Pain & Pride: Survival

At times a poem that already has a pre decided meaning and expression through the poet and her/his background does not stop one from creating one’s own visualisation. A Litany for survival is one such Poem.


A Litany For Survival is a poem by Audre Lorde that not only resonated with my heart but it also brought out a set of emotions that I had never experienced before.

Living in a world where people, especially women have constantly been made to stay quiet about their opinions and advices and coming from the age group of being in my twenties, the first notion I had of this poem was dark yet realistic. But, having spent more time reading and re-reading I came to realise that this poem brings out hope and a sense of inner victory. The poem talks about fearfulness and fearlessness in such a manner that one feels that sense of understanding. Those feelings of thinking that someone else may or may not understand you but you don’t have to stay quiet.

What I like the most about this poem is the variety of levels through which it can be understood and the relevance that it holds even now. This poem has been a personal journey as well because it has sought to the emotions of love and pain and victory all in one. Audre Lorde has poetically described how pain is not useless and how it can make a person stronger. Now, even though every person’s reason for pain is not the same, each one has a story and that is exactly why this piece of literature is alive.

It is inspiring in a unique way and the poem speaks to me and I believe it will speak to anyone who is willing to listen. Audre Lorde emphasises on the line “We were never meant to survive” and according to me, A Litany for Survival is an eye opener to speak up and be proud of what you think, you feel and you love because time will fly by living in fear since at the end of the day, none of us are meant to survive.

For me, reciting this poem for MGR- Unmuted was an honour, not just because I got to learn and explore about Audre Lorde but also because it gave me a platform to express my feelings and my emotions about this poem and recite it with my own touch through my understanding and relevance.

Getting into the depth of this poem and understanding it had its own challenges but they helped me to grow as an artist and as a person and taught me to look at things positively. Not everything is dark and depriving and it is not necessary to drown in pain. You always have the option of learning to swim and reaching to the finish line.

I think in one way or another, this poem lit up my heart and I’m sure it will bring out the rainbow after a rainstorm for any one who listens to it with an open mind and a brave heart.


3 thoughts on “Pain & Pride: Survival”

  1. Oh my goodness! It is like you read my mind! You seem to know a lot about this, like you wrote the book in it or something. I think that you could do with some pictures to drive the message home a bit, besides that, this is informative blog post. A outstanding read. I will definitely return again.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *