| Sipikriva Girl
BRAUN - I walk past men almost wherever I go. They sit on large rocks that somehow end up on the roadside. They lean against power poles, rusted in the winds of time.
Whenever I walk past men, I have to be decent. If I am ‘not decent’, I will be the subject of stares directed at my ‘indecency’.
I want to be like some womenfolk who wear voluminous meri-blouses that render them shapeless, accompanied by laplaps.
This outfit is the type that presumably makes you a respectable, humble, woman.
But try as I might, I cannot. I cannot wear clothes that make me feel like I am swathed in a bedsheet, tangled up inside and outside.
Sometimes I want to be like the other womenfolk. They throw all caution to the wind. They dress like covergirl models I see on magazine covers.
They are the brave ones. They wear short shorts and bare their breasts at least partway. They spice up their attire with lipstick and a bunch of other make-up.
I want to dress like that sometimes. However, I am not brave enough.
I am afraid of men, and maybe women too. I am afraid of society. I am afraid of being groped. I am afraid of stares. I am afraid of catcalls. I am afraid of rape.
I stick to the ‘us-in-between-outfits’. The outfits are ones where I can walk past men feeling at least comfortable.
Sometimes I walk unnoticed, and those are the best times. Sometimes I am given unwanted attention. Sometimes the men are rude, even explicit in their language. How horrid!
I belong to the ‘in-betweens’. The ‘in-betweens’ wear ripped jeans, tee-shirts, jeans or skinny jeans and shorts.
We walk past men, cringing in our heads, not wanting attention. Sometimes walking past men will leave our confidence broken. What is humanity?
Maybe I belong to the stronger ‘in-betweens’. Sometimes I glare at men who throw their ungraceful, stupid comments from their twisted oral cavity.
Sometimes they get a middle finger that flips them to Saturn. Sometimes arguments break out. Sometimes, however, I shut up and take the stares and bad words home.
Everywhere I go, I walk past men: teenagers, young adults, the middle-aged and more.
Everywhere I go, there is a man placed there by some unseen power to judge women, to look down on and to ridicule.
Everywhere there are men put in place to comment on how womanhood should be improved, as if it is not already perfect.
Maybe someday, the eyes of men will not be so judgy and condescending.