He's walking ahead of me in the corridor. All I can see is his back, yet I know; he knows I am behind him. His back is too rigid for him to not know, his head too immobile. He doesn't want to look back, because he can't look forward. Forward to a place and a time where a woman like me exists. Someone who cuts her hair short, who wears pants, and eyeliner, who has dared to remain single, unnaturally free from the yoke that a man rightfully imposes upon her, who doesn't cover her torso with a shawl and shame, who travels alone, whose forehead is not marked with religious fervor, who... the list is endless.
I am taller than him. I wonder if that bothers him. I watch his back, wondering if he'll turn. Why is there so much distance between us? Why is he so afraid of it? In his eyes, I am barely a woman. I try to imagine how it must be for him. If a being fits the description of a label only physically, but in no other way, could I accept it? A bear, brown and furry, but it flies in the air and glows at night. I want to tell him- but I'm normal, see? Just an average girl. It's you who lives in a different time. Then I look around- I'm in his world. I'm the odd one out. And he doesn't like it.
I've never really fully believed it when they say that people are afraid of the new. It isn't something I can quite grasp. In a Universe that destroys and recreates itself every second, what isn't new? And how could the new be anything but fascinating? I have much to learn. From a man who would blame a woman for her own rape? That's who he is. Yet, learning is learning. Not all books are pretty.
He told someone that I don't speak to him. Funny, because I did, the last time I saw him. I wished him good morning and I told him goodbye. Is fear deafening? Not literally. He's picking a fight, so that he may show me his power, so that he may make me suffer, so that he may punish me for ...being? So that he may make himself feel better. I doubt he will. So that he may reassure himself of his being in the right. He's not. Neither of us is wrong.
There will come a future when neither of us matters maybe. But now, we do. We do, because history repeats itself. Neanderthals and Homo sapiens fought for the right to live- a right they already had. All the wars- for rights already had. The Indians call it the Kali Yuga- an epoch of senseless violence. We live in it. We live in life.
Life reduces us in size and increases us in dimensions. Where did I read that? I want to tell him that. Could I make him understand, in a million years? I could use words that he knows, but there are worlds that he doesn't want to know. My world too.
Our worlds don't collide, not really. Why must we? Our worlds co-exist. Why can't we? He doesn't answer. He can't hear my questions. His fear is deafening, his back too rigid. He walks ahead of me, but his head is... immobile.