Cast off all shame

by Janabai

English version by Vilas Sarang
Original Language Marathi

Cast off all shame,
and sell yourself
in the marketplace;
then alone
can you hope
to reach the Lord.

Cymbals in hand,
a veena upon my shoulder,
I go about;
who dares to stop me?

The pallav of my sari
falls away (A scandal!);
yet will I enter
the crowded marketplace
without a thought.

Jani says, My Lord,
I have become a slut
to reach Your home.

-- from Women Writing in India: 600 BC to the Present: Volume 1, Edited by Susie Tharu / Edited by K. Lalita

<<Previous Poem | More Poems by Janabai | Next Poem >>


View All Poems by Janabai



Recommended Books: Janabai

Women Writing in India: 600 BC to the Present: Volume 1 Images of Women in Maharashtrian Literature and Religion Women Saints in World Religions





Cast off all shame