#sheofthewildwrites – hair

Day 7 – my hair feels like

:: A black woman’s body was never hers alone::
Fannie Lou Hamer

Is your hair real? she asks. I sit next to her on the stationary bikes.
Sweating.

I’ve seen them doing that kind of thing along the beach in Jamaica.
I say nothing.

Not to people like you but tourists. You know they pay for it.
I stare forward peddle faster.

Obviously, she’s an older woman who likes to talk. Maybe
the gym is a social occasion for her. I try not to judge.

Did it take a while for you to get it done?
I want to tell her that this is my hair. All my own hair.

Do you wash it?
Really, lady? You’re asking me if I wash my hair?

I want to ask her would she ask
the same questions to a white woman?

I focus on my reflection, and then catch her moving in.
Oh can I touch it?

No! You can’t. I find my voice.
She looks outraged and confused. But why?

Seriously?
I want to say

because I’m not an animal in a zoo
because I’m not your property
because this is my body.

But I say nothing. I move away and if anyone’s
watching it looks like I’m being rude.

#dreadscapes #blackwomensbodies #canitouchit #selflove

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