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Rakta Punje Genthe Yawya Machhi.
(A Fly Stuck in Blood and Pus)

Some Passages Previous

Body- here it is – my body, it is me, Na? Here I am, here, that is called body – here I am. If it does not exist, where am I!
But look, while growing up, what I have come to know! I know that the body, my own body, is not for me--it is for man, for a particular man. The ownership of my body is of a man. Then going through to get me ready for one male person, I can see something else is running as open secret. Oh! Look there are some things here and there, hidden and open! So many things!
Here is some twisting, a bit rubbing repeatedly, little a little close pressing, massaging for getting satisfaction. Here is a kind of heated urge, heated sensation. This is life. One has to live with all these. So many things to do--what many works to be done! Doing all these carry me far away from that heated urge again. I have to be back to that heat.
Yah- I come, I come to this hot sensation, come towards it with a topsy-turvy body. And to come to it, my body gets pleasure. My body groans to get such a hot pleasure. And, after getting pleasure, it starts feeling guilty with shame and hatred. Then only one thing comes to my mind--that is I feel like tearing up the body, spending up my body recklessly. So, with all these, one waits for getting a man, counting days for coming of a man, reaching out to the house of a man?
I am diseased. Every cell of my body carries disease. Is there anybody else who carries such disease? I look at the faces of all silently. Looking at them is for finding out any sign of such disease. No sign of that kind of disease is seen over any face. Is it visible on my face? No, not at all, no sign of it is here, on me. My face bears another sign. The sign of the timid stupid schoolmistress is here, on my face. Oh!
I am Parveen Akter. But, who calls me nowadays by this name? Nowadays my name is Masternee. Everybody calls me Masternee. I am teaching at Pathantali free primary school. I got the job in the year I passed my matriculation examination.
Everybody of my family says that it’s only a gift from heaven. When I say anything about my job, I never forget to mention it. But, only my mind knows it well what miracle from heaven was there, behind my job, behind my passing.
If there were nobody like Jumma uncle, where would be then passing matriculation and getting this job! All these would remain out of reach!
Whenever I appeared at a written examination for job, I found all questions terribly tough. Never ever in my life I had done such a tough sum, and oh! What complicated translations were there! Oh! What did I have to do--what! I was not a good student ever. My passing was a matter of copying in the examination hall. And look, my written test for job copying properly was the only way I crossed it.
Oh, I am filled with hatred remembering it. I felt hatred against me for this too. But if I did not do this, if I did not copy at the time of the test for a job, then what would have happened to me? Who would have carried my responsibilities! If I could not manage my job anyway, how could I survive! Who would give me support to earn my living! Oh life, how could I survive! Thinking of this, I shiver. My brain gets a jolt. I am trembling with hatred against myself.
Looking at the brilliant first-division-holder students, I am trebling with respect and jealousy. Getting icy cold with fear, I am palpitating.
I am dirty. Dirty my body is, my brain too. My life is dirty; so is the area of my dream. No hope does exist in my life. I have nothing to get, nothing to expect--only to go anyhow in life, pulling and dragging this body, this mind.
But, yet, sometimes life, this life seems so sweet to me! Amazingly sweet!
When I sat for the job-test, my body got tremendous sweating. Oh! No question was answerable for me either from English or from Mathematics. How come! Oh, what to do! Then I started to write answers to Bangla questions with sweated hands .Oh! I could manage Bangla questions anyhow! I started to concoct answers from Bangla portion.
Well, I had hardly started to do something, when I noticed that there was Jumma uncle in front of the window on the left side of the examination hall. Oh! He had then reached even here! Jumma uncle made signal to me with his eyes. I knew quite clearly, I knew the meaning of that sign. I have been familiar with it from long before--from the time of my matriculation examination. What did the sign say? I knew it ordered me to go to the toilet. Oh Khoda! He had become familiar with the toilet of this place too! I was amazed at thinking about it. Look, what a guy he was! Oh! If there was a signal, I had no way to ignore it. Then I left my seat, sought permission from the invigilator to go to the toilet. And oh, what I got after just taking one step into the toilet! Oh Allah! What is entering through the ventilator of the toilet! A long, folded paper was entering through the ventilator.
I did not need even a whole second to get at the purpose of the paper. What was the use of that paper? Oh, it was for copying--copying by me, to give the job-test properly. It was coming to me for my help. How many of this kind of paper had reached me at the time of my matriculation exam time! During my exam-time, Jumma uncle tried so many tricks to send copies to me! My cousin Delu Bhai was with him. Both of them applied so many tricks and tacts to make copies reach my hand! Without the help of those copies, what would happen to my passing matriculation examination? Oh, Allah!
But, at first, I felt guilty, feeling gloomy and hesitant to touch all those copies. I was full of hatred, shame. Oh, I never ever wanted to touch them. I wanted to answer of my own. Whatever the standard of answer was--I wanted to make them by myself.
But my wish made all my family members terribly angry. Again remembering what I wrote in my answer scripts made me afraid as soon as I left the examination hall.
Not a single question is answered properly and completely. Did I have that ability to make my answers proper and complete? No, oh no! I manage anyhow; one answer became half done, others were answered somehow, and then I submitted my answer script. And I then realized that it would be impossible to pass, considering the kind of answers I wrote. Oh, did I read attentively so that I could pass?
The first thing was that study did not attract me. Moreover, everybody started giving order to do this and that of household works. Someone asked to give water, and I went for pouring water in a glass. Buji, my grand ma, ordered, “Thrash the betel leaf.” I sat for thrashing betel leaf in hamam dista, adding betel nut, intermittently catechu and lime in it. Amma said, “Guests have come; make Sarbat for them”. I went to cut lemon. I did a world of household works keeping my books open. And I talked to myself, “Okay, let’s ignore this evening’s study. I will start seriously from tomorrow.”
That tomorrow never came. That tomorrow remained the same; there was no scope to touch textbooks. That tomorrow also brought so many trifling causes to keep me detached from my study. And it went on and on. And I, the unable one to pass in any class of the school, sat for giving my matriculation examination.
I wrote answers of the two papers of Bangla grammar and literature of matriculation examination by myself. While giving answers of my own, I found everybody using copies, even for Bangla. Nobody stopped from using copies. Someone was bringing out copies from the fold of the menstruation pad, keeping unfolded the knot of Paijamas. After casting looks here and there to make sure nobody was marking her, one got her Kamij up and untied her Pajama’s knot. Keeping an eye always on the invigilator and bringing out copies within a moment’s time. Another person with quick gripping of the palm brought out copies from under the brassier.