It is not just worn at weddings, parties and ceremonies

It is also worn at a construction site
Amidst the cement, sand, gravel
Under the ruthless sun
Over a parched throat and blistered feet

It does not always shimmer in gold brocade and silk

It is also torn and tattered
With frayed edges, fading colours
and cheap fabric

It is not always neatly pleated and pinned
It is also hastily stuffed into the petticoat
Worn high to avoid puddles
The pallu bunched up and flung over the head
to cushion the weight of bricks

It is not always an epitome of grace

Sometimes, it is patched with grime and grit.