The Manchester Review

      Hamid kisses me here and he kisses me there. Hurriedly! He kisses me on the road driving at 120 kph and he kisses me on the pedestrian bridge over Vali-asr Street with the traffic moving like a snail beneath us. When he is kissing me on the elevator, the door opens and I take a quick step away. A plump woman gets on. She is carrying a cactus. The three of us stare at the cactus until we reach the 3rd floor. The woman gets off. Hamid takes a quick step towards me.

      "Come closer," the gynecologist says.
      The secretary wouldn’t accept my insurance. She was scribbling something in her notebook which was next to a plate full of alluring chocolate doughnuts and croissants. I dropped the card back into my bag.
      I try to slide myself down some more. The table I am lying on looks more like a dentist’s chair but has two horizontal pedals at the lower end on which you are supposed to put the soles of your feet so that your thighs are wide apart. My jeans and panties are lying next to me on a bed with a white cover. I wonder where the clothes hanger is. Opposite where I am lying there is a glass cabinet which reflects the light. I can't quite make out what‘s inside. On my right, the gynecologist is putting on her gloves. I can’t see a hanger. There must be a hanger somewhere.
      "Closer, come closer."
      I slide even closer until it is practically impossible to bend my knees any more and still keep my feet on the pedals. It feels strange to be lying there with my manto and scarf still on and my bottom so exposed. She leans in close.
      "Now remove that."
      I have tried to cover myself with my Manto. Something comforts me though: I am well-shaved. She turns a spotlight on and peers down through her thick glasses. I don't think even Hamid has looked that close. He just kisses and licks, and when I tell him to be careful he says he is careful, so careful that I needn`t worry.
      Isn't that something they say to women in labor? Ceremoniously, the gynecologist takes my labia in her hands, and pulls sideways with all her might.

      "You are open," Hamid said.
      "Nothing," lets do something new.