I watched Banting, the first local malay film to come up since 1975. The film explores and takes a muslim, hijab-wearing girl on a journey of self-discovery – struggling between reaching her dreams of becoming a wrestler and abiding by her mother’s strict wishes. I was inspired to write this poem from the perspective of the female lead character in the film.
What does wearing a Hijab mean?
Many burning questions and doubts to think.
Does wearing a headscarf hold me back from doing what I love?
Or can I still defy conventions and draw a curve?
Abiding traditionally to cultural norms,
Accustomed gender roles to conform.
Wanting to seek out my hidden dreams,
Charge up my potential to the brim.
My mother found out and told me NO,
Her voice all so heavy and cold.
Dressing modestly is a choice I took,
Like my independent voice I definitely would not overlook.
As long as my intentions are pure and right,
I surely won’t do wrong or lose sight.
Got to prove the misconceptions wrong,
And erase the flawed labels all gone.
I can do as well if not better compared to any other girls,
And show the naysayers don’t matter.
Live out your dreams and show to the world,
I’m proud to wear the Tudong like any other Muslim girl.
Wearing a Veil does not change me one single bit,
I am resilient and I can stand on very own two feet.
To check out our other poems, click HEREWritten by: Cass
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