Saturday, May 6, 2017

Woman Body

Woman body knows Spanx, push-up bras, and high-heeled shoes are designed to keep us small.
Knows women used to faint on couches from corsets strangling breath.
Woman body knows we have always survived on less: less oxygen, less stability, less money, less space, less rights, less
of our own bodies.

Woman body knows wage gap, knows "how old are you anyway?"
knows "but you aren't the real doctor, right?" knows "all you women are just the same"
knows research ideas stolen and executed, knows
man got the praise, knows woman body said it first.

Woman body knows "you tell my wife I'm the man and she will do what I say with my children." 
Woman body knows female bodies bruised. 
Woman body makes friends with security guard.  Feels finger on panic button in her sleep some days.
Woman body will never be the loudest voice.  Resorts to being most insistent; woman body learns to say no and forgets to cover her ass first.
Woman body finds boundaries, learns she's being "unreasonable,"
might have to say yes anyway.

Woman body walks down the street.
Woman body wears jeans, wears skirt, wears sweatpants, wears yoga pants, wears...
Woman body hears "hey Baby, where you goin'?"
hears, "you wanna come in and fuck?"
hears, "smile Sweetie.  Aren't you gonna smile for me?"
hears, "why you not answering me?"
hears, "bitch"
hears, "cunt,"
Woman body keeps walking.

Woman body knows wings clipped and pinned to brick like
butterfly to shadow box.  Knows purple crocus blossoming where fingers lay;
woman body cannot write angry metaphors.
Woman body makes them beautiful,
woman body knows they're not,
woman body tries anyway.

Woman body doesn't know what to eat anymore. Woman body starving not for food.
Woman body does not know which women to look to; woman body lost.
Woman body wants a mother; woman body, own mother.
Woman body knows shame.  Knows small.  Knows to take up less
space to make you more comfortable. 
Woman body wonders what space feels like without
too much. 

Woman body stands outside at night,
chest to heaven, breathing in expanse of sky.
Woman body does not imagine herself astronaut.
Does not become planet, moon, or cloud.
Woman body is star.
Woman body is small on the ground but science knows
she is ball of power and light.
When you know her she has already died but
continued existing for light years, she
expanded out beyond her unsmall body, this
woman body knows how to survive anyway.
Woman body knows to survive anyway.
Woman body survive anyway.
Woman body survive

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