The Seamstress’ Daughter

The Seamstress’ Daughter — When, on their first night together, after several rounds of avid, mostly silent love­making, only interrupted by occasional obscene words, he said to her: “You are my first redhead”, she felt like slapping him hard in the face. His tone made her feel like some kind of a milestone in a sexual oddity bucket list. Redhead: check. Next target: Woman with no belly button.

However, she contained her ego and just replied in a calm voice: “And you are my eleventh infidelity”.

He burst out in a loud laugh, too loud to be genuine. She smiled inside because she knew she had succeeded in provoking him back. However progressive a man is, he’d still hate not being the frontrunner of a race. Boys have to compete. Precede. Win. Especially when the trophy is a woman’s body.

There will always be a cave guy inside many suited and well-mannered men, pounding his chest and howling: “I did it! I did it!” before dragging the female away by her hair.

Joumana Haddad — Lebanese award-winning poet, writer, translator and journalist. She was the editor of An-Nahar newspaper’s cultural page for more than ten years, and she taught creative writing at the Lebanese American University in Beirut. She’s an activist for equality, freedom of expression and human rights. She’s been selected as one of the world’s 100 most powerful Arab women by Arabian Business magazine, for her cultural and social activism. Her works, which have been widely translated and published around the world, include The Return of Lilith, I Killed Scheherazade, Superman is an Arab, The Third Sex and the play Kafas (Cages), performed with great success at Metro Al Madina theater.