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Thursday, April 21, 2016

Apology

To the man trespassing her body in a hive of huddled humans
buses, metros or the local trains, where female body is a mosquito
that can be trampled by mustached machismo
to the guy in the lab who walked on her, with an unapologetic wince

walking into her way is his right, he thinks
to the teacher who doesn't bother to listen to her questions
mathematics is an equation, hers was never right

the science of home making they say is her call
to the salesman at the mall, because the dress doesn't sit on her

her tiny frame gives rush if hormones
to the brash neighbours who harass her with impunity

her lonely wars fall on their deaf ears
to the boss who thinks a promotion is not her cup of tea

making tea is what he thinks she's good for
to the mother-in-law who considers her opinion as bad manners

and her sneeze an ugly omen
to the husband who thinks she isn't allowed to fall ill.
Everyday a woman says sorry and chews her words
like her favourite bar of chocolate
or sweetens them with apologies, for secrets that wane inside her bones
for it is not lady-like to raise a voice or use her brain
while she carefully cuts the tags from her new clothes
she thinks of the labels women wear everyday,
for daring to open their mouth, or asking questions
or claiming for a raise at work
while for some like her, apology tags along
for being the pale shadow of a man.

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