Thankless Tasks – A poem by Tricia Hague-Barrett

A few years ago, I penned my thoughts based on women’s past roles, and how women saw themselves back then.  Today’s world is much different, with women changing into the butterflies we were always meant to be.  The religions of the past have all spoken about women in glowing terms, but those who had the power to interpret those Scriptures subdued us.  Not that long ago, we women were stuck in our homes raising children, knitting, sewing, cleaning, day after day.  How difficult it would have been to listen to men’s conversations and not being asked to participate in them.


    We saw ourselves as decorations adorning our husbands; to stand behind the one we adored, walking behind them, seeking their protection.  Today, however, we are in the workplace, making decisions, running organizations, and becoming recognized – showing our abilities.  We are participating in consultation in every walk of life, and in fact are now becoming the best that we can be.  We are almost strong enough to refuse to allow our children to grow up and become fodder for wars, but we are standing strong against all forms of violence against women and girls.  We are thinking for ourselves in today’s world.  What is exceptional though, is that men are now waking up to the need for them to do the same.


“Women have equal rights with men upon earth; in religion and society they are a very important element. As long as women are prevented from attaining their highest possibilities, so long will men be unable to achieve the greatness which might be theirs.” (`Abdu’l-Bahá, Paris Talks, p. 133)




In the past, women have performed thankless tasks,
Often never realizing their own worth,
Unrecognized because we have sought your shade (unrecognized…insignificant…obscured)


In the past, women sought the darkest shade,
Awaiting our moth-like chance to change –  into a butterfly,
Spreading our magnificent wings.


In the past, we were judged for our homeliness, 
Housebound as we once allowed ourselves to be – 
Are now reaping the rewards of full flight.


Assisted by the feminist male,
Will help to bring a measure of Equality
To both sexes, and men will finally



In today’s world, we are opening up to the joys
Of Consultation i
n every walk of life, every endeavor

Awakening to our abilities to bring peace


Today, we are looking at ways to bring peace to our planet
For we have within our grasp the ability
To create Peace and a joyous New World for all.


Walking in the Light
Reaching for the Moon
Seeking the Sun
Touching the Stars
Each to a differing degree
Helping to change our world.

Tricia Hague-Barrett
Author: Tricia Hague-Barrett

Tricia Hague-Barrett Is a New Zealand Bahá'í and applied for membership in 1973. She has served in many capacities, including as Public Relations Officer and was appointed an Archivist in 3 communities. She has served on several Spiritual Assemblies. She is a published author and poet, has written an Autobiography, and she has helped produce and been one of the voices on “Bahá’iTime” on Community Radio. She has created several video presentations for YouTube. Tricia studied art with The Learning Connexion in Wellington, NZ receiving a Diploma of Art & Creativity. An artist with multiple talents in Pottery, Sculpting, Painting, chanting and other arts, she has also tutored art with little children as well as adults. She was invited to go to the Marshall Islands to help create 52 radio programs based on the Hidden Words of Bahá’u’lláh (2004) Her love of art has seen her create posters, pamphlets, and articles during her lifetime, and of course many other things to help further the Cause of Bahá’u’lláh. A mother of 5, grandmother of 12, and a great grandmother of 2.

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