“What if I am another Shikhandi?”

Note : I wanted to write something on LGBTQ and therefore thought would take inspiration from India’s greatest Epic Mahabharata. But in order to make sure that everyone understands this piece it is important to know about ‘Shikhandi’.

Decades have crossed, but the winds still whisper the name of Shikhandi. In Mahabharata, Shikhandi was not a glorious character like Pitamaha Bheeshma who was a symbol of sacrifice, Warrior Karna who always was a tragic hero, third Pandava Arjuna, the devotee of lord Krishna and the ultimate winner. But if the success means proving identity; then it can go through various ways and Shikhandi was one of the successful endemics in Mahabharata. Shikhandi was born a woman. But the Rishis told King Draupada, who was the father of Shikhandi, that she would one day become a man and aquire a male body. Though born a female, Shikhandi was raised as a son and was taught warfare and statecraft. She was even given a wife. And it is believed that finally ShikhandiΒ met a Yaksha called Sthunakarna and was able to aquire his manhood. So there has always been a doubt about Shikhandi’s true identity and hence has been considered a transgender.. My today’s piece is inspired by this story of Shikhandi.

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What if I am another Shikhandi….?”

End this discrimination, it hurts.
I too am Lord’s creation,
made of flesh, blood and a heart.
A disgrace to humanity ; some say I am cursed.
I think they forgot,
The same female womb- source of my birth.

Mindless youngsters mock and laugh
and play their guessing games as I walk.
“Lumps or balls? or none of the two?”
I want to ask, “what if both? what would you do?”

A form I want to fill,
But which box do I tick?
Grown sick of all these,
wish my mother had taken a pill.

Existing without any identity I lost my Self,
Woolf’s Sublime Meditation on Gender did no help.
Now to all the wise men I tell;
“Look in-between the binaries,
and go back on history.
What if I am another Shikhandi….?”


42 thoughts on ““What if I am another Shikhandi?”

  1. Sushmita, in returning to a character of Ancient India’s Mahabharata, you reveal, intentionally or not, that transgenders have been with us from the beginning of time. Yet your poem is grounded in our time: “wish my mother had taken a pill.”

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes, dts what I wanted to show.. that they are a part of our history.. people cannot eliminate them like aliens… they are not a new kind of impure species… they hv been a part of our rich cultural heritage… So why the hypocrisy… Thats y the Mahabharat refrnc

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Thank you for teaching me about this legend … fascinating and it tells me that historically many cultures were more accepting of the the many beautiful shades of humanity than we are now.
    You are a very compelling writer … happy to be here πŸ’•

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Glad you are here.. Welcome to Deliriums. I was in love with your works when I discovered your blog and really wanted to know how you would react to my works… Its great to know about your perspective.. Appreciated. ❀❀ Will look forward to your comments from now on.. 😊


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