Shivani Mutneja

“What makes girls?

Born on this day, under that planet, to a dark father, in the waxing moon, in a waning fortune, of a talkative mother, under the crumbling roof of a nursing home, in the creaking decade of a free country, post an assassination, pre a suicide bomber, swathed in myths, braced by nuns, held by strings, fed on the memory of volcanic eruptions, drinking from the fountains of forgetfulness and dancing on the waves of distant oceans –

And what is it that breaks girls?”

 What Makes Girls

Dimpy dreams of traveling, making art and being free to love in a milieu where women are expected to fit into pre-ordained moulds. Her quest is surrounded by micro-tragedies of forgotten women, lost men, failed love affairs, financial scandals, and fatal heart conditions. Will she be written over or will she be able to write herself out of prescribed meanings? 

Shivani found her way into print as a feminist poet and now she writes about ugly husbands, marital conundrums, and bizarre children. Her work has appeared in Nether Quarterly, Jellyfish Review, Two Serious Ladies and decomp journal among others. She is the associate fiction editor at The Bombay Literary Magazine.