I’m Responsible for You

I’m Responsible for You

"God is going to punish me because of you!”
I was sad that my brother,
who is the closest person to me,
Was treating me like I was a sin that God was going to punish him for.

I had to wear an ice cap like girls do to cover their hair,
So that no one would harass me.
But people weren’t fooled.
“You must be hiding hair underneath that ice cap”
I just wanted them to leave me alone.

My hair made me cut ties with a lot of people I knew.
One time more than 20 people I knew talked to me about my hair.
They all agreed that it wasn’t normal.
They told me my hair was a sin.
To the extent that they made me hate life and living in Egypt.
I’m always very happy when a day passes by without comments about my hair.

I’m from a village in Upper Egypt.
Whenever I go visit, I don’t go out because of my hair.
I started hating the village, even though I absolutely love the countryside.
But they made me hate the village.

All I want is to walk down the street without anyone looking at me.
I want to be invisible to people.
My hair isn’t something wrong or inappropriate.

My brother asks me to shave every day.
I used to tell him okay and then ignore him.
But with time, I started feeling like I was a mouse and he was a bear.
And every now and then, he’d pounce:
“You’re not a man.”
“Don’t wear shorts. No man goes out in shorts.”

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