One morning, I held a hot cup of tea in my hands after cutting 15 green chilies lengthwise. When the heat pulsating inwards began pouring outside, I couldn’t tell what was feeding what.
When someone who doesn’t want to laugh, laughs — I look for the line of anger on their face that suddenly hides. I worry the line will return when they are alone & I won’t be around to humiliate it into hiding again.
A friend once told me that it’s not possible to hold on to self-respect when one is in love. I felt victorious & betrayed. Why though? It’s not like I am a mountain of self-respect when not in love.
When he drove, I liked looking at the folded sleeves of his red checkered shirt on the forearm. But I desired him most when he reversed the vehicle, and put his left arm around my seat to look back, his Adam’s apple teasing.
I get annoyed when I stand before the mirror at the end of a long day to find by bra strap peeping. Why didn’t my girls or aunties on the road tell me or better yet, put it back gently & tuck my hair behind the ear also? The only time I felt happy in convent schools was when girls would sing ‘Sunday is longer than Monday’ everytime a petticoat played hide & seek.
I don’t want feminism that takes away intimacy between women in bathrooms. Come, weep into my arms sister. I will hold you, you hold me.
When I was 6 & refused milk, Mouma pulled me to her lap & promised to show me one breast if I finished half the glass, and both if I finished the full glass, permanently ruining all possible hetero relationships for me.
Even hickies are forgotten in hours. The warmth of chilies still hasn’t left.