29 Mar


BURQA photo: kaala burqa blackburka.jpg

I had a dream the other night and for some reason it came back to me in the early hours of this morning, so instead of being forgotten it was remembered.

It was an exciting adventure in which I, as saviour of the sane world, decided to sort out those cultures in which the mistreatment of women is endemic. I decided to invent a few novel weapons and battle my way through bigotry, cruelty and misogyny. That’s my kind of war. For too long has it been accepted that it’s not all that wrong for men to rape women (in some cultures) and for other men to get away with the excuse of alcohol and drunkenness when they beat their wives (in others).

So I devised a light solar-powered microlight aeroplane that could, unaided and without needing to land, circumnavigate the globe if it needed to. It was great, because I could fly from here to there in the course of a single night, when here is home and there is … somewhere vaguely Middle Eastern.

After a few test runs (which didn’t seem to take any time at all) I was ready for my next invention, and it was easy-peasy.

I created a female robot with laser-eyes, powerful enough to cut through sheet steel and certainly capable of doing extreme damage to mortal flesh. She was magnificent and kept fully-charged by utilising the surplus solar energy picked up by my microlight – it could even convert moonlight into usable energy, and why not? In addition to her fantastic eyes she carried an arsenal of tiny nuclear devices in order to combat more serious threats. She was magnificent. And moody: she had to be moody.

Then I dressed her in a Burqa.

When you’re dreaming and in cloud-cuckoo land it’s very hard to distinguish a female-shaped robot from a woman when they’re both wearing burqas. With little more than a slit for her/its eyes (those laser eyes that were so powerful they could bore through steel, don’t forget) and an armoury of unimaginably powerful but tiny nuclear weapons under her black skirts she was ready to go. All she had to do was take aim with her vagina and whole buildings would vanish in a radioactive cloud of rubble.

And I flew her through the night in my microlight, sitting next to her and holding a desultory conversation with her (she sounded exactly like a female version of Professor Stephen Hawking when she spoke and was consequently very sensible). We raced through the night, the wind on my domed scalp, and by dawn there were the streets of a Middle Eastern country before me.

Now I want to make it clear, my only knowledge of the Middle East is via the gift of the kind of images, the stereotypes, that a large number of its inhabitants want me to have. So I see sharp-eyed men and cowering women in all-black costumes, some of them bleeding because they’ve been flogged. I haven’t created that image. It’s been provided for me by what is almost certainly only a tiny minority of the inhabitants because those inhabitants are ostensibly as human as I am and have similar emotions to those I enjoy. And I enjoy my deep and almost overwhelming love for my wife and wouldn’t like to think anyone hurt a single hair on her head. But that tiny minority has created a world in which women are constantly cowering and subjected to a cruel male dominance, and that’s what I’ve flown half way round the world to sort out.

With Mabel.

Suddenly my robot has a name. She’s Mabel and she’s there to sort out some of the misogynist men that populate my misconception of the Middle East.

You might be able to imagine the rest of my dream, because, yes, there was a rest. We landed and sallied forth down the first road we came upon (stucco buildings all around, men in Arab dress and hurling insults from squint eyes, pushing their womenfolk before them with cruel abandon) and Mabel sorting them out.

Using those eyes I had designed for her, she blinded them with multicoloured rays unseen elsewhere on the planet. She scorched through their flesh, dissolved testicles and created unimaginable painful impotence. She did what the real women would have wanted to do, but daren’t. And within nearly no time at all the howling of blinded and emasculated men and the hysterical laughter of joyously freed women filled the air.

There was more.

Using her arsenal of tiny nuclear devices she blasted whole centres in which fierce and uncontrollable yet heavily armed soldiers marched to battle against a cowering civilian foe. The whole land was aglow with righteous destruction! And the frightened victims became the free, the abusive military, the dead.

And, like some super-heroes drawn in ink and coloured with blood, Mabel and I returned to the peaceful green fields of home, knowing we had righted a dreadful wrong…

There are men who believe that the only happy world is one in which the women are cowed and frightened, and they’ve just got to go.

Ask Mabel.

© Peter Rogerson 29.03.05


One Response to “THE DREAM”


  1. Coverings Worn by Muslim Women | Stepping Toes - December 16, 2015

    […] The dream […]

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