if your conscience is clear, then you've nothing to fear;
you won't feel personally attacked -
but you can't get your kicks barking up the wrong trees
playing victim when bitches bite back.
c Mar 9
i can't
i won't
this time

                    i clasp
                    my legs,
                    the line

will just

                    as i
                    and writhe
                    in fear
c Mar 5
The only other girl at the party
is ranting about feminism.
The audience: a sea of rape jokes and snapbacks
and styrofoam cups and me.
They gawk at her mouth like it is a drain
clogged with too many opinions.
I shoot her an empathetic glance
and say nothing. This house is for
wallpaper women. What good
is wallpaper that speaks?
I want to stand up, but if I do,
whose coffee table silence
will these boys rest their feet on?

These boys…
I want to stand up, but if I do,
what if someone takes my spot?
I want to stand up, but if I do,
what if everyone notices I’ve been
sitting this whole time? I am ashamed
of keeping my feminism in my pocket
until it is convenient not to, like at poetry
slams or woman studies classes.
There are days I want people to like me
more than I want to change the world.
Once I forgave a predator because
I was afraid to start drama in our friend group
two weeks later he assaulted someone else.
I’m still carrying the guilt in my purse.

There are days I forget we had to invent
nail polish to change color in drugged
drinks and apps to virtually walk us home
and lipstick shaped mace and underwear designed to prevent rape.

Once a man behind me at an escalator
shoved his hand up my skirt
from behind and no one around me
said anything,
so I didn’t say anything.
Because I didn’t wanna make a scene.

Once an adult man made a necklace
out of his hands for me and
I still wake up in hot sweats
haunted with images of the hurt
of girls he assaulted after I didn’t report,
all younger than me.

How am I to forgive myself for doing
nothing in the mouth of trauma?
Is silence not an active violence too?

Once, I told a boy I was powerful
and he told me to mind my own business.

Once, a boy accused me of practicing
misandry. “You think you can take
over the world?” And I said “No,
I just want to see it. I just need
to know it is there for someone.”

Once, my dad informed me sexism
is dead and reminded me to always
carry pepper spray in the same breath.
We accept this state of constant fear
as just another component of being a girl.
We text each other when we get home
safe and it does not occur to us that
not all of our guy friends have to do the same.
You could literally saw a woman in half
and it would still be called a magic trick.
Wouldn’t it?
That’s why you invited us here,
isn’t it? Because there is no show
without a beautiful assistant?
We are surrounded by boys who hang up
our naked posters and fantasize
about choking us and watch movies that
we get murdered in. We are the daughters
of men who warned us about the news
and the missing girls on the milk carton
and the sharp edge of the world.
They begged us to be careful. To be safe.
Then told our brothers to go out and play.
Credits to Blythe Baird.

Blythe Baird is an affluent, rising young slam/spoken word poet from Minnesota. She has a book out already, "Give Me A God I Can Relate To" and is making gains in the world of poetry. Regularly performs with Button Poetry. You can find the performance of "Pocket-Sized Feminism" on Youtube. Inspiring and firey on the mic! Check this one out.
Dia Mar 5
Its been four years, night terror, more details, night terror, depression, night terror, it feels all my fault, night terror, no one will believe you, night terror,  incident  anniversary, night terror, more details revealed, night terror, you deserved it, night terror, I will never heal, night terror, loose a friend, night terror,  paralysis, night terror, no one believes me, night terror, self sabotage, night terror, harm, night terror repeat..
Belle Mar 3
it's sick, it's fucking sick as fucking plague to wish someone succeeded at suicide but if that's how i'm feeling i can't control it you fucking made me this way
i hate you
"you don't know how happy it's made me that we're friends again."
we aren't
we aren't
we aren't friends
you think i want to be friend with you
because i'm nice and if i didn't say yes you would probably threaten to kill yourself or some shit and say what you always say.
"but you've been my reason for living."
just like when i didn't say yes you stuck your fingers into me and breathed heavily and i sat there frozen and with no emotion but i wanted to yell for help.
you ruined my recovery and continue to.
people ask why don't i tell you to go away.
i try but you keep coming back.
like the devil.
do you hear the things you say?
"i tried to kill myself."
"i tried to kill myself and I just wanted someone to talk to."
i said I'm not in the place to hear that right now.
"Fuck you Belle, all you ever do is rub it in my face."
You'll do it again.
i'm always the perpetrator.
i don't want to be friends.
stop talking to me.
i have nightmares of you strangling me and forcing me to do things with you, because this is what you once did.
asking someone to go away is never so simple when they're so obsessive.
i have had a ball and chain around both ankles for so long.
maybe i need a restraining order
Kai Feb 7
please stop

i said

and his reply was

if you leave, i'll kill myself


you're a whore


you never said no


there are knives in the kitchen


if you leave, ill kill you

i left
and he's staying alive to haunt me
maria Feb 7

We felt it, with our hands pressed tightly against our child-chests.

