Intrusion: A Poem On Street Harassment

Intrusion: A Poem On Street Harassment. Hush! Here comes an intruder. Silently sliding through the sea of people. Only to stop in the middle of it. And right next to you. You look around at the ones sitting,

You see yourself standing in a crowded bus

With Beethoven’s Moonlight Sonata playing in your earphones

You try to look outside the window

The vision is blurred by the winter mist

Perfectly sprayed on the glass

Those morning office phone calls

And a perfect meeting spot

Craving for a hot cup of coffee

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And wanting to sing like never before



Here comes an intruder

Silently sliding through the sea of people

Only to stop in the middle of it,

And right next to you.

You look around at the ones sitting

Turning their phones on,

Looking at the time every other minute.

You could see the stress

And disappointment on those faces

When the bus got stuck in traffic.


A little acceleration and more breaks

And the intruder falls on you

He straightens himself up,

Grabs the handle,

Pretending that nothing happened!

You try to ignore it too

And take out your phone

To change the tune.


Now, the bus engine is turned off

So both the acceleration and breaks

Are put on a hold.


You feel something creeping on your back

Slowly sliding down to your ass

Your body goes numb

With just the thought

Of this little intrusion

Your mind starts bickering

About what’s real

And what just an illusion


Did what you just felt happened, really happened?

If it’s real, was his intention wrong?

Or was it just the traffic

Inside those four walls?


Before you could figure out

If this was the time when you shout

Or you lock your mouth with an

Unknown key and throw it somewhere

Where it’s never to be found;

The traffic outside those walls

Starts clearing up

And the vibrations from the engine

Pulls you out of your thoughts.


Your stop comes and you get off

With a crazy beating heart

And a banging in your head

Almost, like boring a hole

Over and over again

A hole in the memories

From just five minutes ago


You walk away

Feeling like the whole world

Knows exactly what happened.

And you feel

Every pair of eyes around you

Focused right on you.

When, really, they were just

A few blind puppets

Dancing in this world’s hall.

So much to say, but silent like a broken doll!

Image source: Still from #RukheDari Campaign| SpeakUp against Sexual Harassment by BRAC

[There are laws against street harassment, if readers found themselves or someone in a similar situation, read here for further guidance.]

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