Thursday, November 28, 2019

Unwanted, unheard

What is it about women’s voices that can drive men mad?
Mad with lust, desire, rage? When is it sane, their conversation?
Only when there is parity between them, a rare event indeed.
How much do people actually listen to others, especially across genders?
Fathers listening with rapt attention to their little daughters,
But for how long? Work or boredom will soon stop these precious conversations.
Wise women learn the art of silence, of how not to confront,
And yet do as they please, under a veneer of peaceable harmony.
What turmoil seethes under that veneer? Not known, until it breaks out
Sometimes as illness, depression, divorce, insanity, sometimes never…

And then you see these images of women in different countries
Across the globe, protesting violence against their gender,
Against the violence that has cost so many female lives.
And they have painted a hand across their mouths,
different colours in different countries,
A hand silencing their voices, their unbearable, unhearable voices
That sometimes lead to death. 
Femicide, a word I hadn't heard of before, is a reality 
in a world where feminism has been around for decades.

How hard is it to listen with attention and affection,
before the voice turns shrill and hysterical and unbearable?
And even if it does, the voice is demanding a hearing.

Shutting it up will not work. 
It will not work.
it will not.