It sounded nothing like a heartbeat,
But explosions being let off in the distance.
And it smelt nothing like fear,
It smelt like sweat and dried urine caked onto torn pajama pants.

We learned singing ourselves to sleep
was more an act of saving than screaming out empty lungs.

We picked at their hands like we picked at our scabs,
Because pulling off dead skin meant pulling off what we didn’t want anymore
And prying off desperate fingers from off our bones,
Meant prying off something that terrified us.

We felt it, with our ears pushed against the door,

It sounded nothing like a pleading mother
But warm air, creeping through vents with a sudden force.
And it smelt nothing like fear,
It smelt of fresh blood, kissing the lips of  a weeping woman.

We worshipped knives like they worshiped our baby-soft skin
Because cutting open ourselves meant cutting out what they left inside
And watching the blood rush out of us,
Felt like we were watching the blood rush out of

It felt nothing life fear
It smelt nothing like decay
It was a continual clutch of the knife against their throats

This one's for you, daddy
I was never taught to say no.
Spit fire.
Only to duct tape my hands. Glue my lips.
Nod before the question was asked.
I learned niceness as synonym for women. I learned yes as synonym for niceness.
Aggression must be swallowed. Emotion only shown if it is full of rainbows and butterflies. Of high pitched yeses and forced giggles.
I must eat my guilt, my pain, my anger. Guzzle it with no water.
Choke down the rage, the irritation.
Tie up my suffering in pink lace; place it delicately in a Tiffany's box. Buried underneath my pillow.
like reciting my favorite song lyrics, over and over and over until I can’t remember their meaning but can’t stop humming the melody.

He asks if it is okay and I delicately peel back my skin.
“How could I not be” I say in flawless harmony.
Next time he doesn’t ask if it's okay but I don’t say no. I try to speak but my throat is a desert— hacking up the remains of my innocence.
In perfect pitch I recite the words as I gag back the hurt, the pain, the pain, letting the guilt leak onto my lips and crawl up my skirt.
More afraid of being accused of meanness than claiming my body as my own.

As a woman I have learned that being nice is more important than saying no. That no is synonym for mean, bitch, prude. That mean is synonym for unwomanly.
And what am I without my womanhood?
I have devoured my words for dinner more often than not in hopes of saving my feminine.

I was never taught to say no.
I don’t know how to say no.

Only to sit in the corner like a trained dog and hold my breath. Only to sing along until my throat runs dry, until I’m coughing up blood all over your white carpet.
c Jan 24
If I’d happened to be someone else
weaning myself dry from my silent spell
may have taken months
waiting for words to
find me again

"It was just a touch"

Find me again
drowned in this skin
I used to know before you
chose to
burrow under

Fingers seeping into soil and rooting in
a friend explained her process of
extracting similar roots
like foreign veins
we'd grown accustom to this

The same friend that
smokes herself to sleep in fear
those roots will find her again

By mere sense she learned the mold of mace and
how to wear her Woman in a public space
She demonstrated proper use as
finger wavered trigger--

If I’d happened to be someone else
reconciling air in my lungs
may have taken years

counting up hours into days
buried in a mangled garden of

Nights spent spinning back clock hands--

I mistook unwelcome hands with the gentle brush of a petal

but luckily

orchids grow
and heal
on their own

Luckily I was not someone else--

Someone so used to gardening open wounds that
trauma festers like a patch of weeds
wild and
unforgiving and
when the soil has dried and
sun has silenced into night
the only remedy is to
uproot the vein

If I'd happened to be
someone else
Explicit content. Guttural response to a breach of trust I've experienced from someone close to me, more than twice. I hope to heal from these experiences, but for now they are fresh in my mind and the person is present in my life.

In the poem, I speak about a friend that has experienced similar trauma, only for her that trauma has stuck with her for years into adulthood. I can sympathize but at the end of the day if that would have been her in my position I can't imagine what it would do to her.
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