Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Just Criticism

This poem was written in response to an onslaught on a poetry site. There is nothing JUST about criticism. Justice is a very very relative term. Your judgement will reflect your race and kind, and is groomed by little bits of conversation right from day-one of your life.

  • Can you belong if you are not like-minded? 
  • Does 'wanting to belong' feed your bias? 
  • Does a strong belief/bias benefit you as you move upwards in a particular community? 
  • And does belonging give you a stronger voice? 

There is never a ‘just’ person
Because a mind is a product of bias.

Cemented again and again by
His history, culture and environs

His mind molded by his parents
And theirs by theirs
By the conversations at dinner tables,
You know - the small talk
About black and white
About big and small
About power of love and of hate
About theirs and ours.

His bias gives him his identity
His prejudice make him belong.

It defines his relationships
With people and his life.

It is not easy for a man
To rise above his beliefs
To ‘look’ at the other side.
Accept another?
– That’s next to impossible!
For then he loses his identity
Of belonging to a belief.
It may start a war of thoughts
That will uproot the belief
And he then stops belonging
To the belief that was ‘he’.

Like there is no ‘just’ person
There is no ‘just’ critic

His beliefs colour his criticism
And his life and his writings.

© Nalini Hebbar/openmind/2009-all rights reserved

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Viyoma said...

So true!!
the words are hard hitting!

radhika said...

very poignant poem

dr.antony said...

No justice in this world.
How can there be just people.

Rajlakshmi said...

very true... powerful write

Purba said...

We all have our pet bias...the trick is to recognize them.

Unknown said...

I am sharing this. Apt, to-the-point and in poetry. Totally was in sync with what you wrote. Fab!

varsha said...

यह सच है मगर, निंदक न होते अगर ;
तो गैर का नज़रिया नज़र न आ पाता.

BluestGreen said...

"there is no ‘just’ person
There is no ‘just’ critic"

Such beautiful lines... you have a beautiful blog!

Hari said...

Very good poem Nalini. Our ability to put ourselves in someone else's shoes and think like them is what separates us from most animals. But unfortunately this is something that we rarely take advantage of.

Rajendra Raikwar said...

very nice