No matter where I am
be it New York or in New Delhi
Whenever I am out/alone
I get that horrid feeling in my belly
I fear the night, a dark place.
I catch that glance, that stare.
I increase my pace.
I hold my keys, I am ready to run.
That stare gets closer,
I take out my phone and press 911
I feel them leering,
as their mockery hits intense.
Everything inside me is screaming:
Why is being a woman such an offense?
I stiffen my back as I knock on the door
I (thankfully) get inside
They whistle. They wanna know what floor.
I run to my friend, I am grateful to be safe.
I tell her what happened but
she knows. This happens to us every day.
Now this is one incident,
I wish I could tell you that was it.
Unfortunately being a woman in this world
Means you’ll always be treated like shit.
Before you say I’m exaggerating
Look around, #MeToo is hitting almost infinity
Don’t you dare say it’s the victim’s fault
When you know the fault lies in toxic masculinity.
I know you want to offer solutions but please
Stop saying, “What if it was your mother, sister or girlfriend?”
Instead, hold the men around you accountable and
Ensure he is not an abusive “Father, brother or boyfriend”
We are sick and tired too,
for there’s so much we’ve endured, suffered and seen.
But we can’t do this alone/without you
Coz there are thousands more like Harvey Weinstein.
Mahima Saigal is an actress, writer choreographer and cheerleader for everything books, Bollywood and Beyonce. Born and raised in New Delhi, India she came to New York in 2013 to study at the Atlantic Theater’s Acting School where she met her L2G productions partner and collaborator Gabrielle Adkins. Mahima’s artistic mission is to create work that manifests the most potent magic of which films/theatre is capable of. Apart from serving as a board member of L2G, Mahima also writes for the company’s upcoming projects. For more on Mahima, you can check out her website, www.mahimasaigal.com.