Her mother was her first teacher
She taught her that love is like a rose
To enjoy the flower you have to endure the thorns
For what was love without a little pain?
Told her she was a princess
So she carried her bruises with regal grace
Told that the only time she should raise her voice
In front of men was when she was singing
Was told she was brave
So she wore her blue eyes like medals of honour
Like she were a soldier that went to war and lived to tell the story
But maybe she is, and maybe she did
Because she spends every day of her life in a war zone
Tip-toeing around her man like she is navigating a minefield
How she tries to dodge fists being reminiscent of
Neo dodging bullets in The Matrix
Or how her ‘Yebo baba’ sounds like a direct translation of ‘Yes sir!’
Or how like our men in camouflage she suffers from PTSD
Or is it really PTSD when she is still living through the trauma?
But there’s still hope because she did not die, right?
What if I told you she wishes she were dead?
Or she doesn’t wish she were because she has
Her soul and a body that no longer feels like hers
Because strangers had laid claim to parted ways
The day the person tasked with her protection
Attacked her rose garden with a stiff rod.
How her body should be covered with yellow police tape
Because of the many times it was turned into a crime scene.
Or how she tells the world she doesn’t want to have kids
Because kids are too permanent, too demanding
But in reality she fears that her son might be
His father’s spitting image or that her daughter
Might spit on her grave because she too
Was taught lessons from her grandmother
But even she was a student,
And Tradition was her teacher
Patriarchy, her evil prefect
I cannot find the words to finish this piece
Because no number of metaphors does justice
To the plight of women in this country
Funny isn’t it?
That even through metaphors they can’t find justice.