By the Roadside
"A conversation, a litany, a prayer—one of these three will usually bail you out of a tricky situation. But there are times when all the three combined don't hold enough power to keep the inevitable at bay. Even as the woman offers all that she can, deep down she knows that what's done is done. Her cries will disappear into a void just like everything else. She doesn't know what else to do. What else can she do? Manto's genius lies in presenting the most complex characters and their circumstances in the simplest manner, and nowhere is this more evident than in By the Roadside. While the story was written more than half a decade ago, this powerful take on women in our country is still as relevant today."