Once around the carousel, so she can see the people- big and small alike pour into each other in one big smudge of black and grey and pinks. Once around the carousel, to let her dip her head back breezily, palms firm around the handles and just the clouds above her; melting into magnetic blotches of blue and white and wonder.
But she doesn’t know it yet.
She doesn’t know that soon, she will hear for the very first time, the sweetest modulations of the EADGBE oozing so provocatively out of a stranger’s closed door, that for the very first time, she would know what love is. She doesn’t know it yet, but she is going to spend the rest of her life in prayer: in a symphonic homage to the sound of those strings, the tug of those chords and the freedom in those voices.
She doesn’t know it yet, but the body that she hasn’t even come to understand yet, won’t be hers for the longest time. And not until she makes it hers. She doesn’t know it yet, but she belongs to a world that cannot fathom her individuality. A world where she will be judged, and tested and tried for stepping out of the limbo everyone seems to like to dance. She doesn’t know it yet, but more often than not, she will judge herself, and others like her without the slightest effort. She hasn’t been made familiar with the cosmetic gunk of patriarchy that she belongs to…Not Yet.
She hasn’t discovered the joys of travel yet. She has no idea how much her feet are going to want it. How her heart forgets to beat at the thought of all the earth her toes haven’t even dreamed of treading on yet. She doesn’t know how proud she’s going to feel the first time she buys herself her very own knapsack. She doesn’t know how the ocean’s going to fill her heart up with the moon whom she will slowly and reluctantly sigh out in a whisper of deep deep love and longing, with every tide, every setting sun, and every single time she leaves her place of silence. She doesn’t know just how much she’s going to love silence.
She thinks this is it maybe, or maybe she hasn’t begun to truly think yet. What she’s going to find when she starts to think her own, is how much she longs for still waters, trees reaching out to the skies they adore, cold winters and heavy rains. She doesn’t know just how much she both loathes and loves the very greys and blacks and pinks of this aging city that she sees spinning around her.
She’s going to learn soon, that there’s a lot of standing up to do. And too many painful moments she will have to ignore. She is going to learn soon, what being violated truly means. She is going to be poked, and prodded and undressed so many times a day by a million eyes alone. And if she’s lucky, she will never be touched by the blind savages that house those eyes.
But she isn’t going to be that lucky. She is going to be touched. Touched by men who don’t know her. Men who don’t know where she has been and what it’s taken her to come this far. She is going to be touched by men who don’t care who she is. On the bus, on the street, in a crowd, while she’s walking her pet, any time she’s out. With their eyes, with their hands, with their body language, their elbows, their shoulders and their pride.
She is going to live in fear within the rancid blanket of violation everyday, that for the longest time, she won’t even realise it.
She is going to have dreams. SO many dreams. But she won’t be taught to go after them. She will instead be bathed in stories of young girls in waiting and young princes’ wearing their boots out with adventure. She will be dressed in tales of rescue and dependency. She will most likely never be taught the beauty of interdependency. She’s never going to be taught the need for action! To literally GO OUT THERE and get what she wants, the boy or girl she wants, the love she wants, the job she wants, the money, the friends, the adventures. None of it. She will instead learn from those stories to sigh and wait. And maybe have someone come take her on an adventure.
But she. If things go right. Will want to have adventures of her own .
She will probably not learn that it is okay to touch herself. Not for the longest time will she come to find that she is just as entitled to urges and wanting to be satisfied as any creature walking this quickly paling planet. That her body is her own, not a chaste temple to protect, not a flower, not an object that she must hide. That her hair can be as long or short or wild as she’d like it to be and no book no testament no holy scripture can ever tell her how she should dress, behave or feel.
She is going to learn to associate feelings of guilt and shame and false notions of morality with thoughts of happiness, pleasure, success, dreams and other selfish ideals like putting herself first.
She hasn’t yet discovered just how much she loves food. She hasn’t yet experienced the titillating little lover affair her hungry pallet can enjoy with something as unshackle-able as aromas. But when she does, she’s going to feel like she owes this exhausted planet of opinions a justification for every bite she takes.
But if all goes right, she won’t really give a shit.
She doesn’t know it yet, but so many things are going to happen to her and the world around her. She doesn’t know it yet, but her body’s going to change and keep changing; she is going to have to accept the power that comes with complete ownership of it. She doesn’t know it yet, but she’s going to be a mother one day, of the billion zillion gazillion dreams she lets herself conceive of. She doesn’t know it yet, but she’s going to be fighting so many battles without ever realising it. And just like the centuries of women before her, she is going leave behind a little rebellion, a little revolting and a lot of revolution for the little girls who come after her.
All this- if things go right.
So I’ll let her be for now.There, on that carousel, lost in colours, and pictures and wonders of thought-less alchemy. I’ll let her be for now.
Because soon her world will change. And through all the perceptions and ideologies that she will be dressed by, she will come into her own one day and find herself.
She just doesn’t know it yet.