The blog of author Harper Alexander

In Bardam, it is Illegal for a Woman to Run

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An excerpt from my short story, Chasing me Softly:


In Bardam, it is illegal for a woman to run. Some say it is because our bodies are fragile, that we snap bones like dry brush, and if we run we encourage a dangerous recklessness. Therefore endangering all women.

Endangering women eventually leads to the extinction of a species. A good thing to make illegal.

Some say it is because running musses our beauty. Our hair goes wild and sweat streaks the paint on our faces, running dark rivulets from our eyes. Crazed eyes.
Men want something pretty to look at. And since men run Bardam, they can decide such things – that anything that ruins a woman’s beauty should be made illegal. Apparently, we are that sacred to them.

There are other disruptions to beauty that come from running. The dry, cracked lips from sucking the wind like a drug you can’t get enough of. The blisters that pepper your feet. The contours of muscle that develop over time; the definition of taboo written all over your defiled body.

I know of these greater details because I have a secret. A dangerous, marvelous, rich dark secret.

I sneak away from my canopied luxury, my silken prison where I should be resting my head upon embroidered pillows, at night, and I do that thing that makes me a criminal.

I run.


Available on Amazon: Chasing me Softly


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