

 My sister and I,
Six and twelve years of age,
 Our parents left us here,
 And released our innocence to men of rage. 

I am a dalit. 

Today someone came near to us, 
And said that they were kind and just
It is hard to know if they are safe 
Or worthy of our trust

I am a dalit. 

 They told me about Jesus
He is safe and has won my heart
I long to walk in His ways
Now I have a brand new start

They don't call me a dalit. 

This Jesus is so wonderful
My Lord, my All, the only Way, 
He has bought me with a precious price,
 My heart is His to stay. 

I am no longer a dalit. 

Now I am a chosen daughter 
Of the glorious King,
 I will share His love with others.
His grace, mercy, and love, I will ever sing!

By: Hannah Brooke Hartman 

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