you, yes you, staring at me

You, yes you staring at me,
Either portraying me as a terrorist or pitying me
For you think that I’m oppressed.
Is that how you observe others, by judging them for how they are dressed?

You, yes you staring at me,
Wondering why, as an American living in my own country,
the land of the free,
Where I can be independent but instead I am letting some piece of covering cloth oppress me.
Is that what you think the piece of cloth does, it oppresses me and my identity?

You, yes you starting at me,
With dirty looks for leaving my home covered like that, for how could it be,
It’s an insult on the woman of this country, for they worked so hard to achieve their equality.
Is that what you think that piece of cloth does, denies me of my parity?

You, yes you starting at me,
Lost at the thought and the possibility,
Of how I’m willing to be held captive of a religion that degrades women like me.
Is that what you think my religion does, holds me captive of my liberty.

You, yes you staring at me,
Pondering and dignifying yourself, and maybe just smiling to yourself a bit,
Thankful that you are not me,
For you would never want to be me
And oppress yourself of your body.
For you are smarter than that because you use that body
To attract others with your beauty,
For without it you feel a sense of insecurity.

Me, yes this is me,
The person you’re staring at so obviously, the one in the piece of cloth, hiding her identity.
I wish to clarify a few things for you, so you so you would no longer disagree
And believe that I am held captive of my own body.
The piece of cloth is called the “Hijaab” you see
And the term Hijaab is used for both Muslim men and woman like me
Its meaning goes way beyond to embody a metaphysical dimension of sexuality

For me I wear it to preserve my privacy,
Something that is just for me,
So I won’t be judged by my beauty
But rather my intelligence and prosperity,
Yes that’s right, I am not denied of prosperity
But rather possess it much greatly when I’m dressed modestly
This is the way I choose to be, independent, and free on the contrary.

Eaman Saad Shebley

Thank you for reading

Thank you for reading