Saturday, May 15, 2010

Kauthar at the Gym

Sometimes during the night Kauthar would dream that she could touch her own heart, feel it beating warm blood into her body, calm it away from the pangs of hurt. She would wake with a start and find her right hand laying on her chest; that's as close as she would ever get.


Kauthar never thought she was exceptionally beautiful. There were the bulges she furrowed her eyebrows at in the gym mirror, the slightly crooked bottom teeth when she smiled, and the generally boyish features of her face. No, definitely not the typical ascetically pleasing woman.

A woman should be symmetrical and thin. Her hair should fall in a perfect wave just to below her shoulders - frizzed by neither rain nor humidity. The curves of her body should be slight, alluring, render her a sculpted masterpiece.

Needless to say - that she was not. And the ugliness she wore on her exterior cloaked her inner demons; perhaps people would not look so far into her heart if she looked unbecoming.


Kauthar's kick-boxing class instructor was a petite Caucasian woman with disturbingly bulging shoulder muscles and an unnaturally high pitched voice. The class consisted of moves and routines she'd all but forgotten the names of. Uppercuts, roundhouse kicks, and something about breaking a man's nose by slamming his face into your knee.

The room was large, made up of clean wooden floors and ceiling-to-floor mirrors. While the women around her pumped their fists to the beat of the music, Petite High Pitch Instructor shouted orders at them on her wireless microphone. It was an odd sight - 40 women violently uppercutting the empty space ahead of them, yelling in unison as their fists hit the air.

For weeks, Kauthar could not get into the groove of the movements or memorize any sequence of moves. She would lose herself in the sea of women with unrequited anger - focus on the new ones in class and notice the build up of sweat on their necks, and the constrained look on their faces. The instructor's voice was lost in this - she did not exist.

On the 4th visit to the class, the instructor walked in and chirped: "alright ladies! It's time to picture that one person you've wanted to just clobber, but have always been too nice to!" Kauthar scoffed at the ludicrous suggestion. She was here to lose her bulges, not take out her violent tendencies.

She turned away from the instructor to hide her upturned eyebrow and looked at her reflection in the mirror. She saw ugliness.

Her eyes lit up under angry brows as she curled her fingers into fists. She saw his head jerk back as she rammed her fist into his nose, she saw him stumble onto his hands and knees when she forcefully kicked the hollowed side of his head. She slammed his head into her knee, and threw him aside like a used tissue.

She angrily twisted her body back to the mirror, hands still clenched as if to challenge its reflection. And for the first time in months, behind her reddened face, she saw raw, limitless beauty.


Anonymous said...

was it E. Honda?

Anonymous said...

was it that guy who came to see her earlier?

Asmaa said...

That question is far removed from the real point.

Anonymous said...



Anonymous said...

what's the real point?

HTG said...

Your imaginary friend "Kauthar" seems to me that she has a problem or more than one; why she is always mad? or what is her real problem?

Asmaa said...

Why anonymous, the real point is for the reader to interpret the events on his/her own. What it means to the writer is of little or no consequence or importance. It's what you take away from it that matters.

HTG, yeah Kauthar is a complicated character - she is not my "imaginary friend" as you so delicately put it. It's called fictional creative writing. And why can't she be angry or forceful? Is that only an characteristic acceptable for males?

HTG said...

Anyway; another question for you to answer; hopfully not with a question. why is she complicated? I am trying to help her before she writes her suicide note soon.

Are u Sexist? ur last statment clearly indicate that!! just sayin!!

Asmaa said...

HTG, Kauthar is complicated because she has gone through many turning points in her life, like many women. I try not to be sexist - you clearly misunderstood my previous statement.

Are you assuming that because my character is angry, she'll jump to a suicide note? Thank you for your overzealous concern for this fictional woman, but I assure you, your help is not needed :)

HTG said...

Well, I am glad that I missunderstood your statement.. I usually become happy when I missunderstood people. it shows me how wrong I am; and it make my day.

Tell her please that there is more turning points are on the way and more disappoinments coming soon in theatre near her. life hasn't ended for her YET; I didn't assume; its a proven end for such disorder and mood swinging personality; more danger developments should shows on her as she ages; there is a great chance that she will not get married; and even if she get married; she will just get married for the sake of it. sorry to ruin the plot.. but kinda a clear

I just wished for a happy ending,

I will take my generous offer back and wish you a good Sunday.

Bed time.. will have to wake up early.

Petite High Pitch Instructor said...

I see how it is...

Anonymous said...

i love it asmaa!
i love to kickbox. i feel beautiful when i can unleash my anger. and i feel beautiful bc i feel more honest with myself when i acknowledge the pain that people cause and just do what i need to do to get it out.
i feel lighter and happier when i just do what i have to to move towards steps of forgiveness and moving on.
thank you for understanding.

Asmaa said...

Anon, no no...thank YOU for understanding! :) your comment made me smile.