Friday, 19 February 2016



Whoever thought

That a fire born dusky beauty

Would have such grace, dignity, love

Encased in heart

It was natural for her to wield power

But how well she knew

When not to use it

Her pearl teeth, lightning smile,

Blue lotus fragrance

Kindled fire in many a heart

Her father wanted a son

Of sacrificial fire

To avenge his fury

Her father had not asked for her

Yet along with her brother

Draupadi stepped out of the flaming petals

Born in full bloomed youth

Panchali, daughter of the king of Panchal

She became

Her father had locked her

In a strange marriage

With five brothers

By fate, truly, by kismet

Five exiled princes they were

Five valiant youths

Five consorts!

But happiness was at the beck and call

Of her champak petal fingers

She breathed trust and harmony

She was the sky
To her beloveds

Exiled life with the sun, moon, stars and forest ended

With the kingdom, returned, layered evils

She reduced her foes to ashes

But not before she paid the price

Of being violated in court

Being disrobed while her consorts sat

Hanging their heads in shame

Having lost the power to speak up

Having seen her all five sons slain

Through the passage of

A bloody war among kith and kin

Though she was the stormy inspiration

To her husbands in the battlefields

She always kept the flame of forbearance,

Self esteem, forgiveness, compassion

Bright in the dark hours

She still lives in the breath of Nirbhaya**

In all corners of the Earth



*Draupadi is described as the Tritagonist in the epic The Mahabharata. According to the epic she is the fire born daughter of Drupada the king of Panchal and also became the common wife of the five Pandavas. Wikipedia


**meaning fearless girl, also referring to the paramedical student in Delhi who was gang raped and later succumbed to her injuries in spite of her brave fights.


Posted for Sanaa’s prompt Myth @ A Dash Of Sunny

Sharing it with Poetry Pantry #290 @ Poets United


  1. Such a wisely written poem Sumana, I appreciate the layers of multiple references in this magical Epic.

    Beautifully penned. Thank you so much for participating and for your constant love and support :)

    Lots of love,

  2. This is a spellbind tale. I was absorbed from the very firstvword to the last. Never read about Draupadi before

    Happy too byou dropped by to read mine

    Much love...

  3. Oh wow! This makes me want to explore Indian mythology more thoroughly. So much strength in this, and the way you tied things to the modern era was wonderful.

  4. Thank you for this mythical journey, Sumana. Now I'm extremely curious about "The Mahabharata"... I'm also quite taken by the way you've weaved myth into reality, in the last two lines.

  5. You have a wonderful way of weaving this tale poetically, Sumana! Forbearance, self esteem, compassion, and forgiveness are so very important in the world today.

  6. "But how well she knew when not to use it"....what a fearsome tale, Sumana. She lived an amazing life. I love that she kept those virtues "bright in the dark hours."

  7. She sounds like a wonderful woman. I liked it that you told her story from top to bottom. I could relate to this deity of yours. Loved it.

  8. "She was the sky" -- OH. So much, this. This made me exhale, big. Beautiful.

  9. I truly love how you tied the myths to the braveness and tragedy of the girl gang-raped to death... we live in a world as cruel and beautiful as that of the myths.

  10. This is very interesting. These are my favorite sections:

    "Whoever thought
    That a fire born dusky"

    "Blue lotus fragrance"

    "Her father wanted a son
    Of sacrificial fire"

    "Draupadi stepped out of the flaming petals"

    "Her father had locked her
    In a strange marriage
    With five brothers" ... Fascinating.

    "She breathed trust and harmony
    She was the sky"

    "layered evils"

    "she was the stormy inspiration
    To her husbands in the battlefields"

    "Bright in the dark hours"

  11. What a moving story - you hope that we would learn from history/myth and not repeat it but sadly it seems part of the world and some bad souls seem intent on repeating it

  12. Sumana I wonder if you've read Yajnaseni by Prathiba Ray...her vision of Draupadi is quite unique and beautiful..

  13. So many ancient civilizations had such stories as this probably as a warning to live purer lives. Sadly such tales have not made us any better over the centuries. We seem to have an inherent fault! This really was a fascinating tale.

  14. How hard the myths are on women throughout the world! There is beauty in her sacrifice and warning and example for girls/women, but OH that Dad and those powerless princes and the sad child deaths! Must this be a fated way of the world? Do those of us who wissh for peace and nonviolence want something too foreign to humans--despite Gandhi etc? Which is not to say you didn't write this most beautifully, making me see its blessings and curses more powerfully than ever before.

  15. Phenomenal writing!
    Draupadi was a heroic princess of Mahabharata. One who was firm, proud, angry and a woman with an unbending will and remained an enigmatic woman of substance. Great read!

  16. That was a powerful poem.Respect for the nirbhaya reference.

  17. Oh my what an amazing story of such a amazing woman and how you remind us of this strength and character of a woman who also lived this tale in real life....I can't help but feel sad though as we women still have to fight these brave fights.


  18. I really admire this type of poetry... to tell myth in a poem. This is very ambitious.

  19. History will keep repeating itself, unless we take heed. Nice writing. :-)

  20. This is quite a story. I enjoyed your telling. I am sad to read about the paramedic student. How sad some stories are.

  21. Thank you for this legend, it's amazing!

  22. Was glad to see you connect the myth with that young medical student of today. Myths have a profound purpose but we must listen and learn from them before they can do so.


  23. A very different take on Draupadi! Quite positive spirit in these lines1

  24. amazing narration of a wonderful tale.

  25. Bright in the dark hours
    She still lives in the breath of Nirbhaya*

    Even in adverse situations she is still remembered brightly lit up! Great lines Sumana!


  26. Would that we could all be "fire born daughters."

  27. Please pardon me, as I wipe away the tears, with your powerful and beautiful written poem. I wish, more poetry like this, was exposed me, as a child, which would encouraged me, to read more poetry, growing up, instead of dreading it. Thank you, Sumaa, for continuing my education.

  28. Wonderfully drawn ... I, especially thought that the virtues you highlighted and then, referenced in a current content (in the last 2 lines) was, a wonderful expression of the value inherent in this mythic epic.

  29. Oh my! I loved it! I can visualise and feel Draupadi's beauty, dignity and power. And the way you weaved it towards Nirbhaya...Excellent!

  30. Droupadi, the synonym of beauty, bravery and brilliance has been portrayed here with full justice given to her unparalleled personality.

  31. Sumana,

    It requires great strength and bravery these days, to try and challenge the dreadful happenings which are taking place in India and many other places, regarding violation of females. Disregarded in many instances.. Lives ruined forever.
    I'm sure that Draupadi can offer a spiritual energy and comfort to those who seek her spiritual power, when in need and at other times..


Thank you for stopping by and sharing your valuable thoughts.........