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Muslimah: I am a Muslim Woman

3 May 2013 2 Comments

Fatimah Tazkia

Muslimah: I am a Muslim Woman

Fatimah Tazkia, Indonesia

I am a woman. I am Muslim. I wear hijab.
I am a woman who people will think of as helpless and in need of saving.
I am a woman who people will think of as jailed.

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They say, “This hijab covering your hair restricts you from doing many things.”
They say, “These loose clothes you wear keep you from taking part in your society.”

I am a woman who people will think of as a rebel.
Because in their mind, I have to sneak out of my house,
Trying not to get caught by my fierce father, for an education.

I am a woman to whom people will shout, “NO WAY,”
When they hear that I’ve been to the top of a volcano,
That I ride my own car on the city roads, and
Oversee a bloody and hectic night shift in an emergency room.

Because I am a Muslimah, people want to be my representatives.
They speak on my behalf.
They fight for things they believe are my rights.
They condemn what they think oppress me; my religion.

They think they set me free when they deprecate the teachings of Islam.
But as Islam is my way of life,
Assaulting it will only give them my antipathy, not gratefulness.

I am a Muslimah,
I don’t need people offering me concepts of progress,
Concepts to “save me”

My religion has guaranteed my progress, and my dignity.
It honors me.

I am a Muslimah
I don’t need people to become my representatives in fighting for my rights.
My religion has guaranteed my rights flawlessly and if somebody takes them away from me,
I have my own voice and freedom to speak up.
I have courage to stand up and fight for my own rights.

I am a Muslimah and I wear hijab.
I can make my voice be heard, and my role be acknowledged
Without exposing my body.

Have you ever thought that this is nothing more than proof of the strength of my voice, the sharpness of my intellect, and the significance of my presence in society?

I am a Muslimah and I am proud of the way my religion treats me.
I am always grateful for Islam,
And I don’t need anyone to save me from it.

***

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2 Comments to “Muslimah: I am a Muslim Woman”
  1. irit hakim says:

    Thank you for your post, Fatimah Tazkia.
    It is the first time I know there is the word ‘Muslimah’ – is it your coinage?
    best regards
    Irit
    Israel

  2. Carla Loosier says:

    Thank you for your poem, Fatimah Tazkia!

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