I saw you there on the bus, and felt an immediate affinity with you. Your head, wrapped in a black shroud that kept your hair hidden from me and emphasized your strong face, was slightly bowed. It was as though, if you lifted your sights you might be struck down. You adjusted the blanket over your child that was invisible to me in its pram. It slept peacefully because, like all mothers, you strive to be a good one despite your troubles.
The black cloth covered every limb, down to your shoes that continued the train of black. It hugged your hips, that, like mine, are over-sized for child-bearing. There I stood in my knee-length skirt with my ankles revealed and my hair blow-dried to show it off at its best, and yet we were the same by our hips that hugged the fabric.
I marched for you last weekend. Or was it you I marched for? I think it was for both of us. In fact, it was for myself. When the kings that govern tell me that you and I are just there for groping, I march. When they tell me that your hips and bold face are not the same as mine, I march. When they tell us that our wills and our souls mean nothing, I march.
I didn't expect to feel this way about you on the bus. My preconditioned mind sends the warning signals of a society brainwashed by killers. But neither you nor I are killers. It sends the signal that you have allowed yourself to be subjected to the will of men by accepting that shroud, and thereby have let me down. But that too is a myth. You struggle as I do to shake off the burden of centuries of exclusion and accusation - all because our bodies have the frightening power to perpetuate the human race. Kings have always feared the power of the womb.
I have seen you on the bus before with many different faces wrapped in a black shroud. Not until today did the connection between us touch me on the inside. Now you are there to stay.