Chant of a Million Women

About the Book


Rajapakse explores identity, values and women’s role in society through the poems in Chant of a Million Women. She also looks at the concepts of beauty and the standards imposed on women to conform. Some of the poems are hard hitting and take on subjects that are uncomfortable to talk about like rape, female gender mutilation, abuse and male dominance. She talks about power and the quiet force that keeps half the world moving even when there is no hope.

The language is simple yet the thoughts and ideas are not. They rise from the depth of our very being to swirl through the pages compelling the reader to step into worlds created within the covers. There is magnificence and strength juxtaposed with violence and weakness as are other opposites such as the divine and human frailty. These poems are like a breath of fresh air, provoking, mesmerizing and entertaining.


“At our core is a chant,


like the susurrus of leaves only breezes


Sometimes it opens lips

to sing like gurgling waters meandering

from here to there, to wherever it flows,

or the soft tread of footfalls

on the path outside.

But sometimes,

it’s a roar so loud

thunder stops in its tracks

in awe.”